Is This The Beginning Of The End For Phone Batteries?

Is A Clear Glass The Future Of Power Generation For Handheld Devices? Image: MIT

As exciting as advances in battery technology have been lately–not least because of the efforts of Elon Musk, his Powerwall, and the Gigafactory in Nevada–a new glass created by MIT spinoff Ubiquitous Energy promises (threatens?) to turn current power-storage paradigms of their head.

The key here is the special organic coating of that absorbs light in the non-visible potion of the spectrum. When applied to clear glass it is capable of producing power from it. That means future devices could draw energy from the sun without the unsightly dark solar panels currently being used.

It also mean that with clear glass doing double-duty as part of the physical interface for phones, watches, etc. and as at least part of the power generation for the devices, that their weight and volume could be dramatically reduced. You can be sure there will be a rush to get this glass into appropriate devices as quickly as possible.