The website tells the story of Solar Sharcâ, a unique anti-soiling, easy-clean, durable industrial coating. It details the innovative technology underpinning the project, the consortium of industrial partners and research organisations involved, together with the major funding bodies. The website also provides an easy means for potential partners and future customers to follow developments as Solar Sharcâ is taken out of the lab and into the real world.
Solar Sharcâ offers significant benefits to the solar PV industry, where it is estimated that more than half of total power output is lost through dirt accumulation on the panels themselves. Not only do such large losses directly impact O&M costs, they are reducing the perceived benefits of investing in solar energy.
Solar Sharcâ addresses these concerns by eliminating surface contamination problems caused by salt, dirt, dust or ash. The coating’s unique chemical composition dynamically repels these external pollutants, removing or reducing the need for manual cleaning and making it mechanically resilient to environmental ageing.
As well as delivering numerous operational and commercial benefits, Solar Sharcâ’s self-cleaning properties also reduce water wastage, a major advantage for installations in hot and/or arid locations. Additionally, Solar Sharcâ offers the potential for energy production companies to reduce their carbon emissions, consequently addressing, in part, the current global energy trilemma (energy security, equity and environmental sustainability).
“The launch of the Solar Sharcâ website is a major milestone in the project’s history”, explains David Hannan, Business Development Director of Opus Media Technologies and leader of the Solar Sharcâ project. “The website will serve as centralised repository for the different parties involved. Potential partners and early adopters can monitor progress, gain access to trial results etc. as the project gains traction and matures over the next 18-24 months.”
Although Solar Sharcâ is being developed for solar PV usage, the coating’s underlying technology which delivers environmental durability, resistance to extreme climates and easy-clean capabilities, makes it suitable for cross sector applications within the renewable energies industry, as well as other verticals, such as automotive.
Opus Materials Technologies is already in advanced-stage negotiations with major players in the renewable energies industry and field trials are underway in the UK, Europe, the US and the Middle East.