Washington: A New York company has developed a new form of solar panels, which are shaped like artistically fashioned ivy leaves decorating a wall’s surface.
This new product called Solar Ivy, developed by Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology (SMIT), will be applied for the first time in the University of Utah (the U) in Salt Lake City.
The idea and most of the cash for the project comes from the U’s student-led Sustainable Campus Initiative Fund (SCIF), which is funded by student contributions.
Bringing Solar Ivy to the U was headed by Tom Melburn, an environmental studies major.
His project was awarded a grant for roughly two-thirds of the 42,000 dollars cost of the project.
The remaining third will be raised from the campus community in a drive to generate funds and awareness of the many ‘green’ efforts taking place all over campus.
Solar Ivy is a composition of small photovoltaic panels shaped so that they can be installed in an attractive arrangement, much like ivy growing over a building’s surface.
The panels generate electricity that is used by the building, offsetting the amount of power the building buys from the utility company.
Panels can be shaped and coloured to suit the installation.
The installation of the prefabricated panels is expected to begin late this fall and projected to take a few weeks to complete.