With SolarWindow Technologies’ latest creation, it is now possible to generate power by the use of bendable glass. Yes, we are talking about the ultra-thin electricity-generating flexible glass that the firm has recently created. This new generation method of creating clean electricity makes it possible to tap solar power through the windows of tall buildings or vehicles. The product, yet to be launched, is currently in the development phase.
SolarWindow Technologies’ electricity-generating flexible glass can also be applied to cars, buses, planes, trucks, …
This electricity-generating flexible glass is a thin bendable glass just 0.1 millimeters in thickness. When large sheets of such glass are applied to the skyscraper’s windows, these have the capability to turn into tall electricity generators. The produced electricity is clean, efficient and has no carbon footprint at all. This electricity-generating flexible glass is created by coating Corning Willow Glass with ‘electricity generating thin coating’ developed earlier by the firm. According to SolarWindow, it is possible to realize a payback period of one year in case of applying it to a 50-story building. It is then laminated to manufacture the final product. Not only the curved or plane windows of tall buildings but also the windows of the cars, buses, planes, trucks, boats, and ships can be used to create power for vehicular usage. Electric cars could even charge their battery.
SolarWindow CEO John Conklin said in a statement, “Along with our SolarWindow liquid coatings for rigid glass, we’re excited to expand our capabilities with brand new ways of generating clean electricity on almost any surface imaginable by using flexible Corning Willow Glass. As leaders in the sector, we’re setting out a clear vision for the future with this new, innovative technology.”
SolarWindow began its journey in the year 2009 when its scientists integrated the world’s smallest solar cells to a clear surface. Later on, at least thrice the number of these cells were squeezed into the same area to create an improved product with greater speed and durability and at the same time lowering costs. The result is the cost-effective, durable electricity-generating flexible glass. The company’s product development was bolstered when it entered into an alliance with the United States National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA). Soon after, the company made a major technical breakthrough. CRADA’s main aim is to manufacture these solar windows for commercial purposes.
Dr. Maikel van Hest, a Senior Scientist at NREL commented, “While generating electricity on flexible glass presents obvious commercial opportunities, this approach is especially attractive to high-speed roll-to-roll manufacturing for maximizing output while lowering production costs”
Looking at the company’s work, SolarWindow’s goal to manufacture electricity-generating flexible glass for commercial usage seems achievable. If they continue at the same pace, it seems highly likely that the company would further keep on developing great products that exploit the potential of this great source of renewable energy.