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Solar Fabric Technology

Methods and Applications of Embedding Solar Technology into Fabric

April 13, 2017 by Donald Krambeck

Researchers are combining textiles and solar tech, but there’s no one way to get there. From weave-able solar cells to solar dyes, from handbags to smart houses—solar fabrics could change the way we power our world.

Solar technology has decades of research behind it with thousands of engineers and scientists devoting their talents to developing viable solar energy harvesting and storage. From the large silicon panels developed in the 1950s to the tiny solar cells in today’s everyday objects, solar has gotten more efficient, smaller, and more ubiquitous. 

One of the ways solar may creep further into our lives is through solar fabrics. Clothing that can charge your phone, awnings that can power streetlights, curtains that can cut a home’s power consumption: these are all areas that researchers are exploring with the combination of solar with textiles.