Shrinking Solar Technology Into Photovoltaic Film

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It’s a little hard to believe, but one day soon your shirt could power your cell phone.

That miniature solar cell pictured to the right is the work of John A. Rogers at the University of Illinois, and it’s small enough to be printed on rolls of plastic that can coat windows, awnings, or even be stamped into a t-shirt.

Compared to traditional solar panels which are heavy and stiff, this new technology is flexible enough to be wrapped around something as small as a pencil, and at a fraction of the cost of other panels available today. If solar t-shirts are already on their way, what could this technology be applied to next?

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