Tensile Solar by SMIT
Brooklyn design company SMIT (Sustainable Minded Interactive Technology) has created Tensile Solar, a cool and lightweight shade powered by the sun (through CIGS photovoltaic cells).
Copper indium gallium (di)selenide (CIGS) (CAS NO. 12018-95-0) is a I-III-VI2 compound semiconductor material composed of copper, indium, gallium, and selenium. The material is a solid solution of copper indium selenide (often abbreviated “CIS”) and copper gallium selenide, with a chemical formula of CuInxGa(1-x)Se2, where the value of x can vary from 1 (pure copper indium selenide) to 0 (pure copper gallium selenide). It is a tetrahedrally bonded semiconductor, with the chalcopyrite crystal structure, and a bandgap varying continuously with xfrom about 1.0 eV (for copper indium selenide) to about 1.7 eV (for copper gallium selenide). It is used as light absorber material for thin-film solar cells.
Tensile Solar is come in various designs: saddle, tent, pole mount and the last is intended to a larger architectural structures, such as a party tent.
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Plastic Organic Solar Cell from University of Cambridge
Researchers from the University of Cambridge have developed cheaper organic solar cells. Made from organic plastic, the cells have unlimited possibilities for commercial uses, which have become obstacles in the production of solar cell for some time now.
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Active and Passive Solar Heat
Utilization of solar energy in architecture can be done in two ways: passive and active. Utilization of passive do when solar power does not need to converted first into electricity. Deep utilization of the passive is also included on space heating (using the greenhouse gases) for the region with temperature of the air low, and water heating. Also, techniques to prevent heating the air in the room on the building in the area, including Tropical into the use of the passive type, where component of sunlight, which consists of: light and heat, only used on components’ light ‘it – the need for natural lighting in buildings.
Passive design strategies will be very different between the buildings that are on climate Tropical and climate Sub Tropical / cold. At the Tropical climate, direct radiation from the sun tend to be avoided by building in order to heat gain in the building to be low, so the increase of air temperature in the building can be prevented. While in Sub-Tropical climate, the design strategy is a passive step of the Tropical climate strategy in the acquisition of heat sun tend to be maximized (except in the summer), solar radiation through that fall directly on the building so that temperature increase occurs in the building, considering the air temperature around is low.
In utilizing the solar actively using the photovoltaic, should also simultaneously architect implement the strategy of passive design. Without the application of passive design strategies, energy use in buildings very likely remain high when visual and thermal comfort must be achieved. In situations such as this, the electric power comes from solar power conversion by solar cells does not become too much meaning. With dimensional solar cell panel which needs large electricity for the achievement of thermal comfort and visual on the building difficult to fulfill. Still electrical energy required for engine cooling air with a large capacity, because the air temperature in a high building, also required electricity for lights in the torch-lighting building a dark room when the strategy passive design that lead to the energy savings are not applied. Role of solar power to replace electricity necessary to achieve the building comfort (thermal and visual) finally failed because the building was not designed in such a form so that comfort achieved without the many electric energy consumption. Electricity generated by the photovoltaic possibility will not be large enough to cool down and illuminate the building. In other words passive design considerations for the use of energy in buildings in this case can not be ignored.
In the passive design, objectives of architecture work that would be achieved – that is comfortable and aesthetic, are generally made integral. Each step in the preparation of the components to form the jacket, simultaneous will result in the achievement of buildings comfort and aesthetic. Be not so with the case where the design of active solar cell panels can be arranged separate components with the preparation of building casing. In other words, the achievement of building aesthetic in active design done in a more flexible and separate with the strategy of comfort achievement, although in fact the architects are required to thought to integrate a comprehensive comfort needs with aesthetics – between needs using a solar cell panel with place them on the integrated shroud of the building so that the panels at once can be a building aesthetic element.
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The High Costs of Solar Electric Power
Executive Summary about Solar Electric by Klaus H Hemsath
Promotion of solar power generation is booming. Why are solar farms built when financial data clearly show that solar power is still the most expensive electricity generation technology available?
