ClearVue next-gen ‘solar window’ powers through mass production run

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From pv magazine Australia

ClearVue said it has shown that its second-generation power-generating solar windows can be mass produced on unmodified manufacturing lines, avoiding the need for glass manufacturers to make costly and time-consuming changes to its industry-standard facilities.

The Perth-based company said its licensed manufacturer in China had conducted a commercial production run on a standard manufacturing line with continuous production of 80 integrated glazing units (IGUs). Adding ClearVue’s components to produce a fully assembled and sealed IGU increased the production cycle time by only five minutes.

ClearVue Chief Executive Offer Martin Deil said the production run was a “very important milestone,” proving that the company’s second-generation IGUs can be mass produced by glazing manufacturers globally without the need for production line change.

“We now have proven ability to scale our innovative smart building solutions,” he said. “Our ability to mass produce the second-generation IGUs confirms the commercial viability of our product for both large commercial and small-scale bespoke products.”

Deil said eliminating the need for production line changes will allow manufacturers to lower their costs and increase their production outputs and manufacturing plant capability, “leading to lower cost products for end-customers.”

ClearVue has developed specialized glass technologies that preserve glass transparency while generating electricity. The IGUs feature PV cells around the edges of each unit. The units incorporate a nanoparticle interlayer and spectral-selective coating on the rear external surface which allow much of the light to pass through but redirects infrared and UV light to the edge of the IGU where it is harvested by solar cells.

The company said its second-generation IGUs deliver enhanced efficiency – averaging about 100 w peak per square metre over an entire facade – and a lower average cost per watt. The new design also provides reductions in the thickness and weight of the units while new electrical connection elements simplify the assembly and fabrication process.

ClearVue said production of the second-generation IGUs was initially tested at a smaller factory in Singapore with the company saying the time required to fabricate and assemble them was about 90% less than its original IGUs.

Deil said he expects the latest commercial-scale production run will assist ClearVue as it looks to expand its manufacturing capabilities, adding the company is currently in discussions with “multiple manufacturing license partners around the world.”

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