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RECOGNISING OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENTS IN ENERGY

The Global Energy Prize annually honors outstanding achievements in energy research and technology from around the world that are helping address the world’s various and pressing energy challenges.

World production of solar panels is developing at an active pace

June, 2 in St. Petersburg, within the framework of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, the solemn ceremony of the Global Energy Prize will take place. On the eve of this event, the laureate of 2017 - Professor of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, the world-famous scientist Michael Graetzel - spoke about his developments that offer simple and effective solutions for power generation and increase the world production of solar panels.

According to experts, over the past three years, the share of renewable sources in total electricity production has increased. Today, the world's best scientists are working to find new effective ways to convert the energy of the sun into electricity. A significant contribution to the development of this direction was made by the laureate of the Global Energy Prize 2017 - Professor of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, the world-famous scientist Michael Graetzel. He is rightly considered one of the leaders in the development of solar energy. His solar cells, named in his honor, are the only photovoltaic devices in the world that successfully simulate the process of plant photosynthesis and work on an organic dye. One of the main advantages of Michael Graetzel's development is the efficiency of energy storage regardless of the angle of the sun's fall. Such panels can be powered even from refracted or reflected light. Under bright sunlight, the elements of Graetzel work with an efficiency of 15%, and in diffused light (in cloudy weather or indoors) this figure reaches 28.9%. Thus, they are capable of operating at different frequency ranges of the luminous flux, up to infrared. Another advantage of the development is the simplicity of the device and the production of inexpensive materials. Today, these solar cells represent a viable alternative to the market leader - the more expensive and sophisticated silicon battery technologies.

Batteries based on Graetzel cells are more convenient from a consumer point of view than silicon cells. They can be made flexible and executed in various color solutions, which expands the possibilities of their use in the construction of civil and industrial construction. Batteries can be integrated into facades, windows and other structural elements of buildings for power generation. When embedded in the window glass with their help, you can achieve a double effect: cooling the premises and passing electricity. For example, such panels are installed on the facade of the Swiss Swiss Conference Center in Lausanne. Batteries can be integrated into facades, windows and other structural elements of buildings for power generation. In case of embedded in the window glass with their help, you can achieve a double effect: cooling the premises and passing electricity. For example, such panels are installed on the facade of the Swiss Conference Center in Lausanne. Another example of use is the noise barrier built on the motorway between the Swiss cities of Bern and Zurich, which not only protects from noise, but also generates electricity.

Michael Graetzel's solar cells are also used today as a portable power source for charging electronic devices. In particular, in the UK developed a "sunny backpack", in which a flexible panel of solar cells is pitched. It continuously collects external light and accumulates energy in an electric battery for the subsequent supply of energy to mobile phones, GPS, iPod or other electronic devices.

According to experts, now the solar panels of doctor Graetzel are produced by tens of thousands of square meters, but in the next few years this figure will increase to millions of square meters. Thus will be generated gigawatts of electricity. According to the forecast of the world-famous German Institute of Solar Energy Systems Fraunhofer (ISE), by 2030, annually, will be produced at least 20 GW of electricity.

As Michael Graetzel stressed, the presentation of the Global Energy Prize, which is financed by the largest Russian energy companies - PJSC Gazprom, Surgutneftegaz and PJSC UES FGC - will strengthen the introduction of a worldwide commercial innovation Technology, which appeared as a result of his research.

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