27 April 2012

CIGS PV firm Nanosolar fulfills grant specifications from DOE

Nanosolar Inc of San Jose, CA, USA, which makes thin-film photovoltaic cells and panels based on depositing copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) and nanoparticle inks on flexible substrates (using roll-to-roll solar cell printing), has achieved or surpassed all 10 major tasks on completion of a $42m grant from the US Department of Energy (DOE) for a Solar America Initiative (SAI) Technology Pathway Partnership (TPP) program.

Nanosolar was awarded the grant in 2006 to develop large-scale photovoltaic (PV) systems for commercial buildings that offer the best price per watt performance in the industry. The project started in September 2007, and Nanosolar received sign off from the DOE early this April.

Major achievements included the following:

  • Cell power conversion efficiency of more than 13% has been reached on the production floor (which has been built out to a nameplate annual capacity of 115MW).
  • 3.4MW of panels has been deployed specifically for pilot installations for this project (a 550kW deployment for Camp Perry in Ohio, and a 2.88MW deployment based in Oregon). Also, as of December, Nanosolar has produced, sold and deployed at 14 sites around the world.
  • Based on third-party estimates, Nanosolar will reach grid parity economics by 2015 (as per DOE program goals).
  • Nanosolar continues to collect performance and reliability data from third-party testing laboratories (analysis is carried out by independent engineering firms and institutions).

“The close of this grant validates Nanosolar’s ability to execute to plan,” says CEO Eugenia Corrales. “We continue to drive toward delivering the most cost-efficient solar electricity.”

Nanosolar worked with three partners to complete the TPP project, which focused on developing solar electric solutions for flat commercial rooftops that can deliver grid-parity with other non-renewable energy resources. The team included Nanosolar's innovations in cell and module technology, inverter technology and systems optimization from Conergy AG, and mounting technology from Sunlink LLC in a pilot installation by Suntechnics.

The SAI team focused on using Nanosolar’s scalable PV cell technology in large-scale commercial building installations to deliver grid-parity PV systems through the development of an integrated suite of system components and designs based on innovations in module, inverter and mounting technologies.

Tags: Nanosolar CIGS thin-film PV panels CIGS

Visit: www.nanosolar.com

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