Nanosolar: Solar Power at a Lower Cost
In a market-friendly scenario, Nanosolar claims to be able to produce electricity at 5-6 cents/kilowatt hour almost as cheap as power from coal and at about one-third the cost of other solar power. Nanosolar claims: Nanosolar claims mass production of solar power will now become feasible with their differently manufactured solar panels. Conventional silicon-made solar panels have a stiff competitor from CIGS semiconductor printed solar panels – composed of copper, gallium, indium and selenium – which perform as good as conventional solar panels in lab conditions. An inexpensive printing process makes it ideal for mass production by an automated facility with robots and other hi-fi equipment.
Solar panels re-invented:
The low efficiency which haunted Nanosolar raising the cost of installation of solar-power arrays and which necessitated more solar panels has been addressed successfully by Nanosolar. The larger panels they are now using generate more power; with modifications that cut the cost, the larger panels generate 160 watts as against 70 watts by First Solar.
According to Martin Roscheisen, Nanosolar’s CEO, in sunny locations, power plants with these panels could produce electricity at 5-6 cents per kilowatt hour. Mr. Roscheisen claimed even the 16.4 % energy conversion in sunlight as against 20% energy conversion in the lab and only 11% of that energy into electricity by Nanosolar is high enough compared to conventional solar panels.
Raring to go!
Based at Germany and enjoying a huge market thanks to government’s incentives for the solar cells made of CIGS semiconductor, Nanosolar is ready to storm the market with producing solar cells twice as fast as the conventional solar-panel factories. He is ready to give First Solar a run for its money.
But the claimed low costs are attainable only at close-to-capacity operation level which is at best a distant possibility. Because despite all improvements, under the current economic scenario, Nanosolar is finding it tough to find banks willing to back power plants which may be ready to use their solar panels. Now the panels are not yet “bankable;” but Nanosolar is hoping for a better future.