Swedish company Ripasso may have just doubled solar power technology, increasing it’s effectiveness to an astonishing 34% of sunlight directly in to solar power. Photovoltaic solar panels can turn as much as 23% of the sun in to usable grid power while traditional solar panels convert at around 14% to 16%. The ‘new’ solar tech actually uses a concept designed by a Scottish Engineer Robert Sterling in the 19th century coupled with some modern military technology to create large round shaped dish with mirrors focused on a tiny concentrated point to drive the ‘Sterling’ Engine.
Currently the project has a test going on in the Kalahari desert in South Africa where the sun is the most intense. Ripasso CEO Gunnar Larsson said in a press release, “Our whole team in South Africa has been hired locally, and our new systems have all been built with local South African labor. It works great!”
IT Power, a UK based consulting and advisory firm, claims that a Ripasso dish can produce enough power for up for 24 typical households with a reduction in CO2 emmissions of up to 81 metric tonnes over the traditional coal burning means of producing power.