Inventors say they’ve created a solar panel like no other
Crystal Green Energy Corporation is a small company of three men, producing extraordinary things.
Lead technical and engineering expert Gilles Leduc, along with partners James Delsaut, a pharmacist, and Malik Amjad, an optical design enginer, say they have found a way of building highly efficient solar panels like no other.
According to northernlife.ca, while typical solar panels only gather light, Crystal Green’s high-concentration photovoltaic thermal (HCPVT) systems not only concentrate sunlight on a compact panel for conversion to high-amperage electricity, but also extracts and stores heat — something no other solar panel on the planet can do, they say.
“When you play with magnifying glasses you have heat — you can burn things. I started there,” Leduc said. “There’s a lot of energy that no one’s using right now.”
Other solar panels have to dissipate heat because it can damage the solar cells, Leduc said. But Crystal Green Energy has found away around that.
“With our heat exchanger, we also capture the thermal energy and store it,” said Delsault. “It can then be used in your home for hot water, heating and, (if we) reverse that process, cooling.
The panels themselves are something like lightweight, mirrored bowls that are mounted on a sun-tracking system, allowing the panels to follow the sun across the sky from sunrise to sunset, which maximizes the amount of energy generated.
Crystal Green told NorthernLife.ca the thermal mirroring on their optics is 98-per-cent efficient, calling it a huge leap over the 80-per-cent efficiency of previous systems.
The designers say their “triple junction photovoltaic cell” is another innovation over the competition. They use fibre optics to channel the sun’s rays through a reflective Winston cone onto the photovoltaic cell, which converts light energy into electricity. Generated energy is stored using lithium ion batteries.
“We’re trying to gather all that energy as fast as we can, and pouring it into a backup system, so on the days the sun does not shine, you have those backup systems,” Leduc said.
Their design is so effective and efficient, Crystal Green said, a 1500-square-foot home can get all the power and heat it needs from only six of their 1.1-x-1.1-square-metre panels. The company said it’s panels are are not only more compact that traditional solar panels, but are also 40-per-cent efficient compared to 15-per-cent for standard panels.
“Solar panels are a 30-year-old technology that can’t be adapted,” Delsaut said. “We’re not comparing apples to apples anymore — this technology is way beyond (that).”
Leduc, Delsaut and Amjad spent the past four years perfecting the product in their small Sudbury office, self-funding the prototype design.
“We do this on the side,” Delsaut said. “We still have our full time jobs. We just want to see the product succeed.”
So what’s next? The men behind Crystal Green Energy said they have partnered with researchers at the University of Sherbrooke, Ottawa University and Cambrian College for pre-testing certification and advanced development of the cells.
Short URL: http://solar-magazine.com/?p=4171