The French start-up Solar Cloth plans to increase the capacity of its module production plant near Cannes. The plant will produce flexible solar modules with a yield of 17.6% embedded in textile supports.

The French start-up Solar Cloth has developed a copper, indium, gallium and selenium (CIGS) solar module for housing, greenhouses, aeronautical applications, mobility, sports and leisure.

The modules are made with CIGS solar cells supplied by the American manufacturer Miasolé and have a power conversion efficiency of 17.6%.

“We are currently planning to set up a manufacturing plant in Mandelieu, near Cannes, with our partner Soy PV, which is a new French CIGS platform for the manufacture of CIGS cells with electrolytic deposition”, said the CEO of Solar Cloth, Alain Janet. photo magazine. “The new production unit should be operational in April, with a capacity of 20 MW.”

Solar Cloth manufacturing plant.

Image: solar fabric

The panels measure 1400 x 820 mm and weigh 1.5 kg/m². The products are described by the manufacturers as rollable and extremely flexible modules, which do not contain any breakable silicone or glass. “CIGS has a low carbon footprint of 12-20g CO2/kWh, and its recycling process is low impact and high value,” says the manufacturer.

The module is also said to adapt to all kinds of textiles and has recently been used for several lodge tents in the heavenly springs Californian seaside resort in the United States. The panels were deployed with a west-east orientation on both sides of the lodge tents and connected to a battery with a capacity of 75Ah.

According to Solar Cloth, each of the lodge tents can now use an average of 1,300 Wh per day and power a refrigerator, three portable lights, a light in the bathroom, one in the main room, a computer, three cell phones and other small applications for a total power of 379 W.

“Solar Cloth participated in a European tender last month, joining a consortium for the development of perovskite/CIGS tandem solar cells,” Janet said, referring to the company’s latest steps to further develop its solar cell technology. mods.

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