back to article Sharp shows first 'zero-emission' telly

If your electricity bills are getting you down, then perhaps it’s time you started living off grid? And, thanks to Sharp, you’ll still be able to watch TV while cuddling up to Mother Nature. Sharp_TV_solar_04 Sharp's 52in solar powered LCD TV Photo courtesy AVing The electronics giant has shown off what it claims to be “ …


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  1. D@v3


    so u would only be able to watch it if u had a suitable light source to keep it powered. Something along the line of the floodlight, maybe itself powered by a petrol generator? just a thought.

  2. Adam C

    Hahah like this will ever take off in the UK....

    Absolutely useless in Britain. How the hell are we going to manage 220kWh shining through a window in your living room onto a bloody solar panel!? We have approximately 2.7 days of sunshine per year.

  3. Anonymous Coward

    Is it me..

    Or does the solar panel look bigger than the TV?

    *\. Getting my coat, because the idea of living off grid sounds better by the day.

  4. dervheid
    Thumb Down

    And just WHAT...

    do you do when there's no sun, at NIGHT when 'most' people are watching the telly?


  5. Anonymous Coward

    So you need to buy a floodlight to power it?

    Is the floodlight solar-powered? ;)

    More seriously, what happens in the winter when it's dark from 4pm - midnight, which are my usual TV viewing hours? :-\

  6. Neil Barnes Silver badge


    Damn the telly - I want one of those solar panels! Bolt it on top of the car, electricity on the move...

    Do you think we ought to tell then the average insolation on Earth is around 800W/m^2?

  7. Steve Sherlock


    I don't use that much in a month - one of these solar panels could save me a fortune!

    Alternatively, in could be a typo. Shame on you for giving me false hope!

  8. Uwe Dippel
    Paris Hilton

    on the wrong side ...

    A joker he must be: the 220kWh that the panel produces.

    An engineering degree, a kingdom for an engineering degree!

    Paris, because she is not an engineer either.

  9. Rob

    .. not wishing to sound ungrateful for this technological advance but..

    .. is the factory it's made in solar powered too?

    .. and is it shipped to us in sailboats?

    .. and does every member of staff in the shop I bought it from cycle to work?

    .. and is it made from renewable resources?

    .. and is the industry whose content it delivers carbon neutral? What? Even if I don't watch the latest Hollywood action trash laden with petrol explosions?

    .. and does it work in London (i.e. does it require actual sunlight)?


  10. Dave
    Paris Hilton


    A little more in the way of facts would be nice: where does the 22kW/h figure come from? Is that based on 24hours of sunlight per day? ( a common trick with these sorts of things.)

    If there wasn't enough sunlight at the show to keep it going, does that mean the same for my home? Do I need to leave it outside all day - I'm not worried about it getting pinched if it is that crap, but it would end up covered in bird poo...

  11. Richard Read


    >> The net result: pictures and no damaging CO2 emissions.

    Well no CO2 emissions apart from those produced by manufacturing, recycling and all those generated by the creation and transmission of program content.

  12. Kev

    Once again...

    Where are the components from?? Did they pull them out of someones arse... not to mention the energy used in manufacture. If not then its NOT a zero emissions telly... its a low energy usage one at best.

    why oh why oh why.... and so on

  13. Michael Habel

    They didn't think this thought did they?!?

    I mean who's going to be impressed by a 52" ~Solar~ Panel, when we should be talking about 52+ Plasma / TFT Panels?!

    +The fact that this "Panel" is sitting on the floor the rudy thing would likely stop working after a Week!!

    ...Dusting I've heard of it, but that's a Woman's job!! /jk

    ps ...Probably explains why I still live alone lol

  14. Craig Graham


    So what on earth do you mean by 220kWh? Total available electrical energy delivered over the entire life of the thing?

  15. Anonymous Coward

    But is it as green as it's painted?

    A. How much CO2 was emitted in the course of manufacturing the solar panel which powers the TV, and how much will be emitted over the course of disposing of it at the end of its life?

    B. How long is the panel expected to last in normal operation, and therefore how much CO2 will be saved over its lifetime?

    And is answer "B" greater than answer "A"?

    And please, please, for the love of all that is sane and decent, please, would it really kill you to give screen sizes in proper measuring units, i.e. centimetres or millimetres?

  16. Nigel R

    220 KWH should read 2.2 KWH?

    220 KWH is enough to power a small town.

    Even 2.2 KWH is suspiciously high for a solar panel - what is the real unit of measure?

