PowerFilm is manufactured using an internally developed, proprietary manufacturing processes. The core process is a true roll-to-roll process. The general process steps are Vacuum Deposition (Back Metal, Amorphous Silicon, Transparent Top Contact), Printing and Laser Scribing, Bus Bar/Lead Attachment, Encapsulation, and Die Cutting. PowerFilm is patterned on a 13 inch wide web on a roll up to 2400 feet long.
PowerFilm is so flexible it can be curved around a cylinder 2 inches in diameter. This is possible because PowerFilm has a plastic (polyimide) substrate. PowerFilm is the most flexible solar module in the marketplace.
PowerFilm can be used for both large- and small-scale power generation. It can power devices directly or recharge batteries from which devices draw power. The current focus is on small-to-medium-scale power generation. New products are being developed for large-scale power generation.
Overall efficiency is strongly dependent on the module design configuration which determines the percentage of the area which is actually collecting sunlight. You can use 5% as a starting point. We have ongoing research and development programs to continue to improve the efficiency of PowerFilm modules. Note: There are widely varying standards for module efficiency numbers. We encourage you to test actual commercially manufactured modules on a consistent basis.
The modules are guaranteed to perform in normal atmospheric conditions. The optimal temperature is usually 25-50 C. surface temperature. The module is guaranteed to perform in normal atmospheric conditions (50 C. surface temperature). For all solar modules voltage output drops with increasing temperature.
The encapsulation of the PowerFilm module will determine the life expectancy of the encapsulated module.
Photovoltaic Semiconductor Device - No particular life expectancy limitation in protected environment.
Polyester Encapsulation - Limited to protected use (e.g., consumer electronics) or limited time outdoor use.
ETFE Encapsulation - Best protection for permanent outdoor use.