PROVIDENCE, R.I., Aug. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Solaris Nanosciences has demonstrated a completely rechargeable dye sensitized solar cell (DSSC or Graetzel Cell) creating the lowest manufacturing cost, long-life photovoltaic system in the world. DSSCs which are based on low cost materials and simple construction, have to date suffered from limited operating lifetimes due to the degradation of the sensitizer dyes. Solaris' nontoxic chemical process allows the degraded dye in already installed DSSCs to be removed and replaced with new dye, restoring the performance of the original solar cell. "This low cost process, which can be performed by the existing base of heating and air conditioning businesses, requires less than thirty minutes and takes the operating life of these photovoltaics (PV) beyond that of silicon to over 30 years," said Nabil M. Lawandy, CEO of Solaris Nanosciences. Lawandy also stated, "Not only can we replace the original dye, but we have shown that newer, more efficient dyes, resulting from ongoing efforts worldwide, can be used in recharging. This effectively allows for efficiency upgrades over the life of the installed system." The recharging process and its performance were independently confirmed at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne where DSSCs were invented by Professor Michael Graetzel. "Our evaluation has shown without any doubt that the cell performance after three coloration cycles remained intact and could even be pushed beyond the initial cell output..." said Professor Graetzel, whose group performed the study. Professor Graetzel also said "The procedure developed by Solaris Nanosciences is the first to accomplish a rapid and complete replenishment of the sensitizer and electrolyte. This has important implications for the long-life applications of the dye sensitized solar cells. This solution provides an elegant way to maintain for a very long time the conductive glass shell structure of the cell serving as current collector. This is the part of the DSSC that is most expensive and has the largest energy content. Thus, the new Solaris Nanosciences process saves costs and energy, avoiding the waste of materials and the recycling problem that other competing PV technologies must face." "Professor Graetzel's confirmation of our process is an important validation, both for the Company and the entire PV community. Solaris has effectively created the solar cell analogue of the rechargeable lithium-ion battery developed by Sony, forever transforming that industry," said Lawandy. Solaris plans to develop a large scale prototype of its rechargeable solar cell for testing at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and with corporate partners to explore the distribution of this new PV technology through the building and construction industry. SOLARIS NANOSCIENCES Solaris is pursuing the commercialization of its rechargeable solar cells as well as engineered nano-antenna materials to provide unique benefits to several large industry sectors. Solaris Nanosciences is applying its nanotechnology processes and materials patent portfolio to become a leading manufacturer and licensor of nano-materials and technology for photovoltaics and other applications. In addition to the primary focus on photovoltaics, the company is developing additional products for displays and vision enhancement through corporate and institutional partnerships. For additional information on Solaris Nanosciences and its technologies, visit www.solarisnano.com.
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