New Sabic panels boost green agenda

01 July 2014

WITH approximately 70 GW of cumulative global installations, photovoltaic (PV) systems represent the third most important renewable energy source – after hydroelectric and wind power – in terms of capacity. As demand for solar power rises, Sabic is helping to drive the feasibility and integration of this increasingly preferred energy source having launched the first polycarbonate (PC) building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) panels for roofing, cladding and glazing applications.

The innovative solution from Sabic’s Innovative Plastics business, called Lexan BIPV panel, provides architects and builders with enhanced design freedom, thermal insulation, easy installation and energy production in a single, integrated solution, Sabic says.

“Created through a close collaboration between Sabic and Solbian Energie Alternative, an innovative flexible photovoltaic (PV) production company, Lexan BIPV panels combine tough, lightweight, transparent Lexan Thermoclea PC sheet with flexible PV laminated crystalline cells from Solbian and are available in a broad range of structures, configurations and colours,” it added.

“The new Lexan BIPV panels show Sabic’s commitment to challenging the status quo to find better solutions and create practical innovations for customers in the building and construction industry,” said Jack Govers, Sabic general manager, specialty film and sheet. “Our collaboration with Solbian has created a technology that can transform conventional roofing and glazing systems and provide new choices for the integration of solar systems into building designs across the globe.”

Enrique Garcia, president, Solbian Energie Alternative, noted:  “Our successful collaboration with Sabic has resulted in a very new, high-performance solution that will no doubt drive broader adoption of photovoltaics across many types of commercial and residential structures and geographies. Sabic’s drive to constantly enhance its materials opens up new possibilities for its customers and we are happy that Solbian can contribute to this success.”

One of the top benefits of Lexan BIPV panels is design freedom. Compared to traditional BIPV materials, the Sabic panels can be easily cold bended on site to form graceful, curved roofing systems. By using semi-transparent Lexan BIPV panel modules designers can create unique day-lighting features in façade, roofing or skylight systems. In addition, the new panels provide high performance, beginning with excellent thermal insulation and light management that are hallmarks of Lexan Thermoclear sheet. The new panels can reduce energy consumption by up to 17 per cent vs traditional high-return, double-pane glass glazing.

The new Lexan BIPV panels comply with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) EN ISO/IEC 17025, EIC 61215 and IEC 61730-2 standard certifications and contribute to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building certification system.

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