New research of the Israeli company SolarOr – BeeHive PV – present transparent panel with the structure of honeycomb. Innovations in the field BIPV (Building Integrated Photovoltaics) looks for new solutions for coexistence of buildings and high technologies for solar energy. SolarOr uses the base of biomimicry. The structure of the honeycomb allows optimal allocation of the solar cells so that the panels simultaneously to pass light but also to concentrate it on the PV.
The standard PV cells are photovoltaic which on the face part is covered with glass and on the back one – with white polyvinyl. This structure does not pass light and therefore cannot be applied entirely on a facade, which should deliver natural lightening.
The main target of SolarOr is creating solar panels that will replace the glass facades. The largest challenge is how this panels to pass through the light. Till now there are two researches in this direction.
1. The first – combination of glass and solar cells, situated through a certain interval and forming sunblind.
· The advantage of this method is that it shades the rooms protecting them from overheating as well as producing energy.
· The disadvantage is the uneven distribution of light. It gets the effect of point source – there are shade zones and high light places causing blicks.
2. The second tendency is to create panels from more transparent materials. They pass the light, but do not have crystal clarity of the glass.
Beehive PV consist of photovoltaic elements integrated in the glass. Te latter has protection function. The main skeleton in the shape of honeycomb is made by polymethyl methacrylate PMMA. Each cell is full with silicon, which serve as a basis on which the photovoltaic cell will be put. Depending on the filled volume the inclination of the photovoltaic element is regulated, which makes the productive adaptive to different projects and locations. The PV elements will not be effective enough if installed vertically. They should be mounted in the suitable angle. The small silicon volumes on which the photovoltaics are fixed play as a prism, which magnify the solar rays concentration on the cells as in the same time allow the access of scattered light in the rooms.
The net of prism bodies increases the concentration of solar radiation on the PV elements 2.5 times. It is expected 1 sq.m. solar panel to produce 140 W electricity, achieving 14 % effectiveness. To have maximum energy profits the integrated solar panels should face south as the ideal orientation in the regular roof solar panels. Any shading (from adjacent buildings for instance) will considerably decrease the energy quality produced by the PV.
The products under this idea unite 2 features – isolation and energy. It save space and eliminates the need of additional construction for the panels. Beehive PV has attractive design and the structure gives the façade style.
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