Hawaii — Two months after installing an 80-kW concentrating photovoltaics unit in California, Skyline Solar has put another 22-kW project in the ground in Hawaii.
Skyline manufactures a trough-like system that concentrates sunlight onto a PV cell. The company claims that it delivers 10 times more energy per gram of silicon than traditional PV modules.
Another selling point: All the parts are made with existing manufacturing processes, reducing the cost of adding all those new components to the solar system.
Skyline broke out on the scene in 2009 and has since installed a couple of mid-sized projects. The 80-kW project developed in California in June made the town of Nipton “the first fully solar-powered town,” according to the company. (There are only 20 people who live there).
The Skyline systems are small compared to some of the bigger CPV installations. SolFocus has the largest installation in place, a 1-MW system in California. And industry-veteran Amonix recently announced that it is going to develop a 30-MW project in Colorado.
Companies have been hailing the coming of CPV for years. Does this mean that the technology is finally here to stay? Well, considering that there are a few MW of CPV going in the ground this year compared to the 15 GW of traditional PV, there’s still a long way to go for this technology.
Skyline started making a public push last fall at Solar Power International. An interview with CEO Bob McDonald at the conference is linked below.
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