For the first time ever, researchers connected nine biological-solar (bio-solar) cells into a bio-solar panel. Then they continuously produced electricity from the panel and generated the most wattage of any existing small-scale bio-solar cells – 5.59 microwatts.
“Once a functional bio-solar panel becomes available, it could become a permanent power source for supplying long-term power for small, wireless telemetry systems as well as wireless sensors used at remote sites where frequent battery replacement is impractical,” said Seokheun “Sean” Choi, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering in Binghamton University’s Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, and co-author of the paper.
Choi is the corresponding author of the paper “Biopower generation in a microfluidic bio-solar panel,” which reported the findings.
“This research could also enable crucial understanding of the photosynthetic extracellular electron transfer processes in a smaller group of microorganisms with excellent control over the microenvironment, thereby enabling a versatile platform for fundamental bio-solar cell studies,” said Choi.
Xuejian Wei, a graduate student in the department, and Hankeun Lee ’15, who will graduate from Binghamton in May, were also authors of the study.
Nine biological-solar (bio-solar) cells connected into a bio-solar panel. The panel has generated the most wattage of any existing small-scale bio-solar cells – 5.59 microwatts Credit: Seokheun “Sean” Choi