Solar Roofing System: In Plane Sight

Another winner at the 2008 IDEA Awards, the Solar Roofing System (SRS) combines solar energy and roofing in one product that’s made to look like blue-glazed ceramic tiles. Like roofing tiles, SRS installs easily too. Founder of the Bresslergroup, Peter Bressler, got the idea one day when he was flying: upon spotting a solar power system, it occurred to him that solar energy for the home would not be embraced until the panels were integrated into the roof. SRS does just that. Using an injection molding process, solar cells are embedded in the tiles.

Solar Roofing System. Designed by Bresslergroup.

Headquartered in Philadelphia, Bresslergroup industrial design firm intends to sell a similar product soon—one that will look like slate (in case the blue is not your style). Which means that homewoners will have two roofing/solar power choices that will enable them to generate and resell up to 80% of their electricity needs.

According to an article in The Philadelphia Business Journal, SRS is easy to install: “One roofer to whom Ondik [SRS Director of Sales and Marketing] showed the system said it would only take about a half hour to train people to install it. Another said it would take less effort to install than a traditional ceramic roof because the tiles are lighter and don’t break.” The cost is not prohibitive either. What would cost $35,000 for a blue tile ceramic roof would cost $45,000 for SRS.

For solar power, the past hasn’t been ideal: at the Business Week website, Bressler states that “cost, appearance and installation complexity raised high barriers to mass consumer acceptance of photovoltaic (PV), solar electricity-generating systems.” The future, however, is bright—thanks to Bressler’s ingenious SRS.

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