CWRU studies solar panels

After an uncharacteristically warm winter in Cleveland, the upcoming summer offers the possibility of being even hotter than usual—with plenty of sun to enjoy and to use. This is good news for Case Western Reserve University’s Solar Durability and Lifetime Extension (SDLE) Center and its director Roger French. Created in 2011 in conjunction with Ohio’s Third Frontier initiative, the Center is the brainchild of French, a professor at the Case School of Engineering. In brief, the project focuses on “outdoor, exposed technologies that have very long lives,” in French’s own words. Chiefly, this refers to photovoltaic (PV) cells, also known as solar cells, which convert light (typically solar) energy into electricity. The SDLE’s research initially centered around determining the reliability of PV module warranties (typically estimated at around 25 years)…

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