I asked LG is they planned on allowing the power generated by the solar panels to be sold back to the grid, and they said that would have made the unit too expensive--but to stay tuned for future models that not only let you use the solar panel energy elsewhere, but also allow more solar panels to be added on so that more than 10 percent of the air-conditioners energy consumption is covered.
I don't think the companies in US are not really lagging with respect to the investments in the alternate green energies. Most of the universities are running development projects with funding from obama administration. But there isn't many product companies in US other than general electric co, those are investing in the green products.
A very interesting concept. As smart grid deployment kicks in, this unit could also supply power to the building when the air conditioner is not running to further contribute to the local energy supply.
itís not only LG nor Samsung (who plans to spend 20B$) so Korean co.s spending on "Green tech", the Solar power lead is done by China. Chinese invest in green energy almost 2 times more than US. On the other hand in EU Germany and Italy is leading again ahead of US. So thatís true US is behind the other countries but no doubt after oil spoil catastrophe Obama administration's politic vision have changed. We'll see more environment friendly products/tech in imminent future. No more oil lobby to block greener solutions.
It is amazing to see how much money large Korean companies are investing in innovative energy saving products and alternative energy generation. The timing seems to be excellent. And - unlike the in the US and Europe - it seems, that there is very little or no public money being spent. There is real competition and real competition drives innovation. In contrast, governments in the US and Europe seem favor one technology over another by lavishing subsidies. I have always wondered who makes the call which technology to subsidize? Letting bureaucrats steer technology has never been a good idea and normally ends in regret (remember the Soviet Union?). If Korea continues down its current path, it may turn out to be the White Knight who saves the world. At least as far as catastrophic climate change is concerned.