‘urban tiles’, a combination solar cell and OLED screen project by meidad marzan

the graduation project of meidad marzan for his industrial design degree at israel’s bezalel academy of art and design, ‘urban tiles’ combines photovoltaic and OLED technology in a unit that serves to harness solar energy, provide lighting, function as an entertainment screen, and create exterior light displays.

the ‘urban tile’ panel is an aluminum and steel construction that contains a photovoltaic cell on one side and an OLED screen on its other. these are assembled together into rows, creating a kind of technological system of window blinds. the system offers almost zero net consumption, as the light captured by the solar panels is used to power the already low-energy OLEDs.

in a programmable interface that marzan hopes one day may be intuitively controlled via touchscreen, an electric motor permits each panel to be rotated on its axis so that the solar cell may be turned outwards and at specific angles during the day to harvest energy and/or permit the entry of natural light. by night, the OLED screens can be used indoors for lighting, faced outdoors to create building-scale display patterns, or utilized as a single collective screen for media playback.

meidad marzan: ‘the city and its buildings are epic light objects that [by night] emit light energy as far as the outer space, while in daytime the city absorbs great sun energy not being used at all. the cycle of light and lighting in the urban space made a design intervention, that along with other urban values, stood [as] the basis of this project.‘

demo video of ‘urban tiles’

meidad marzan: urban tiles detail on panels, each controlled by electric motor and assembled into a grid

meidad marzan: urban tiles night use of panels

meidad marzan: urban tiles concept exterior use for display screen

meidad marzan: urban tiles left: concept of the use of ‘urban tiles’ in apartment ‘window blinds’ right: use of OLED screens for external building-scale displays

meidad marzan: urban tiles interior use as media playback screen

meidad marzan: urban tiles interior use for lighting

meidad marzan: urban tiles marzan’s concept for a future touch-based control system for the ‘urban tiles’

meidad marzan: urban tiles detail rendering of the ‘urban tiles’ system

meidad marzan: urban tiles technical construction of each ‘urban tile’ unit

via gizmag