October 23 , 07
Inflatable Solar Produces Power For 25 times Less

There is an amazing new technology that promises much cheaper solar energy and it’s not hedged on future technology or unresolved production issues.

The technology is Inflatable Solar Concentration, it exists today and is being developed by a company called Cool Earth and the name is fitting because this technology is nothing short of cool.

The concept of Inflatable Solar is born out of the need to save the planet from energy conflict and environmental damage and Nobel prize winning scientists from around the World are gathered to make it happen. The goal is to reduce the cost of Solar by an incredible 25x in 3 years from $5.00 per watt to about 20¢, and they’re well on their way to doing so.

Inflatable Solar works by concentrating light and focusing it onto photovoltaic cells, increasing the energy impacting the cells many times over. The design costs (400x less) per collected area than conventional mirrors and yet is so stable that it can withstand 130 mile an hour winds. The 2 meter wide bubble design also has the advantage of protecting the delicate mirror surfaces from rain, insects and dirt. Each in a series of concentrators are suspended on support cables that also control movement of the collectors. A grid of poles suspend the system high in the air making for usable land under the grid for farming ranching or other purposes. The idea is thought to have greater potential than wind energy which is limited by its material cost and relative smaller area of possible installation.

The system is patent pending and it makes a lot of sense even for people without a great deal of knowledge in alternative energy. With the price of oil soaring to $90 a barrel and not so appealing prospects of increased Coal and Nuclear Power use, thinking out side of the box may be the best answer and it looks like the people at Cool Earth have found an Earth minimal and low cost solution to the problem of energy conversion.