Dyesol Limited (ASX:DYE) discusses its perovskite solar cell technology


Dyesol Limited (ASX:DYE) Managing Director, Richard Caldwell discusses the development and commercialization plans for its Perovskite solar cell technology
Dyesol Limited (ASX:DYE) is the world leader in the commercialisation of a PV technology, known as Perovskite solar cells. Perovskite solar cells have a very broad range of applications from utility type applications, through to building applied PV. And ultimately, our target is building integrated Photovoltaics. Major area demonstration prototype is big news for Dyesol, because it’s really part of our strategy to take this technology from the laboratory to fabrication, or lab to fab, as we like to say.
And it involves working with some of the world’s leading companies, particularly VDL Systems of the Netherlands, introducing its engineering expertise with our technology, to develop this major area demonstration prototype. Dyesol is not an engineering company. Dyesol is more a technology enabler and a speciality chemicals company. So we need that engineering expertise to help de-risk this important commercialisation step.
The MAD project is in three phases; its first, feasibility and functional specification, which we’re right in the middle of now. Then we move to engineering and design and ultimately, realisation. The whole three phases are intended to take somewhere between 12 and 18 months. And will result in a number of major area demonstration prototypes being available for testing, accreditation, demonstration and showcasing. That’s a really important risk mitigation step for Dyesol.
MAD’s a very important step prior to pilot line development, pilot line development typically precedes mass manufacture. Again, this is all part of our risk mitigation strategy. Because if we’re going to enter a multibillion-dollar market, we need to make sure that we have really de-risked this technology. As you do with any new technology, to ensure that the steps that we take are very firm and solid steps. And the money that follows to support the investment and generate new revenue, is well invested.
We had a cracking first half. We made some serious developments in terms of our milestones, relating to technology development. Most importantly, we reached our thermal stability milestone, which is 85 degreesC for our demonstration or smaller panels, for a thousand hours. And that’s really an important step towards accreditation, known as IEC 61646 and we published that result. And we were over-the-moon to achieve that result, because it’s one of the unknowns when you start developing these PV technologies. We’ve already hit very exciting efficiencies, but to de-risk the stability element was really an important step for the company to make.
The Dyesol Board does not have a policy in terms of making a revenue forecast, because at the moment we are a pre-revenue company. But we have a very public commercialisation schedule. And what I can tell you with a great deal of confidence; we’re aiming to have product in the market for glass-based panels, by 2018 and with steel-based panels, by 2019. This really opens an enormous number of markets and really brings us on as a credible competitor, with the incumbent silicon technology.
In terms of understanding Dyesol’s prospects over the next 12 months, I think the focus having really achieved some important technical milestones recently, is going to be on commercialisation development. The whole world is waiting to hear what we’re doing in Turkey. It’s coming along very very quietly, slowly, but inextricably.And in fact as early as today, I got an overnight communication telling me that we will be meeting in Turkey over the next few weeks, to finalise some of the technical due diligence.
So Turkey, Australia, Korea are all possibilities for significant commercialisation developments, in the next 12 months. And there’re also one or two others on the backburner. In fact I got an enquiry last week from another European country, wanting to explore possibilities for developing Perovskite solar cells. This technology’s definitely considered to be the most competitive and most likely to displace silicon, as a generally credible and commercially viable renewable energy source.

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