Belgian company EnFoil has developed revolutionary solar panels in collaboration with imec, a leading Belgian R&D business. EnFoil’s solar panels are only one millimeter thick. In addition to being ultra-thin, the panels are also flexible and lightweight.
EnFoil’s ultra-thin solar panels open up new possibilities for solar cell usage on surfaces where traditional solar cells are unsuitable. These surfaces include truck roofs and corrugated roof tiles. Despite their slim design, EnFoil solar panels are highly durable.
In the past, solar cells for truck and building roofs came in standard formats, often flat and of fixed sizes. By contrast, EnFoil’s solar cells come in in various shapes and sizes, offering much greater flexibility in installation. The solar cells can be directly installed on the customer’s products or integrated into various applications.
According to Innovation Origins, EnFoil’s solar panels are based on CIGS technology. CIGS is an abbreviation for the four elements used to make the panels: copper, indium, gallium, and selenium.
This combination of elements makes the panels pliable, lightweight, and robust. The thin-film solar cells are also more resistant to shocks, making them a reliable and sustainable option.
EnFoil envisions a wide range of applications for its solar panels. Panels can be used as swimming pool covers and corrugated roof tiles at customers’ homes. In the logistics industry, the panels can be used on the roofs and sidewalls of trucks to power sensors and track & trace systems. This would reduce trucks’ reliance on batteries and optimize energy usage.
The European Research Council has recognized the potential of EnFoil’s solar panels and awarded them a grant worth €150,000 (about 165,000 USD). Hasselt University will use the grant to hire a researcher for further product development. This grant underscores industry experts’ confidence in the viability of EnFoil’s innovative solar panel technology.
Image Source: EnergyVille, https://shorturl.at/bEV19