spacer
spacer search
Search
spacer
Newsflash
Facilitating a local and worldwide synergy of suppliers, builders, architects, planners, educators, and visionaries committed to Creating a Sustainable Future for ourselves and generations to come
 
Main Menu
Home
Blog
Links
Contact Us
Search
FAQ's
About Us
 
Home arrow Blog arrow 2/14/08-Dyed Solar Cells May Offer Unique Installation Opportunities

2/14/08-Dyed Solar Cells May Offer Unique Installation Opportunities PDF Print E-mail
Written by John Sarter   
Friday, 15 February 2008
Designs decorating the huge windows of corporate buildings may soon be able to provide more than just advertising. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute of Solar Energy Systems (ISE) have developed a new solar module that uses organic dyes in combination with nanoparticles to produce electricity.
A glass facade made of this material can be given any sort of decorative or promotional design, such as a colorful company logo or graphic, while delivering electricity to boot.

Members of the Fraunhofer ISE are traveling to Tokyo for Nanotech 2008 to demonstrate the new module, which is the size and shape of a door: two meters high and sixty centimeters wide.


These design options open up an entirely new range of possible applications. Instead of mounting the solar module on the roof of a building, the electricity producer could be integrated in the glass façade. Used in this way, the new technology not only prohibits direct sunlight from entering the building interior but also generates electricity at the same time.

"We don't see the dye solar cell as being a rival to the conventional silicon cell," says Fraunhofer ISE physicist Andreas Hinsch. The module prototypes only achieve an efficiency of four percent, which is not sufficient for rooftop applications in comparison to the performance of crystalline silicon solar cells. On the other hand, dye solar cells have a clear advantage when it comes to facade integration. The wafer-thin electricity-generating film, which lies between two glass panes, is produced from nanoparticles and applied using screen-printing technique. This technique makes it possible to integrate any desired image on the module. A glass facade made of this material can be given any sort of decorative or promotional design, such as a colorful company logo or graphic, while delivering electricity to boot.

The dye solar module is still a prototype. The Fraunhofer researchers have developed it together with industry partners in the ColorSol project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research BMBF.

One particular challenge posed by the new technology is that the narrow gap between the two glass panes must be hermetically sealed so that no air can get in and destroy the reactive substances inside. The Fraunhofer experts have come up with a special solution to this problem. Instead of using polymeric glue like their competitors, they have decided to work with glass frit, which is th efused or partially fused materials used in making glass. To this end, glass powder is screen-printed onto the panes, and fuses with them at a temperature of around 600 degrees Celcius. Fatigue tests under various weather conditions have shown that the solar cells still function properly even after several thousand hours. The long-term stability as such, however, has yet to be officially certified.

spacer
Green Building Resources
ADPSR
BIPER
BuidingGreen.com
Build-it-Green
Buildin Design & Construction
CIWMB
Common Sense Design, resource page
Environmental Building News
Frank Lloyd Wright
Get into Green, at the National Building Musem
Green Affordable Housing
Green Building Community.Com
Green Sage
International Initiative for sustainable built environment
LEED for Homes, energy certification from the USGBC
List of recycled building products from the Ca.Integratd waste management board
Marin County Green Building Program
Marin Max Reuse
National Renewable Energy Labratory Homepage
Oikos Green Building Source

 
(C) 2020 offthegriddesign.org
Joomla! is Free Software released under the GNU/GPL License.
spacer