A plan for low-cost solar cell encapsulation
This github repository contains all the plans and resources needed to create your own solar panels.
What is it
This project is an open source, low cost, solar cell encapsulation plan and bill of materials to enable members of the open hardware community to build solar panels and integrate them into projects.
The original motive for the project stems from the fact that existing 5W solar cell phone chargers cost $50-100 and that the solar cells themselves can be had for around $1/W. This begs the question of whether a cheaper encapsulation method exists, while retaining the robustness of more expensive alternatives.
Features of this design
- No soldering required (uses foil tape with conductive adhesive instead of pre-tinned bus bar)
- Very portable (3.5"x2.5"x1") when folded.
- The only tooling required is an office laminator and some cutting equipment
- Modular-ish design means more cells can be added if projects call for more than 5V. This causes a small increase in thickness.
Please refer to the wiki for instructions
Jumping right in
Many thanks to solar pocket factory's instructable on making solar cells with a laminator.