26 Jun Andaltec joins efforts with Solarays to develop an innovative passive solar tracking concentrator generating electrical and thermal energy
The Technological Centre for Plastics (Andaltec) has partnered with the company Solarays Energy from Alicante (Spain) in order to develop innovative solar energy collection equipment, capable of generating electrical and thermal energy at the same time; it is a passive solar tracking equipment that includes a highly efficient concentrator to track the sun’s position very accurately, without any engines or electrical consumption. Moreover, Solarays Energy has succeeded in developing a very lightweight system, with a reduction of 50% in weight compared to current electricity and thermal generation systems, thanks to the use of plastic materials. This allows for an installation on any kind of surface, such as hospitals, schools, swimming-pools, buildings, houses or industrial plants. Regarding photovoltaic concentration, the solar kit reaches an electrical efficiency higher than 33%, twice the amount achieved by conventional silicon panels. The global equipment presents a combined efficiency (electrical and thermal) of 72%.
Andaltec and Solarays have worked in close cooperation to develop this project. Researchers from the technological centre have worked on the product design, material selection, simulations, prototyping, testing and they have even found the suppliers for the industrial manufacture of the plastic parts.
“We are very satisfied with the results obtained from this very complex project, in which we have worked together with our customer throughout all the process”, as Jesús Castillo, head for this project in Andaltec, explains. This project’s success highlights the capabilities of Andaltec’s multidisciplinary team to help their customers in all areas to turn their ideas into viable business models. “Besides, we have here a clear example of the advantages emanated from using plastic materials. In this case, they have allowed for the creation of a highly-efficient and lightweighted solar concentrator, which is a distinguishing concept within this sector”, as Castillo states.