REC’s new achievements for its solar modules should entice customers to look twice at the companies solar modules. REC revealed that its crystalline solar modules had not only cut their carbon footprint, but had also achieved an enhanced energy payback time and that it was now offering extended linear warranty for its solar modules sold as of September 1, 2011.
Independent Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) testing by the Energy Research Center of the Netherlands (ECN) confirmed that REC crystalline modules hold an energy payback time (EPBT) of one year and a lighter carbon footprint all due to the company’s clean energy use throughout the solar module life cycle. The LCA study looks at the complete environmental impact of a solar module from the extraction of raw materials through the production and recycling of the module. ECN conducted the study during Q1 2011 using the ISO 14040 standard.
Erik Sauar, senior vice president and CTO of REC Group stated, “We are continuously working to reduce waste in product design, improve ingot crystallization efficiency, decrease wafer thickness and increase cell efficiency with a target of 18% in 2012 in order to make solar more sustainable.”
According to ECN’s testing, an REC system holds a carbon footprint between 18 and 22g/kWh CO2 depending on the manufacturing chain. This footprint is compared to other PV systems, which are said to typically hold a footprint of 35g/kWh.
Subsequent to revealing ECN’s LCA findings, REC also noted that it would begin to offer a 25-year linear power output and a 10-year material and workmanship product warranty, which would guarantee customers 5.6% more power output. The warranty now guarantees that an REC module will produce at least a 97% effective output during the first year of operation, an improvement from the previous warranty that guaranteed 90% performance during the first year. Furthermore, REC stated that the maximum decline is now 0.7% each year, with a minimum performance level of 80.2% by the end of the 25th operational year.
“We stand behind our new warranty thanks to the high quality of our products and control of the complete solar value chain. We are committed to offering customers high performance solar modules with a long-term value”, said Luc Graré, senior vice president of sales and marketing for cells and modules at REC Solar.