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Solar Power Goes to Church

Toronto glass artist Sarah Hall has completed the installation of photovoltaic stained glass windows in a Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, church that combines art, green energy, and spirituality, all while supplying around 2,500 kilowatt hours of energy.

The solar-enabled stained glass window installation, dubbed “Lux Gloria,” has been put in place at the Cathedral of the Holy Family. Solar cells are sandwiched between layers of hand-painted glass, with dichroic glass attached to the back of the panels. The energy generated will be used in the cathedral, and the system will be connected to the local power grid, a first for one of Hall’s solar projects.

Hall also has solar installations in place at the Enwave Theatre/Harbourfront Centre in Toronto; Regent College in Vancouver; York University in Toronto; Grass Valley Elementary School in Camas, WA; and the Solar Decathlon House in Washington, D.C.

The installation at Holy Family is Saskatchewan’s first building-integrated photovoltaic system, with solar panels directly integrated into the structure rather than being mounted on the roof. The solar panels used in the windows at the church are a variety of colors and sizes, and are trapezoidal in shape. Hall had to hand solder each one.

In an interview with the CBC in Canada, she indicated she is investigating the possibility of using spray-on photovoltaic coatings and other technology that would allow the solar cells to be transparent.

Source: Sara Hall Studio

About Brian Albright

Brian Albright is a contributing editor to Desktop Engineering. Send e-mail about this article to DE-Editors@deskeng.com.
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