Glass that generates electricity from the sun

Photo of a flare from the sun
Start-up company has a new technology that lets transparent glass generate electricity from the sun.

In these times of outrageously greedy oil companies and ever-increasing energy prices, there is a lot of focus on alternative energy sources. Solar energy is not a new concept — most of us are quite familiar with those ugly black panels you saw spring-up on rooftops back in the late 1980s (and most of us are glad they’ve fallen out of style too!)

However, a small company named XsunX has developed a new technology called Power Glass which aims to gather solar energy without the ugliness. Their technology deposits a thin, transparent film on window glass which generates an electrical current when struck by the sun’s rays. To anyone looking at or through the window, it appears pretty much like any other window, thus allowing you to maintain the asthetic appearance of a building or home while taking advantage of the free energy from the sun.

This is a pretty incredible idea if it’s affordable and works well. I think that most people would either love to save the environment by using alternative energy or perhaps enjoy “sticking it to The Man” by relying less on commercial energy sources. However, most people are not going to be willing to put huge, ugly devices all over their office buildings or homes just to accomplish this feat. By combining the look of normal glass with a means to generate energy, XsunX has a potentially huge potential.

However, don’t go running down to your local hardware store looking for these windows just yet. The company is shipping samples to manufacturers to facilitate cooperative product development and the technology appears to be at least a few years away from full commercialization. Just imagine, when the technology is ready, how much energy some of those monstrous glass high-rise office buildings could generate!

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