Solar Wheels: Now That You’ve Installed Them on Your Roof, Consider Your Car

Solar Power on the Go

Solar Wheels, solar panels on your car

With so many people adopting solar as a way to power or supplement the energy used in their homes, many are starting to wonder if solar-powered cars aren’t right around the corner. Well, they are. And though they may not be ready to release to the consumer market just yet, the future is looking very good for solar-powered or solar power supplemented vehicles appearing sometime well before we run out of fossil fuels.

But what if you can’t wait that long? What if you want to start using solar power in your car now? Furthermore, even if you can’t power the whole car with solar just yet, couldn’t you at least attach solar panels to your car so that you could recharge your laptop or your smart phone, or run your stereo system?

The answer to that question is yes. Solar power can be generated and used within the confines of your car to do many useful things, no matter how far you might be from the grid.

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Cheapest, Most Flexible Solar Cell Yet: Linköping University Breaks Record

Swedish Researchers Have Just Beaten the Flexibility Record for Solar Cells

Linköping University Breaks Record for Fullerene Free Polymer Cells

Earlier this month, researchers at Sweden’s Linköping University and the Chinese Academy of Sciences announced a stunning new breakthrough in solar cell construction: the creation of the world’s first polymer solar cell without using fullerenes. The new cells, which can be manufactured in thin sheets using low-cost roll-to-roll printing technology, represent a major breakthrough in the manufacturing, installation, and efficiency of polymer solar cells.

For most of the history of the solar energy industry, solar cells have been made with rigid materials and silicone. These cells where typically manufactured in heavy, rigid panels, which were then transported to the site of their installation, hoisted to a roof and installed.

Polymer solar cells have been making gains against silicone based rigid cells because they are flexible, lighter, and cheaper to manufacture. Unfortunately, up until now, the manufacture of working polymer solar cells has required the use of fullerenes.

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The Purple One’s Green Initiatives: Prince’s Solar Philanthropy Revealed

Prince’s Green Secret: Solar Power for All

Prince's Solar Philanthropy

In the short time since the death of pop, R&B, funk, soul, and rock legend Prince was announced, it seems as if just about everyone you know has a Prince story to tell, some secret or not terribly secret way that his music touched their lives. Well, it turns out that along with the public persona of the beloved artist, singer, songwriter, and musician, there were many hidden aspects of his life. Some of these hidden aspects or activities may have touched more people than realized it.

It turns out that Prince was secretly supporting and funding multiple charitable programs throughout the country. One of these charities, Green For All, an Oakland-based environmental group, is reporting that Prince paid for solar panels that were installed on the homes of needy families without them having any idea where the money funding the project came from. Now that Prince has passed on, the truth about his secret and wide-ranging philanthropy can be told.

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Looking at Growth in the Solar Storage Market

Advancements in Solar Energy Storage Technology Are Driving the U.S. Market

Looking at Growth in the US Solar Storage Market

A quiet revolution of sorts has been building over the last couple of years. Thanks to a variety of technological advances in everything from battery technology to the way in which solar power systems convert and store the sun’s energy, there is a boom happening in solar energy storage. The United States energy storage market just recorded its best ever quarter and its best ever overall year in 2015.

Energy storage technology seems to be making headway in its effort to catch up with the massive advancement that have been made in sustainable energy generation or conversion technology. A couple of decades ago solar cells were large, clunky, inefficient shadows of what they’ve become recently.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t until the last two years that solar energy storage seemed to make any real advancements toward catching up.

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Solar in Space: Solar Panels and NASA

NASA Is Leading Research That Uses Solar in New Ways in Space

Solar in Space: Solar Panels and NASA

It may be surprising to some people, but NASA is working hard to improve the environment here on earth. For every negative story about the amount of carbon produced by a single space shuttle launch, or the fact that reaching orbit may punch holes in the ozone layer, NASA has quietly invested time and work into partnering with several leading solar researchers and manufacturers to improve the quality of solar power generating technology.

These advances in solar power help to further generate power in space for existing satellites and spacecraft, as well as the International Space Station. The advanced solar technology is not only employed in ongoing and up and coming NASA projects, but it is also used to increase the efficiency and power generating capacity of solar projects here on Earth.

NASA-driven technological advances are also helping to make manufacturing and installing solar power systems more efficient, and energy and cost effective. What’s more, NASA is working on a project that generates electricity from solar and wirelessly beams it down to earth.

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