  17. Simon Martin


    I believe a typical house consumes a few hundred kWh per month. So presumably the number on the poster is to do with maximum annual production/consumption.

    BTW even in Scotland (the inhabited bits) the amount of solar energy that hits a house is something like 5 times the amount used inside it. The real issue is converting it into useful energy and storing it.

  18. Liam


    i assume im not the only one to close the curtains when watching movies and playing games? the amount of light needed to light the thing would mean your lounge would have to be so bright you probably cant see the screen anyway!

  19. Ken Hagan Gold badge

    What's the point?

    Given the rather vast infrastructure that exists for the transfer of electrical energy from A to B, and the very high efficiency with which it is achieved, there is absolutely no reason whatsoever to bundle a product that generates electricity with one that consumes it.

    I don't know about 100% green, but it's certainly 100% gimmick and the fact that they needed to use a spot light simply holds them up to ridicule. So tell me again, what message are Sharp trying to communicate to the waiting world?

    We are stupid?

    We think you are stupid?

  20. David Gosnell

    @Adam C

    220kWh is just an amount of energy, not a power rating. Give it long enough...

    Mind you, that would mean there must be a battery in this thing big enough to store 220kWh - i.e. enough energy to run 220 1kW electric fires for an hour.

    Smells very very brown to me, consequently.

  21. Rhyd

    Am I the only one...

    that closes the curtains when it's bright outside so that I can see the TV? I suppose I could use the solar panel as a window blind...

  22. Anonymous Coward

    'zero-emission' telly

    Zero emissions? What, not even photons? That's going to be bloody boring to watch then, innit?

  23. Steve
    Thumb Down

    so what's the story?

    If Philips hook up a hair dryer, or a toaster or a kettle to a solar panel will they get a story as well. Look, I hooked up my mobile phone to a solar panel, write me story.

    This seems to be (at least based on the report)

    1) Take existing technology A

    2a) Plug in

    2b) Existing power supply technology B

    3) Get free publicity

    4) ???

    5) Profit

  24. Peyton

    my guess

    In Japan they have loads of outdoor TVs, so it may be more targeted to advertising or public service than normal home viewing.

    It does sound great at first (I loathe cables of any sort with a passion), but I really wouldn't want to have to block up a window with this thing..

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Zero-emission TV?

    The pedant in me suggests that if the TV has zero emissions then there will be no light coming out of the front of it. That should improve the programmes lots!

  26. Anonymous Coward

    Zero Emissions?

    Zero emission? It doesn't emit any photons? Not very useful, is it? Of course, it does solve the power problem, you never need to turn it on.

  27. Big_Boomer Silver badge


    That solar panel will be HUGE to provide that much power.

    Presumably it will have batteries that is charges and they run the Telly so stop yer whining you bunch of muppets. <LOL>

    You can do this yerself with enough solar cells, batteries and an Inverter.

    They'd be better off making a bicycle powered TV.

    That way you have to work-out to watch your shite reality-TV crap.

  28. Matt Thornton

    Not wishing to state the obvious...

    Whilst the sarcastic naysayers were quite predictable, in case anyone was actually serious, [power from a] solar panel isn't on demand. i.e., it doesn't need to be sunny when you want to use it... it charges up when it is sunny and is available when it isn't.

  29. Craig

    @Ken Hagan

    "Given the rather vast infrastructure that exists for the transfer of electrical energy from A to B, and the very high efficiency with which it is achieved"

    I thought loads of power was lost between the station and peoples homes.

  30. Frank Bough
    Thumb Down

    So Many Twatsperts...

    Listen, cretins. Sharp make a) LCD tellys (and very nice ones, too) they also make b) PV solar panels. Now, a 52" LCD telly would likely suck in the region of 150W (at mid brightness) so the 220Kilowatt HOURS figure should give you a clue that we're talking about power consumption OVER TIME (and quite a long time), even if you don't understand basic units.

    Yes, it's quite possible to drive an LCD TV from a modestly sized PV panel - my 26" Sharp LCD only draws around 30W in typical evening lighting. And guess what? Sharp know more about it than you do.

  31. Anonymous Coward

    @Matt Thornton - Stating the obvious

    A solar panel by itself doesn't store ANYTHING. It converts sunlight to electricity. Storage requires a rechargeable battery of some kind. The article doesn't mention any kind of battery.

