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£3.4 Million programme to find solar cells you can wear, bend or even spray on

The University of Warwick is to lead a consortium of  eight UK universities in a new £3.4 Million programme to develop technologies that will lead to a new generation of solar cell that you can not only wear, fold, bend,  but you can also even spray onto surfaces.

The SUPERGEN "Excitonic Solar Cell Consortium" is funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and  brings together the Universities of Warwick, Bath, Bristol, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Imperial College, Loughborough and Oxford for a 4  year research programme starting in April 2009.

Excitonic Solar Cells (ESCs) differ from the standard heavy silicon based solar cells, in that they are based on organic and other materials with particular structures  at nanometre scales. They can  be made using low cost methods that could deposit or even spray onto  both rigid and flexible bases. One could wear them, use them to power electronic products you wish to bend to fit a space or a body shape, or even spray them onto the roof of a vehicle that could easily not take the weight of conventional solar cells.

Lead Researcher University of Warwick Research Chemist Professor Tim Jones said:

"There have also been initial steps to commercialise some ESCs, with the first manufacturing plant to produce dye sensitised excitonic cells opening in the UK in 2007. However, it is widely recognised that much fundamental research still needs to be carried out, in particular on the less well developed organic and hybrid excitonic cells."

For further information please contact:

Peter Dunn, Head of Communications
Communications Office, University House,
University of Warwick, Coventry, CV4 8UW, United Kingdom   
Tel: +44 (0)24 76 523708
Mobile/Cell:  +44 (0)7767 655860