Tesla, Inc. announced that the solar roof it started developing in 2016 will be made commercially available this year.
This new technology was contrived after the renowned manufacturer of artificially intelligent battery-powered cars acquired the solar energy service company Solar City for $2.1 billion. According to Tesla CEO and product architect Elon Musk, the solar roof would be more affordable compared with the normal roof, considering its lower cost of labor.
In terms of design, the new roof is not only efficient, but is also aesthetically pleasing. Basically, it comes in four types of shingles to suit different house designs. The company believes that the great features the roof has will encourage homeowners to prefer it over the conventional solar panels. Musk said during a conference:
“First of all, I’ve never seen a solar roof that I would actually want… they’re weird. Every one of them that I’ve seen is worse than a normal roof, without exception. So, unless you’re going to beat a roof on aesthetics, why bother?”
This solar roof is also durable. As shown by Musk in a weight drop test, the Tesla glass tile remained intact, while the clay, terracotta, and slate tiles shattered during the experiment.
When it comes to cost savings, former Solar City CEO Lyndon Rive stated that a price point of around 40 cents per watt can be achieved from using the roof in a large scale. After all, it will be very cost-efficient with battery cells having the highest energy density at a very low price.
Now, Tesla and Panasonic are manufacturing the solar cells at the Gigafactory 2 plant in Buffalo, New York.