Sponsored Awards

Department of Navy Naval Science Award, Mu Alpha Theta Award, Hogan Energy Hero Award, Third Place - AZ Psychological Association Science Award

Fibonacci Solar Panels

Energy and Environmental Engineering
Juliannah Gavin

Melissa Bravenec

"This project is about making solar energy more efficient by using the Fibonacci spiral. Since the Fibonacci spiral helps plants get the photosynthesis they need with the very limited amount of space they have. I wanted to combine this idea to make solar energy more efficient by placing solar panels in a Fibonacci spiral, and measuring the difference of space and energy compared to a grid arrangement. The grid arrangement is what one would see in a field. After testing the two arrangements for space and energy efficiency, the solar panels in the Fibonacci spiral generated about 3% less energy while being about 72% more space efficient. Therefore, the Fibonacci spiral takes up much less space with only a minor less energy loss. With land becoming increasingly expensive, and space being limited in urban areas, solar panels in a Fibonacci spiral could be a great resource for solar energy while optimizing space. "

Project presentation

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Lab journal excerpts

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Research paper

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2 thoughts on “Fibonacci Solar Panels

  1. Applying mathematics to biomimicry is excellent example of first principle scientific thought.

    The key though is how much total power is produced.

  2. The space efficiency of the Solar Panels seems to help to also reduce the cost of solar panels. This could perhaps spread across the Southwestern United States as an effective replacement for the majority of fossil fuels!

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