The current research for Giant Leap Solar is the electronic (non-mechanical) steering of light over large ranges of direction, wavelength, polarization state and power by electronically modulating optical structures within a transparent medium between visible and invisible states. Our technique is based on moving tiny amounts of optical fluids within a transparent medium to steer light. This has the potential to completely replace heliostats and parabolic trough concentrators, which are used in today's utility-scale and small-scale solar power plants. This work, supported by the Energy Department SunShot Initiative and in partnership with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, will finally bring solar energy into the digital age and provide amazing new capabilities and cost-reductions to both photovoltaic and solar thermal power plants.
Bringing Solar To The Digital Age. The most advanced and capable solar receivers today require mechanical solar trackers. These trackers have high cost and low reliability. In an age of efficient digital electronics, we can do better with non-mechanical digital solar trackers. At Giant Leap Solar we are determined to replace heliostats and other forms of mechanical solar trackers with our patent pending Digital Glass™ technology.
Applications. The electronic control of light and microwave energy has applications in remote sensing, national defense, renewable energy, medical tech, and commercial consumer electronics. Remote sensing examples include LiDAR applications for autonomous vehicles and robotic vision system. National defense applications include electronically directing high power laser energy for missile defense. Commercial entertainment systems that can substantially benefit from electronic control of light and microwave energy include displays for augmented reality and adaptive headlights for automobiles.
Digital Glass (TM) is based on electronically distributing tiny amounts of optical fluids through blood vessel sized capillaries in a transparent medium. This allows a material’s internal structure to be electronically turned on and off and for broadband and polarization diverse light (like sunlight) to be redirected electronically.
The next major advance in solar energy lies in liberating nature’s secrets for the electronic (non-mechanical) control of sunlight. Electronic control of sunlight can provide up to 10x improvement in cost and/or solar energy collected compared to today's state of the art solar technology. The solution for affordable, utility scale solar is to shift from trying to direct massive collectors toward the sun and instead steer massless sunlight towards collectors.
At Giant Leap Companies, we believe in relentlessly challenging the status quo and thinking differently in order to create a better world for humanity through advanced control of light and other forms of wave energy. Recent efforts include breakthrough technology and early-stage R&D on electronic control of light and microwave energy, including applications for solar as well as LiDAR.
Giant Leap Technologies (GLT) is an R&D start-up company located in the San Francisco Bay Area. GLT is focused exclusively on high-impact early-stage technology development. We take select projects from initial concept to proof-of-principle prototyping, build-test-build engineering, field-testing and low-rate production.