A London-based firm is appealing for help in financing a new additive for paints, coatings and flooring that it claims can transform any surface into a solar energy receptor.
SolarLayer has the potential to revolutionise renewable energy by turning any roof, wall, street or path into a photovoltaic generator.
Developed by a group of British, Swiss and Argentine scientists, the patented product is composed of three basic elements: a fibre conductor, photovoltaic cells and a voltage stabiliser.
The conductor is a super thin copper-based alloy fibre that can be fabricated as a cloth or as a powder.
As well as transforming light into electricity, the innovative photovoltaic cells work as an intelligent conductor and sense the magnetic north.
The tension stabiliser receives electric current from different parts of the conductor fibre and stabilises it before generating a useful current output.
Once the electrical output is obtained, the system can be connected to the house grid.
In order to bring SolarLayer from the lab to the market, the scientists have begun a second stage of research and development, for which they are seeking finance through www.indiegogo.com
In a statement, the group said: “This will finally allow the consumer market to use solar energy energy, without changing the existing aesthetics of homes and roads. Among its main applications, we can name, street lighting, electrification of SOS posts, parking lighting, public offices and homes. The system can be used as a replacement or support to the electric grid. It can also be of major help for refugee camps, where tents can be sprayed with SolarLayer paint to generate electricity.
“Consumer use of this technology should dramatically increase the use of renewable energies, reducing fossil energy requirements, fixed government costs and can even mean a tax reduction. The founders aspire that in the next five years every paint in the world will be mixed with SolarLayer. They estimate that using this technology everywhere, in the next 25 years the world would generate enough solar electricity to eliminate the use of non-renewable sources.”