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“It’s just an eyesore.” Speaking to the New York Times, New Jersey resident Eric Olsen summed up a view of solar energy shared by millions across North America. “I just hate them.” Indeed, dark grids of solar panels are seldom a welcome sight — and for good reason. However, a technological and aesthetic revolution in photovoltaic generation means that the myriad benefits of solar energy can now be seamlessly integrated into the urban landscape. Enter Mitrex.

Thanks to Mitrex’s innovative Building-Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) system, solar cells are embedded beneath a layer of tempered glass that’s engineered to allow any tone, pattern or design to be introduced into the facade without compromising the efficiency of the embedded solar cells. From the shingles of a residential roof to the glazed cladding — or balcony railings — of a high-rise tower, Mitrex BIPV offers invisible power generation.

Mitrex’s BIPV cladding is equally well-suited to new builds and retrofitted buildings.

Installed atop a rigid aluminum honeycomb base, Mitrex BIPV combines the strength and durability of concrete with lightweight, versatile efficiency. While the installations lend themselves to a wide range of residential, commercial and industrial contexts, the system is particularly well suited to high-rise projects, where Mitrex BIPV can match both the design and cost of traditional cladding materials.

Mitrex solar cladding and roof installations can be customized to any construction and aesthetic need, conform to desired angle and panel size, and mimic any material readily available. The systems can achieve the look of any surface material, pattern, texture or image desired, including granite, porcelain, brick, wood — even custom graphics. In balcony railing installations, Mitrex BIPV can also be fully transparent, maintaining the openness and natural light of outdoor spaces.

Transparent and translucent solar railings offer energy generation without compromising a light-filled outdoor ambiance.

Traditional solar panels are typically restricted to standardized panel formats, limiting architectural freedom. By contrast, Mitrex’s durable cladding is available in a wide variety of sizes, curves and corners to satisfy any design needs. For new construction and deep retrofits alike, it facilitates a reinvention of the building envelope.

The versatility is possible thanks to an innovative surface treatment that serves as the top cladding layer; a highly customizable ceramic facing conceals the colour of the solar cells without compromising visual appearance. Fade resistant, self-cleaning and largely maintenance-free, the durable solution ensures efficient, affordable — and carbon-free — power generation.

Custom designs and colours can be integrated into both railing and cladding installations.

It all adds up to a major boon for sustainability. While solar energy has long been relegated to the fringes of the built environment (think concealed roofs and massive solar farms), Mitrex BIPV elegantly weaves solar power into the urban fabric. Aesthetic vision and sustainability go hand in hand when renewable, affordable and efficient energy generation is all in the design.

This content was published by Azure on behalf of Mitrex.

Mitrex Expands the Aesthetic Possibilities of Solar Cladding

Unparalleled architectural versatility meets carbon-free power generation with innovative Building-Integrated Photovoltaics.

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