Coatings Technology and Solar Panels
The use of solar panels as an alternative source of energy and power has been embraced across the globe. This is because using solar energy reduces the level of emissions in the atmosphere in addition to being a reliable source of energy. Over time, however, solar panels accumulate dirt, which reduces their energy accumulation and production efficiency. To deal with this, solar panels are cleaned on a regular basis, which is usually after a week or so.
However, cleaning of the solar panels is not only expensive but also time consuming. This is one reason why different companies have developed various coating technologies aimed towards improving the efficiency of the solar panels. We provide a variety of mixing equipmentto help these companies find optimal ways to disperse their coatings.
Coating Technologies and Solar Panels
1. Mineral Coating
This is known as the perovskite layer and it is designed to enhance the energy efficiency of solar panels. For this coating to work effectively, it is used on silicon solar panels or solar cells. When used with a panel that has a sunlight to power conversion rate of 25 percent, the perovskite layer will improve the energy generation by up to 20 percent. The panel also gains an energy generation efficiency of 50 percent from 30 percent when the mineral coating is applied.
This mineral coating makes the solar cells so light they can even float on a bubble of soap. The manufacturing process of this perovskite film is so low that it has come to be preferred by many companies because it doesn’t need elevated temperature conditions. This is in comparison to the silicon-based films whose raw materials are not readily available. The companies only need half a cup of the ink to make adequate perovskite that will provide enough power for a house. The efficiency of the perovskite-based films has increased by 21 percent over the last 3 years, which is highly promising.
2. Glass Coating
This is one of the most sophisticated and unique coatings being used on solar panels with the aim of making them water repellant as well as reduce the amount is sunlight reflected off the panels. The companies using this coating apply the antireflective and rain repellent properties to provide the best solution for solar panel efficiency.
Companies use industrial mixers to prepare this glass coating. This type of coating boasts the ability to reduce light reflectiveness from the solar panels by up to 3 to 6 percent. This in turn leads to an increase in the solar energy output obtained from the glass-coated solar panels.
Other than the enhanced energy generation, using the glass coating helps reduce the maintenance expenses such as cleaning. This is because when it rains or when water is splashed on the glass-coated solar panels, it bounces back carrying with it all the dirt on the surface.
The major properties associated with the glass coating include:
• Water proof
Using glass coating also helps one reduce glare from the solar panels that is accompanied by a blinding light. When used in a snowy area, glass coating on solar panels prevents the accumulation of ice or snow that would affect their efficiency.
3. Robust Coating
The technology behind this coating on solar panels is based on the use of a nanohydrophobic material that is self-cleaning. Once the mixture is prepared, it is applied on the solar panels allowing the covalent bonds formed to hold it in place.
This robust coating applies the hydrophobic principle such that when water is on the solar panel's surface, it forms a spherical shape and rolls off. It is designed such that when applied on the solar panels, the water does not adhere to its surface. Like the glass coating, this robust coating also allows the water to clean the solar panel surfaces as it rolls off them.
This coating is effective because it allows the filling of the microdepressions on solar panels thus reducing the accumulation of water and dirt. This makes it easier for the solar panels to be maintained for long lasting power generation as is desired. The result of using this coating is a smooth glass surface that increases the efficiency of the solar panels in absorbing radiation for power generation.