Install motorized shades to control light, and use that same light to power the motorized shades. This seems logical considering the shades are in the window where they can be exposed to this abundant energy source.
Solar panels have been around for a long time and typically are made up of wafer-based crystalline silicon cells. Panels based on a silicon composition are rigid as a result and need direct sunlight to be able to generate power, hence the term Solar Panel. This hasn't worked well for window coverings that are installed on the interior since glass coatings and other obstructions lessen the amount of direct sunlight an interior-mounted panel could receive.
A recently announced breakthrough in photovoltaic (PV) technology changes everything. The magic is a solar photovoltaic (PV) panel that doesn't need direct sunlight to generate energy. DSSC, or dye-sensitized solar cell, is an exciting development in PV technology that uses a system similar to how plants convert light into energy in photosynthesis. So DSSC panels are able to generate power in low light conditions where silicon-based solutions can't, and will start creating energy at sunrise and will continue throughout the day even behind coated glazing.
While we offer many options for motorizing your window coverings, we strive to make system selection easy for you. The information provided below is to help answer your questions and give you a basic knowledge of motorization.
The wide range of motors we offer differ in lift capacities, voltage/current, motor diameter, control features, and operating noise level. Sometimes there are existing factors, such as pre-wiring, that will help shape your selection of a system. Motor length can also be a factor in the selection process if your windows aren't wide enough for a particular motor. Aside from physical considerations, the available features of a motor series and how it will be interfaced or be controlled will really help narrow the options. For instance if you want to be able to control and monitor the motorized shades from a Smartphone, Tablet, or PC there are still several options to choose from, but the choices have been honed down to a select few.
Standard ControlQuiet Motors
the basic option
·push-button or progressive-screw limits
·limits set mechanically at motor head
·largest range of lift capacities available
·individually controlled by a wired wall switch
·group controlled by an external motor controller
·AC requires home-run wiring, no daisy-chaining
the wireless option
·limits set electronically from a wireless device
·individual or group control via radio frequency
·RTS radio allows a full line of RTS accessories:
wireless sun and wind sensors and timers
·Z-Wave and Zigbee are bi-directional signals
·Motors require only power, control is wireless
the smart option
·all motors are individually addressed
·option to have limits set over the network
·employs bi-directional wired communication
·interfaces with Home and Building Automation
·offers advanced programmable features like:
solar tracking, priority locking, multiple stops
3-Wire (AC) + Cat5e Data
2-Wire (DC) + 2-Wire Data
It used to be that motor noise was hardly a consideration, but with recent advancements quiet motors are now another feature to consider. While the benefits seem obvious, there can be considerations that come with quiet motors, mainly a reduced lift capacity. In order to achieve lower operating noise levels the motors are near the lower end of the how much weight they can lift and they might turn at a slightly slower RPM, as well. We offer the full range of industry-leading quiet motor options varying in both lift capacities and levels of quiet.
Electronics for Motorized Window Treatments
Switches - Three position - Paddle, rocker, and toggle - white standard (ivory optional). One or two motors can be controlled off a single DPDT switch. Key switches and key pads are also available.
Group Control by GCS II - A low voltage control system controlling 4 motors. Multiple groups can be controlled by a master switch. Sun sensor, timers, and remote controls interface to GCS II’s.
Individual and Group Control by IGC & IGC3N1 - Operates 1-3 motors and groupings of motors individually and in sub groups with master control. Dry contact interface is available for connection to automation and audiovisual control systems. Sun sensor, timers, and remote controls interface to IGC systems.
Sun Sensors, Timers and Wind (exterior applications) operate individual and group control systems as noted.
Radio and Infrared Remote Controls - Radio and IR controls are available in several configurations and integrators to fulfill any complexity of control options.
Animeo IP Solar Tracking - enables the automatic control of all interior and exterior window treatments relevant to the sun's position.
Automatic control system - The system controls 8 zones determined by the level of light level and room temperature.
The shade management software can be linked to the HVAC systems by a personal computer.
Sensors - The sensors transmit information concerning light level and temperature via sensor boxes.
Decentralized Zone Control - The motor controllers manage the priorities from information delivered from local wired and wireless control points.