A Swedish startup out of Uppsala university is launching a transparent solar cell developed for smart building systems. This new technology can be a power solution both for dynamic windows and for self-powered sensors and other devices in energy efficient building systems.

Peafowl Solar Power, the company behind the innovation, was awarded regional SKAPA prize in memory of Alfred Nobel by the Swedish agency Almi on September 5th, for development of “a patented power source for low-power applications, a sustainable and designable photovoltaic cell” that can be “installed without cabling into smart transparent window glass for applications in the sustainable buildings of the future.”

“It is important for us that our technology should enable retrofitting. There is a lot of new technology like dynamic windows and IoT systems to make buildings more efficient, but a lot of it is only suitable for new construction. We need to develop solutions that also work for the buildings that are already in place,” says Jacinto, co-founder and CEO.

The Peafowl Solar Cell is the first direct plasmonic solar cell. A direct plasmonic solar cell converts light into electricity using plasmonic nanoparticles as the active, photovoltaic material. Plasmonic nanoparticles can absorb up to ten times as much light as other known materials. Because the Peafowl Solar Cell is so efficient at converting the light it intercepts into electricity, it can produce electricity even when very little light is intercepted. This is the key to the ultra-high transparency of the cell.