13-Year-Old Makes Solar Power Breakthrough by Harnessing the Fibonacci Sequence

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posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:22 PM
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Originally posted by snarfbot
you might as well build a flat array that tracks the sun. which would take up less space and produce more power.

Don't forget use power since you have a motorized thing tracking the sun for optimal positioning throughout the day.
edit on 19-8-2011 by Funshinez because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:28 PM
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I read through the slideshow and have quite a few criticisms. What qualifies me to criticize? Im a Journeyman Electrician and am NABCEP certified, which is just a national test that says I have the basic understanding of the principle of Solar panels, their application and the theory behind them.

First off its too complicated. Solar energy is so expensive to produce. The maintenance and manufacture of the tree structure will make it only more expensive. It will also be a giant wind catcher, good luck keeping it standing.

Second, Shading is a huge problem with Solar cells. If all of the cell is not exposed to sun, it will not produce any electricity. There are ways around this, however the portion that is shaded will produce a fraction of what a full sunned cell will make, and drives the cost up. I suppose the less cells you put on the "tree" the less chance of shading, however shading will likely be inevitable no matter how you configure them.

Third, he states that in the winter it makes more electricity.. This is common with ALL solar cells, as they are more efficient in colder weather, all electrical systems are more efficient the colder it gets.

I have to applaud the kid for trying, most kids nowadays wont do that. I don't think this is going to solve any crisis' any time soon though.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:32 PM
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After studying how trees branch in a very specific way, Aidan Dwyer created a solar cell tree that produces 20-50% more power than a uniform array of photovoltaic panels. His impressive results show that using a specific formula for distributing solar cells can drastically improve energy generation. The study earned Aidan a provisional U.S patent – it’s a rare find in the field of technology and a fantastic example of how biomimicry can drastically improve design.

Source


I love the fact that every once in a while we get these remarkable people that come along and completely change the way we view the world and get things done. It's incredible really to think that a 13 year old boy is changing science for the better.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:36 PM
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Originally posted by snarfbot
also for solar, like everything, theres an optimal way to do something, and everything else is suboptimal.

the point of the tree i think was to build something that performed decently all the time from any direction without any adjustment.

on the other hand if you scaled that up for practical applications, it would be so big and expensive then you might as well build a flat array that tracks the sun. which would take up less space and produce more power.


The typical array only needs adjustment a couple times a year. They adjust to angle of the array to catch more sun as its at a drastically different height in the summer as it is in the winter. If you wanted to micromanage it I guess you could adjust it four (or more) times a year, but the benefit wouldn't be that great.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:43 PM
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Cool post, thanks for sharing this OP. The 13 year old getting it done
I'm sure he has a bright future (no pun intended) ahead of him, whether it be in engineering, architecture, math, physics, music, art what ever.

The numbers for the December month is quite amazing, 50% more output(collection?) as well as it getting powered for 50% as long as a flat solar panel array. Quite amazing!



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:50 PM
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Originally posted by Nola213

The numbers for the December month is quite amazing, 50% more output(collection?) as well as it getting powered for 50% as long as a flat solar panel array. Quite amazing!


Its actually not that amazing, if you know the principles of Solar arrays. All solar arrays are more efficient in the winter (natures air conditioning). It does take advantage of the sun longer, but putting a solar tracker on a flat array will do the same thing, before shading makes it not work anymore.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:52 PM
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reply to post by croweboy
 


right, my point was that for the cost of building a "tree" as depicted here, you could instead build something that was optimized perfectly.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 03:58 PM
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reply to post by snarfbot
 


Youre right on there. They make a "tree" like array that is less fragile, tracks the sun and is adjustable for different times of the year. I would hate to do the maintenance on his proposal, much less pay for it.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 04:21 PM
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Originally posted by Funshinez

Originally posted by snarfbot
you might as well build a flat array that tracks the sun. which would take up less space and produce more power.

Don't forget use power since you have a motorized thing tracking the sun for optimal positioning throughout the day.
edit on 19-8-2011 by Funshinez because: (no reason given)


Hm, one could make solar panels that require almost no energy to track the sun. Just build the tracking device like old mechanic big watches.
K, someone go entrepeneur this idea, i wont do it anyway.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 04:31 PM
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Man, this is one of those "duh" moments.
It took a small boy to realize this, why didn't I think of it.


