Nepalese Teenager Turns Human Hair into Solar Panels

Eighteen-year-old Milan Karki of Nepal has invented a new type of solar panel that uses human hair as a conductor:
The hair replaces silicon, a pricey component typically used in solar panels, and means the panels can be produced at a low cost for those with no access to power, he explained....
The solar panel, which produces 9 V (18 W) of energy, costs around £23 to make from raw materials.
But if they were mass-produced, Milan says they could be sold for less than half that price, which could make them a quarter of the price of those already on the market.

Melanin, a pigment that gives hair its colour, is light sensitive and also acts as a type of conductor. Because hair is far cheaper than silicon the appliance is less costly.

Link (Photo: Tom Van Cakenberghe/Barcroft Media) - via Gizmodo

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is if there is a coating around the outside of the hair that conducts electricity. But even then, I'm struggling to see how this could possibly to build a solar panel
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hair contains melanin, as stated. melanins when doped with iodine turn into semiconductors. solar panels are semiconductor. i dunno, maybe iodine doped hair is photovoltaic, but 18W sounds a bit iffy. maybe 18mW?
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I think it's great that people are thinking up wild ways to provide cheaper energy. I don't know if this is the next big thing, or if it will be something else, but 10 years from now there will be some great idea that works!
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