The Shadow-Effect Energy Generator (SEG) is a real prototype device which turns shadows into electricity.
A team from NUS Materials Science and Engineering and NUS Physics published their work on this prototype, explaining how it works and what its effectiveness is like in the Energy & Environmental Science journal.
In the abstract, the researchers explain that the device “scavenges the illumination contrast that arises on the device from shadow castings, and generates a direct current, simply by placing a part of the generator in shadow.”
However, unlike solar panels, the researchers found that SEG works best when exposed to the contrast of shadow and light rather than full shadow. They found it was twice as effective under a shifting shadow compared to complete cover.
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