Forty Years Before Tesla Solar Roofs, NASA Solar Was "Far Out" 

On August 9, 1977, the United States Patent Office approved an application from three researchers at NASA’s Lewis Research Center in Cleveland. The patent was for a “solar cell shingle,” and it’s one of the earliest — if not the earliest — designs for putting solar cells on people’s roofs to bring power to their homes. Exactly 40 years later, companies like Tesla and others are on the verge of making solar-powered roofs a reality.

It’s been a long road to that point, and

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