Longwood, Fla.-based SKYShades, a fabric structures company that designs and engineers a variety of
lightweight protective and solar power generation solutions, recently announced the first
installation of a tensile membrane solar parking structure featuring thin-film photovoltaic solar
panels. The installation, at a West Palm Beach office park, uses the solar panels to produce
electricity to power lights and electric car and golf cart charging stations in the parking
structure, as well as provide shelter from rain and protection from the sun.
SKYShades first incorporated the thin-film photovoltaic technology from Lowell, Mass.-based
Konarka Technologies Inc. into umbrella and awning products such as its Powerbrella™
Fabric of the Month: Umbrella Power,” July/August 2009,
“The solar parking installation is a killer application representing the result of several
years of research and development having the sun at its core: on one hand it fulfills the crucial
need to provide shade and protect from harmful [ultraviolet] rays that cause skin cancer, and on
the other hand it harvests the power of the sun to generate clean, renewable electricity,” said Joe
McKenna, executive vice president, SKYShades.
The company reports it currently is looking at several business models to further
commercialize the technology both quickly and cost-effectively.
November 9, 2010