BIPV-Building Integrated Photo Voltaics for Clean Energy
BIPV refers to Building-integrated photovoltaics, which are photovoltaic materials, capable of harnessing solar energy, that are designed in a fashion that they can be used in place of conventional building materials in the building envelope, e.g. the roof, skylights, or facades.
BIPV materials are becoming increasingly popular in the modern scenario, where “eco-friendly”, “green building” are the catch phrases. They are incorporated into the construction as a source of electrical power. Even existing buildings may be retrofitted with similar technology.
The term building-applied photovoltaics (BAPV) is used to refer to photo-voltaic materials that are a retrofit – integrated into the building after construction is complete. Most building-integrated installations are actually BAPV.
Building-Integrated Photovoltaic modules are available in several forms. Some of them are listed below.
Flat roofs– thin film solar cell integrated to a flexible polymer roofing membrane is used for flat roof applications.
Pitched roofs– Modules are shaped like multiple roof tiles.
Solar shingles – modules designed like regular shingles, while incorporating a flexible thin film cell.
Glazing- (Semi)transparent modules can be used to replace a number of architectural elements commonly made with glass or similar materials, such as windows and skylights.