Thin-Cell Solar Goes Big In China

Twenty-three thousand square feet – that’s about half a football field, from goal line to 50-yard line and sideline to sideline. That’s also the size of the single-structure, thin-film photovoltaic rooftop system Dupont has installed at a plant in China through its Dupont Apollo subsidiary and partner China Everbright. The companies said the 1.3-megawatt (MW) system is the largest of its kind ever installed in China.

The project is something of a case of Dupont putting its money where its mouth is: Dupont Apollo is a soup-to-nuts thin-film photovoltaic module manufacturer and system solution provider, doing everything from project development to system design and engineering to material preparation, construction and installation.

Thin-film solar installation, China, Dupont Apollo

image via Dupont

The project in the Guangming New District, Shenzhen, began in July and includes 13,000 high-performance amorphous silicon (a-Si) thin-film photovoltaic modules made by DuPont Apollo. Dupont said the system delivers stable production even in low-light conditions and will provide around 1.5 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity per year for 25 years.

Earlier this year, we reported on GE’s big move into thin-film solar. But whereas Dupont is working with amorphous silicon, GE chose to go the cadmium telluride route.

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Pete Danko is a writer and editor based in Portland, Oregon. His work has appeared in Breaking Energy, National Geographic's Energy Blog, The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and elsewhere.