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Old 2007-08-31, 21:38   #1
jasong
 
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"Jason Goatcher"
Mar 2005

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Default solar panel prism patent

I read someone's idea about how to improve the efficiency of solar panels. I was pretty sure I read it on Mersenne Forum, but a quick perusal didn't find it.

If the person who came up with the idea reads this, or someone knows who it was, I'd like to know who came up with it. And if that person could write a few paragraphs on the theory.

What their theory basically amounted to was that solar panels generally only accept one wavelength(or range of wavelengths?) of light and that a prism could be used that would break up the light. Then the solar panel would be made to collect the different types of light based on their location behind the prism.

In my mind it was a very creative, and possibly brilliant idea, so I'd like to find out if it's patented. If it isn't patented, I'd like to be in contact with the person who came up with the idea. If they're not interested in patenting it, and I do enough research to decide it would be a good idea to patent it, I want them to have the opportunity to be involved in licensing agreements, on the off chance that I get that far.
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Old 2007-08-31, 23:13   #2
Wacky
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasong View Post
What their theory basically amounted to was that solar panels generally only accept one wavelength(or range of wavelengths?) of light and that a prism could be used that would break up the light. Then the solar panel would be made to collect the different types of light based on their location behind the prism.
Fundamentally, you are suggesting that the incident energy might be spatially distributed, and that different sensors could extract energy from that energy more efficiently that a single receptor receiving all of the incident energy could extract.

This assumes that there are "sensors" that can extract the energy, at sufficiently higher efficiency, to offset the losses inherent in the distribution optics.

Please elaborate on your proposal.

Richard
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Old 2007-08-31, 23:45   #3
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Originally Posted by Wacky View Post
Fundamentally, you are suggesting that the incident energy might be spatially distributed, and that different sensors could extract energy from that energy more efficiently that a single receptor receiving all of the incident energy could extract.

This assumes that there are "sensors" that can extract the energy, at sufficiently higher efficiency, to offset the losses inherent in the distribution optics.

Please elaborate on your proposal.

Richard
To be perfectly honest, I didn't come up with the idea. As many people know, there's a big difference between understanding an idea and having the education to explain it properly. I understand the concept just well enough to like the idea.

My main interest in the idea is that I want it to be owned by an individual or organization that will have the goal to get the idea(assuming it's a good one) accomplished to it's full benefit-to-humanity potential, rather than it's full profit potential.

If it's a bad idea, well, no big deal. My main goal is to determine whether or not the idea even deserves a patent.
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Old 2007-09-01, 00:26   #4
Fusion_power
 
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there are two or three problems with this.

1. The use of fresnel lenses is already well accepted for solar power production. The are very effective but expensive and benefit only if tracking systems keep the lens focused properly.

2. Separating light into frequencies has already been tried. The problem is that receptor media have to be tuned to a specific frequency to benefit. Unfortunately, current materials are effective for no more than 3 frequencies. Solve the problem of frequency absorption and this might even be a good idea.


Here is another great idea that is already in production. Put appropriate light collectors on the roof of a house. Attach fiber optic leads and run them into the house to fixtures in the ceiling. Now you have an easily controlled light source that is essentially free so long as the sun shines.

DarJones
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Old 2007-09-01, 00:40   #5
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2. Separating light into frequencies has already been tried. The problem is that receptor media have to be tuned to a specific frequency to benefit. Unfortunately, current materials are effective for no more than 3 frequencies. Solve the problem of frequency absorption and this might even be a good idea.DarJones
I should have done a search first. Sorry for wasting everyone's time. :(
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Old 2007-09-01, 02:02   #6
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Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post

Here is another great idea that is already in production. Put appropriate light collectors on the roof of a house. Attach fiber optic leads and run them into the house to fixtures in the ceiling. Now you have an easily controlled light source that is essentially free so long as the sun shines.

DarJones
Might be easier, to just open the curtains.
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Old 2007-09-01, 04:49   #7
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Might be easier, to just open the curtains
Windows let in infrared which heats up the house. Using the solar collectors and fibers, infrared can be screened out by appropriate lenses. Note that a decent light concentrator on the roof can put all the light falling on a 9 square foot area of the roof into a tiny fiber that can light up a 12 x 12 room. Very little heat is captured and the light can be controlled by a simple system of darkened lenses to provide anything from full darkness to maximum light.

DarJones
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Old 2007-09-01, 06:11   #8
xilman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post
there are two or three problems with this.

1. The use of fresnel lenses is already well accepted for solar power production. The are very effective but expensive and benefit only if tracking systems keep the lens focused properly.

2. Separating light into frequencies has already been tried. The problem is that receptor media have to be tuned to a specific frequency to benefit. Unfortunately, current materials are effective for no more than 3 frequencies. Solve the problem of frequency absorption and this might even be a good idea.
You omitted the third reason.

3. You can't patent something that's already been published. (Not at all in most of the world, not after a year since publication in the US).

Paul
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