Solar panels have become a more ubiquitous part of the urban and suburban landscape. Where they once stood out, they’ve now become an almost ordinary feature on a range of structures. Part of the reason for that is demand, but it’s also soon to be built into their design. New, more advanced solar roof options are being developed, and there are plenty of providers vying for marketplace dominance in the U.S.

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A More Seamless Sustainable Energy Source
It’s fairly easy to notice most solar panel setups placed on the roof of a standard residential home. However, new solar roof suppliers are offering aesthetically-minded homeowners something different.

Solar cell roof tiles are far sleeker and less distinguishable that raised panels. Instead they closely resemble conventional roof tiles and shingles.

Last year, Tesla announced it would be offering four different styles of inconspicuous glass roof tiles with solar cells integrated within. Two of the designs are now available and can be ordered online, with the others expected to be available in 2018.

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Rising Competition
Up and coming company, Forward Labs has stepped up as a notable competitor to Tesla in sleek solar tile offerings. They have designed glass and galvanized metal layered solar cells that cost between $12.00 and $8.50 per square foot, while Tesla’s cost is roughly $22.00 per square foot.

Other companies, like Sistine Solar, have also come forward with designs for solar panel systems that can be customized with a “skin” that matches surrounding roof tiles or even an image of your choosing.


Sustainability And Aesthetic
As solar cells become less expensive, thinner, and offer more structural versatility, the residential and commercial solar panel market could really start to heat up. Those property owners who have been hesitant to incorporate solar panels due to their aesthetic appearance might now be more eager to adopt the energy system.

It appears as though an increasing number of suppliers are finding new ways to meet their needs, and at competitive prices.

What do you think of newer, sleeker solar roof panel options? Let us know in the comments.

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