Posted: 31 Aug 2012 04:00 PM PDT
People think windmills are ugly (I disagree though – I think they’re quite neat) and that photovoltaic dual-axis solar panels, while efficient, aren’t really any prettier.
Well André Broessel from Barcelona has united sleek architecture with intelligent scientific design as an answer to the ‘ugliness’ of renewable energy devices with the “ß torics” system. This spherical ball of glass uses a simple optical system to concentrate sunlight up to 10,000 times – and is 35% more efficient than the dual-axis tracking models. It incorporates a weatherproof, fully rotational natural optical tracking device, which means it can be placed on inclined surfaces, curtain walls, roofs or anywhere really – this allows you to draw energy from any surface of a building.
Check out this comparison of different solar providers. I’m not sure I fully grasp all of it but it seems impressive:
Apparently it can also draw energy from moonlight, which is pretty cool too. They’re planning on installing this at a hotel and calling it the “hybrid building” – a place where travellers can go to experience “high-tech and sustainable environments”.
Check out the images below of a few of the prototypes, but I believe the project is still in development. It’s such a beautiful design that it’s easy to imagine these perched on sculptures and other grand outdoor art pieces, decorating the world and powering it at the same time. The future of green tech is looking rather shiny.