Silicon Valley Making Progress in Transparent Solar Energy

Written by: Samuel Gregoth

It is scientifically proven that within a five-day limit the Sun provides sufficient energy in such an abundance to the Earth that it surpasses all of the other energy that could come from our natural resources like oil, gas, coal, as we as natural gas. While this is true how much of the Sun’s energy would need to be harnessed to sufficient care for the Earth’s energy needs. Scientist report that it would only take 1/6000th of the energy that the Earth can harness to care for our needs, which leaves a surplus of solar energy to be stored. Perhaps one-day other technology will be able to store this vast amount of energy from the Sun, which scientist and those who use solar energy are beginning to harness to its full capacity. 

With so much at stake, it is not surprising that solar scientist and technologist are rising to the occasion to make some serious advancement for solar energy use for the future. From 2008-2015 there has been a continuous decrease in price per MWh of solar energy. The prices fell from $12 in 1998 to $2 in 2018. New developments in solar efficiencies are on the rise with new materials being developed for use in solar panels, as well as the ability to provide more solar energy from smaller panels. New solar technologies are driving the market down as rebates form a government is also helping the use of solar energy for homeowners. ON the other hand, solar energy and solar panels are being adapted to more and more practical uses in today’s technology-driven economy. Everything from robotics to toys, vehicles, and practical gadgets are getting in on the solar panel bandwagon.

Solar Capture Devices

While large swaths of land, as well as unused rooftops of building in-country uninhabited areas, are great places to set up a solar panel shop, research has shown that the adoption of land use is a major barrier for the adoption of solar panel use. Could this mean that the possession of large areas of land inhibit people form investing in this great natural resource for renewable energy? This failure to have other options for homeowners to encourage them to use solar energy may have been caused by its restricted use by those who have set up large energy reservoirs in deserted places like deserts, unusable land and offsite land areas which have remained uninhabitable. 

Changes Proven

It is predicted that within the next decade more and more easily usable sources of solar panels will emerge which fit more easily into a modest home and integrate seamlessly into the home environment. For example, where there is a seamless integration into the windows, doors, and roofing of a home, without any detection of a “solar panel” look protruding from your home property. Or the possibility that WI-Fi could be harnessed in the future to be used for solar energy be retrieved and stored in one part of the globe in the day, then transmitted to another part of the world for use at night. While these changes have not yet been invented, some inventions have fond ways to make the use of solar panel technology more hidden and sustainable for the home user without the unsightliness of having solar panels protruding from the home. 

Glass Solar Panels

Imagine walking into your living room, bathroom, dining room, and kitchen where everything was powered by solar energy, but when you look around anyone could ask “where are the solar panels?” OF course, they are there but hidden from the naked eye who only sees the windows, the plants in the courtyard, and other vegetation bu no solar panel. THis kind of technology is already being developed today. Transparent solar panel technology has been seriously pursued since 2013, but at the time, the ability of those transparent mediums was not able to transmit enough solar energy to make a difference over the then established means being used as solar energy storage. 
Today some companies are making major headways into this new dimension of transparent solar panel usage. 

Ubiquitous Energy

A new upstart in Silicon Valley called Ubiquitous Energy has found a way to harness non-visible light thru clear glass windows and transform it into energy. It is a young company yet to reach it mature stages, yet it has already made some serious headway into the ability to use transparent mediums to capture solar energy by using so prevalent a medium as clear glass windows. This opens the door much like Edison did what the light bulb, to bring in another level of solar power integration into a society where every office building can have solar energy by only using this latest technology. No more need to fill the roofs with solar panels. A previous breakthrough was made at Michigan State University but with only half the efficiency as Ubiquitous’ 9.8% efficiency. Solar tiles and solar roofing are also being developed simultaneously with these other advances in solar power technology. 

Solar Energy Battles

Several companies are competing battling for the space to make these contributions to the solar energy space. Tesla and Forward are competing for space in solar roofing technology. Forward, a Silicon Valley startup has shown it can provide more energy per square foot of its roof tiles than Tesla has shown; though Elon Musk has said that the believes that solar panels in the future will be less expensive than traditional roof tiles. Forward’s solar tile panels show 19 watts per square foot of tile.

The Future of Solar Energy

The future of solar energy advances, if built upon what is being developed as of today, will allow the use of renewable energy applications across all devices with the foreseeable future. With more an more solar energy gadgets also coming to birth thru innovative technologies and inventions the solar energy age can finally be welcomed as having arrived for the good of home, household, and the planet. A greener Earth, a more sustainable future for all alike.


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