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designer solar panels

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Designer screen printed solar cells are possible now with the new technique developed by researches at Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE.

Instead of mounting the solar module on the roof, it could be integrated in the glass façade of a building. It is possible to produce it in desired colours, print images or text on the module.

These design options open up an entirely new range of possible applications. It can be used as shade, window or even as company’s logo while generating electricity.

The key component of the new module is an organic dye which in combination with nanoparticles converts sunlight into electricity.

The wafer-thin electricity-generating film, which lies between two glass panes, is produced from nanoparticles and applied using screen printing technique. Due to the small size of the nanoparticles, the modules are semi-transparent. This technique makes it possible to integrate any desired image on the module.

“We don’t see the dye solar cell as being a rival to the conventional silicon cell,” says Fraunhofer ISE physicist Andreas Hinsch.

In the new technology the narrow gap between the two glass panes are so sealed with glass frit instead of using polymeric glue that no air can get in and destroy the reactive substances inside. Glass powder is screen-printed onto the panes, and fuses with them at a temperature of around 600 degrees Celsius.

Tests under various weather conditions have shown that the solar cells still function properly even after several thousand hours.

The dye solar module is at present a prototype and amber in colour. The Fraunhofer researchers have developed it together with industry partners in the ColorSol project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research BMBF.

Image and info source: Fraunhofer Gesellschaft  

(just the info for people like me: The solar cell is one small area on the surface of a solar module. The module is made up of many solar cells. A solar panel is several solar modules installed together.)

7 comments to designer solar panels

  • srikar reddy

    i need to be a member of your team ………….and make solar panels

  • Hugo lubin

    Whom ever designed this designer solar panel is genius, make renewable energy generation look good. I’ve learnt a fair bit about solar panel and am very very interested in the concepts , I have also been selling solar panels for a large known electricity company for the past 5 years and believe solar is the future of energy generation but what awesome is that you guys have taken a product and made it look good, if ever you want somebody selling your product let me know I’ll be glad to help promote.

  • Menzi Nene

    This is something that I am interested in. How can I learn more of this and or be in touch with the manufactures of designer solar panels.

  • i just wish that they could soon reduce the cost of solar panels coz it is still expensive;*’

  • Those look great. I would use them around the house jjust as decorations. I hope solar energy becomes a popular use for energy around the world someday.

  • As an architect and firm believer in sustainability, I’m so glad to see products like this coming out. Soon this kind of thing will be cost effective to incorporate into any situation. Thanks for posting.

  • [...] DesignFlute, I found out about designer screen printed solar cells. ‘Instead of mounting the solar module [...]

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