ERG Renew is entering the new generation solar energy market with the Permasteelisa Group and is participating in a project for the research and development of a cutting-edge technology to produce non-silicon-based solar panels.
The objective is to develop so-called “organic” photovoltaicsand create an industrial production line for DSSC panels (Dye-sensitized solar cells).
ERG Renew’s partners in the project are the Universities of Rome Tor Vergata, Ferrara and Turin, which are dealing with the research side, and an industrial partner, the Australian company Dyesol, through its affiliate Dyesol Italia, which is a sector leader in the supply of materials and technology.
To this end, in July 2009, the six members of the project signed the by-laws of the DYEPOWER Association, the aim of which is to create an industrial production line for the new panels.
Furthermore, the association has the objective of promoting, planning and carrying out research and development in the organic/hybrid photovoltaics sector with regard to dye-sensitized solar cells on glass or other rigid non-metallic products.
When the research is completed, ERG Renew and Permasteelisa will launch, exclusively, the business of producing and marketing these new generation panels, which are more competitive in terms of cost, efficiency and durability, as well as being much more environmentally friendly compared to those based on the traditional silicon technology.
Participating in this large research and development project in the solar energy sector is a large step for ERG Renew and it is consistent with its strategy of growing in the renewable energy sector. It will allow the group to gain a significant role in the production and sale of innovative photovoltaic panels.
The Permasteelisa Group has always given absolute priority and importance to research projects which, like this one, have the right amount of potential to be able to contribute to the design and production of a new and energetically proactive generation of construction materials.
The DSSC (Dye-sensitized solar cells) panels make use of an innovative technology which uses organic photosensitive dyes and nanotechnology to generate electricity.
Unlike the traditional ones, the new panels use more simplified production processes which use less energy, have a lower environmental impact and lower costs; moreover, they are more versatile to use because they are less sensitive to the angle of incidence of solar radiation, so much so that they can also be installed on vertical walls (such as the windows of skyscrapers and towers for example) or in situations where the light is diffused. They can have varying degrees of transparency and various colourings and can therefore be better integrated into the architectural design than the traditional ones, which are opaque and colourless.
ERG Renew installed a traditional plant at ISAB Energy's Sicilian industrial site in Priolo Gargallo (Syracuse) with a capacity of approximately 1 MW, come on stream at the end of June 2011.