This one weird trick gets 4 percent more from solar panels

This one weird trick gets 4 percent more from solar panels

Pellucere Technologies announced that it has secured a major investment from Energy Innovation Capital. The investment enables the beginning of “full-scale commercial deployment” of MoreSun, an anti-reflective and anti-soiling coating.

The company asserts that field data (above image) reflects that its anti-reflective and anti-soil coating was able to increase electricity production somewhere between 3 and 5%, on a mix of the DC and AC side of the equation. The coating is formulated with Pellucere’s “Talus Dirt Rejection Technology” (Talus DRT), which the company says reduces dust/dirt/etc buildup by 90%.

The company’s no-risk warranty page is cute, reach out to figure out and learn the details. The durability testing page suggests that after dealing with an ASTM D2486 Device with Standard Brush Subject to 2,000 cycles under DI water the coating’s benefit fell less than 4% from before testing.

MoreSun says their process adds a 140 nm thick silica structure (above image) to the glass. The layer can be added both in the field and in the factory. The company says the fundamental benefit is their creation of a gradual transition from air to glass which reduces angles of incidence, allowing about 8% of formerly lost light to have a chance of being captured. Pellucere posits most anti-reflective coatings work in the same manner, however, MoreSun is just plain better.

The company also claims that their Talus DRT technology, “optimizes the unique physical properties of our silica shield’s nano-structure to prevent buildup of dirt and other particulates.” Specifically, they note that one of their technology’s benefits is that the structure tends to stop the initial connection with the dirt and dust, rather than offering a structure that allows dirt to fall off later very easily with rain or morning dew, as some coatings do. The above video illustrates the “reject the dirt” philosophy of the technology.

The product can again be applied in the field, with the below noted backpack applicator in all markets currently. The company suggests this method is feasible for smaller projects.

Sometime after Q3 2019, the group hopes to deliver a “frame applicator system” to limit labor and speed application. Additionally, the company is currently testing a robotic applicator system that is expected to be released for field trials in the first part of 2020.

MoreSun was developed at Oregon State University, with support from the National Science Foundation, the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute (ONAMI) and VertueLab, a climate impact accelerator located in Oregon.

According to IHS Markit, some 40 GW of European solar plants with a capacity of more than 100 kW each are more than six years old. pv magazine projects that Europe’s aging PV fleet will be subject to revamping and repowering. We suspect operations will not just be limited to repairing and replacing inverters and other balance of system components, but could also see a wave of retrofitted panel coatings – like noted here – and the addition of power optimizers (which we’ll be covering soon).

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