Solar energy requires the sun and big solar panels that you usually see mounted to the roofs of buildings in sunnier climates. You don’t see them mounted to the roofs of cars because they would be impractical. However, a new solar spray could coat your roof in a substance that turns it into a working solar panel (without the actual panel).
It’s called sprayLD and it was developed by Illan Kramer, a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Toronto. It uses colloidal quantum dots (CQDs) to create a thin film that can coat a flexible surface, like a car roof. The average car roof could provide enough energy to power three 100-watt bulbs or 24 compact fluorescent bulbs.
The spray is an incredible idea, but just as incredible is the spray dispensing machine. You might expect something fancy that’s hidden under lock and key because of its astronomical cost to build. You’d be wrong.
It’s made from commonplace inexpensive components. The spray nozzle was sourced from steel mills and originally used there to cool steel with a fine mist of water. The brushes were picked up at a local art store. They’re working on making the technology scalable so that someday soon surfaces like your car roof can be solar without the ugly panels.
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