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Purple Pokeberries hold secret to affordable solar power worldwide

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posted on May, 2 2010 @ 07:52 PM
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Purple Pokeberries hold secret to affordable solar power worldwide


The weeds that children smash to stain their cheeks purple-red and that Civil War soldiers used to write letters home - could be the key to spreading solar power across the globe, according to researchers at Wake Forest University's Center for Nanotechnology and Molecular Materials.

Nanotech Center scientists have used the red dye made from pokeberries to coat their efficient and inexpensive fiber-based solar cells. The dye acts as an absorber, helping the cell's tiny fibers trap more sunlight to convert into power.

Pokeberries proliferate even during drought and in rocky, infertile soil. That means residents of rural Africa, for instance, could raise the plants for pennies. Then they could make the dye absorber for the extremely efficient fiber cells and provide energy where power lines don't run, said David Carroll, Ph.D., the center's director.




posted on May, 2 2010 @ 07:53 PM
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In the wake of this Oil Disaster. It's ideas and discoveries like this that need to be thrust into mainstream. We really need to ween ourselves from BIG Oil's teet and soon!! IMO of course



posted on May, 2 2010 @ 08:26 PM
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And the new shoots are delicious too. This is amazing news with great potential for creating new energy sources. SN'F



posted on May, 2 2010 @ 09:00 PM
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I have a poke berry in my front garden.

I always cut it back before the berries turn purple because they are poisonous
to animals.

It is a cool looking plant, very useful it seems.



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