Solar, Solar everywhere…..

June 10, 2008 at 8:26 pm Leave a comment

And not enough to power my house affordably? At least not yet. There are loads of different approaches being tried and everyday a new story comes out. This may be more of a steam of consciousness post but I am going to put a few somewhat unconnected links out there for your information.

First of all if you are a believer in solar power you might want to join the American Solar Energy Society who offer a good magazine on the subject called “Solar Today”.

Next, can you imagine your windows as solar panels? No I don’t mean gray windows, but clear like the glass you would normally expect. A company going by the name Dyesol is developing what they refer to as solar windows. The process is as follows: (excerpt and story via ecogeek)

Dyesol’s solar cells use innovative technology called “artificial photosynthesis,” where a dye works in much the same way as chlorophyll to absorb light and produce electricity. Panels are made up of “an electrolyte, a layer of titania (a pigment used in white paints and toothpaste), and ruthenium dye sandwiched between glass. Light striking the dye excites electrons, which are absorbed by the titania to become an electric current.”

Lastly tonight we have a technology called an “organic solar cell”.

As solar cells are relatively expensive, researchers are working on using plastics to harvest solar energy and accordingly, a discovery has been made at the Center for Polymers and Organic Solids at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Researchers here have worked together to create a new “tandem” organic solar cell that has increased efficiency in harnessing solar energy.

These tandem organic solar cells are made of two multilayered parts that work together so that together, they will be able to gather a wider range of the spectrum of solar radiation of both shorter and longer wavelengths.
These solar cells produce six and a half percent efficiency in solar energy, which is the highest level that has been achieved in solar cells that have been made from organic materials. Though these solar cells are in the developmental stage, they are expected to hit the markets in about three years.”

You can read the full article here:

So you can see there are lots of promising technologies out just over the horizon and I just wish that at least one of them would hurry up and go mass market so I could stop having to be so patient!

As always I thank you for your time and interest. Please take the time to Digg, or add to the other social network of your choice to help me spread the word about these issues. Please forward any questions or suggestions to:

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Entry filed under: Solar Power, Technology. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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