Fifteen of these flower-shaped solar panels were installed last month in an open space between a highway and a retail lot in Austin, Texas. They not only provide a green source of energy, but also bring a fresh look to solar panel design. Unfortunately, I can’t help but think of those fake-tree cellphone towers when I see these things.
Designed by Massachusetts art duo Harries/Heder, the SunFlowers are an art exhibit at heart, and stand over 30 feet tall. They collect power from the sun by day, and use that energy to power their blue LEDs at night. Up to 15 kilowatts of surplus power is sent back to the grid as payment for any maintenance fees the SunFlowers incur.