Solar Coin is a cryptocurrency created in 2014 with the objective of incentivizing solar energy generation worldwide. By design, the total SLR supply is set to last for 40 years, ensuring incentives to be delivered for the generation of 97500 TWh of solar-powered electricity.
In contrast to other cryptocurrencies, the SolarCoin network relies on a “double Proof-of-Work” consensus system that is implemented in two phases. The first one works like the classic PoW consensus system present in Bitcoin, while the second acts like a meter reading, that represents 1 MWh of solar electricity. This double PoW implementation is designed to ensure that all SLR are justly and equitably distributed between all solar energy producers.
The SolarCoin platform is a fork of the original Litecoin project, based on the Scrypt hashing algorithm. The maximum SLR supply is of 98.34 billion coins. The total amount of SLR coins was distributed to investors through the PoW consensus system up until September 2014 when the project switched to a Proof-of-Stake Time (PoST) consensus system, citing energy consumption concerns. This switch also had the added effect of increasing SLR scarcity, thus driving the price up in the long term. At the current time all SLR mining on the platform is achieved by producing solar energy.
SLR coins can also be obtained through trade in trading pairs against USD, GBP, EUR, CHF, JPY, and BTC, on cryptocurrency exchange platforms like Bittrex, CoinExchange, and the Swiss cryptocurrency exchange Lykke. SolarCoins can be held on desktop and mobile using the SolarCoin Core Wallet, available on the project´s website.
Lykke´s CEO Richard Olsen (who later joined the SolarCoin Foundation advisory board) declared at the time of the SLR listing on his exchange: “Our users can now convert sunshine directly into francs, euros or Bitcoins…”, “Bringing the SolarCoin currency into the Lykke Exchange is a logical extension of our long-term plan. We are always looking for ways to expand market access and increase participation. Challenging conventional wisdom is what we do best, and we will be able to do it that much better with the passionate, forward-thinking SolarCoin community on our exchange.”
Interestingly, SolarCoin has partnered up with space-based data storage company Cloud Constellation, with the goal of storing its blockchain vault using their satellite-based service for deep cold storage. The project also became the first cryptocurrency worldwide to be recognized by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), an international intergovernmental group.