Major Italian corporations ERG Renew (ERG Group) and Permasteelisa (the worlds leading façade company), are to enter into the development and industrial production using Dyesol materials and technologies of DSC panels (Dye Solar Cells) which generate electricity using artificial photosynthesis. The program by the Italian consortium is planned to grow to manufacture of over 500,000sqm of DSC panels per annum.
In contrast to traditional photovoltaics, the new panels will use simpler production processes which utilise less energy and will have a reduced environmental impact and lower costs.
In addition, DSC panels are more versatile as they are less sensitive to the angle of the solar radiation, which allows them to be installed on vertical walls (for example glass office buildings) and in places with poor light. They can be transparent and utilise different colours resulting in better architectural integration options than those available for silicon.
The Universities of Rome Tor Vergata, Ferrara and Turin will be partners in the project which will undertake the industrial research phase. Universita Roma Tor Vergata recently purchased a prototype facility from Dyesol and a team from the University is currently training at Dyesol’s Australian Headquarters.
On completion of the development and first stage production facility, ERG Renew and Permasteelisa will produce and market these next-generation panels which based on cost, efficiency and durability are forecast to set a new industry benchmark being more competitive than the traditional silicon technology products.
The establishment project, estimated to have a total cost of over Euro 10 million, will apply for funding under the “Industria 2015” programme which provides state financing for research projects aimed at energy efficiency through the use of innovative technologies. ERG Renew and Permasteelisa will contribute, respectively, approx. Euro 2.5 million and Dyesol approx. Euro 1.5 million.
According to the Dyesol’s Global Managing Director, Dr Gavin Tulloch, “This is a tremendous step forward for Dyesol, our shareholders and the renewable energy sector. This project brings together a top team of researchers and industry. The Dyesol Group is enthused to be partner in this strong industrial and research consortium committed to bring DSC glass panels to the marketplace. We have been working with the Italian team for many months now structuring this project which is a great business opportunity for Dyesol as exclusive supplier of the DSC materials since there is about $75 value of DSC materials in every square metre of product.’
The CEO of ERG Renew Raffaele Tognacca commented: “ERG Renew is part of an important research and development project in the solar energy sector which will permit us to enter into the production and sale of innovative photovoltaic panels as a major player. This represents an important step, in line with out strategy, of growth in the renewable sector.”
The Dyesol group was founded in Australia, is listed on the ASX (DYE) and traded in Germany (D51), and has European operations in Italy, UK and Switzerland with representation in Germany