Solar Power, Progress
As most people know, collecting solar energy for the purposes of making electricity on any sort of large scale is more or less a futile venture that produces considerable heavy metal waste and is generally inefficient. Also, considering the dependence on some rare metals like iridium means mass production of many of the most efficient designs is largely impossible (remember, many of the world’s only known reserves of these metals are in China). But, as is always the case, when a market creates a demand, invention and necessity will find a way. Current research at CalTech has found a way to use silicon (one of the most abundant elements on the planet) micro-wire arrays to collect useful amounts of solar energy and convert it into electricity. Progress is exciting.