Are Tesla's Rooftop Solar Shingles Here to Stay?
Solar panels have had minor aesthetic changes since their introduction in the 1950's by Bell. Many panels still have a very bulky appearance and are installed in a similar fashion on top of preexisting shingles. With the environmentally friendly market expanding, it shouldn't come as a surprise that Elon Musk from Tesla has not only altered the aesthetic of the solar panel but also re-imagined the application of the panels.
Made of textured glass and indistinguishable from other high end shingles, the new Tesla solar shingles are able to easily integrate into the aesthetic market. The four roofing types unveiled at Tesla’s solar roof launch are shown above: Tuscan Glass Tile (left), Slate Glass Tile (middle left), Textured Glass Tile (middle right), Smooth Glass Tile (right).
Along with the aesthetic value, the solar tiles are said to last longer than traditional shingles and can withstand the harshest inclement weather. In the demonstration above you can see how Tesla's glass tiles remain in tact while the others shatter and break under the weight.
In addition to the strength of the solar tiles, Tesla has also considered inclement weather and other outages that could arise and disrupt the homeowner. According to the Tesla website, the energy created from the solar panels on the roof can be stored using their Powerwall product. The Powerwall (prototype shown above) is designed to seamlessly integrate with your solar system, storing the unused energy and automatically releasing it when the sun is not shining. Powerwall enables solar energy to be an available power source 24/7.
While the solar roof tiles are presenting multiple benefits to the public, some are skeptical of Tesla's ability to convince consumers that they are worth the expense. Only time will tell whether or not Tesla will be able to successfully saturate the solar panel market with their new product.