There are increasing public and private pressures for the adoption of renewable energy technologies, of which solar is anticipated to be a prime player1. As it becomes increasingly desirable to generate energy nearer the point of demand (such as within a city centre) it is also more apparent that additional features beyond electrical performance play an important role in solar power: aesthetics2 and perceived safety3 of the devices come to the fore. Because of their adaptability and attractive appearance, there is a burgeoning interest in luminescent solar concentrator (LSC) devices for use in urban areas4. LSCs are large plastic plates filled with luminescent materials that essentially redirect solar energy to small edge-attached photovoltaic (PV) cells to generate electricity (Fig. 1). The first steps have been made in integrating LSCs into public spaces5, 6. But while the silicon-based PV panel industry has experienced tremendous growth, there is still no commercial manufacturer of LSCs.