A novel approach to concentrating sunlight could cut solar panel costs

The main limitation of solar power right now is cost, because the crystalline silicon used to make most solar photovoltaic (PV) cells is very expensive.

One approach to overcoming this cost factor is to concentrate light from the sun using mirrors or lenses, thereby reducing the total area of silicon needed to produce a given amount of electricity. But traditional light concentrators are bulky and unattractive -- less than ideal for use on suburban rooftops.

Now Prism Solar Technologies of Stone Ridge, NY, has developed a proof-of-concept solar module that uses holograms to concentrate light, possibly cutting the cost of solar modules by as much as 75 percent, making them competitive with electricity generated from fossil fuels.

The new technology replaces unsightly concentrators with sleek flat panels laminated with holograms. The panels, says Rick Lewandowski, the company's president and CEO, are a "more elegant solution" to traditional concentrators, and can be installed on rooftops -- or even incorporated into windows and glass doors.

The system needs 25 to 85 percent less silicon than a crystalline silicon panel of comparable wattage, Lewandowski says, because the photovoltaic material need not cover the entire surface of a solar panel. Instead, the PV material is arranged in several rows. A layer of holograms -- laser-created patterns that diffract light -- directs light into a layer of glass where it continues to reflect off the inside surface of the glass until it finds its way to one of the strips of PV silicon. Reducing the PV material needed could bring down costs from about $4 per watt to $1.50 for crystalline silicon panels, he says.

Read the entire news article on the source link below.

600450 A novel approach to concentrating sunlight could cut solar panel costs glassonweb.com

Others also read

This solar canopy covers 360,000 square meters, with the size of 27 soccer fields, for sheltering over 10,000 finished car products of Dongfeng Nissan and the cars of its employees.
The Q22 is a pointing building with glass façades made of PRESS GLASS IGUs.
The Copenhagen International School’s new building is covered by 12,000 colored solar panels based on a technology developed at EPFL.
Rafic Hanbali: Discussions with authorities and companies in final stages.
Industry’s first quad-silver glass features neutral-reflective appearance, solar control.
Pilkington Insulight™ Sun double-glazed units were used throughout the building.

From industry

Is Kuleleri, Kule: 2, Kat: 22, 4. Levent
34330 Levent-Istanbul/İstanbul
Turkey

52 Corniche El-Nil, AL-SHARIFAIN Tower, 10th Floor, Maadi,
Cairo
11511
Egypt

Add new comment