Firm Seeks New Partner for Thin-Film Solar Project

[] Akzo Nobel is looking for a new partner for a pioneering solar cell production program after its existing collaboration came to an end. Christened Helianthos, the project designed to pave the way for the commercial manufacture of flexible solar cells was launched in July 2001 together with Shell Solar. Both parties have now agreed to end their development agreement, but Akzo Nobel is confident of finding a new partner with the relevant market expertise which is critical to the continuation of the project. Under the original agreement, Akzo Nobel took on the technological development of roll-to-roll processes for the flexible solar cell modules and a pilot line for their manufacture has already been successfully set up. The key to Helianthos is its thin film deposition technology, which uses an extremely thin film as part of the manufacturing process. According to Akzo, the project has made significant progress and created a lot of interest, but after being involved for three years, Shell Solar’s strategy changed focus and joint development was no longer feasible.
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