The Apollo thin film module has achieved an 8.3 percent efficiency with a corresponding power output of 72.2W, making it the most powerful monolithically integrated thin film modules in the world.

“This is a good product for the PV marketplace,” Ken Zweibel, Manager of the Thin Film Partnership at NREL told edie “and should make inroads as soon as it is produced in volume. The fact that it is made inexpensively is also important.”

The results were verified by the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The advances have been supported by NREL’s Thin Film Partnership Program, a government and industry partnership program with NREL and the US Department of Energy.

In April 1999, when BP Solar and Solarex announced their merger, BP

Solarex became the largest photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing and marketing company in the world.

The company has a global market share of 20 percent and annual revenues of more than $160M. With manufacturing operations in four countries – the USA, Spain, India, and Australia – BP Solarex produces over 30 megawatts of solar products each year.

Major recent projects include contracts for rural electrification in Indonesia and the Philippines, a partnership in Japan targeting the residential market, and the supply of solar modules to the athletes’ village for the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia.

Thin film solar cells are being hyped as the next step in solar electricity generation, but production for high volume sales has not yet been achieved (see related story).

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