Taking Advantage of The Latest Solar Panel Technology [Sunedison Inc, First Solar, Inc., Guggenheim Solar ETF]

solarTony Sagami: Where do you stand on the Keystone Pipeline? Or fracking? There isn’t much middle ground on either topic; either you’re in favor or very much opposed.

One thing everybody seems to agree on, however, is the development of alternative or “green” energy sources.

The only debate is whether taxpayers should subsidize what is uneconomical with current technology.

That is … uneconomical in the U.S.

Many parts of the world are quickly developing green energy solutions that are cost-efficient and pay for themselves.

In Japan, clever architects and engineers have found new, effective and attractive ways to harness the power of the sun.

If you travel to Japan, you will notice that most of the roofs are tile, either ceramic or clay. These beautifully slopping tile roofs give a distinctive, charming appearance.

Those roofing tiles are as functional as they are attractive. Japanese roofs are steeply sloped to accommodate heavy snowfall, and provide effective insulation during the cold winters,

Plus, their convex shape creates an air pocket that helps cool the house during the humid summers.

But clever Japanese engineers have found ways to make tile roofs even more energy-efficient and take advantage of solar energy.

Roof Tiles Made From Glass

To take advantage of natural light and reduce electricity usage, many Japanese homeowners install skylights.

Image credit: DesignBoom.com

One clever Japanese roofing company has come up with glass tiles that, like skylights, fill a room with natural sunlight, helping reduce electricity usage.

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