Solar power plant developers and marketers obviously know that they need to lower costs. Cost reduction is, however, expensive and takes time. There are two major technologies for solar energy conversion. Electricity production with steam is a very mature technology. The other technology is the direct, photovoltaic conversion of sunlight into electricity. This technology will most likely become the dominant solar electric power generating technology – eventually. The concentrated sunshine creates very high surface temperatures on the solar panel. To save solar panel area and make the solar panel price competitive, one must cool the surface of the solar panel very efficiently to prevent it from melting and destruction.
Present production costs for generating electricity with solar panels are hovering around $0.50 per kWh. Right now, solar power does not yet make economical sense.
None of the available technologies using renewable energy can compete with the cost of electricity generation from coal.
The technologies for generating electricity with solar power, wind power, marine power, and geothermal power are very well understood. At present, a respectable number of windmill farms and solar panel farms are being installed. Solar power does not make economical sense, yet. A random sampling of recent announcements of solar farm installations reveals that system installation costs are in the $3000 to $7500 per kW installed capacity. These plant costs loosely translate into a cost of producing electric power at $0.30 to $0.60 per kWh. This very unfavorably compares to the cost of electricity generation by any other technology.
As long as solar power constitutes only a very small fraction of overall electric power generation, the additional costs of storing intermittently produced electric power are not yet of concern. If the US is going to depend significantly on the intermittent production of electricity from solar power and wind power, it must begin to develop storage technologies for huge amounts of electric energy. Intermittent, renewable energies and electric energy storage are inseparable.
The Solar Electric Panel – An Inexpensive Way to Generate Electricity
Executive Summary about Solar Electric by Dan A Swanson
The solar electric panels, generally called solar photovoltaic panels, are made of a set of treated silicon cells arranged in a series array. They produce electricity on being exposed to the sunlight. A small solar electric panel will lessen the energy bills considerably, while a big solar panel will in fact budge the meter backwards. The contemporary solar electric panels are simple to install and are modular. The solar electric panels transform the sunlight to DC (direct current) electricity. Buy any of these solar electric panels according to your requirements.
Solar electric panels are the perfect answer to our increasing electricity bills and ever increasing reliance on depleting conventional energy resources. Make a one time investment in solar panels and generate free electricity for years to come. Solar electric panels are the need of the hour.
Solar Powered Bikini
That is so wonderful, you could be on the beach all day grooving songs in your ipod and never run out of electricity while wearing this solar photovoltaic bikini! And who goes in the water anyways.
A solar film bikini that charges your iPod! (With a USB connection!).
The suit is a medium-sized bikini swimsuit fitted with a 1 “x 4″ photovoltaic film strips were stitched together in series with conductive thread. The cells terminate in 5 volt regulator into the female USB connection. [Via]
Solar Pavement by Onyx and Butech
Onyx Solar collaborating with Butech – subsidiaries of ceramics, kitchen and bathroom interior manufacturer, Porcelanosa – making photovoltaic paving stones specially made for outdoor applications, such as yard or sidewalk.
To be able to absorb sunlight, both companies make the solar pavement from glass and ceramics. Solar cells embedded between the two materials. At the top of the layer is glass, while at the bottom that serves as buffer made ??of ceramic.
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Flexible Solar Cell by Spheral Solar Power
Car bonnets, roof tiles and building facades can quickly enter the colorful and flexible solar panels to complement their conventional resources. Spheral Solar Power has produced efficient and flexible solar cells, which produces electricity at a lower cost and open an array of new applications for renewable energy.
Like denim material consists of thousands of tiny silicon beads attached to aluminum foil – each bead acting as an individual solar cells and uneven surfaces offer a larger area for light collection. Production costs can be reduced through the use of recycled silicon and this, combined with the efficiency comparable to standards photovoltaic cells and the versatility of a flexible material make Spheral solar cells potential to dramatically expand the use of renewable energy.
Building design can take advantage of hundreds of colors, styles and shapes to smoothly integrate solar cells. Spheral cells can be used to reflect light from or transmit light into the building and expand their flexibility for use in the company logo.
