Tuesday, March 20, 2012

No. 464: A new coating to increase the power output of a solar battery (March 20, 2012)

Asahi Kasei will launch a new coating to apply to the surface of a solar battery to increase its power output toward the end of this year. The new coating is based on Asahi Kasei’s self-developed Durahikari (Durable light) that is a photocatalyst coating to prevent outer walls of buildings from getting filthy for 30 years. By applying the technology of Durahikari, the company employed composite materials that mixed adaptable organic substances and inorganic substances with high hydrophilicity using its own formulation technology. Besides maintaining the same performance of the solar battery for 30 years, it can be applied to the existing solar batteries.

Applied to the surface glass of a solar battery, the coating increases the absorptance of sunlight 4% to 99%. When it rains, the coating creates water film on the surface to help wash off stains on the surface. It also prevents static electricity from occurring and stains from sticking to the surface. The company started to ship samples in 2010 to solar battery makers both at home and abroad. In Malaga of Spain, it conducted the substantiative experiment for one year and confirmed that the new coating increased power output by 4%. Therefore, on the condition that a photovoltaic generation unit with a power generation capacity of 1 MW generates 1,000 hours per year and the generated power is purchased by 40 yen per kW, the coating will increase the profit from sales by two million yen per year.     

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