Hair power

Milan Karki, a Nepalese teenager, has invented a solar panel that uses hair instead of silicone to convert the rays of the sun into power.

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Karki wanted to help provide energy for his village but now can set his sights on a bigger market.  The Melanin in hair, it turns out, is light sensitive and a semi-conductor.  Karki and four other classmates developed the cells as an experiment and with its success have already sent test cells out to other districts.

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If mass-produced it could potentially cut the cost of solar panels in half and because the hair would be easy to replace consumers would have more maintenance control.

Karki says he was inspired after reading Stephen Hawking’s book where he describes using hair to create static electricity.

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