Make that boy the US secretary of energy now!



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 04:35 PM
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Originally posted by Funshinez

Originally posted by snarfbot
you might as well build a flat array that tracks the sun. which would take up less space and produce more power.

Don't forget use power since you have a motorized thing tracking the sun for optimal positioning throughout the day.
edit on 19-8-2011 by Funshinez because: (no reason given)
It takes minimal solar power. You only need a solar powered mini tracker that transmits coordinates at intervals. I'd like to see his tree go up against a tracker.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 04:48 PM
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Originally posted by Cryptonomicon
I hate to burst everyone's bubble, but that kid's design is flawed. The reason the "tree" did better was because it has twice as many PV solar cells. Just look at this picture: aidan_large_08.jpg

The flat panel has 10 PV cells, and the Tree has 20.

The kid should get the Al Gore award for fake Science.
edit on 8/19/2011 by Cryptonomicon because: (no reason given)

Actually, if you look carefully at how the panels are arranged. Not all of them receive sunlight at all times throughout the day. Like a tree, all of the panels will receive sunlight at some point during the day.

The conventional array of panels will only receive sunlight for a certain amount of time.

-saige-



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 05:01 PM
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Originally posted by CriticalCK

Originally posted by Funshinez

Originally posted by snarfbot
you might as well build a flat array that tracks the sun. which would take up less space and produce more power.

Don't forget use power since you have a motorized thing tracking the sun for optimal positioning throughout the day.
edit on 19-8-2011 by Funshinez because: (no reason given)


Hm, one could make solar panels that require almost no energy to track the sun. Just build the tracking device like old mechanic big watches.
K, someone go entrepeneur this idea, i wont do it anyway.


These would require the same amount of energy to run as an electrical motor, not counting any conversion loss. The only difference is it is you supplying the power, by winding the mechanism. The amount of energy it takes to reposition a solar array at various intervals throughout the day is negligible anyways, and more than offset by the increased efficiency of the solar array.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 05:18 PM
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What a clued on kid,good on him.

Im thinking that maybe a solar panel system that works in the same way a daisy flower does which is following the sun.It would catch alot of the sunlight because its actually moving with the sun.
It could even be in a similar design to a flower just on a larger scale,which would mean that most of,if not all,of the panels would gather sunlight as long as the sun is available.

Something ive thought about now and then.


Cheers



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 05:19 PM
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reply to post by ChaoticOrder
 


You could probably extend the arrays a bit until they begin to overlap. It's probably easily simulatable.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 05:25 PM
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Our new little crop of geniuses populating the earth! I love it!



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 05:59 PM
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I don't get it. The flat panel test has 10 solar panels, while the tree has around 17-18 from what I can count. Of course it's going to get more energy, cause it has an extra 7-8 solar panels attached to it.


Am I missing something here?
edit on 19-8-2011 by TravisT because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 06:02 PM
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How many more young geniuses are slipping through the cracks of our educational system?

Teachers are losing their jobs, not being replaced, and have to have second jobs just to make ends meet.

We cannot simutaneously praise and ignore our schools, people.

Volunteer, donate, and get involved in your local schools.

Find all the intelligences, and help them make us better.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 06:04 PM
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Originally posted by A por uvas
Maybe the tree can transform to be flat for maintenance and other reasons like weather etc.
A solar panel that has both capabilities of flat and tree like would be advantageous to certain scenarios.
Kinda like a flower opening and closing also.
Nature holds the secrets
S&F
edit on 19-8-2011 by A por uvas because: (no reason given)


I agree. We know what people have always known: nature is amazing, important, and deserves our unending love and respect.

Nature is what we need; the problems of the world are derived from technology.

Not all technology is bad, but most of it is truly horrific.

However, this is the life we are given, so we must make do with what we have and just do our best.



posted on Aug, 19 2011 @ 06:13 PM
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I was literally thinking about this design like two weeks ago.. hahaha I got beat to the gun!

Props to the kid still!!!





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