Cotton, Castor Beans Combined to Make Solar Panel Bio-Backing


image: BioSolar

You might not think that cotton and castor beans could be the answer to making solar panels less expensive, but that’s just what California-based BioSolar is trying to make happen. The company has just unveiled a new backing for solar panels which it hopes manufacturers will find financially and functionally more compelling than the petroleum-based backing sheets currently used for most panels.

Renewable and Less-Expensive, BioSolar Says
Announced at the Solar Energy + Applications conference in San Diego this week, BioSolar says the new backing sheet is made of a mixture of cotton and a nylon resin made from castor beans. Not only will these be a more environmentally friendly option, but according to BioSolar, will sell for 25-50% less than current backing sheets.
BioSolar’s Chief Technology Officer, Dr Stan Levy:

We have demonstrated that functional photovoltaic back-sheets can be produced from renewable resources. We believe that the BioBacksheet is a viable alternative to back-sheets currently in use. Not only is this product produced from sustainable and renewable resources, but is expected to be more cost effective than the current back-sheets.

Preliminary testing has shown that the new material performs well in tests, but final testing still has to be done before commercial production begins.

via BioSolar and :: GreenTech Media
Solar Panels
Hairy Solar Panels Could Result From Nanowire Breakthrough
Solaria: Finding Clever Ways to Make Cheaper Solar Panels
Lumeta Makes Peel-and-Stick Solar Panel Installations a Breeze

Tags: Renewable Energy | Solar Power | Solar Technology

Best of TreeHugger 2014

WHAT'S HOT ON FACEBOOK