dow solar: photovoltaic roof shingles
Dow Solar Solutions has launched a new range of BIPV system that will be great for all those who don’t like to give up the appearance a conventional roofing shingle gives to their house for being ecofriendly. The company’s latest solar panels look just like regular roofing shingle and according to the company, they cost about 40% less than other solar panels that can be installed like roofing tiles. Dow received $20 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy to help develop its BIPV products.
In addition to being cheaper, these new solar shingles, dubbed Dow PowerHouse, are 10% more efficient and cost 15% less on a per-watt basis. The panels can be installed by regular roofers and can provide renewable energy without changing the look of your house. The new solar shingles can be integrated into rooftops with standard asphalt shingles, Dow said, and will be introduced in 2010 before a wider roll-out in 2011. The shingle will use thin-film cells of copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS), a photovoltaic material that typically is more efficient at turning sunlight into electricity than traditional polysilicon cells. Dow's shingle will be about 30 to 40 percent cheaper than current BIPV systems. The Dow shingles can be installed in about 10 hours, compared with 22 to 30 hours for traditional solar panels, reducing the installation costs that make up more than 50 percent of total system prices. The product will available in North America through Lennar Corp (LEN.N) and Pulte Homes Inc (PHM.N) before marketing is expanded.