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This New Class Of Material Is Key To Making Solar Panels Cheap

While the answer to the second question is no, the answer to the first is a lot more positive. Year on year, solar panels have been plunging in price and improving in the efficiency with which they can convert light into energy.

At the same time fossil fuel costs continue to rise, and in the next few years we will reach the point where the costs overlap ? some figures suggest this may have already happened. The question is not whether solar energy can supplant fossil fuels as the cheapest means to produce energy, but rather when.

While this has provided an enormous boost to the solar industry, the main excitement in the solar sector today is due to a new type of material called perovskite. Combining some of the best qualities of more mainstream materials, it has proved incredibly flexible ? to the point that University of Sheffield researchers have manufactured perovskite solar cells as a spray-on liquid. So what is perovskite, and what's the buzz around it?

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