According to researchers in the energy sector, nanotechnology should bring various benefits to the sector, particularly storage of energy and the solar energy industry. The two main economic benefits of nanotechnology are reduced manufacturing costs and better material efficiency, which are most valuable to the energy sector. Through nanotechnology, solar cells should become cheaper, battery capacity will be extended, and the lifetime of batteries or solar cells could be increased.
Through nanotechnology, the generation of light energy by organic or crystalline solar cells has been successful or at least increased by a great margin. The manufacturing process now uses less material and cost efficient. The use of nanomaterials in lithium-ion batteries will also improve the energy storage capacity. Ever since the 1990’s battery technology has witnessed very minimal growth. Nanotechnology seeks to improve this because of the increasing demand for better energy storage in the automobile, and communication industry.
It is estimated that by the year 2035, use of fossil fuels in production of energy will fall to 75%. This showcases the growing importance of renewable energy in global energy generation. Key technologies including solar cells have to be developed further. Nanotechnology presents various solutions to the many limitations of such technology, and it might turn out to be the solution to the search for a viable energy source. Most researchers believe that nanotechnology still has a lot of untapped potential especially in improving the current renewable energy sources.
Other nanotechnology-driven achievements in the energy industry include hydrogen storage for fuel cell vehicles, high-efficiency light bulbs, better electricity generation from windmills, reduced friction in mechanical parts, electricity generation from waste heat, reduces loss of power during transmission, and even energy storage on cloth and paper. Energy storage remains to be one of the major shortcomings of modern day technologies. Nanotechnology continues to provide better ways of energy production and storage, and it might turn out to be the missing link that scientists have been missing.