DURHAM, N.C. — Semprius, developer of the world’s most efficient solar module, is planning to open its first manufacturing facility in Henderson, NC in the next three months. The company will scale up manufacturing over the coming months to 30 megawatts by the end 2013, creating many technical jobs that are expected to be sourced locally.
Semprius builds a high-concentration photovoltaic (HCPV) module using the world’s smallest solar cells (600 microns — about the size of a pencil tip) combined with unique optics and state-of-the-art manufacturing to deliver cost-competitive solar-generated electricity. To be competitive with other forms of energy, Semprius is working to decrease the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) to under $0.10/kWh in sunny regions.
Semprius’ technology has many advantages over conventional PV solutions. By using high efficiency “triple junction” solar cells, Semprius modules are approximately twice as efficient as standard silicon modules and three times more efficient than competing thin film modules. Semprius modules also enable the use of cost-effective tracking technology, which means that the amount of energy produced can be up to 30 percent greater than a conventional system that does not follow the sun. Semprius modules also perform much better under high temperature conditions – perfect for desert applications in the Southwest U.S., Middle East and other sunny regions. Finally, Semprius systems have a low environmental impact with low land usage, minimal water requirements, no grading or permanent shading and dual-use land potential.
Semprius currently has several demonstration systems deployed globally, including in the U.S., Europe and Middle East. Target regions for commercial-scale deployments beginning in 2013 include the Southwest U.S., parts of Latin and South America, Africa, Italy, India and Australia, as these regions have high amounts of direct solar irradiation.
Semprius is working with Siemens, which has a 16 percent share of the company. Siemens is focused on developing a complete turnkey offering for its global customers, powered by Semprius modules. Semprius is also working with other leading renewable energy companies to deploy its technology around the world, including Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne.