A team of MIT scientists are currently building a solar energy device that uses inventive engineering and advances in materials science to capture the sun’s energy in greater scales. A standard silicon is able to convert approximately 32% of the energy in sunlight into electricity. Specialists have estimated that the MIT device has the potential to be roughly twice as efficient as conventional photovoltaics.

The way it works is by using a photonics crystal that captures not only light energy but also heat energy from the sun, which is normally lost in conventional solar cells. The heat energy captured is converted in to to wavelengths of light that a solar cell can transform in to electricity. The solar energy device therefore is more efficient and can continue to produce electricity even after the sun has set. This technology is still in prototype stages, however it could offer a new means of cheap and continuous power to the world economy.

Value for Dubai

The development of existing technologies that promote more efficient and environmentally sustainable methodologies of producing energy on mass scale, is relevant to Dubai’s Clean Energy Strategy 2050.