Transparent Solar Panels Will Turn Windows Into Green Energy Collectors

    A research carried out by Michigan state university invented transparent solar panels which can be used in architecture, mobile electronics & automotive industry and other fields as well.

    Although they tried several times before all ended up unsuccessfully. This time they were satisfied with the result.

    The team developed the transparent solar concentrator or TLSC which doesn’t emit light as a result of heat (luminescent) focusing on the see-through factor. This can be placed over a clear surface such as a window and gather solar energy without any impact on the transmittance of light.

    This technology absorbs light wavelengths which are invisible to the naked eye such as infrared and ultraviolet rays.

    According to material science at MSU’s College of Engineering & Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering, Richard Lunt, they say that,  

    “We can tune these materials to pick up just the ultraviolet and the near infrared wavelengths that then ‘glow’ at another wavelength in the infrared. The captured light is transported to the contour of the panel, where it is converted to electricity with the help of thin strips of photovoltaic solar cells.”

    These devices can make the most of the building’s outside hence the vertical footprint is larger than the rooftop. There will be no impact on the architecture format of the building, but it depicts more efficient technology. This can be unsegregated into old buildings as well.

    According to the New York Times:

    “If the cells can be made long-lasting, they could be integrated into windows relatively cheaply, as much of the cost of conventional photovoltaics is not from the solar cell itself, but the materials it is mounted on, like aluminum and glass. Coating existing structures with solar cells would eliminate some of this material cost.

    If the transparent cells ultimately prove commercially viable, the power they generate could significantly offset the energy use of large buildings, said Dr. Lunt, who will begin teaching at Michigan State University this fall.

    “We’re not saying we could power the whole building, but we are talking about a significant amount of energy, enough for things like lighting and powering everyday electronics,” he said.”