NEW SOLAR MATERIALS ON THE HORIZON

We're constantly hearing about the next big thing in the world of alternative energy, so much so that it's easy to forget that these are applicable here and now. Solar has been dubbed the real deal, and it looks like new materials are the answer.

 

As businesses and municipalities explore alternative energy sources, solar is a constant topic of conversation. It’s a proven science, but the perceived expense of contemporary solar cells has discouraged more widespread utilization. That could soon change. What the world needs to see is a more affordable and efficient solar panel that allows organizations of all sizes to begin to integrate it into their new construction or updates. Well, that big break through might be here soon.

 

As reported in the Washington Post, the days of silicon solar cells may be numbered. The material is less expensive, but not as efficient as many experts believe may be necessary to encourage more widespread use.  The debate has been divided between exploring ways to make silicon more efficient, while other researchers are looking at completely different materials. There’s certainly benefit to both efforts and investment will chase the best candidate.

 

One promising lead is perovskites. These crystal structures were initially extremely inefficient, capable of converting less than 5% of solar energy. Scientists were able to quickly improve on that number, with the goal of equaling silicon. Why just equal silicon? Perovskites are much less expensive, and the savings of the materials and construct mean that solar technology in the form of panels could be much more accessible for even small businesses.

 

Easier production, competitive outputs, and plenty of upside mean that perovskites are an encouraging solution that Keen and other contractors are excited to make the most of. Solar is a serious contender in the alternatives game, and is sure to play a big part in the future of many of our current clients. New technologies, new applications, and a green footprint are the things that get us excited, and we can’t wait to see where solar is in the next few years.

 
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TESTIMONIALS

" As part of our sustainability and resilience strategies, Oryana works to reduce our environmental impact by investing wisely in energy saving technologies, recycling, water quality, savings, and other opportunities.  Keen has been a great partner in this quest. "

- Steve Nance GM