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Posts Tagged "photovoltaic"

Observations

More Solar Panels at the White House

white-house

The Washington Post‘s indefatigable Juliet Eilperin got an unnamed official at the White House to confirm that solar panels are being reinstalled at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue this week—fulfilling a promise made by the Obama administration three years ago. President Jimmy Carter famously put solar hot-water heating panels on the White House roof in the 1970s [...]

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Observations

Solar Power Helped Keep the Lights On in India

india-overloaded-grid

Every day, at least 400 million Indians lack access to electricity. Another nearly 700 million Indians joined their fellows in energy poverty over the course of the last few days, or roughly 10 percent of the world’s population. Oddly enough, some of the formerly energy poor—rural villagers throughout the subcontinent—found themselves better off than their [...]

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Observations

Charge of the light brigade: How quantum dots may improve solar cells

Photovoltaic cells remain woefully inefficient at converting sunlight into electricity. Although layered cells composed of various elements can convert more than 40 percent of (lens-concentrated) sunlight into electricity, more simple semiconducting materials such as silicon hover around 20 percent when mass-produced. And, at best, such cells could convert only a third of incoming sunlight due [...]

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Observations

Sunshine is free, so can photovoltaics be cheap?

Here’s how to make a solar cell from silicon: take one solid block of doped silicon, saw it into thin wafers, layer said semiconductors beneath a panel of transparent glass, connect them to a metal electrode that can channel away the electrons knocked loose by incoming photons and turn it into a photovoltaic device. That [...]

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Plugged In

6 things about solar PV, from one who actually knows

My friend Mark Turner just finished up his own solar PV roof installation, and like everybody else I’ve been curious about how it worked — and how it’s working out. He responded with a blog post that answers just about every simple question, so I thought I’d share it here. I hope we follow along [...]

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Solar at Home

Clouds Over the Solar Industry in Britain [Guest Post]

A couple of years ago, I reported on the experiences of a solar homeowner in England, and I was curious how the situation in Britain has evolved since then. Alex Hole, owner of Strenson Solar, a British firm which provides solar panels in Sussex, recently approached me and I invited him to write the following [...]

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Solar at Home

20 Solar Apps for Your iPhone

The iPhone seems like the perfect accessory for a solar power enthusiast. Right now, you have to navigate a maze of websites such as PV Watts to calculate how much energy you can expect to produce and how many years a solar array will take to pay itself off. The iPhone could cut to the [...]

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