June 10, 08
Concentrix Solar Sets Concentrator PV Efficiency Record of 23%

A new record was set by Concentrix Solar in Freiburg, Germany for its concentrator PV system. During the measurement period in May 2008, AC system efficiencies of 23% and higher were measured under normal operating conditions for a demonstration system located at the test site of the new partner Abengoa Solar in Seville, Spain. AC stands for alternating current and normal operating conditions means that the measurements took place on a system which feeds electricity into the utility grid under actual field conditions as opposed to a system set up in the laboratory.

The new generation of improved concentrator PV modules is a decisive factor in achieving such high efficiencies. Also, the inverter, which converts the direct current (DC) of the PV generator into alternating current (AC), plays a central role in achieving this high efficiency.

“We are overjoyed that we have succeeded in even exceeding the projected values”, says CEO Hansjörg Lerchenmüller. “At 23%, our concentrator system based on multijunction solar cells produces almost exactly double the electricity yield of conventional PV power systems. With these results, we have advanced an important step further in the continual optimization of our production and quality assurance.” The record efficiency value was measured on a 5.6 kW system located in Seville, Spain. In Fall this year, this system will be commercially available in Spain through Concentrix Iberia, a joint venture company of Concentrix and Abengoa.

Just a few weeks ago in the province Castilla-La Mancha, Concentrix successfully installed the first 100 kW system within the Spanish ISFOC project that is ready to be connected to the grid. In total, Concentrix will contribute 500 kW to this first large solar power plant with a projected 3 MW nominal power using highly efficient III-V multijunction solar cells. A spin-off company from Fraunhofer ISE, Concentrix is presently constructing a 25 MW production line in Freiburg, Germany. The production on an industrial scale is planned to start operation in Fall 2008