For residential property owners, switching to solar power generally means a choice between PV (photovoltaic) solar panels that generate electricity, and solar thermal panels that heat water without electricity.
But now, a hybrid solar panel can generate solar electricity and solar hot water at the same time! Virtu, a hybrid solar panel, has been invented by UK renewable company Naked Energy.
Richard Boyle, the Chief Engineer at Naked Energy, developed the hybrid solar panel technology, which combines PV solar cells that generate electricity, and solar thermal panel that generates hot water.
The solar technology works by using the downside of PV solar cells (a decrease in efficiency as they get warmer) to transfer excess heat from the PV cells to heat water. Solar electricity generation rises as excess heat is transferred to warm water. When the PV solar cells are cooled, they maintain efficiency.
In short- its a win, win for the solar technology and consumers!