Taiwan's Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) has developed the easy-dismantled solar panel module technology with United Renewable Energy (URE) and San Fang Chemical Industry Co, Ltd., under the support of the Department of Industrial Technology at Taiwan's Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA). The technology meets the IEC international standards and recently received its first certification granted by TÜV Rheinland for high safety and reliability.
ITRI adopts a circular design to reconstruct conventional PV modules by utilizing a new encapsulant and factoring into the lifecycle of a module's backplane, cells and bracket, leading to a complete recycling of solar cells and glass plates.
With this easy-dismantled technology, solar modules can have a much higher recycling rate. Recycled materials, such as silicon and glass, can be reused without being broken up or degraded. The high purity of the recycled silicon wafers dramatically increases the material value, reducing the demand for new raw materials. Plus, carbon emissions from module production are estimated to be cut by 50% or more; it also minimizes workforce costs.
—said Alex Y.M. Peng, Executive Vice President at ITRI.
To ITRI's estimation, the recycling value of the retired PV modules could significantly rise from roughly USD 18 million to USD 74 million per 1 GW, creating a new circular economy model for the solar industry.
The easy-dismantled solar panel module technology has been tested and proved viable by the Proof of Concept (PoC) conducted by the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA). The material system and structural design of the module have been optimized based on different environmental conditions.
In addition to passing IEC 61215 and IEC 61730 tests and receiving TÜV's certification, it is expected to obtain Taiwan's Voluntary Product Certification (VPC) in the first quarter of 2023.
URE is the largest solar panel and solar cell manufacturer in Taiwan, while San Fang Chemical Industry is a technological film producer dedicated to sustainable operation.