Dow Solar 'Powerhouse' Solar Roofing Shingles to be Available Next Year
Dow Chemicals will be releasing their thin-film "Powerhouse" solar roofing shingles next year, and claim they will convert 13% of the sunlight into renewable electricity, a significant improvement over the current solar shingles that only have a conversion rate of 11%. The sleek design of the shingles also will have aesthetic appeal over the clunky-looking options currently available on the market.
The Dow technology uses a new solar panel strategy referred to as CIGS, described as PC cells that use a blend of copper, gallium, indium and selenium instead of the current industry standard, silicon. This efficient design will generate 3.5 kilowatts of power for every 250 shingles installed. Though not enough to power most homes, the panels should pay for themselves in energy savings within a decade, according to Dow's preliminary estimates.
At present, a the new system is expected to be double the price of even a standard asphalt roof, so smart consumers may want to wait until the prices come down after the initial roll out. The projected cost for installing a 'Powerhouse' solar roof is $10,000 for 250 shingles which can cover 1,000 square feet.
Other Building Integrated Photovoltaics:
3M flexible CIGS thin-film solar on plastic
Ascent Solar FlexPower - only monolithic plastic CIGS thin film on market
System Photonics Ceramic Substrate BIPV Panel allows more color options & lower overall cost