July 4, 2008 weblog
Sharp Unveils Solar-Powered TV
For the 1.6 billion people living in areas without utility-supplied electricity, Sharp has designed a TV that can get 100% of its power from the sun. The company plans to exhibit the 26-inch LCD prototype at the Hokkaido Toyako Summit, or G8 Summit, in Hokkaido, Japan, on July 7-9.
The TV uses about one-fourth the power and has about one-third the annual energy consumption of a conventional CRT TV with the same screen size. Compared to today´s LCD TVs, the low-power prototype uses about one-third the power, and about one-half the annual energy consumption.
This extremely low power consumption allows the TV to be powered from one of Sharp´s triple-junction thin-film solar cell modules, with a surface area of about the same size as the LCD screen. The company plans to market the TV and solar energy system as a combination pair.
The technology could bring TV to the 1.6 billion people worldwide who live off the grid, improving their lives not just with entertainment, but also access to news and information. The company predicts that environmentally-conscious consumers would also be interested in such a product.
Besides the low-power TV prototype, Sharp will also exhibit other energy-saving technologies at the G8 Summit, including a 57-inch AQUOS TV, a solar-LED lighting module, and a super-thin (20-mm) 65-inch LCD TV that uses about half the annual energy consumption of conventional LCD TVs.
In addition, the company will display a semi-transparent "see-through" solar cell module. Developed with a laser-trimming process to create large numbers of optically transparent slits over the surface of the cell, the modules could be used as architectural elements, such as in skylights and curtain walls.