Tool order: SynergX signs orders, ships automated optical inspection systems for PV glass

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SynergX Technologies has landed nine orders for its automated optical inspection systems for photovoltaic glass from three separate customers in China and Europe. The privately held company, based in the Laval suburb of Montreal, entered the solar glass inspection market last year, after establishing itself in the automotive and other industrial glass sectors.

Three of the nine systems just shipped to the two Chinese customers, with the remaining six going out in about 3-1/2 months to the same Chinese companies and the European customer, CEO Ken Wawrew told PV-Tech. The trio of tools bound for China represent the first production shipments of SynergX’s PV glass inspection platforms.   

The company’s Glass-Scan systems offer solar glass and panel manufacturers a turnkey yield management and quality control solution for the inspection of both continuous and cut sheets of super-clear and patterned glass. Proper inspection helps manufacturers avoid poor quality glass that can disrupt the production flow with in-process breakage and can often be a reason for failure of the solar panel after installation in the field.

High-resolution camera-based systems provide accurate detection, sizing and classification of defects, including open and closed bubbles, black and white stones, scratches, and edge defects. The equipment’s modular design makes it readily adaptable to all manufacturing environments.

“SynergX can provide solutions at a number of stages in the manufacturing process with its Glass-Scan Systems,” stated Wawrew. “We have systems for the glass manufacturers, as well as for the factories that cut and temper the glass, and the actual solar panel makers. This is a solution that provides the benefits of improved quality, increased productivity, and process improvement, ultimately resulting in a competitive advantage for our customers.”

Warew told PV-Tech that one of his customers who does both automotive and PV glass encouraged SynergX to get into the solar glass business. The company’s unique technology works especially well for patterned glass, showing itself in tests to be better than other inspection systems on the market, he said.

The company executive said that several other orders with new Chinese customers should be finalized this month. Although the first business came from glass manufacturers, he expects to see two more orders this year for the inspection systems from what he calls “transformer” companies–those firms that cut the glass to size and temper it.

For the PV module manufacturers, Wawrew said they could “set up an incoming glass inspection area [using SynergX tools], when there is enough volume. With two lines or more, the investment makes sense.”

Wawrew declined to disclose the monetary value of the recent transactions or the employee headcount at the company.

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