Friday Field Notes 070116


This weekend we’ll be celebrating our nation’s independence. In that it somehow seems fitting that the District of Columbia Council unanimously approved legislation to expand the renewable energy target for our nation’s capital to 50 percent by 2032. The bill (B21-650) now heads to the desk of Mayor Muriel Bowser (Eco Watch). With that, a bright, safe weekend to you and your loved ones–wherever you call home.

Now, for other solar news . . .

You know, long summer days prove the perfect backdrop for a bit of Shakespeare: What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet . . . speaking of roses, scientists of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany have reproduced the epidermal cells of rose petals and integrated them into a solar cell. The result is a 12 percent gain in efficiency, thanks to the cells antireflection properties (Solar Daily). Isn’t nature (and science) awesome?

Long summer days are also good for a road trip. There was a day when we’d hit the Mother Road for unparalleled adventure. And while Route 66 was abandoned in favor of more direct routes, it’s seen something of a resurgence in recent years. The latest, part of Missouri’s Road to Tomorrow initiative, includes installation of Solar Roadways on a portion of historic Route 66 (Inhabitat). This may be just the ticket for getting it back on the map–and paving the way for new generations to experience that old highway intrigue.

The Solar Impulse 2 completed its historic trip across the Atlantic ocean. The flight from New York City to Seville, Spain took approximately ninety hours to complete. “The Atlantic is the symbolic part of the flight. It is symbolic because all the means of transportation have always tried to cross the Atlantic–the first steamboats, the first airplane, the first balloons, the first airships and, today, it is the first solar powered airplane,” said Bertrand Piccard. To celebrate, Eco Watch posted 10 incredible photos of Solar Impulse 2’s flight around the world.

Solar solutions in Africa (and the ways they’re changing lives for the better) seem a constant theme in our field notes. And it doesn’t look to change any time soon. The latest:  a 30 megawatt solar module manufacturing facility outside Ghana’s capital city of Accra. Jacob Obeng, assistant production manager of Strategic Power Solutions (SPS), explains: “We want to be able to play on the international field so anything that we do has to be of world class quality at competitive global pricing.” (PV Tech) We hope they succeed.

How to Let Go of the World and Love All the  Things That Climate Can’t Change, a new documentary by Josh Fox, debuted on HBO this week. And Fox offers seven things we should do after watching the documentary. Here’s a teaser: “Realize that we don’t save the world, we only save today. So don’t shame yourself. We’re all in the same boat . . . the world is saved and lost every day, not all at once.” (Eco Watch)

Lastly, are you a filmmaker between the ages of 14-35 who wants to have a positive impact on people of today and generations of tomorrow? If so, submissions are now open for the Film4Climate Global Video Competition. Check it out.


Now, for our disclaimer: Friday Field Notes is a weekly post about the goings on in (and possibly around) the field of solar. We simply link to news articles from the week, to help you stay in the loop. While we try to stick with reputable sources, we cannot attest to the accuracy of each and every piece. Furthermore, the links and subsequent views and commentary are purely the opinion of the writers. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the company, nor should they be considered professional opinion, backing, and/or advice.