According to Megan Treacy of TreeHugger, Sharp has just released something new in the world of solar panels:
Yesterday, Sharp announced a new see-through solar panel that offers a variety of benefits over a standard solar panel. The semi-transparent black solar panel is designed to be used in balcony railings or as windows in tall buildings where it can generate energy while also letting light in. The glass, while see-through up close, creates a privacy screen from farther away, acts as a heat shield and is aesthetically pleasing too.
This is an interesting change in solar panels, though they have a reduced efficiency of about 6.8 percent. Even so, they can provide solar power while also functioning as a window!
Read the article here: http://www.treehugger.com/solar-technology/sharp-unveils-see-through-solar-panels.html