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- Making Solar Energy Sheets by the FootBall Field
- ▼ December (40)
Many visionaries do not realize their potential immediately and so it is and was with Stan Ovshinsky. Mr. Ovshinsky is 84 and finally running a photovoltaic plant at capacity with a machine that prints photovotaic film. The machine is almost as long as a football field, and many critics lampooned the idea of producing so much solar power generating material but those critics missed a few beats.
Solar Energy has not yet come into its own, but as oil prices hit $70 a barrell and more many people took a fresh look with renewed vigor at the potential of Solar Energy.
Stan's company is Energy Conversion Devices Inc is the largest US owned producer of photovoltaic materials. These sheets can be used not only to harness the power of sunlight in conventional contraptions attached to the roof of a house, but they can also now serve as the roofing material itself. Office buildings are even considering outfitting photovoltaic materials on the exterior of their buildings right over the windows to gather powre and filter out a little sunlight like a window shade.
Some of Ovshinky's unconventional views were recently covered by the WSJ in their article "After Decades a Solar Pioneer Sees Spark in Sales". Its a great article but features the struggle that many visionaries work to overcome. Losing money to achieve progress. Stan is still losing money in his business today, but he's in the right spot at the right time.
If Einstein's theory of relativity is applied where Power and time are considered maybe the matter of money will eventually come into balance.