Creative photovoltaic applications
Document typeBachelor thesis
Rights accessRestricted access - author's decision
This report is for the EPS project “Creative photovoltaic applications”. It was assigned to develop a product that uses photovoltaics. Some of the objectives to this project were: creating a report, developing an innovative product, and creating a company. The primary guide for this project was the design thinking methodology. A survey was also utilized in an attempt to identify outsider’s opinions of photovoltaics and how they could be applied to their lives. The survey, with a total of 60 participants from a large variety of backgrounds, provided a consensus of how people viewed solar cells. The majority of people had problems with charging their phones while being outside. After a trial and error phase of brainstorming many products and their viabilities, the topic finally agreed upon was a solar umbrella. This product that attaches quickly and easily to the umbrella can be used basically anywhere a person would simultaneously want sun protection and immediate access to a charging device. The next phase was to purchase the parts and assemble the product. It was difficult to acquire all the parts necessary for completion of the product, as many are far from standard order, such as: a custom 3D printed device to attach to the top, a power bank capable of charging the device and distributing electricity at the same time, and also a DC/DC converter able to convert energy to the right voltage. At this point in time, a report, product, and company were created. The issues were solved using the design thinking methodology. The solar umbrella product is inexpensive and easy to use, created to pander to outdoor enthusiasts.