Eindhoven-based manufacturer of lightweight and ‘green’ solar panels Solarge has gathered enough capital to start a 100 MW production facility in Weert. “In the Netherlands, the use of solar power is expected to grow by at least a factor of 10 in the coming 30 years, after which the market for replacement PV panels will be enormous. We’re delighted that we can get going with the real work and configure our production line in Weert, where we have found the ideal location,” comments Solarge CEO Jan Vesseur. In subsequent years, Vesseur aims to expand to 350 MW capacity.
Instead of aluminum and glass, Solliance spinoff Solarge uses biobased or recycled plastics as support materials for monocrystalline silicon solar panels. The company claims its design saves up to 50 percent in weight, allowing installation on rooftops that can’t support the weight of traditional panels. According to research commissioned by Topsector Energy, 45 percent of Dutch rooftops aren’t compatible with regular solar panels (link in Dutch).
Solarge also touts green benefits, claiming an 80 percent lower CO2 footprint than conventional products. Additionally, the panels don’t contain harmful chemical compounds and can be easily disassembled for recycling at the end of their useful life.