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Curious - Can Solar Power Supply Enough Juice To Power My Led Grow Lights?


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a question i asked myself tonight...




can a bank of solar collectors grab enough energy to power its own LED's


how many LED's would i need to light directly above a solar collector panel to be able to "break even" with the energy draw?


how many more LED's could i add to this system to be able to "power my own light system"


it is a question that butts heads with the laws of thermodynamics... however i am not one to follow the rules very well..


what i envision is a sealed hood type system where 1/2 the LED light bank powers the solar capacitors and 1/2 the light can "bleed off" to be able to "feed" my plants the light energy they require where the solar capacitors will provide the energy to charge themselves and the spill off the light which can be captured to effectively grow plants.....

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Scientists Create Electric Generator Just One Atom Thick

October 20, 2014 | by Lisa Winter

Photo credit: Rob Felt

A team of engineers have developed an incredibly thin electric generator, only one atom thick. This study also provided the first experimental evidence that the material is piezoelectric, or capable of producing electricity through pressure. The paper was published in Nature, and the lead author is Wenzhuo Wu of the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Two-dimensional molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) is light, flexible, and transparent, making it highly desirable for use in nanoelectrics. Though researchers have theorized that MoS2 would be piezoelectric, it had never been demonstrated before. Piezoelectricity comes from generating electricity through pressure or movement of certain solid materials. When flakes of the material between 1 and 8 atoms thick were placed on a flexible base, MoS2 was able to generate electricity as it was stretched and pressed.

“Proof of the piezoelectric effect and piezotronic effect adds new functionalities to these two-dimensional materials,” Zhong Lin Wang, co-senior author of the paper, said in a press release. “The materials community is excited about molybdenum disulfide, and demonstrating the piezoelectric effect in it adds a new facet to the material.”

However, the piezoelectric effect could only be achieved under certain conditions. First, the researchers noted that an even number layers of the MoS2 did not generate electricity, only an odd number of layers did. Additionally, less was more. A single atomic thickness of MoS2 was bent and stretched into generating 15 megavolts. The thicker the layers got, the less electricity they were able to generate. According to the researchers, the random organization of the MoS2 led to electric charges getting canceled out as additional layers were added. This also explains why even layers didn’t work.

“This is the first experimental work in this area and is an elegant example of how the world becomes different when the size of material shrinks to the scale of a single atom,” co-senior author James Hone added. “With what we’re learning, we’re eager to build useful devices for all kinds of applications.”

Earlier this year, a team from the Vienna University of Technology speculated that it could be possible to make solar cells just a few atoms thick using molybdenum disulfide. Because it is transparent, the material could cover existing windows in buildings, providing energy without sacrificing aesthetics. Additionally, since the material is flexible, the possible applications are endless

“This material – just a single layer of atoms – could be made as a wearable device, perhaps integrated into clothing, to convert energy from your body movement to electricity and power wearable sensors or medical devices, or perhaps supply enough energy to charge your cell phone in your pocket,” Hone said.

If the movement from clothing isn’t enough to meet one’s electricity desires, imagine if the material was integrated into the fabric of a flag, which are nearly constantly in motion. Additionally, it could allow medical implants to be smaller and less intrusive. Now that MoS2 has been shown to be piezoelectric, a host of innovative applications could be possible in the future.

Read this next: Your Microbes Get Jetlag Too

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when you figure this out let me know please. I've spent a small fortune on solar power. batteries, inverters....only to find that in the end, its cool for some years for sure, but right when you start feeling good about your investment, its about time to replace those failing batteries, dammmitt. $$


I love your idea, but it reeks of perpetual motion type dreams that keep me up at night. I bet there's a ghost in there we're not seeing......someone here is a smarty pants and will help with the tech.....I'm gonna watch closely and learn some more.  Keep up the good thinking there !


I used to have an exhaust fan in my grow room, around 24 inches, running from a solar panel to the hid light. It worked and I felt like I was getting away with something. all and all though, nothing beats the economics of an off season box fan or two.

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solar collectors are only like 10-30% efficient.

and led are nowhere near the power of the sun.

with batteries , it might only take you 50 hours of led lights to power your led light for an hour.


solar just isnt there yet.


you could always try creating a stirling engine.

lay it between the wall , cool outside temps and warm inside temps would make it generate electricity. although, youd have to deal with batteries again.


i think what you'd want to do, if you wanted to create a near-perpetual energy generator is mix some techs together.


so you take some wind turbines

solar panels

and... a hydro electric generator plus a few pumps and a water tower.

so, during the day you get wind and solar to pump water up to your water tower

all day/night the water (gravity) makes your hydro generator work.

every day the sun and wind pump more water up to the tower.

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