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English: 525kW BIPV CoolPly commercial roofing...

English: 525kW BIPV CoolPly commercial roofing system which provides clean energy to the Patriots Place Complex adjacent to the Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Winner of the 2009 Energy Project Award, this is the largest BIPV CoolPly system in the state of Massachusetts. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Researchers at the NRC Institute for Research in Construction and Natural Resources Canada are looking to the future when roofing goods, such as films and shingles integrated as part of the building envelop, will make energy.

This technology, Building Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV), includes both the building envelop surface and the building energy source.

On low-sloped roofing, the roofing film coated with thin film photovoltaic technologies to form BIPV.

On residential roofs there are two choices. Roof shingles designed as photovoltaic shingles incorporating the solar cells. Or thin film photovoltaic covers built-in with traditional asphalt shingles or a metal roof.

Currently, thin film photovoltaic covers commercially offered in North America, while photovoltaic shingles expected launched in 2012.

Recently, half of the roof on the Canadian Centre for Housing Technology (CCHT) InfoCentre transformed into an energy producer.

The roof stripped down to the bare plywood. A varied bitumen waterproof film adhered to it and photovoltaic (PV) films coated to the film.

This is a novel approach adapted from a roofing system that would typically found on low-sloped roofs such as commercial supermarkets, industrial warehouses and school buildings.

The roof construction completed in August 2011 and assessment has begun.

It finds out the energy performance, but also evaluates its integration with traditional shingles and durability in the Canadian climate.

On a sunny day in September, the system produced up to 1,650 watts of electricity at its peak.

Researchers hope to continue to explore new roof-integrated PV technologies for both housing and commercial roofs, not only from the energy perspective, but also for the durability of the roofing parts.

(this article published in 1BINA.my)