Ecoseed recently reported on an Australian consortium that is developing “home grown electricity”. This consortium of Australian universities and industry partners is working on developing new technology for solar cells that can harness the sun through walls, windows and roofing. The consortium includes Monash University, the University of Melbourne, several national science agencies and industry partners including Bluescope Steel. They aim to come up with an alternative to traditional PV cells.

These ‘dye-sensitised’ cells would not rely on direct sunlight, but rather can harvest light from any direction. This means they could be integrated in to a range of bulding materials, and would be able to operate when there isn’t a strong source of sunlight, something that traditional panels do not currently offer.

The collaboration is currently backed by a $3.4 million grant from the State and Commonwealth governments. To date there have been improvements to the materials used and consequently they are looking at producing the cells to an appropriate industrial level.