Canadian solar company Mitrex has developed a new product called Solar Brick which mimics the effect of a brick wall while delivering traditional solar panel electricity. The clever facade panels can produce 330W per panel and can be used for new builds or retrofits of older buildings. The advantages of being able to add a layer of solar cladding to an older surface opens up a whole new market for building upgrades. Mitrex is not the only company doing this kind of technology of course. The Building Integrated Solar Products (BIPV) market is booming, and incorporates such things as solar windows, glass roofs and more. The thinking is obvious, which restrict solar to a roof when there’s so much more surface are available. Of course the issues with shading and power efficiency come into play on vertical surfaces, but it’s still a technology which has a real purpose.
There are a couple of other advantages for this new product. First it can be delivered in a number of different panel configurations and sizes, and second all their panels are guaranteed for 25 years, with a minimum efficiency of 80% power output guaranteed even after that time. Nice!