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Ministry of Education.
Kaua e rangiruatia te hāpai o te hoe; e kore to tātou waka e ū ki uta

Sunflower solar panels provide electricity & heat to remote locations

20 October 2014

Solar power icon

Airlight energy and IBM research have announced plans to bring affordable sunflower-shaped solar panels that provide remote locations with electricity and heat, to the market by 2017. 

As a branch of airlight, dsolar’s “high concentration photovoltaic thermal” (HCPVT) system concentrates the sun’s radiation 2,000 times and converts 80% of it into useful resources. The 12 kilowatts of electrical power and 20kw of heat generated is enough to supply several average homes, which makes it ideal for those in isolated areas.

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Discussion starters

  • Characteristics of technological outcomes: Use this and other examples to explain why time and context are important criteria for judging the fitness for purpose of technological outcomes. (level 5)
  • Characteristics of technology: Use this and other examples to discuss examples to illustrate how socio-cultural factors influence technology and in turn technology influences socio-cultural factors in complex and ongoing ways. (level 7) 

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Keywords: sunflower, energy, solar, characteristics of technological outcomes, characteristics of technology, sustainable

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