Archinect - News 2015-10-08T23:34:03-04:00 Could 'quantum dots' be the key to turning windows into photovoltaics? Nicholas Korody 2015-08-26T14:37:00-04:00 >2015-08-26T14:37:26-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="343" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>While wind may be one of the most economical power sources out there, photovoltaic solar energy has a big advantage: it can go small. While wind gets cheaper as turbines grow larger, the PV hardware scales down to fit wherever we have infrastructure. In fact, simply throwing solar on our existing building stock could generate a very large amount of carbon-free electricity.</p></em><br /><br /><p>But, as many homeowners already know, installing solar panels can be quite cost-prohibitive. New research might just have solved that problem by incorporating solar hardware into the most basic light filter used in architecture: the window.</p><p>According to a study, solar windows could filter out a portion of light and convert about a third of it to electricity. By utilizing a "diffuse cloud of quantum dots," the glass would still meet "the highest standards for indoor lighting."</p><p>The quantum dots are made of "copper,&nbsp;indium, and selenium, covered in a layer of zinc sulfide." They absorb a broad band of the solar spectrum but convert it to "specific wavelength in the infrared," which happens to be ideal for absorption by a silicon photovoltaic.&nbsp;</p><p>There would be a good deal of energy loss in the conversion process compared to a panel installed on a roof, but as <em>Ars Technica</em> notes, that's not really the point. Contemporary architecture tends to use vast amounts of glazing &ndash; by harvesting even ...</p> The City That Made Solar Power Illegal Alexander Walter 2014-08-13T14:09:00-04:00 >2014-08-18T20:31:17-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="315" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The rainy season coincides with summer in Dakar, which means it&rsquo;s the power-cut days. The heat goes up, A/Cs kick into gear and the power utility, Senelec, cannot cope. [...] Enter solar. This potential renewable savior is a latecomer to Dakar because until recently solar power was banned in cities, as it was considered what the French pointedly call &ldquo;comp&eacute;tition d&eacute;loyale&rdquo; &ndash; unfair competition. But under pressure from Dakar&rsquo;s own citizens, the ban was lifted under the last government [...].</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Team UOW Australia Wins 2013 Solar Decathlon China Justine Testado 2013-08-15T12:57:00-04:00 >2013-08-19T19:33:35-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="341" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>On Aug. 11, the Illawarra Flame House of Team UOW Australia (University of Wollongong and TAFE Illawarra Institute) won the 2013 Solar Decathlon China. Co-hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Energy Administration China, the competition challenged university teams to design, build, and operate solar-powered houses that are affordable, energy-efficient, and stylish. Participants included 22 teams from 35 universities, with students of over 35 nationalities in 13 countries.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Printed Paper Photovoltaic Cells nanoarchitecture 2011-10-04T12:04:00-04:00 >2012-11-13T12:41:54-05:00 <em><p>Researchers from Chemnitz University of Technology and Julius-Maximilians-University of W&uuml;rzburg, in Germany, have presented solar panels that are printed on standard paper. The technology, known as 3PV (3PV stands for printed paper photovoltaics) uses conventional printing methods and standard substrates, like those used for magazines, posters or packaging.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html>