The technology needed to harness solar electricity is growing by leaps and bounds with each passing year. Researchers and entrepreneurs are always finding new and exciting ways to apply the technology. Some of the most interesting applications involve building solar panels into objects that are already in our homes, and often in direct sunlight.
One example of this concept is the solar blinds made by a company called SolarGaps.
SolarGaps blinds are a great solution for people living in apartments or rental houses, and even people who just don’t want to go through the trouble of installing solar panels on their roofs.
To make the blinds more efficient, the panels track the sun and adjust their positions throughout the day, and they can also be controlled through a smartphone. The blinds can be set up as the main source of power for your home if you get enough sun, and there is even a battery to store extra electricity, which can be saved for later or sold back to the power company.
Truth Theory reported on a similar technology earlier this year, but instead of solar blinds, it was the whole window. Researchers at Michigan State University developed a transparent solar cell that could be used as windows and various other building materials.
Researchers at MIT have been working on the development of a liquid fuel that can store the sun’s energy for up to 18 years. Findings of studies conducted on this material in the past year could pave the way for huge advances in solar technology, considering one of the biggest hurdles that the industry has faced thus far is figuring out a way to properly store and harness the energy once it is collected.
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2016 data from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) suggests that solar has actually already become the cheapest way to generate energy.
According to a recent estimate released by the International Energy Agency, solar will be the world’s primary source of energy by 2050. Recent breakthroughs in solar technology are making it more efficient and cheaper to extract energy from the sun, which in turn, is making this technology more available to the average person.
Solar power is unlike most other energy resources because there is a limitless supply. This limitless supply of power could actually cause energy prices to drop so low that anyone could afford it. Like all technology, the technology to harness electricity from the sun will continue to become cheaper as it is developed and perfected.
Image Credit: Solar Gaps