Would you like your solar panels in blue-black, blue-black or blue-black? For years, that’s been your only efficient choice. But researchers recently announced they’ve discovered a way to make the panels bright green.

Once we’ve gone green, can other colorations be far behind? Imagine terra cotta for roofs, green or brown for ground-level panels camouflaged by natural areas, and white, taupe and every other color for exterior walls and outbuildings.

Color panels are currently being made but they are only about 50% as efficient as the ubiquitous blue-black PV panels. The new green panels, which infuse color via “nanocylinders”, rather than a coating or reflective dye, are about 90% as efficient in generating electricity.

A new solar color palette may well incentivize installation for property owners who believe in sustainability principles, but want their solar to aesthetically blend in with their site and architecture.

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By Steven J. Schleider, MAI, LEED-AP BD + C President, Metropolitan Valuation Services

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