Fujitsu converts heat and light into electricity with a single device
By Rick Martin
December 9, 2010
Fujitsu Laboratories today announced a two-in-one energy harvesting device that can convert both light and heat into electricity. With no electrical wiring or batteries to replace, Fujitsu says that this sort of device can be manufactured from organic materials keeping costs to a minimum.
Devices that use photovoltaic cells to convert light to electricity or temperature differentials to harness heat are not new, but by combining the two on a single hybrid device, Fujitsu says it can double the energy-capture potential.
Fujitsu's diagram shows how such a device, which contains both N-type and P-type semiconductor materials, can operate in both photovoltaic mode (left) and thermoelectric mode (right):
If you're a regular reader of Gizmag you're well aware of Fujitsu Laboratories' efforts in the field of green tech. Whether it's plant-based plastics, power-saving optical switch technology, or even something as simple as a smarter power strip, we're always curious to see what these folks are up to.