New Product: Encapsulation and Potting Materials for PV

WACKER, the Munich-based chemical company, introduced several new products for the solar industry at the EUPVSEC show in Hamburg, Germany.

WACKER, the Munich-based chemical company, introduced several new products for the solar industry at the EUPVSEC show in Hamburg, Germany. One is TECTOSIL, a flexible, highly transparent and electrically insulating sheet comprising a silicone-organo copolymer. Because of its thermoplastic properties, this silicone-based polymer can be processed quickly and inexpensively – without curing or chemical reactions. The lamination process thus benefits from short production cycles and a high tolerance to local temperature differences within the laminator. TECTOSIL sheets help to lower manufacturing costs and ensure that modules are produced in consistently high quality.

Solar cells encapsulated in TECTOSIL are afforded optimum protection against mechanical and chemical stresses. The material bonds the components of a PV module into a stable laminate. Since it is highly elastic and extremely flexible across a very large temperature range, the productcan compensate the different thermal expansions of the laminate materials.

 
WACKER also introduced ELASTOSIL Solar 2120 UV encapsulant. This is a UV-activated silicone elastomer that cures at room temperature without any additional heat. The trick here is that UV light triggers the crosslinking process. Curing of the silicone encapsulant at room temperature – until now a time-consuming process – is effected in just a few minutes.WACKER now offers this innovative curing technology, which was first used successfully in its SEMICOSIL UV series, in a silicone elastomer formulated specifically for the solar industry. The product has a very short curing time which can be customized within a broad time frame and processing window.
 
Another new product is ELASTOSIL Solar 3210 developed specifically for concentrated PV high-performance modules. The two-part rubber is pourable and is characterized by very good light permeability (transmission). It is thus ideally suited for the production of optical lenses and moldings, for example Fresnel lenses. The product cures fast and does not shrink, is easily demolded and shows high dimensional stability. It is of medium hardness (approx. 45 Shore) and is electrically insulating and resistant to weathering and UV.
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