A research team led by scientists at Berkeley Lab, in collaboration with UC Berkeley, has demonstrated a unique workaround that offers a simpler approach to solar cell manufacturing: A crystalline solar material with a built-in electric field – a property enabled by what scientists call “ferroelectricity.”

The new ferroelectric material – which is grown in the lab from cesium germanium tribromide – opens the door to an easier approach to making solar cell devices.

Berkeley Lab Research Scientist Sean Lubner is studying materials that can help better store renewable energy to power large-scale systems.

What is photosynthesis? Oh, no big deal, just the key to life on Earth as we know it! Join me as I take a deep dive into this amazingly sophisticated chemical process. Hear fascinating details they didn’t teach you in school and get a crash course on how natural photosynthesis inspires the development of renewable energy technologies that could someday replace all petroleum products.