Revolutionary new panels generate electricity from falling rain – DNyuz

Revolutionary new panels generate electricity from falling rain

Researchers may have devised a revolutionary new way to replace solar panels altogether. Instead, we could one day see rooftops adorned with rain panels that can capture energy from falling raindrops.

Tech. Entertainment. Science. Your inbox.

Sign up for the most interesting tech & entertainment news out there.



By signing up, I agree to the Terms of Use and have reviewed the Privacy Notice.

The idea of capturing energy from falling raindrops isn’t exactly new. Scientists have been discussing the idea for years. There are some limitations in bringing the rain panels into reality. The main one is that every droplet will only create a small amount of energy, which the panels can capture.

So far, researchers have utilized triboelectric nanogenerators (TENG), which collect energy from the raindrop when it collides with the panel. The amount of energy that is collected, however, makes this concept inefficient and unpractical. Why don’t you set up solar panels with many cells per panel, as some might suggest?

That’s a good question. It works well for solar cells that require sunlight, but not for panels that do not. This is due to a phenomenon known as “coupling capacitance”, which happens between the lower electrodes and upper electrodes of each cell.

Because of this phenomenon, the amount of power lost from cell to cell is actually too great, making it impossible to build an effective rain panel that gathers energy reliably from falling rain. Thankfully, engineers and researchers may have found a way around this issue.

Using D-TENGs, a new type of TENG that significantly reduces (but doesn’t completely negate) the coupling capacitance issue seen in regular TENGs, we may be able to finally make rain panels capable of gathering renewable energy from falling raindrops. The process is still too early to say if it will work as well as solar power, particularly with the climate changes we are experiencing.

If researchers can expand this idea, and make it truly work, then we may see a rise in renewable energy sources. A study on their findings is available in the journal iEnergy, where the researchers break down the new D-TENGs and what they might make possible.

The post Revolutionary new panels generate electricity from falling rain appeared first on BGR.