14 September 2010


CPV system maker Concentrix Solar joins Transgreen Initiative

Soitec Group of Bernin, France, which manufactures engineered substrates including silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers (as well as III-V epiwafers through its Picogiga International division), says that its concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) system making division Concentrix Solar GmbH of Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany has joined the Transgreen Initiative.

Transgreen was launched on 5 July within the context of the European Union’s Mediterranean Solar Plan to stimulate the development of a Trans-Mediterranean electric power transmission network to respond to the expected need for electricity exchange between the two sides of the Mediterranean.

Concentrix was founded in 2005 as a privately held spin-off of the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, before about 80% of its shares were acquired by Soitec last December. Its CPV technology is designed for use by large-scale solar power plants in hot and arid regions. The firm says that the systems are efficient, modular, flexible and suited to the challenges of the Mediterranean region for producing low-cost electricity.

“We are looking forward to working with this ecosystem of companies and the countries of the Mediterranean region to demonstrate the value of CPV,” says Concentrix Solar‘s CEO Hansjörg Lerchenmüller. “We have an opportunity to make a significant contribution to the region's energy needs for renewable energy sources and to export energy to European countries,“ he adds.

With 25% AC system efficiency, Concentrix’s CPV systems provide what is claimed to be the highest efficiency of all solar technologies available. Particularly at locations with extremely hot ambient temperatures, CPV systems perform better than conventional solar systems, guaranteeing high and constant power production throughout the day, says the firm. Because they do not need cooling water, Concentrix’s systems are suited to power plant installations in arid areas like in the Mediterranean region.

Also, due to the technology’s high scalability, it is possible to commission CPV power plants in different phases, shortening time to operation. After connecting the first units to the grid, the systems start to produce energy while the installation of the power plant is still in progress.

Concentrix Solar is exhibiting its CPV systems at this week’s SolarMed trade show in Paris, France (15-17 September).

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