A sample of a gallium arsenide solar cell. Photo by Dennis Schroeder, NREL

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have developed a new process called acoustic spalling that holds the potential for significantly reducing cost in the manufacturing of III-V solar cells for earth-bound applications. These solar cells, while highly efficient, are limited by their cost to use in space applications. Researchers have determined that the use of acoustic spalling (sound waves) will reduce manufacturing costs by allowing them to repeatedly reuse the substrate that the cells are grown on.

To read more: NREL Puts Sound Waves to Test in Making Solar Cells Cheaper | News | NREL