Special Coating for Storm Cell Solar SystemCategory: Science & Technology
Posted: August 24, 2012 02:08PM
Solar power is quite different from more traditional means of power generation, and so it has different challenges to overcome. Among these is keeping the cells clean because, like a TV, monitor, or smartphone, they are not as useful when dirty. A researcher at the University of Houston (at the request of his wife) has developed a thin coating for solar cells that is self-cleaning, but will not impair the performance of the cell itself.
When hurricane Ike struck Texas in 2008, the researcher's house and family survived undamaged, but was without electricity. As the researcher had spent years working in solar energy, his wife asked why he had not made a portable unit for the next time they lost power like that. That is what he has done with the Self-Cleaning Nano Hydrophobic layer, which has recently been licensed to C-Voltaics along with a storm cell system.
This storm cell system is a photovoltaic equivalent to the emergency generators you can get to power your house, but obviously does not use gasoline or diesel fuel. Instead it has solar panels with the self-cleaning layer on retractable arms that can be manually positioned when needed and collapsed when not. As the layer will keep the panels clean, the storm cells are much easier to maintain, which will be perfect for an emergency power system for the average consumer.