Singapore-based Maxeon Solar Technologies has announced that it will commercially release its Maxeon Air solar panels this summer. The company says the Air solar panels are frameless, thin, lightweight, and conformable, with efficiency and performance the same as standard solar panels.
Thin, flexible, stick-on solar panels
Basically, the Air is a solar panel sticker, or, as Maxeon describes it, “peel and stick,” so the panels can be installed directly on a roof’s surface without racking, anchors, or ballast. Maxeon says the solar panels are engineered to conform to uneven roof surfaces.
No metal frame or heavy glass are used in the panel. The installed weight is around 6 kg (13 pounds) per square meter, which is less than half of conventional systems. They’re also certified for fire resistance.
The cells within the panels include a solid metal foundation and stress-relieved cell interconnects. That protects against corrosion and enables fault-tolerant circuits that allow energy flow, even with cracked cells.
The Air panels feature an efficiency rating of 20.9%, a low power-temperature coefficient, shade tolerance, wide spectral response, and hot-spot resistance.
Maxeon Air panels will be used in selected projects in Europe in the second half of 2021. General product availability is scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2022.
That must be some seriously strong adhesive, and Maxeon doesn’t specify the types of roofs onto which the Air panels can be stuck. How do the Air panels work if tiles aren’t flat? And if any panels need to be replaced, how do they peel them off?
Regardless of questions we still have, this seems like a game-changing product in the solar sector, and Maxeon is no startup – it’s been around for 35 years. It operates in more than 100 countries through a network of more than 1,200 partners and distributors. If the Air panel is as great as it sounds, it can basically be applied easily to roofs that previously couldn’t bear the load of conventional solar panels or are awkwardly shaped.
Maxeon also doesn’t yet state what the Air panels will cost, but it says the product will be presented to the public during “The Smarter E Industry Days” on July 21-23. You can sign up for more information on their website.
What do you think about these new solar panels? Let us know in the comments below.
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