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Field Testing

In February 2008, field testing of Konarka’s Organic Photovoltaic (OPV) ‘Power Plastic’ bonded to SKYShades’ tensioned membrane structures officially commenced in the USA at sites in Florida and Massachusetts.

This testing program has been implemented to assess the commercialization of OPV technology bonded to SKYShades’ PVC canopies, and will be appraised in three stages:

  • Firstly, SKYShades has devised an attachment process which is currently being evaluated on a daily basis to measure the effectiveness of withstanding the challenges of the elements;
  • Secondly, the electrical wiring of each of the sixteen panels of Power Plastic attached to each SKYShades’ retractable umbrella is being connected so as to maximize the generation of clean, green electricity and to channel this power to batteries housed within the umbrella structure;
  • Thirdly, the task will be to quantify the amount of electrical power fed into the housed batteries to establish the capacity of each umbrella to re-charge personal appliances. Already an internationally renowned Accountancy firm has been commissioned to audit all this data.

The results of this testing are expected to be released by mid-summer (Northern Hemisphere) of this year.

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Click to enlarge.
SKYShades Executive Vice President Joe Mckenna (2nd from right) discussing the testing requirements with Konarka's President and Chief Executive Officer Rick Hess (right) while SKYShades President Barry Maranta (3rd from left) monitors the application of the OPV Power Plastic to the umbrella.
Joe McKenna SKYShades Executive Vice President on left and Barry Maranta President SKYShades (4th from left) explain to Lake Highlands College Principal, Staff and selected students how the Power Plastic is applied to SKYShades umbrellas.