Who knew Blu-ray discs were so useful? Already one of the best ways to store high-definition movies and television shows because of their high-density data storage, Blu-ray discs also improve the performance of solar cells — suggesting a second use for unwanted discs — according to new research. An interdisciplinary research team has discovered that the pattern of information written on a Blu-ray disc works very well for improving light absorption across the solar spectrum. And better yet, the researchers know why. Blu-ray discs contain a higher density of data than DVDs or CDs, and it is this quasi-random pattern, perfected by engineers over decades for data storage, that, when transferred to the surface of solar cells, provides the right texture to improve the cells’ light absorption and performance.
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