    The 220kWh rating is strange, very strange. As others mention, the total power striking 1 sqaure meter of the Earth's surface is somewhere around 1kW so there's no way the cell alone could produce 220kW. If the cell could collect energy, store it, and deliver it with one hundred percent efficiency, it would need 220hours to reach full charge.

    220kWH is also a LOT of energy. This ( says a small family uses 5,480 kWh per year. So 220kWh would power a home for a family of four for 2 weeks.

    That seems unreasonable from a little panel on the floor in front of the Telly.

    Mine's the one with the zero point energy panel on the back powering my flying antigravity underpants.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Frank Bough - Twatspert

    I'll grant you that you could probably power an LCD from a reasonably sized solar cell in full daylight. You could probably even do so indoors.

    The wonky thing is why in the heck Sharp finds it necessary to throw in a non-sensical rating that is of no use to anyone. If you want to impress me, tell me the solar panel can run the TV indoors under normal lighting. If it won't do that, then tell me it'll run the Telly outside on a cloudy day.

    No body here doubts that the combo will work, we just wonder what in 'ell Sharp is trying to express with the numbers.

  33. Ken Hagan Gold badge


    "I thought loads of power was lost between the station and peoples homes."

    Some, yes, but hardly "loads". Otherwise it would be more economic to generate power in smaller (less efficient) stations that were closer to the point of consumption. Half a century of industry practice world-wide would indicate that this isn't the case.

  34. It'sa Mea... Mario

    what's wrong with my previous comment?

    Slightly off topic but that's not normally an issue is it?

    Nevermind I'm getting used to my comments to James stories not getting posted.

    it's not even like they are offensive. (normally)

  35. A J Stiles

    For the record

    I have a 38cm. set with built-in Freeview and all-region DVD player which runs from a 12V adaptor. I have successfully powered this from a 12V battery charged by solar panels.

  36. J

    Dear fellow numpties

    First of all, El Reg just ran a story based on a bunch of pictures, apparently. And apparently they didn't even bother to ask a Japanese speaking person to read WTF is written on those signs. They could only understand the 220 kWh part besides the few English bits here and there (me too).

    So, even ignoring that, why be so stupid with the comments? Or have you forgot to put the "joke icons"? You make yourself look like idiots, really... It's a DEMO thing, FFS. How interesting/marketing gimmickish would it be if it said "Solar powered TV. The panel is outside, trust us"? And then, who said the final product would look like that one? Only a retard would believe someone nowadays would think of building a TV with indoor solar panel, on the floor, in front of said TV. While you're at it, why don't you just complain that it also comes with an ugly sign full of stuff written in Japanese right in front of the solar panel, as well as a bunch of other Japanese stuff on the wall behind it? Gee...

  37. Michael

    @ Matt Thornton

    >>>[power from a] solar panel isn't on demand. i.e., it doesn't need to be sunny when you want to use it... it charges up when it is sunny and is available when it isn't.

    Actually, power from a solar panel *IS* in fact on demand. The technology you're describing is called a "Battery". Not the same thing.

  38. Christian Berger

    Power consumption


    Even in the 80s, you could get LCD TV-sets which only took a few watts. Those sets only took about 2 watts total, which makes 48 watthours. Of course it's trivial to power an LCD screen with solar powers. Unless of course you have a badly designed active one with useless features like colour.

  39. Matt Thornton
    Thumb Down

    OK pedants

    Oh FFS... fine, I should have been more explicit. Normal implementation of solar panel technology incorporates the a) solar panel and b) something to store the electric in. Like I said - I didn't want to state the bleeding obvious, whereas you poor saps seem to need it spelled out in every last detail. If you actually thought that Sharp would consider building a TV that required it to be sunny, then it's time you stepped away from the 'puter and went outside for a while.

  40. Anonymous Coward

    @Matt Thornton - Twatspert

    Here's a 9.6kWh battery backup unit for solar panels:

    See the size of it? See the number of batteries? Doesn't exactly fit under the Telly or in the cupboard now does it? Now imagine it 22 times bigger to approximate the 220kWh figure mentioned by Sharp. Hmmm. Might need a bigger flat to keep it all in.

    That's what's got those of us with a clue wondering just what the blue peeping HELL Sharp is trying to express with 220kWh, cause it sure as heck isn't that capacity of the solar panel or an hypothetical battery attached to it.

    Mine's the one with a 220kWh battery in the (BIG) left pocket powering the antigrav unit in the right pocket that make the battery light enough to carry.

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