Color Solar Panels Let Stained Glass Windows Produce Cheap Power

Because solar panels are designed to accumulate as much light from the sun as possible, they're typically very dark in color. It makes them more efficient, but also kind of an eyesore, minimizing their adoption. So researchers at the University of Michigan have developed what they believe to be the world's first… » 3/03/14 4:00pm 3/03/14 4:00pm

A Roomba For Solar Panels That Keeps the Sun Shining Through

It's easy to live with a few smudges on your smartphone's display, but for devices like solar panels that are completely dependent on every last drop of light making it through, cleanliness is a top priority. And when you've thousands of solar panels in a field drinking in sunlight, cleaning them all manually isn't an… » 11/29/13 9:00pm 11/29/13 9:00pm

Almost Everyone Is Angling Solar Panels the Wrong Way

Conventional wisdom in the northern hemisphere is to face solar panels south so they get the most light all day. Architects and panel installers implement this approach all the time, especially on homes. But a new study indicates that panels facing west may actually get more juice from the sun, and at more convenient… » 11/17/13 12:04pm 11/17/13 12:04pm

Solar Panels: Not Just Big Rectangles on the Roof Anymore

In designing the 28th Street Apartments in South Los Angeles, architects at KoningEizenberg had several underlying missions: To restore an 80-year-old structure, to add a new residential wing, and to modernize the entire complex, making it more sustainable. In sunny L.A., adding solar energy was a no-brainer. » 11/12/13 4:30pm 11/12/13 4:30pm

Super Thin Graphene Solar Panels Could Pave the Way for Powered Paint

Covering any and all things with solar panels would be an awesome way to get power, but the bulk and expense of the tech we've got today makes it a little less than practical. But wonder-material-at-large graphene is shaking up the scene with ultra-thin solar panels and, maybe someday, solar-powered paint. » 5/03/13 11:53am 5/03/13 11:53am

Flexible Solar Panels Stack Cells on Sheets Printed Like OLEDs

Solar panels are finicky devices—they have to be specially mounted, angled, and presented with the precisely correct environmental conditions to function at capacity. The complexities make it hard for the technology to gain mainstream appeal. A German startup could change all that with flexible solar cells built using… » 4/24/12 11:30am 4/24/12 11:30am

Solar Panel-In-a-Tube Generates Power and Hot Water At the Same Time

Solar photovoltaic cells and solar thermal collectors both capture the sun's rays. The first one turns the light into electricity, while the other turns it into hot water for heating. They usually battle for rooftop real estate, but Naked Energy has found a way to merge them both into a single solar solution. » 4/12/12 4:40pm 4/12/12 4:40pm

Was Our Beloved 13-Year-Old Solar Power Genius Just Proven Wrong?

Many of you in the comments remarked that 13-year-old Aidan Dwyer's breakthrough was nothing new. Fair enough. But it'd be different if someone totally disproved it. One blogger claims to have done it. Can I get an expert in here? » 8/20/11 4:00pm 8/20/11 4:00pm

Japanese Company Wants to Turn Moon Into Disco Ball

The moon is pretty, we guess, but what has it ever done for us? Nothing. Until now! The Shimizu Corporation, an enormous contracting conglomerate, has a plan to turn the moon into a giant, solar panel-covered disco ball, providing "13,000 terawatts of continuous solar energy being transmitted back to receiving stations… » 5/30/11 5:40am 5/30/11 5:40am

Samsung's Transparent LCD Now Runs on Ambient Light

Samsung unveiled a new rendition of its beautiful and transparent 46-inch LCD at German expo CeBIT that uses astonishingly little energy. In fact, the high-tech glass runs on ambient light that hits its solar panels but still manages to offer 1920x1080 pixel resolution and ten finger touchscreen capability. [Techtree » 3/10/11 8:29pm 3/10/11 8:29pm