Solarge PV modules are 100% recycable
Conventional solar panels contain aluminum and glass. Recycling a glass panel is not a simple process and separating the different materials consumes a considerable amount of energy. Furthermore, solar glass is difficult to recycle within its own production chain because of the high purity requirements.
Solarge’s design replaces aluminum and glass with a fiber-reinforced thermoplastic polymer. The module also contains tinned copper which electrically connects the solar cells. The cells themself are made of silicon. All these materials are 100% recycable. In addition, Solarge is able to produce the polymers for the modules in full from recycled materials.
Use of non-toxic materials
Many Asian manufacturers of PV modules use synthetic materials for their backsheet that contain poly- and perfluoroalkyl substances. These are also known under the collective name PFAS (Perfluorinated Alkyl Substances).
This group of chemicals do not occur naturally in the environment and have a negative effect on the environment and (people’s) health. The toxic substance enters the environment through emissions from factories or because products containing PFAS end up as waste.
The Solarge products do not contain PFAS and are non-toxic.
Low CO2 emissions during production
The current generation of solar modules, mostly produced in Asia, account for CO2 emmisions that usually repay themselves in two years. As with the generation of Solar energy one saves on the CO2 emission of fossil-fueled power plants. After the first two years a Solar module will generate at least for another 25 years of energy without CO2 emissions. This sounds great but Solarge took this one step further:
Conventional solar panels contain aluminum and glass. The aluminum frame around the panel leads to the depletion of bauxite mines and causes high emissions of CO2 during manufacturing. Aluminum and glass are manufactured at high temperatures of 1000°C and 1500°C, respectively. Also high CO2 emissions occur at production and transport of the 13 kg glass frontsheet.
Aluminum and glass are fully replaced by polymers in Solarge’s design. During the production of these polymers we use much lower temperatures, down to 250°C. On average that is close to 800°C less than what is required for aluminum and glass. Since the polymers are lightweight, the emissions during transport are also considerably lower. The result is 25% less CO2 emissions for Solarge PV modules during manufacturing and transport.