Climate change is a hot topic especially in 2020 and moving forward. More and more people are turning towards renewable energy which greatly includes Solar energy. The convenience and ease of access for consumers is one reason why solar is becoming more popular in commercial and residential buildings to reduce the reliance on fossil fuels.
Since 2014, solar roofing costs have nearly been cut in half. This makes solar roofing a viable and cost effective option for consumers. New trends are emerging in the solar power industry for roofing and other uses.
One of the biggest trends in solar roofing is solar shingles. These are known as a Building-Integrated Photovoltaic or BIPV for short. This technology just means that it is just a structural component but also a way of collecting energy from the Sun. This way is popular because the shingles create the roof instead of external solar panels.
The cost of solar shingles is currently pricey compared to traditional solar panels. The pros of a solar shingle are the fact they add a nice look onto your roof as well as creating a larger surface area. As technology advances, the prices should decrease just as solar panels have since the start of solar power technology.
Solar skins are a fairly new technology that has potential to grow as consumers tend to like the traditional look of their home or business. They work as a miniature billboard that allows the consumer to have patterns or images printed on it. This can work for brands, businesses, and can add solar panels without drastically altering the look of the building.
The solar skins are a thin printable material. This allows light to pass through so the solar panels are efficient but blend into the aesthetics of the house or business better. This is an important step towards the future of solar roofing by appealing to homeowners and businesses for branding and more.
Solar Panel Glazing
Glazing is a solar panel so thin that it is nearly transparent. It is another example of a BIPV for homes and businesses. Glazing is used generally over windows or skylights in order to collect the solar, but also allow light to still come through.
This method of solar is more expensive and less efficient that other methods, but in order to keep up with the rising energy costs, every little bit helps.
With advancements in solar roofing, engineers are working with solar fabrics that are not only useful for homes, but can expand into temporary housings. Developing a photovoltaic fabric can expand to clothing, construction, and more. Imagine camping in a tent and gathering solar energy to power the camp.
Not only will solar fabric be helpful for tents, they will be used in permanent buildings as well. Buildings that use awnings and other coverings can benefit from this type of solar energy. Solar Fabric is fairly new, but is expanding everyday to further meet the needs of the consumer.
Further Advancements in Solar Energy
Solar Energy is advancing each and every day at an exponential rate. As time progresses, solar roofing and trends will become easier to attain, cheaper, and more efficient. This can lead to higher renewable energy production which is important to help the ever growing climate change issues.
These technologies are not greatly widespread yet to business and consumers. They do offer potential for future technology to help reduce energy costs and allow less use of fossil fuels. Solar technology could soon become a new standard. It is not easy predicting the trends of technology, but solar energy has a bright future!
Image Credit: https://sunshinerenewable.com/residential-solar-installer/solarskin/srs-solar-skin-info-2/, https://www.sbcmag.info/news/2018/jan/solar-window-glaze-innovation-significant-breakthrough