An investigation of a wash‐durable solar energy harvesting textile

Satharasinghe, A. ORCID: 0000-0002-7124-8228, Hughes‐Riley, T. ORCID: 0000-0001-8020-430X and Dias, T. ORCID: 0000-0002-3533-0398, 2019. An investigation of a wash‐durable solar energy harvesting textile. Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications. ISSN 1062-7995

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This work demonstrates a novel and sustainable energy solution in the form of a photovoltaic fabric that can deliver a reliable energy source for wearable and mobile devices. The solar fabric was woven using electronic yarns created by embedding miniature crystalline silicon solar cells connected with fine copper wires within the fibres of a textile yarn. This approach of integrating solar energy harvesting capability within the heart of the textile fabric allows it to retain the flexibility, three‐dimensional deformability, and moisture and heat transfer characteristics of the fabric. In this investigation, both the design and performance of the solar cell embedded yarns and solar energy harvesting fabrics were explored. These yarns and resultant fabrics were characterised under different light intensities and at different angles of incident light, a critical factor for a wearable device. The solar cell embedded yarns woven into fabrics can undergo domestic laundering and maintained ~90% of their original power output after 15 machine wash cycles. The solar fabric embedded with 200 solar cells demonstrated here (44.5 mm × 45.5 mm active area) was capable of continuously generating ~2.15 mW/cm2 under one sun illumination and was capable of powering a basic mobile phone. The power generation capability and durability of the solar energy harvesting fabric proved its viability to power wearable devices as an integral part of regular clothing.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications
Creators: Satharasinghe, A., Hughes‐Riley, T. and Dias, T.
Publisher: Wiley
Date: 27 December 2019
ISSN: 1062-7995
Divisions: Schools > School of Art and Design
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 06 Jan 2020 09:38
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2020 09:38

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