In tile the cells can be incorporated into the curved substrate opening various markets applications and automobile manufacturer may have found an alternative aerodynamic to rigid photovoltaic cells that are not practical in terms of vehicle design.
Commercial production of flexible cells are expected to begin in late 2003.
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Outdoor Solar Lights Explained
Outdoor solar lights uses the identical action to generate power as the solar panels on your ceiling (or that you could set up on your ceiling, if you selected to). Essentially, it applies photovoltaic (PV) cells, which accumulate and switch solar energy into electrical energy. The PV cells apply semiconducting materials to engage the sun’s light, which interacts with the silicon and another components to produce electrical energy. The electrical energy runs over cables which power the battery, which in go powers the light. This is an highly simple explanation, but it will present you the common idea of how solar cells play. They can only make electrical energy from direct sunshine, which is why solar lighting wants a battery in order to be able to light up the dark.
So that the batteries to keep a constant charge, the solar light fixture should be in a position that meets full sunshine for almost of the daylight. If it just gets partial sunlight, because it’s barred by trees or other construction, or because your area has much of cloudy conditions, the batteries will run out earlier, and your fixture will supply light for a lower amount of time. Most outdoor solar lights fixtures own a backup power system which applies rechargeable batteries. Solar lights fixtures which apply a small amount of electrical energy frequently apply small AA Ni-Cad or NiMh batteries. But more strong solar lights fixtures (like head lights) apply a covered lead acid battery.
Photo detectors that automatically evaluate light degrees (like the kind that tells your photographic camera when to apply its flash) are constructed into the solar lights fixtures. They monitor light degrees and turn the fixture off at morning and on at nightfall. But get sure there are no artificial light sources (like a street lights or head light) that may contribute a wrong reading and forbid the light from turning on.
Outdoor solar lights usually utilizes LED bulbs. They apply less power than incandescent bulbs and, with a lifetime of around 20 years, are much longer-lasting. Until lately, solar lights overall has not been as bright as lighting powered straight by direct current electrical energy. But the earliest super bright LEDs can at present illuminate as well as halogen bulbs.
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The history of “Photovoltaic”
The history of “Photovoltaic” (PV) industrial development has been running about 50 years, and have been many studies done in the hope that one day could produce cheap solar cells and feasible compared with artificial electricity (hydro or nuclear) to solve the problem of availability of environment friendly electricity at all levels of this world.
In the late 19th century, solar electricity discovered by German physicist named Alexandre Edmond Becquerel accident where the sun rays fall on the solution of electro-chemical research materials, so the charge of electrons in the solution increases, there is no scientific explanation of the event. Not until the early 20th century, Albert Einstein called the discovery of this natural electrical event with “Photoelectric Effect”, which is the basic understanding of the “Photovoltaic Effect” (Albert Einstein got the Nobel Prize in Physics).
“Photoelectric Effect” comes from Einstein’s observations on a plate of metal release “photon” particles of light energy when exposed to sunlight. Photon continuously urged metal atoms and form a particle “Photon Energy”-is the wave of light energy.
Ultraviolet light waves, light that are high charged photon energy and short wavelength, while red light (infra-red) is low charged photon energy and long waves.
Then around the year 1930, research continued and related to discovery of the “Quantum Mechanics” concept, to create new technologies “solid-state”, which then the Bell Telephone Research Laboratories company create the first solid Solar Cell.
Year 1950 – 1960, technology of solar cell design and efficiency continued and applied to the spacecraft (photovoltaic energies). In 1970′s, the world encourage “renewable” alternative energy sources and environmentally friendly, then the PV is applied to the “low power warning systems” and “offshore buoys” (but the PV production could not be much because it is still “handmade”).
Just in 1980, the PV companies joined with government energy agencies in order to produce the PV cells in large numbers, so the price of solar cells can be more suppressed as low as possible.
