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3D Printable Solar Panels

Posted on: October 3rd, 2014 1 Comment

Do you remember the cost of laptops in the late 90’s? Imagine how the growth of the laptop market would have lagged if the cost had remained the same through the years.

Without the advancement of computer technology and gradually lowering the cost of laptops every year, we wouldn’t have been able to open the doors to laptop alternatives like tablets and smartphones.

The same type of advancement is occurring right now in the solar industry. Every year, solar panels are not only able to absorb and retain more solar energy, but the panels themselves are becoming more affordable to manufacture and ship to installation companies like us.

Dr. Scott Watson

Source: Abc.net.au

What if it was possible for you to print solar panels at home using a 3D Printer?

Solar power scientists in Australia are now one step closer to making this possibility a reality, creating an opportunity for a cheap and quick way to print solar cells on plastic.

This innovation probably won’t replace the durable solar panels that you’re accustomed to seeing on residential homes and businesses, but its a great possibility to print mini-size solar panels on bendable plastic, that you can use to charge your electronics.

Scientists from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), and the Melbourne and Monash universities have been working on printing solar cells since 2007. The team is now able to quickly produce solar cells on plastic, using a 3D printer and solar ink.

This innovation creates new possibilities for utilizing the nearly unlimited solar power we can harness from the sun. Just like the progress of the laptop led to innovations like smartphones and tablets, the progress of solar panels will allow amazing uses for solar renewable energy in the near future.

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Luke AFB Leases Land for New Solar Power Plant

Posted on: July 15th, 2014 No Comments

The government, recognizing the near unlimited source of power they could harness from the sun, has been utilizingrenewable energy, such as solar power, from the start of the industry.

In 1956, the first solar cells were available commercially, but the cost was far too high for  everyday people.

At $300 for a 1 watt solar cell, the cost to generate solar energy was far beyond anyone’s means. In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s satellites in the USA’s space program were powered by solar cells and in the late 1960’s solar power was basically the standard for powering space bound satellites.

Recently, the Luke Air Force Base in Arizona partnered with Arizona Public Service (APS) on a new solar power plant to be built on 100 acres of land located on the Base. The facility will begin construction at the end of this year, and is expected to produce 10-megawatts of power.

Luke Air Force Base Adding Solar

This partnership will help the Air Force save money and also meet their goals to continue investing in solar renewable energy. APS will lease the land for 30 years from Luke AFB for $6 million.

The project at Luke AFB will join 8 other Arizona sun projects that are already online or in some stage of development, totaling 170 megawatts of solar energy for the state. That amount of megawatts is enough to power more than 42,000 APS customers.

The solar plant will be highly visible and set a great example for other states to incorporate solar energy as a means for power production.

The solar plant will generate enough energy to power 2,500 Arizona homes, and will prevent the emission of 12,000-15,000 tons of greenhouse gases a year, according to Robert Worley, 56th Civil Engineer Squadron installation management flight chief.

More than 200 local jobs will be created during the construction of the plant. The facility will be operational, serving APS customers by summer 2015.

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