Michigan based ECD Ovonics signs another partnership for rooftop thin film solar

February 02 2009 / by Garry Golden
Category: Energy   Year: 2018   Rating: 4 Hot


Thin film solar is a low cost alternative to traditional glass based solar panels.  'Thin film' photovoltaic cells can be inkjet printed onto plastic sheets via a 'roll to roll' machine.  These long plastic sheets can then be integrated into building materials like commercial and residential rooftops.

Startups are now scaling up production volumes, but the first phase of commercial growth for thin film depends on strategic partnerships with rooftop materials and construction companies.

ECD Ovonics transforming 'Rust Belt' to a 'Green Belt'
Thin-film solar is a new energy technology platform that can be produced at low cost in many regions around the world.   American energy visionaries imagine transforming the industrial Midwest 'Rust Belt' into a manufacturing hub for new cleantech materials.

Now Michigan-based ECD Ovonics has signed a contract with Carlisle Construction Materials to provide its Uni-Solar thin film for use in commercial roofing systems.  The agreement is good news for Michigan economic developers.  ECD is the world's leading producer of thin film solar, and has had previous partnerships with Italian steel and metal materials company Marcegaglia which expects to introduce the low cost, durable thin film solar metal roofing products to the market in 2010.

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Via PV Tech

Comment Thread (5 Responses)

  1. Isn’t this a little misleading when it says: ”’Thin film’ photovoltaic cells can be inkjet printed onto plastic sheets via a ‘roll to roll’ machine.” Inkjet print is in use for some CIGS production and Innovalight is doing this with silicon, but doesn’t ECD use vapor deposition amorphous silicon? It’s still ThinFilm and it’s a great improvement over crystalline silicon and poly-crystalline silicon, but the difference from inkjet deposition is important. (Actually, aSi has always had efficiency and stability problems. Thanks to Stan Ovshinsky and his wife First Solar has done better. Hope they can continue to contribute, but we’ll see. This is a big race. No holds barred.) Read what Martin Roscheisen has to say on company blog at nanosolar.com. He hits some line drivers in there.

    Isn’t First Solar the current leader in ThinFilm? http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/story?id=53559 – September 2008 “Explosive Growth Reshuffles Top 10 Solar Ranking” “CdTe-cell maker First Solar debuted at fifth place, the only US-based and only thin-film supplier on the list.”

    CIGS should take the lead soon.

    Posted by: mds   February 08, 2009
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  2. MDS Yes, you’re right on expanding spectrum of solar platforms. If it is misleading – certainly not intentional to throw others out of the running. I’m certainly eager to see them evolve… but guess I went along with mainstream writings of thin film. It’s always heard to know level of awareness of the audience. Though as you’ve pointed out this should be more accurately reflected. Will do so! I will check out the links and will note something in the post. Thanks!

    Posted by: Garry Golden   February 09, 2009
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