Southwest Solar Technologies, a developer and manufacturer of energy technologies, has entered into an agreement with MaxQ Power Conversion to advance its new, patent pending concentrating photovoltaic solar energy (CPV) technology.
As per the agreement, both the companies will develop and produce Southwest Solar’s CPV solar module. The CPV technology is an integration of several high efficiency multi-junction photovoltaic cells with modern techniques in power electronics, concentrator optics and efficient manufacturing.
Southwest Solar’s product employs an exclusive solar flux management capability, which allows the use of nonuniform light intensity. This ability makes the CPV module to be used along with heliostat collectors or dish developed for concentrated solar power (CSP) application.
The compact CPV module helps to achieve a solar concentration ratio of 1200x. A very high energy flows resulting from this concentration can generate heat that leads to reduction in solar cell performance. To overcome this issue, Southwest Solar’s technology uses an advanced cold plate technology from MaxQ. The cold plates are produced using a patent pending design and the Friction Stir Welding (FSW) process. This enables MaxQ to integrate unique structures with higher reliability, low pressure drops and high thermal performance. At present, MaxQ’s technology is successfully utilized in the inverter and electric vehicle sectors.
The current advancement of Southwest Solar is a part of an integrated development plan focused on the commercial solar dish concentrator in North America. The development and testing of the CPV solar power technology was carried out at Southwest Solar Research Park located in Phoenix, Arizona.
By José Santamarta, www.swsolartech.com/