Climate love
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Deakin University

Climate love

For developing an affordable way to recycle solar panels

Recycling old solar panels is complicated and expensive - but a group of Australian scientists may have found a simpler and much cheaper solution, writes euronews.green
Solar panels are key to the clean energy transition. But 90 percent currently end up in landfill once they have stopped working. Not because they can't be recycled, but because recycling them is more expensive than burying them as landfill.
Up until now, that is.
A team of researchers from Australia’s Deakin University has developed a new thermal and chemical technique to extract silicon from obsolete panels. Their method - which relies on complex heating and chemical processes - doesn't need dangerous chemicals to extract the valuable silicon from the panels, making it both cheaper and more environmentally friendly. As a bonus, the nanoparticle material made from silicon is worth a lot of money - making the new method financially very interesting for recycling businesses. The recycled material can be used to create battery anodes that increase the capacity of lithium batteries. The researchers are now working on a way to make low-cost batteries from this material.
When these solar panels are worn out, chances have now increased that they will be recycled instead of being used as landfill. Photo by Bill Mead on Unsplash
When these solar panels are worn out, chances have now increased that they will be recycled instead of being used as landfill. Photo by Bill Mead on Unsplash

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  • We Don't Have Time

    66 w

    Dear Markus Lutteman Thank you for getting your climate love to level 2! We have reached out to Deakin University and requested a response. I will keep you updated on any progress! /Adam We Don't Have Time

    1
    • Daniel Waweru

      66 w

      Amazing technology used in good climatic ways

      1
      • Waigwa Monica

        66 w

        Innovative solutions that are sustainable is a win to the planet.

        2
        • walter lungayi

          66 w

          This is great innovation.

          2
          • Elizabeth Gathigia

            66 w

            Technology advancement is taking turn towards bringing sustainable green energy

            3
            • Munene Mugambi

              66 w

              This means there's going to be zero waste solar panels

              4
              • Sarah Chabane

                66 w

                Wow! This can be a game changer in this industry!

                2
                • Ibrahim Babagana

                  66 w

                  It's so wonderful development

                  5
                  • Tabitha Kimani

                    66 w

                    An awesome technology.

                    9
                    • Ulrica Westman

                      66 w

                      But why not storage them until they can be recycled? Instead of bury them? Can You dig them up when they can be recycled? Seems like a waste of time/resorces since we all know we will - and have to - find ways to recycle!

                      4
                      • Anon.org

                        66 w

                        @ulrica_westman It's a more #Financial #METHOD #OHS

                        2
                        • Ulrica Westman

                          66 w

                          @anon_org Yes, I know. Still think it is stupid 😓

                          3
                          • Anon.org

                            66 w

                            @ulrica_westman The electroilysis ⚡element??

                            2
                            • Ulrica Westman

                              66 w

                              @anon_org No, to bury solar cells in landfill.

                              2
                              • Markus Lutteman

                                66 w

                                @ulrica_westman, I totally agree. My opinion is that landfill should be banned whenever there is a recycling option (which there almost always is).

                                4
                              • Annett Michuki..

                                66 w

                                this is a nice idea recycling these panels will also create job opportunities

                                2
                                • Hilda Wangui

                                  66 w

                                  Great

                                  10
                                  • Johannes Luiga

                                    66 w

                                    Really great

                                    2
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