HI-TECH NEWS with #solar energy hashtag

France’s Minister of Environment Ségolène Royal has officially opened the world’s first solar road this week with one kilometer and 2,880 solar panels in Tourouvre-au-Perche. Now the country is waiting to see if the road, built with construction company Colas‘ Wattway technology, will live up to the hype surrounding the clean energy experiment. The road is designed to produce sufficient power to electrify street lighting in the 3,400-person village.

by Matar Khalifa
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SolTech Energy, a Swedish company selling solutions for clean solar power, has developed a unique home heating system contained within roofing tiles made out of ordinary transparent glass. The attractive house-warming tiles (somewhat ironically) give roofs a beautiful, icy appearance quite unlike anything else we’ve ever seen before.

The Maasai are a semi-nomadic pastoral tribe spread across Kenya and Tanzania, and globalization has not been kind to them. Vulnerable to wildlife that steal their livestock and powerless after the sun goes down, many Maasai often have to walk many kilometers just to charge their phones. But a new project spearheaded by Green Energy Africa has brought solar energy to 2,000 homes in Naiputa county alone, and put new power into the hands of women who sell affordable solar installations.

It’s been one year since an innovative solar-paneled bike path was laid in Krommenie, Netherlands, and the results have even surprised the designers. Over the past year the path has generated 70 kilowatt-hours per square meter - enough to power about three houses. The people behind SolaRoadare hopeful the path’s success will spur more cities to adopt the idea and use existing roadways to gather cheap and sustainable energy.

Washington D.C, Aug 4 (ANI): A team of researchers has come up with high-performance, micro-scale solar cells that outshine comparable devices by making sideways swipes.

University of Wisconsin-Madison engineers’ miniature solar panels could power myriad personal devices – wearable medical sensors, smartwatches, even autofocusing contact lenses.

by Ahmed Dubai
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A new resort slated for completion in 2020 is striving to be the greenest of its kind in the world. The Oasis Eco Resort designed by Baharash Architecture for a site surrounded by dunes in Liwa Oasis will boast a host of sustainable features, including 1570,000 square feet of solar panels that are expected to produce sufficient energy to power 100 percent of the 8,400 square foot development.

Built by Mark Keevers and Martin Green from the University of New South Wales (UNSW), the unique prism could help make solar panels cheaper and more efficient. "Instead of what you can get now, which is typically, say, 17 percent [efficiency] modules for your rooftops, in 10 or 20 years, you might be able to buy 34 percent efficient modules, so you'd need half as many for a rooftop to get the same electricity out." Keevers said.

by Ahmed Dubai
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By 2040, 33 countries are expected to face extreme water stress, according to the World Resources Institute, making the race to develop innovative solutions more furious than ever. Ap Verheggen has been on the cutting-edge of solar thought experiments for several years. You may recall his SunGlacier – a conceptual solar-powered leaf that produces water in the desert. Now he’s back with WaterDrop, a handheld solar-powered device that produces condensation for drinking. Ap acknowledges the concept is a bit like science fiction, but solar technology has taken huge strides in recent years, so it’s worth giving it a closer look.

by CrinetJanet
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Renewable energy companies offered a record-breaking bid for the third phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. At rates of 2.99 U.S. cents per kilowatt-hour, the bid means that solar power in Dubai would be cheaper than coal when compared to rates of a recently-commissioned coal plant.

Rain means clouds and clouds mean less sunlight. That’s bad news for most solar cells, but a new design can actually make use of rain drops that fall on its surface, allowing it to generate electricity even when the weather’s bad.