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Bean Curd Component Could Slash Solar Panel Costs

6/26/2014 07:00 PM EDT
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Anand.Yaligar
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Re: Win-Win for energy
Anand.Yaligar   6/29/2014 11:57:51 PM
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The burning question in my mind is how QUICKLY can this new approach be deployed and consumers start seeing the safety and cost savings?

@DrQuine, that is a very good point. Energy prices are going up and consumers need cost effective way of generating power. If Solar panels cost reduces then it will encourage many consumers to install solar panels,

Anand.Yaligar
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Re : Bean Curd Component Could Slash Solar Panel Costs
Anand.Yaligar   6/29/2014 11:49:59 PM
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common chemical used to make the bean curd -- which some say tastes like wet paper -- could dramatically reduce the cost of solar panels.

@Karen, thanks for the post. This is really great news indeed. High cost of the solar panels was one of the reasons why people didnt install solar panels, now with this new technology solar panels will become more affordable and dependency on other power sources will reduce.

David Ashton
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Re: Flexible solar panels
David Ashton   6/29/2014 3:36:15 AM
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@Wilber.... diameter is 1.5 m....divide by 2 for radius gives 0.75 m...square it gives 0.5625....multiply by pi (3,14159) gives 1.7671 m2, I used 1.75m2. Which in full sun woould give 1750W radiation.   The big question is what sort of efficiency you could get with a flexible solar panel....some of the rigid ones are over 10% but I don't think the experimental flex ones are near that yet.   But I'm sure developments in this area won't be too far away.


wilber_xbox
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Re: Flexible solar panels
wilber_xbox   6/29/2014 3:17:46 AM
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@perl, i think a lot of researchers are working on printable solar cells that donot need silicon or glass but can be printed like PCB. The downside is the efficiency but barring that the applications are tremendous.

wilber_xbox
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Re: Flexible solar panels
wilber_xbox   6/29/2014 3:14:55 AM
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@David, sorry to be the party pooper but in your area calculations, your forgot a factor 0.25 as you consider diameter and not radius to be 1.5m. So ur total power output will be about 22W for 5% efficiency.

David Ashton
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Re: Flexible solar panels
David Ashton   6/28/2014 7:36:03 PM
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@perl_geek - yes, they are fairly standard cells, just small.  and in large quantities they would be heavy.  I've seen them used as phone chargers, but a laptop charger would be better done with larger types - you could maybe make a fold-up shelter based on them, but it would still be fairly heavy.  It seems flexible solar cells are on the way, but not quite a commercial reality yet.

You could probably have a solar cell the same size as your laptop lid and while it could not run the laptop indefinitely, it would considerably extend your battery life and could charge it fully when not in use.  Probably even more applicable to tablets.

perl_geek
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Re: Flexible solar panels
perl_geek   6/28/2014 4:50:05 PM
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Those cells appear to be based on glass panels. Even if they're "tiled" for flexibility, the weight for the area would be considerable. A practical material has to be not stiffer or heavier than perhaps a thick vinyl. Flexible PCBs have been around since the 1970s; the glass is the problem.

I'm looking for stuff that's at least at the engineering sample stage at the moment. Speculating a bit, perhaps a material could be woven from a receptor material on thin wire and a transparent insulator?
 That would yield a "solar cloth".

Max The Magnificent
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Re: Free (and better) lunch!
Max The Magnificent   6/28/2014 1:14:40 PM
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@seaEE: This is great news, though I wish it could happened wtih Brussel sprouts instead of bean curd.

You are right -- we should never underestimate the power of the Mighty Sprout (all hail!)

Max The Magnificent
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Re: Free (and better) lunch!
Max The Magnificent   6/28/2014 1:12:37 PM
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@David: ...re tofu....serve it with bean sprouts and I'm sure Max would like it :-)

How about tofu wrapped in bacon ... hold the tofu LOL

DrQuine
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Win-Win for energy
DrQuine   6/28/2014 1:02:13 PM
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This is a wonderful development (and we don't even have to eat tofu). The burning question in my mind is how QUICKLY can this new approach be deployed and consumers start seeing the safety and cost savings? So often breakthrough developments in solar energy sound exciting ... but are a long way from deployment.  This sounds like something that can be implemented very soon.

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