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Published on November 25th, 2011 | by Zachary Shahan

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Ascent Solar’s Flexible CIGS Solar Panels One of TIME’s 50 Best Inventions of 2011

November 25th, 2011 by  


flexible solar panels

Ascent Solar Technologies develops innovative, lightweight, flexible, thin-film solar photovoltaic modules (that’s a mouthful, I know — read it again). Ascent’s flexible CIGS solar panels are so innovative they were named one of TIME’s are designed to integrate with limitless applications, transforming unused surface area into a source of clean, renewable energy.50 Best Inventions of 2011, one of only six “green” inventions to make the list this year. The list is featured in the November 28, 2011 issue of TIME (which, somehow, is already online… oh, old media, how you amuse me).

“For each of the past 10 years, TIME has recognized the top 50 breakthroughs in science, technology and the arts,” Ascent notes. “Previous honorees have included the iPad, Nissan Leaf, 3-D cameras, and the world’s first synthetic cells.” Not a bad list of technologies to be associated with.

“TIME refers to Ascent’s solar panels as ‘ingenious’ for their ability to be directly integrated with building materials without the limitations of standard, glass solar panels.”

Ascent Solar’s Solar Panels in Use on Tents

Here on CleanTechnica, Tina wrote, nearly one year ago, how Ascent’s solar panels are being used for portable disaster relief on tents — innovative, useful application, especially in disaster-hit areas. The panels’ flexibility and light weight certainly do allow for more applications than most of us would normally consider are possible with solar, and allow for renewable energy expansion in formerly inaccessible areas and tremendously under-utilized areas.

As the company states, they are “designed to integrate with limitless applications, transforming unused surface area into a source of clean, renewable energy.” Who doesn’t love that? (Other than, perhaps, some solar panel competitors.)

Image via Ascent Solar 
 

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About the Author

is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA] — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in this company and feels like it is a good cleantech company to invest in. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort on Tesla or any other company.



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