Posts filed under ‘Solar’

New Developments in Nano Tech

Check out this CNN article:

Researchers have developed a new anti-reflective coating that boosts the efficiency of solar panels and allows sunlight to be absorbed from almost any angle.

Scientists from the Future Chips Constellation (FCC) at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York have created the coating using nanotechnology — engineering devices on a molecular scale.

They are hopeful that it can transform the solar energy market in the coming years.

A typical untreated silicon solar cell absorbs just over two thirds of the sunlight it receives. But with the FCC’s nanoengineered coating, that figure rises to 96.21 percent.

In their paper: “Realization of a near perfect antireflection coating for silicon solar energy utilization,” published in the scientific journal Optics Letters, researchers report that gains in absorption were consistent across the entire spectrum of sunlight — ultraviolet, visible light, and infrared.

“To get maximum efficiency when converting solar power into electricity, you want a solar panel that can absorb nearly every single photon of light, regardless of the sun’s position in the sky,” said Rensselaer physics professor Shawn-Yu Lin, and head of the FCC research team. “Our new anti-reflective coating makes this possible.”

Good news.  Read the whole thing.


January 26, 2009 at 1:38 pm Leave a comment

3 Bullet Points to Understanding Solar Lighting

Here’s a quick bit of information on how solar lighting works, with a more in depth explanation to follow:

  • There are rechargeable batteries inside the fixture
  • These rechargeable batteries are charged each day as the solar panel gets energy from the sun
  • At night, when the panel is not effected by solar energy, the lights automatically go on, and are powered by the rechargeable batteries

Two quick things that may stick out as you read this:

  1. Light must necessarily be bright to charge the batteries.  It is definitely the case that the more direct sunlight your solar panel can get, the brighter your light will be that night.
  2. The lights go on automatically when the panel does not sense solar energy.  This brings us to a good point about solar lights…that the less ambient light your lights are affected by at night, the better.

Hope this helps.  More information and a good amount of products can be found at YCA Solar Light Store.

January 12, 2009 at 10:44 pm Leave a comment

Multiple Web Stores

What to do, what to do.

When we first got started opening up e-commerce stores, we decided to use Yahoo Merchant Services as our platform (using Solid Cactus as well).  That’s what we used to open our first store, YCA Solar Lights (now offline, decision made).  Now don’t get me wrong, it worked.  But as time moved on we realized we could do much better:

  1. It took an extremely long time to upload products
  2. Changing things around was clunky and difficult
  3. It’s a fairly antiquated system
  4. SEO wasn’t extremely intuitive

So, we looked into other solutions and settled on Volusion.  Now we have our “newer” store up and running at YCA Solar Light Store.  I can tell you it is an incredible step up.  Volusion makes everything much, much easier.  It seems like the people who started Volusion used Yahoo to set up their stores, got extremely fed up, and set out to make a much better product that solved all of Yahoo’s problems.

Earlier today we made the decision to close the Yahoo store even though we were still converting.  Why?  Mostly because we felt we could better serve our customers that way.  With one central home, our customer service can be better and more focused.  Also, we didn’t want two URL’s competing SEO-wise.  Lastly, our google advertising was getting thrown off having two separate URL’s competing.  We knew we had to do this at some point, but made the decision today.  It hurt, but I think we made the right call.

Thoughts?  What would you guys have done in this position?

January 12, 2009 at 9:41 pm 2 comments