It’s always great to identify new technology for our Green Tip column! This month we’ve identified a new area of alternative energy generation: Building Integrated Photovoltaics or BIPV. One company, Onyx Solar has developed a clear glass product that also acts as a photovoltaic solar collector.
These glass panels offer an opportunity to generate electricity in buildings where orientation and the angles are not conducive for traditional PV solar arrays, such as north-facing rooflines. The company produces glass that is rated for safety in buildings and in a variety of thicknesses, colors and features, including walkable floor tiles and insulating glass applications. The PV glass from Onyx can be fully integrated and combined with other construction materials.
As an application in a residential home, consider skylights, both in the main roof area and on porch overhangs for added natural light in outdoor settings. We can see applications for sun rooms and solariums, where a large array of glass with photovoltaic capabilities can be a true asset in the home’s overall energy efficiency.
Here is a great example of design for commercial properties that can be a useful addition to the residential application. For more insights into Katahdin’s commitment to the environment, visit our Environment page.