Dow Chemical (NYSE: DOW) on Monday unveiled a line of photovoltaic solar panels in the form of shingles that can be integrated into rooftops with standard asphalt shingle materials.
The Dow Powerhouse™ Solar Shingles are expected to be available in limited quantities by mid-2010 and projected to be more widely available in 2011.
The technology from Dow Solar Solutions (DSS) integrates thin-film CIGS photovoltaic cells into a proprietary roofing shingle design. The product design is said to reduce installation costs because the conventional roofing shingles and solar generating shingles are installed simultaneously by roofing contractors. DSS said it expects an enthusiastic response from roofing contractors since no specialized skills or knowledge of solar array installations are required.
The solar shingles were showcased Monday at an event at Dow's Michigan Operations in the Company's headquarters city of Midland, Michigan.
"Making Michigan a leader in manufacturing green energy products continues to be a key part of our economic plan to grow the economy and create solar jobs," said Michigan Governor Jennifer M. Granholm. "Dow's solar shingles are another example of local research and development helping grow our green economy, and I applaud Dow's ongoing commitment to developing green energy solutions right here in Michigan."
In 2007, Dow received $20 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop "building integrated" solar arrays for the residential and commercial markets.