Third-Generation Solar Cells: Toxicity and Risk of Exposure

Solar energy is considered clean energy, and its use is predicted to increase in the near future. Most installed units today are crystalline solar cells, but the field is in constant development, and when the first dye sensitized solar cell was published byGratzelandO'Reagana new, third-generation, solar power was born. Highly toxic metals are used to produce the photovoltaic units today, and with the predicted increase in solar cell installation, the human health hazards of these panels could become an issue. Additionally, many of these materials are used in their nanoform, which is associated with an additional risk. In this article, we discuss the technology behind the third-generation solar cells with its valuable use of nanotechnology as well as the possible health hazard when such nanomaterials are used in solar power units. We will show that the main exposure will occur either during the development and production phases or at the end-of-life stage of the solar cells, where toxic material can leach into landfills, and subsequently into the environment and impact the ecosystem directly, or humans indirectly through edible plants or drinking water.


Published in:
Helvetica Chimica Acta
Year:
Aug 20 2020
Publisher:
Weinheim, WILEY-V C H VERLAG GMBH
ISSN:
0018-019X
1522-2675
Keywords:
Laboratories:




 Record created 2020-09-03, last modified 2020-10-27


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