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Light Up Your Life With Outdoor Solar Lighting
Executive Summary about Solar Lighting by Simon Harris
Outdoor solar lighting adds to the looks, or curb appeal, of a home. Because there are so many designs and styles of outdoor solar lighting, people can use them anywhere.
How Solar Lights Function
Small photovoltaic cells turn sunlight into solar electricity.
Options for Solar Lights
Some outdoor solar lights turn on when they detect motion. Other solar lights remain on from dusk until dawn.
Disadvantages of Solar Lights
There’s only one common flaw with solar lights.
Benefits of Solar Lights
One of the most talked-about benefits today is the fact that solar lights are an eco-friendly alternative to the traditional, electricity-using outdoor lights. Solar lights are also a fairly inexpensive option in terms of both purchasing and use. Finally, solar lights are easy to install. With traditional outdoor walkway lighting, for example, users needed to dig a trench and bury the wire that connected the lights to the power source. In the end, outdoor solar lighting may be the wave of the future.
10 Uses for Outdoor Solar Lights
Executive Summary about Solar Lighting by Dave Joa
Solar Lighting can be used in many ways
Here are just a few examples of practical applications for outdoor solar lighting:
1. Solar Accent Lights
For specialist use in the yard or garden these are designed for accent lighting along the edges of driveways, walkways, paths and entrances to homes, garages and other buildings.
2. Solar Lanterns
Typically these solar light fixtures include many different and unique designs of solar lights to enhance any part of your garden and yard.
3. Solar Motion Sensor Lights
Because solar lights are easy to install they can be located in those places where traditional lights and the wiring required are a problem.
4. Solar Spot Lights
Use solar spots to light up any individual objects outside you home such as trees, bushes, a flower bed, statues or even a pond or stream.
5. Solar Flood Lights
If you want to light a much larger area then solar flood lights will help you to do this.
6. Solar Sign Lights
7. Solar Pond and Pool Lights
Today you can now get small solar powered lights in a wide rage of different colors that will float permanently in your pool or pond to giving a dramatic and potentially moving light show all night long.
8. Solar Flag Light
Just like the solar sign lights there are now specialist lights for lighting the flag on your flag pole if you have one or the whole flag and pole together.
9. Solar Rope Lights
These are great for creating great lighting effects anywhere in your yard and garden but especially on patios and decks, They can be run along anything such as under a deck railing or around things such as tree trunks and deck posts or hung on buildings or in trees.
10. Solar Christmas Lights
Yes, you now even get solar Christmas lights for your tree or other features outside and around your home.
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What To Expect From Solar Power Home?
Many people, especially those who are beginners in solar technology may wonder how solar panels work. But first, what is the home solar panels? This is a solar-powered gadget that collect and use the energy from the sun through its rays and convert it into power.
Some people use solar panels home gadgets to act as an alternative source of energy for their small household, effectively complements the consumption of electricity from local utilities.
There are still homeowners who invest in residential solar panels are fully able to provide power to the house, run all appliances, water heaters and swimming pool. However, the cost is very expensive if you intend to own and install your own home solar panels that will work as the only source of daily strength. A solar panel unit actually has a very high price from a few thousand dollars.
How solar panels work can be answered simply. He has a photovoltaic cell in a panel that primarily works by collecting energy from sunlight that falls on them, then solar energy is converted into electrical energy for use at home.
You may very well consider this gadget as an investment, because you need to shell out large enough amount of money to buy and install them as your resource. It is a serious investment even if you only need to spend the money early, the amount needed is really great. After purchase you do not have to worry about this as the sun runs his own gadgets, making endless supply of electricity to your residence with the help, of course, the sun.
Many supporters of a clean environment and recommended the use of green house solar panels, if only because the energy that collects and converts power from the sun. Therefore, the power generated is clean and not harmful to the environment of the world. Likewise, you do not have to worry about running out of the sun’s energy for endless supply. Solar energy is a clean renewable energy, and is considered the best alternative energy is there.
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New Solar Technology
Solar technologies is now highly developed, with some progress is being developed to be used every day.
