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Power

Altered Organism Triples Solar Cell Efficiency 158

An anonymous reader writes "By harnessing the shells of living organisms in the sea, microscopic algae called diatoms, engineers have tripled the efficiency of experimental dye-sensitized solar cells. The diatoms were fed a diet of titanium dioxide, the main ingredient for thin film solar cells, instead of their usual meal which is silica (silicon dioxide). As a result, their shells became photovoltaic when coated with dyes. The result is a thin-film dye-sensitized solar cell that is three times more efficient than those without the diatoms."

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