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Joshua Spurgeon
Graduate Student, Biological Imaging Center

A silicon microwire array embedded in flexible polymer (PDMS - polydimethylsiloxane). These films are being made into next generation photovoltaics that could one day be inexpensive and easy to roll out on your roof. The principle behind wire array solar cells is that light can be absorbed along the long axial dimension of the rod while photogenerated electrons or holes could be collected along the shorter radial dimension. Being able to collect charge carriers along a path shorter than the light absorption depth could allow cheaper, more impure materials to be incorporated into effective solar cells. The wires are 100 microns tall, 2 microns wide, and embedded in a layer of polymer approximately 30 microns thick.


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