One of the main reasons that green power hasn't taken off is its high price tag, but Australian PhD candidate Nicole Kuepper may be changing that. This green-thinking student has discovered a way to produce solar cells using a pizza oven, nail polish, and ink jet printers.
According to the The Sydney Morning Herald:
Ms Kuepper realised a new approach would be needed if affordable cells were to be made on site in poorer countries: "What started off as a brainstorming session has resulted in the iJET cell concept that uses low-cost and low-temperature processes, such as ink-jet printing and pizza ovens, to manufacture solar cells."
While it could take five years to commercialise the patented technology, providing renewable energy to homes in some of the least developed countries would enable people to "read at night, keep informed about the world through radio and television and refrigerate life-saving vaccines". And it would also help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The inspiring Kuepper was awarded the British Council Eureka Prize for Young Leaders in Environmental Issues and Climate Change for her solar power development, as well as a $10,000 study tour to Britain. I'm always proud of girl geeks, and since women are underrepresented in the sciences, I am doubly impressed by this young inventor. Congratulations, Nicole!