Turning solar panel factories into neighborhood businesses, similar to microbreweries, is inventor Shawn Frayne’s argument as to how to make solar panels cheaper and more accessible to the masses.
Frayne and co-inventor Alex Hornstein created the micro-solar panel “factory” to ease the labor cost of producing small-scale panels (solettes), which he says are two to three times more expansive per watt than large panels. Frayne explains that automating the process in the form of these “printers” — which look more like slicers — could bring down the price by producing 300,000 to one million panels a year.
As narrator Flora Lichtman points out, this factory is small enough to fit on a picnic table in her backyard.
The Solar Pocket Factory has been launched on Kickstarter and received about $70,000 in backing – another example of crowdfunding coming to the rescue.
Frayne says the completed project should be ready by April.
Source: Climate Crocks
Chelsea is a former newspaper reporter who has spent the past few years teaching English in Poland, Finland and Japan. When she wasn't teaching or writing, Chelsea was traveling Europe and Asia, sampling spicy street food along the way.