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Energy - Supercharged solar panels

 

Inexpensive aluminum reflectors are helping to make a 700-watt solar system designed by JX Crystals far more efficient and less expensive than conventional solar panels. The four 175-watt panels concentrate the sun up to three times its normal strength, which reduces by two-thirds the amount of expensive silicon solar cells required to produce the same amount of electricity. To further enhance the efficiency of the system, an inexpensive solar tracker keeps the panels pointed toward the sun throughout the day. This increases the energy output as much as 35 percent in some regions. A system installed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is producing electrical performance and efficiency data that was presented by ORNL's Curt Maxey at a recent international conference in Germany. The panel was purchased by the lab's Facilities Management Division for evaluation purposes.

 -  Ron Walli,  865.576.0226,  November 14, 2007
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