SunMan, a Hong Kong PV energy firm, has officially rolled out a pliable glass-less solar panel which can be used in an extensive range of applications.
The solar panel, dubbed "eArche," can be made into a translucent format which appeals to architects. It can generate power that is comparable to the traditional solar panel models, despite the 85% and 75% reduction in its thickness and weight. A solar panel consisting of 72 mono-si cells can generate up to 320-325 watts of power while weighing only 8.2 kilos, compared to the 20 kilos of the traditional solar panel models.
Many scientists have been actively developing lightweight solar panels, such as thin-film and perovskite panels, in addition to the pliable ones. The light weight solar panels can be used in an extensive range of applications, including the military, disaster relief, entertainment, etc. The U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) believes that the pliable solar panels will eventually be applied in automobiles and trains to boost their overall cruising range.
Another notable lightweight solar panel that is worthy of mentioning is the CIGS solar panel from Sunflare, which boasts low sunlight needs and high-temperature resistance. Its power output is approximately 10% higher than those of the traditional solar models. These solar panels have recently been applied on Pinzgauer all-terrain vehicles for trial purposes.
Consisting of 12 PV cells, the CIGS solar panel has a lightweight stainless-steel frame and weighs only 10 kilos. Its capacity, which is approximately 360 Wp, is enough to power various in-car electronic devices, such as radios, alarm speakers, flashing signal lights, GPS, and air compressors.
Alta Device’s Solar for HALE is another noteworthy lightweight solar panel solution which can enable drones to fly at a higher altitude and longer distances.