Bonded Photovoltaic System Facade

In cooperation with partners from research and industry, the Institute of Building Construction has developed new PV composite panels as integral com­ponents for a facade suspended in front of a ventilation cavity [57]. The 1.20 m x 0.60 m CIS (copper, indium, selenium) thin-film solar modules, some with a colored cover glass, are bonded to a backing plate made from foamed recycled glass over their full area. So they can be adjustable suspended from a load bearing framework at the rear (Fig. 19). Individual insulation thicknesses on the external wall behind the facade guarantee the thermal performance required and electric cables are routed through the ventilation cavity.

The homogeneous surface—available in six different colors and with print­ing—and the frameless design represent great potential for applications in architecture, including the refurbishment of existing buildings. Output com­pared to the standard black version is reduced by 10 %-25 %, depending on the color of or the printing coverage on the cover glass. This suspended PV facade has already been used in a practical application on a new company building in Reutlingen in south-west Germany (Fig. 20).