While photovoltaic cells are certainly one of the best ways to produce clean energy, from a scientific perspective they are actually quite inefficient. In the average solar cell, only about 20% of the solar energy is transferred into usable electricity.
This is in contrast to photosynthesis performed by plants, which reaches efficiencies of 95 percent. While in the past, we knew very little about how plants reached these efficiencies, new research by the ICFO- Institute of Photonic Sciences is giving us insight into the quantum secrets of photosynthesis with the hope of developing a new generation of solar cells.
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