The shipment is valued over $300,000 and was delivered ahead of schedule before the end of the first quarter of 2018. This substantial sale equates to approximately 50% of the c ompany’s 2017 full-year revenue.
The Ultralight PV module is the first of its kind for Ascent Solar to introduce two major advances over previous products. First, Ultralight utilizes next-generation PV that was developed originally for Ascent’s space customers and is manufactured on a substantially thinner substrate than Ascent’s standard bare PV module.
Secondly, the product utilizes asymmetric laminate packaging to reduce thickness and weight substantially from its predecessor, the Superlight product. These changes have resulted in vastly-reduced areal density to nominally 330 grams per square meter, or approximately 50% less than thin crystalline PV airship options. The PV modules that were provided to the customer in this shipment are designed for easy integration to reduce assembly time of the power system and increase overall array reliability.
“Our company was created, in part, to address the emerging unmanned high-altitude airship market through the use of our unique, extremely light and flexible photovoltaic product, and we have customizable solar blankets that address multiple aspects of this unique market segment,” stated Dr. Joseph Armstrong, CTO and founding member of Ascent Solar. “The customer has ordered a custom version of one of our existing 25-watt Superlight airship PV blankets with dimensions and electrical connections specific to their vehicle. By combining our space PV technology with our new asymmetric laminate packaging, we were able to achieve the breakthrough in terms of substantially higher power-to-weight ratio with Ultralight. By proving out the Ultralight construction, we have opened the door for other customers who wanted an even lighter version of our aerospace product that cover drones, tethered aerostats, and both fixed-wing and lighter-than-air high-altitude long-endurance (HALE) applications.”
“We are thrilled to have completed this significant order,” said Victor Lee, president and CEO of Ascent Solar. “This contract, which accounted for approximately 50% of our 2017 full-year revenue, will be booked as revenue in the first quarter and give the company a strong head start into 2018.”