An Australian PhD student has found a cheap way to make solar cells with nail polish, a pizza oven and an ink jet printer. 23-year-old Nicole Kuepper’s invention, named iJET, doesn’t require the pricey clean rooms and high-temperature ovens of traditional solar panel manufacturing plants, thus dramatically lowering the cost of solar and paving the road for introducing the technology to third-world countries.
Kuepper was awarded two Australian Museum Eureka Prizes, the country’s top science award, for iJET. Unfortunately, it seems like the only page that would explain how iJET works is down right now, but Kuepper said it would probably take five years to commercialise the technology and it’ll help people in less developed nations to “read at night, keep informed about the world through radio and television and refrigerate life-saving vaccines” without all those nasty CO2 emissions. [The Australian via Treehugger]