Europe´s first solar concrete wall was inaugurated yesterday at RECKLI’s headquarter in Herne, Germany. The façade, designed by RECKLI to fit the solar film from Heliatek (HeliaFilm®), represents a novel approach to BIOPV – Building Integrated Organic PV. RECKLI, the world leader in the design and manufacture of elastomeric formliners, and Heliatek are demonstrating the next step towards a sustainable, net-zero energy building.
This solar active concrete wall is the result of a joint development project of RECKLI and Heliatek. With an installed power of 1kWp, the south-west oriented wall will supply around 500 kWh of electricity per year. The energy produced will be used directly by Reckli.
The annual energy output is expected to be about 25% above the yield of silicon technology. Heliatek has already shown that its solar film, HeliaFilm®, delivers more energy under overcast sky conditions and at high temperatures compared to traditional solar cells. This advantage is based on the unique properties of its organic semiconductor. In addition, HeliaFilm® allows a wide range of colors and flexible layouts – both features sought after by architects and planners.
The solar active concrete façade in Herne comprises:
-3 rows of concrete modules with vertically mounted integrated solar film (total area: 16,80 m x 3,50 m)
-Peak Power at standard test conditions: 1 kWp
-Expected power production per year: 500 kWh
“We focused for this pilot installation on how to combine the solar film and concrete modules in a reliable and aesthetic manner,“ explained Peter Henning, Sales Manager of RECKLI. “We want to demonstrate to architects, planners and investors, how the solar concrete future looks like.“
Dr. Thomas Bickl, Heliatek’s VP Sales & Product Development, added: “We are very happy to see the progress of our joint development project. The unique features of our solar films like ultra-thin, low weight and flexible layout fit this application perfectly. About 130 million square meters of concrete façades are installed every year worldwide – this is our target market!”
Concrete façades of tomorrow
RECKLI and Heliatek have been working together for 3 years on smart façade solutions, which combine various concrete structures and HeliaFilm®. By using different colors, concrete facades can be aesthetically enhanced and simultaneously supply energy to meet urban power requirements.
Building integrated organic photovoltaic (BIOPV) is able to make an important contribution to the urban power needs. The carbon footprint in large cities can be significantly improved. One major advantage of using HeliaFilm® is that there is no need for ventilation or cooling systems in order to operate effectively. Additional pilot projects of RECKLI and Heliatek are in the pipeline for 2016. Market entry is planned for the second half of 2017.