Washington, May 11 : Solar-panels have long been considered as those traditional tilt-it systems that are installed on roofs, but now a construction company has developed solar panels that use peel-and-stick technology to attach to roofs.
Lumeta's Power-Ply 380 is a solar panel sticker and with its adhesive back it can offer be speedy installation, about twice as fast as conventional rack-mounted solar panels.
"Solar needs to become part of the building envelope and this is a step towards that. The whole idea was [to] create a new product that integrates better with the roof system," Wired quoted Stephen Torres, COO of Lumeta, as saying.
Despite being lighter and easier to install than traditional tilt-it systems, its major drawback is that it is stuck flat on the roof, which makes them lose the optimal angle to the sun.
According to Torres, this costs his company's panels about five percent of their power production as the panels claim peak power generation of 380 watts (pdf) in a "typical installation."
Till date, Lumeta is looking forward to several projects totalling about 500 kilowatts of electricity generation beginning at the end of June. And they have a total of five megawatts worth of panels in the pipeline from Suntech, a major solar cell manufacturer.
Installation is not the only hassle linked with solar panels; most solar systems cost at least 10,000 dollars to install. This in turn depends upon your state's incentive programs, which do not allow you save your money in electric bill for more than a decade.
Thus, despite the increased ease of installation provided by these stickers, solar photovoltaic panels probably won't prove the only answer for clean energy generation in the foreseeable future.
While the stickers aren't available for home installations, Lumeta does provide a panel system designed to integrate also with the much-in-use terra-cotta tiles.