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the ability to print solar cells

Solterra Renewable Energy Technologies is on a mission to lower the cost of solar cells by introducing thin film quantum dot solar cells, which supposedly can cut the production costs of solar cells in half. Quantum Dot PV Solar Cells is an advanced manufacturing process which not only lowers cost, but increases solar cell efficiency by allowing the solar cell to capture a broader spectrum of light. The manufacturing process of quantum dot PV solar cells is similar to low-cost screen printing or the way inkjet printers work. The ability to print solar cells onto inexpensive substrates is the key to Solterra’s patented manufacturing process, which is the key reason they are able to print the cost per watt down significantly. Don’t get excited yet, this company is far from developing product for the mass public and has no efficiency data to backup the expected results of their product line. Although it will be an interesting solar technology to follow since printable solar cells can change solar power products overnight. What do you think about the ability to print solar cells onto virtually any substrate? What will quantum dot solar cells do to solar technology and most importantly the...

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generate electricity from both sides

What if both sides of a solar panel could generate electricity? That’s the question Sanyo asked when they developed the Sanyo HIT Double, bifacial solar panels. These type of solar panels are unique because the back of the solar panel catches ambient light reflected off surrounding surfaces, and combines with power from the front face of the solar panel. Depending upon system design, the project site and installation, bifical solar panels from Sanyo may result up to 30% higher power generation, which means you’ll generate more kWh per square foot. What type of applications could you benefit with a bifacial solar panel? Sanyo suggests , Awnings, Balconies, Bus Shelters, Walkway Covers, Deck & Porch Coverings, Canopies, Carports, Trellises, Fences, Facades, Siding, Trellises, Tracking Systems, BIPV, Ground Mount, Roof Mount, Skylights. What can you think of? How could you take advantage of a solar panel that could generate electricity from both...

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produce electricity & heat water, one solar panel

Traditionally there have been two types of solar panels, a type that can produce clean electricity or heat your water. Entech Solar has developed a new type of panel that can not only produce electricity but it can also heat your water, killing two birds with one stone. This is a revolutionary development because with the same amount of surface area can take care of two energy needs. The interesting aspect to the Entech Solar PVT (Photovoltaic Thermal) is the Fresnel lens which concentrates 20x sunlight onto silicon solar cells along with heating a pipe with water in it. This dual functioning solar panel will not be offered to the residential market. Although industrial and commercial such as hospitals and hotels will be able to deploy PVT systems for $6-$7 per watt. What do you think about this “all in one” solar panel? Will it be a success? Do you see any problems in using one solar panel to heat water and produce...

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what do you think of "solar in a box"?

Last month we announced that we would be offering ReadySolar’s “Solar in a box”® through GoGreenSolar.com Solar in a box is a unique complete solar electric system which makes the installation process similar to installing an appliance versus a complicated system. Solar in a box is completely pre-engineered and meets NEC code. We all can agree if solar was easier to install, it would reduce costs and encourage faster adoption of solar power, don’t you agree? I think we will see more standardized solutions hit the market, what do you think? How do you like “Solar in box?” It would be great to hear your...

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Do you really have a lot of sun on your roof?

I get a lot of people that call me everyday and say, “when I go outside and look at my roof, I have a lot of sun on it”. Many people think just because they have a sunny roof they have an ideal roof for solar panels, but often the inexperienced solar consumer is making a faulty assumption. Here in the USA, which falls under the northern hemisphere of the world, peak sun occurs around 12pm, at this time the sun is south. The solar electric systems that get the maximum return on investment point true south. Looking at your home at noon notice the position of the sun, this will give you an approximate location of true south. Does your roof allow you to point solar panels true south? Understanding the concept of magnetic declination and true south will help you get the most out of your investment in a solar electric...

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solar electric systems and your utility meter

Grid tie solar electric systems connect to your existing electrical service and send extra power you generate back to your utility company. Your utility company in return, depending on their interconnection agreement give you a credit based on the number of kWh (kilowatt hours) you contribute to the grid each month. This is called net-metering, it allows you to offset or eliminate your electric bill through solar panels without leaving the reliability of the electric grid itself. This concept is converting homes and businesses across the world into mini power plants that give back to the grid versus just being a liability to it. When you are using electricity from the gird, your meter spins forwards in the normal direction. On the flip side, when you install a grid connected solar electric system and you produce more then you are using, your electric meter will spin backwards! Although before installing you solar electric system be aware of the type of meter you have on your home or business, because some older electric meters records the number of time the meter spins and does not register if the meter is spinning backwards or forwards. In this case if you do not have a “two-way” meter you would be billed for the power you contribute to the grid, yikes! Most locations have two-way meters although if you are unsure, call your utility company to confirm. If you find out you only have a one-way meter, you can always upgrade your...

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