solar power

Smart Grids Could Save Australians $28 Billion In Electricity Costs

A $500 million, four year smart electricity grid pilot project in Sydney and Newcastle CBDs has paid off, with the final analysis showing that smart grid monitoring and control could save Australian consumers a total of $28 billion over 20 years. A national smart grid would enable a gamut of services like real-time consumption monitoring that could help Australians lower their energy bills.


The World Is Your Steam Room With A Material That Turns Sunshine Into Steam

Good news for vaporised water fans everywhere: MIT researchers have developed a disc-shaped material structure that generates steam using solar power.


Scientists Swapped A Toxic Chemical In Solar Cells For A Tofu Ingredient

Thin-film solar cells promise to bring flexible, low-profile solar power to all kinds of surfaces. Unfortunately, constructing thin-film panels requires cadmium chloride, a finicky, expensive and toxic material. Now, University of Liverpool scientists have figured out how to make solar cells using magnesium chloride, a compound so innocuous, it’s actually used in the production of tofu.


This Is What Solar Panels Used To Look Like

This incredibly beautiful object is a dual-axis array of non-imaging solar concentrators — or, in other words, a solar panel. Things have certainly changed, haven’t they?


Why The Future Of A Solar-Powered Life Isn't Here Yet

You’d think that with all the solar farms we’ve been building up and all those solar panels on people’s roofs we would figure out how to use solar power to replace those old smoking power plants of ours. But we can’t yet.


CSIRO's Supercritical Solar Is A Clean Energy Breakthrough

CSIRO has made some amazing contributions to science in its almost 100 years of history, like Wi-Fi and the Square Kilometer Array. It can add another feather to its cap with the announcement of a potentially world-changing solar energy breakthrough.


IKEA Is Powering Its Australian Stores With Solar Energy

Everyone’s favourite Swedish furniture store is getting a green makeover. With a Queensland store already well on the way to its maximum PV potential of 741kW using almost 2500 solar panels, solar programs for four NSW and Victoria retail warehouses, and four new stores planned for construction with solar, IKEA will be the nation’s largest solar business.


The Solar-Powered Fridge Of 1937 Made Sunbeams Into Ice Cubes In 2 Hours

We often think of solar-powered devices as pretty new. But we’ve been harnessing the sun since long before the first practical solar cell was introduced back in 1954. For instance, in these solar-powered contraptions from a 1937 Popular Science film — including the amazing fridge that turned sunbeams into ice cubes in just two hours!


This Apocalypse-Ready Solar Charging Station Folds Up Behind A Bike

At the NYC Bike Expo over the weekend, I got the chance to meet Jeff Crystal of Voltaic Systems, a New York-based maker of photovoltaic systems. Crystal built a mobile charging station on the back of his bike that can supply devices with a charge within minutes. If there ever was an apocalypse — this is the guy to know.


Australia To Pioneer Off-Grid Solar Power Storage With SunPower

Australia will be one of the proving grounds for the world’s second largest solar energy company to test its off-grid solar energy storage, putting solar panels and lithium-ion batteries into customers’ homes in Victoria. SunPower is expected to make an official announcement on a pilot project in Australia’s second most populous state in the next two months.