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New efficiency record could increase smartphone battery life

This week, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) confirmed a new world record in dual-junction solar cells of 30.8% efficiency.

The record was set by California-based Alta Devices, and while dual-junction solar cells are still very expensive for rooftop solar, these cells can be applied to small devices.

Alta Devices claims their solar cells are efficient, flexible and very thin – making them suitable for consumer goods like smartphones and tablets.

“We are changing the way solar technology is used,” said Chris Norris, president and CEO of Alta Devices.

“With our technology, enough energy can be generated from sunlight to effectively power devices in ways not previously possible. We are working with a number of customers who are designing their mobile products to increase battery life; and in some cases, we can provide enough energy to eliminate the need to plug into the electric grid.”

Credit: Alta Devices

Alta Devices’ technology can be integrated into mobile devices, potentially eliminating the need for a traditional power source.

According to the firm’s calculations, someone working outdoors could benefit from 80 percent more battery life each day for his or her mobile phone, or 60 percent more battery life for a tablet.

“This new dual junction record at 30.8% is a testament to our technology and our world-class team. It’s also an important step toward our target of 38% efficient cells,” said Norris. “We continue to redefine the boundaries of what is possible with solar power.”


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