Robots Give Solar Power Competitive Edge


With countries and companies looking for ways to utilize alternative energy sources, technology has made some significant leaps. However, new technology can take time to catch on, and alternative energy is often still an expensive endeavor. A company we recently highlighted, QBotix, reappears alongside German robot Momo, both making long strides towards keeping solar energy production cost effective and efficient.
Behind a high fence in Menlo Park, Calif. a gray, tuna-shaped robot glides on a monorail around 20 solar panel arrays attached to steel poles, like WALL-E on a Disneyland ride. The Solbot, made by startup QBotix, stops at each array and extends a cylindrical arm to adjust the angle of the photovoltaic panels so they capture the most amount of sun as it moves across the sky and through the seasons.

Meanwhile, in Germany a giant robotic arm that looks like it escaped from an automotive factory and mated with an Army tank rumbles through a field, plucking 300-pound solar panels from a pallet and installing them on steel racks. The robot is called Momo, and two of them can do the work of the 250 laborers needed to build a 100-megawatt photovoltaic power plant, its creator claims.

Solar power’s race to become competitive with fossil fuel has been aided hugely by the steep price drops in recent years for photovoltaic modules. Down 40% in the past year, PV modules now account for only about a third of the cost of a power plant. That has left developers scrambling for other ways to cut costs. “To be honest, there hadn’t been that much innovation happening,” says Martin Simonek, a solar analyst with research firm Bloomberg New Energy Finance in London. “There’re only so many ways you can put panels on the roof or the ground.” So attention turned to such things as streamlining permitting and other paperwork and reducing the number of nuts and bolts needed to assemble a solar array.

Boring. It’s time to welcome our new robotic overlords, as startups like QBotix exploit advances in sensor technology and automation to cut solar power plant costs.

Read the full article at Forbes. How do you see robots helping alternative energy gain a competitive edge in their industry?

Advertisements

9 Responses to Robots Give Solar Power Competitive Edge

  1. […] Robots Give Solar Power Competitive Edge With countries and companies looking for ways to utilize alternative energy sources, technology has made some significant leaps. However, new technology can take time to catch on, and alternative energy is often still an expensive endeavor. A company we recently highlighted, QBotix, reappears alongside German robot Momo, both making long strides towards keeping solar energy production […] […]

  2. Screensuit says:

    Just passing by, want to leave a note to say your website
    have a lot of spammy comments, you should clear out some of those comments.
    . lol

  3. If some one wants to be updated with latest technologies then he must be
    go to see this web site and be up to date
    everyday.

  4. I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here.
    The sketch is tasteful, your authored material stylish.
    nonetheless, you command get bought an nervousness over that you wish be delivering the following.
    unwell unquestionably come further formerly again since
    exactly the same nearly very often inside case you shield this increase.

  5. For more ideas and tips on weight loss and nutrition, go to my blog at.
    I’d jog for a minute, then run as fast as I could for another minute. Obviously, if you choose a steep hill for an interval, your movement will not be fast per se, but it should be as fast as possible.

  6. Latrice says:

    My brother recommended I might like this website. He was entirely right.
    This post actually made my day. You can not imagine simply how much time I had spent for this
    info! Thanks!

  7. I think the admin of this web site is genuinely working hard in favor of his site,
    for the reason that here every information is quality based information.

  8. Karry says:

    I needed to thank you for this very good
    read!! I certainly loved every little bit of it. I’ve got you book marked to check out new stuff you post…

  9. Demetria says:

    Kidney disease will take many years to visit from chronic kidney disease (CKD) to kidney failure.
    Different parts of the country would have other top problems occurring.
    If you are feeling you are experiencing the symptoms associated with restless leg
    syndrome, it is important to seek medical assistance to get a confirmed diagnosis as
    there are treatments available that may assist you in coping with
    the symptoms.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: