There are almost endless design possibilities when it comes to colored solar panels. Today, I wanted to zoom in on one technology in particular, ColorBlast.
ColorBlast is ideal for making all kinds of designs on solar panels because the palette of available colors is enormous when compared to other color technologies. ColorBlast boasts over 4000 unique, pre-tested colors and for high-definition designs we can interpolate infinitely more. At the same time, ColorBlast depends on a black background which is visible between the pixel pattern in order to generate energy, and therefore the range of colors is limited in brightness. This can make it challenging to come up with designs that truly suit the medium, especially when you haven’t experienced it before.
I wanted to show you a couple of designs that might inspire you to come up with your own ColorBlast ideas.
One of our favorite samples (we named it Fuji-san), we took an artwork and vectorized it with a more limited color palette, then replaced each color with a specific color chosen from the ColorBlast color database (available from our downloads page). This allowed us to make very conscious decisions surrounding the colors. In the image on the right, you can see the high resolution in which ColorBlast inks are printed – 1400 DPI. This accurate printing method gives us far more control over color consistency, color accuracy, a color’s light transmission, and thereby also the ability to avoid hotspots in multi-colored PV modules.
Printing with such accuracy means you don’t need to worry about small details for very fine images, but keep in mind that scaling up images, even high-resolution versions, to fill an entire façade will inevitably lead to some blurring or pixelation.
You can always speak to one of our in-house design consultants if you want to discuss the possibilities or plan an appointment in our showroom. Get in touch with us if you’re interested in the options.
I designed a small leaf pattern on a trio of solar façade modules for a trade show demo. This is a simple, repeating pattern in two colors. Because there is a brightness limit to ColorBlast’s palette, you will need to adapt your approach to creating contrast. Most commonly, we try to contrast using light and dark colors whereas ColorBlast lends itself more to contrasting different hues. You can then further increase contrast by changing the brightness of one of your chosen colors.
Here, we use some of the base inks to create a rather dynamic pattern. From a distance, the lines between the leaves become the dominant pattern we focus on. As we close in, the almost solid-colored shields appear to be leaves as their veins become visible. Closer, still, the ColorBlast hexagonal print we turned into an industry standard catches your eye. In none of these, however, are the solar cells beneath visible!
An important part of the design process we can also take over for you are the transitions between modules so that a design seems to flow on despite any spacing between two panels. Note the transitions in the image above, as if the leaves from one module continue, through the space between, into the next panel.
There are plenty of striking effects you can make with rather simple designs, and the result here is an almost regal set of modules.
In the Fall of 2020, we performed a fire test on our newest ColorBlast material build-up. To further ensure that we would pass the highest possible fire class for this product we decided to get a little help from the Fire Department. The hexagonal print we’re famous for was often used in pop art prints in newspapers and old comic books, so we decided to print some firemen in this style on the modules that would later be set on fire. The result was better than we could have imagined!
In the first picture, you can see a great example of how we choose different patterns to even out the light transmission across the panel. From a distance, everything blends in seamlessly.
In order to achieve this style, we once again vectorized some cartoons and hand-picked a specific color palette.
We have many examples of panels at our office and production facility, where you can also see our production line and all the materials options for each of our color techniques. Make an appointment today to visit us!
I hope you enjoy some of our work and have a great day!