New Energy generates electricity with flexible plastic
August 3, 2011 By New Energy
New Energy generates electricity
with flexible plastic
New Energy Technologies has announced that researchers developing its SolarWindow technology, capable of generating electricity on see-through glass, have now successfully generated electricity on flexible plastic using the company's spray-on coating methods.
Aug. 3, 2011 – New Energy Technologies has announced that researchers
developing its SolarWindow technology, capable of generating electricity
on see-through glass, have now successfully generated electricity on
flexible plastic using the company's spray-on coating methods – an
important technical achievement necessary for the development of
electricity-generating window films.
"Today's breakthrough supports a brand new commercial application for
our core SolarWindow technology and is the direct result of numerous
patent-pending methods, materials, and processes we have worked hard to
invent and develop," explained Mr. John A. Conklin, president and CEO of
New Energy Technologies.
"These important technology breakthroughs have already resulted in a
successful public demonstration last year of our SolarWindow
application on glass, able to generate electricity while remaining
see-through. Since then, New Energy's product development group has
worked aggressively to advance our SolarWindow application for glass
windows towards commercial manufacturability. Concurrently, our
research scientists have been working to create new and exciting
SolarWindow products which reach beyond glass. The result is today's
announcement regarding our ability to generate electricity on flexible
Scientists anticipate that commercially developed electricity-generating
flexible plastic could be deployed as tinted window film, which remains
see-through while generating electrical power. Traditionally, the
prospect of creating see-through flexible plastic which generates
electricity has been limited by numerous technical challenges, including
the need for cumbersome temperature-specific, pressure sensitive, and
expensive process methods for applying coatings to plastic surfaces.
New Energy researchers achieved today's breakthrough by spraying the company's electricity-generating coatings onto flexible, lightweight
lab-scale plastic (polyethylene terephthalate or PET) at room
temperature and at low pressure, which may result in reduced
manufacturing costs. While developing the first working PET prototype,
researchers also overcame conventional issues with surface preparation,
considered vital to achieving maximum strength of the coatings' bond to
the surface, and for optimizing product durability and lifespan.
Notably, researchers were able to maintain the working architecture of
New Energy's SolarWindow while achieving flexibility. The
SolarWindow architecture enables various important functions such as
generating electricity on the surface of plastic and distributing
electricity to the circuit.
Currently under development for eventual commercial deployment in the
estimated 85 million commercial buildings and homes in America,
SolarWindow is the subject of ten new patent filings.
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