Below 10 Solar Technologies to note:
- Water Heating Solar Panel: Pyron Solar Triad uses a special design, short focal-length, lens in the acrylic concentration to reflect and accept the light, effectively concentrate 6.500 solar power in the form of a small light. The second lens capture light and focus on PV cells. According to related companies, HE Optics System produces 800 times more energy than the silicon solar cells.
- Home Solar to Hydrogen Storage: An MIT professor Daniel Nocera, build a company this year to market a technology that can split water and store solar energy. The key of this company is to achieve a breakthrough solar energy to make solar power cheaper.
“The idea is to use solar panels to power the electrolyzer to produce hydrogen which would be stored in tanks. When people need electricity, the stored hydrogen would put through a fuel cell.”
- Solar panel roof that can be printed and painted: If solar power is easy to install as to paint your roof with sunlight resistant paint, it will lower the standard for the installation of solar power at home. This technology called silicon ink, and according to the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory, solar cells showed 18% energy savings.
- Large Panel Solar Film: SunFab ™ system uses silicon thin film technology to market the largest and most powerful panels in the world and combines inexpensive material.
- Organic Solar Concentrators: Engineers at MIT have created a method to transform glass into a high-tech solar concentrator, using color glass to collect and emit light which is usually missing from the panel surface. This technology can create a building for use with glass window film to gather strength. Other companies, GreenSun, has developed a panel of light color where it catch the other parts of the spectrum of the sun, and does not require direct sunlight to work.
- Space Based Solar: Japanese are developing a giant space station with solar power generators to transmit solar power to earth from 36.000 km above the earth within the next 30 years. The Japanese Government supports $ 21 billion project, which includes a space station solar power with solar panels cubical 4km, save electric energy of 1 gigawatt, enough for 300,000 homes in Tokyo.
- Solar Roads: Solar Roadways concept, will make a way to use glass panels to collect and distribute solar energy to illuminate the light at night and hot in winter, with enough remaining energy to light homes and businesses. Discoverer, Scott Brusaw, estimating each mile of solar panels can be illuminated 500 houses, and is expected to make a panel for 12×12 need cost about $ 5,000.
- SunCatcher: Stirling Energy System, contains a solar concentrator in the bowl structure supported by a convex mirror, can be used in Arizona soon. SunCatcher using glass system fitted with a parabolic bowl for concentrating solar power in high-efficiency Stirling engine, with each bowl produces 25.000 watts.
- Solar Nanotechnology: Research workers at McMaster University in Ontario has developed a light-absorbing nanowires formed of excellent photovoltaic materials in thin but durable carbon-nanotube fabric. They also use small particles in a flexible polyster film where can lead to solar cells that are both flexible and cheaper than today’s solar cells.
- Grid Ready for Solar: Andalay AC solar energy panels, made with Akeena Solar technology, integrate the racking, wiring and electrical grounding components to the panel. According to the company, this will against the damage, a lot of money in saving for 30 year lifetime. Andalay AC solar energy panels produce a safe AC power, and can be a safe installation process for users.
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Beach Ball by Tony Leung
Beach Ball designed by industrial designer Tony Leung, is the concept of solar energy generating system in Abu Dhabi between Saadiyat Island and Yas Island. This system has a photovoltaic panel that is contained in the inflatable transparent latex material.
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‘Flower Power’ Solar Windows from Sony
We’ve covered previously solar panels that can be installed in glass windows, Transparent Photovoltaic Glass Window by Rainbow Solar Inc. (RSI).
Now it comes from Sony, the ‘Flower Power’ solar windows, a glass window that not only can produce electrical energy and are easy to install but can also be designed with the colors.
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Photon Synthese by Vivien Muller
Recharge your mobile phone and camera with usb & universal solar trees charger. 54 tiny photovoltaic panels will store energy in batteries during the day, so you can recharge your items whenever you need them. All cables installed and hidden under the electronic bonsai tray. This object constructed by several modules installed along with a 3.5 jack connector. You can rotate each part individually and create a different form in large quantities. It’s decorative and ecological. [Via]
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