In his Riverworld novels, everybody who died since the beginning of the human race reappeared suddenly on another planet to live without dying.
In the Dayworld trilogy, man is allowed only to live one day a week because of overpopulation, spending the other six days in stasis.
Such concept story-telling aptly describes a technology under development by a team at the University of Southern California that eventually could mean solar T-shirts at the Gap.
"Imagine people powering their cellular phone or music/video device while jogging in the sun," Gomez De Arco, a team member, told alternative-energy-news.
Researchers combined organic photovoltaic cells, which use organic polymers to absorb light and convert it energy, with transparent graphene films to create the flexible power-producing material.
"Graphene solar cells demonstrated outstanding capability to operate under bending conditions," according to a paper the team published in science journal ACS Nano.
"Our work indicates the great potential of CVD graphene films for flexible photovoltaic applications.
" Definitely cool.
Apply a coating to Iron Man's suit of armor and all he has to do after battling a superfoe is fly into the sun to recharge.
Or slap a layer of the stuff all over my 1974 Super Beetle and I'll never have a dead battery.
Plus it might keep the paint from oxidizing further.
The USC team includes Chongwu Zhou, Cody W.
Schlenker, Koungmin Rye, Mark E.
Thompson, Yi Zhang and De Arco.
Alternative Energy wrote while the graphene-organic photovoltaics don't produce electricity nearly as efficiently as standard silicon panels, they make up for that lack with "low cost, conductivity, stability, electrode/organic film compatibility, and easy availability along with flexibility.
" Farmer in his heyday could have worked with the possibilities and taken solar on graphene to even greater heights.
Then again, 3M may do the same thing in a couple of years.