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Ranked as our #1 overall solar installer, SunPower features the world’s highest efficiency solar panels and features three flexible purchase options to fit the needs of nearly every homeowner. Not only will SunPower…

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Other than costly, heavy batteries, there’s no cost-effective way to store the energy gathered by solar panels (necessary if you want to use the electricity at night or during cloudy days). Without an inexpensive way to store this energy, solar power may not be able replace fossil fuels—at least on a large enough scale to obviate the need for big, expensive storage systems. MIT chemist Daniel Nocera believes he’s found a solution. He recently copied the process by which green plants split water. In essence re-creating the reaction that generates oxygen from water like plants do during photosynthesis. This would covert solar energy into hydrogen fuel that could be easily stored. The “Base Load Power” Conundrum Solar tech is improving by leaps and bounds. As PV panel efficiencies rise and manufacturing costs drop, solar will become a major contributor to a home’s electricity needs. But things take a different turn when you’re talking solar on a utility scale—amounts of electricity needed to power an entire city or town. If we depend on solar energy for more than about 20… Read more

There are more than half a million billboards lining America's federal-aid highways, increasing by 15,000 billboards annually. Most of these billboards are lit up at night. That’s a lot of power, power that contributes to an advertiser’s overall expense. To help cut power costs, billboard owners are opting to power their billboard lighting systems with photovoltaic panels and LED lighting systems. Solar billboard lighting systems provide an efficient means of lighting billboards without the need for standard utility power. These self-contained solar systems deliver cost savings by eliminating the need to depend on utility electric power for the billboard owner. These savings can be passed on to the advertiser in the form of reduced monthly rates. By going solar, both billboard owners and advertisers can improve their image as sustainability stewards of energy. Today’s solar billboard lighting systems typically come complete with a self-contained solar power assembly. The systems are usually sized to power the type and quantity of solar light fixtures as specified by the billboard owner. The systems are designed to accommodate the power consumed by the fixtures… Read more

Nearly 1.1 billion people in the world live without access to electricity, and roughly 25% are in India, where people are forced to use noxious kerosene and bulky, expensive-to-charge batteries. The solution: small solar-powered light units. These portable light sources increasingly provide off-grid villagers in third world countries the light they need to live at night.  Power for Lights, Fans and Cell Phones  The compact solar units are generally designed to provide minimum power to those traditionally disconnected from municipal power sources. In most cases, they consist of a 40-watt solar panel that provides power for LED lights, fans and cell phones. The solar panel charges a small power station for roughly ten hours at a time. The solar power kit provided by SimpaNetworks, offers subscription plans structured to accommodate the needs of low-income consumers. The concept is so popular that it has created a vast market of cheap, unreliable knock offs sold by street vendors who also sell recharging services using solar power. Millions Have No Electricity The need for cheap, reliable electricity is often most keenly felt in… Read more

Lighting miles of highways with conventional lighting systems isn’t cheap. There are large expensive lights to pay for, ever-escalating installation costs, and on-going maintenance. A team of Spanish scientists believes they have the answer to lighting the world’s endless highways and roadways—cement that emits light. Returning Absorbed Solar Energy Imagine a material that has the capability to absorb solar energy and return it to the environment. An ecologically sound material that can last for up to 100 years, one that can light up mile after mile of roads, highways and bicycle lanes without using a single watt of electricity. Scientists at Michoacan's University of San Nicolas Hidalgo, (UMSNH) turned this dream into reality. They created a revolutionary light-emitting cement that can deliver light from its surface for over a century. Altering Cement’s Microstructure Unlike ordinary cement, which is essentially a dust that dissolves into an effervescent substance, the new light-emitting cement avoids the formation of unwanted crystal flakes in hardened cement. Instead, the microstructure of the cement is altered to eliminate crystals to form a gel. This gel is capable… Read more

For many property owners, going solar still represents a sizeable investment with a protracted Return on Investment (ROI). Larger, multi-story corporate buildings can save considerably on electricity by going solar. But the upfront expense and ROI have convinced some to hold off on going solar. However, the day may soon come when those who want to go solar may not have to mount solar panels on their roof, or even resort to conventional PV solar panels. 50 Times More Electricity Than Ordinary PV Solar Panels Last year, SolarWindow Technologies announced a stunning new development that may revolutionize the solar industry. Their new cells can produce 50 times the electricity of today’s PV solar panels. Best of all, this new solar technology can be integrated into windows. The impact of this new technology is enormous when one considers that there are currently a half-billion square feet of windows installed on commercial buildings in the U.S. every year. New Active Layer & Transparent Conductors So how does the new breed of solar windows work? Ordinary glass panels are initially treated with an… Read more