Automotive solar tech firm OPES Solar Mobility has selected the German town of Zwenkau as its new location for developing vehicle-integrated photovoltaics for trucks, motor homes and buses.
The 12,000 square meters facility is set to commence production by the end of 2024. The production capacity of the new plant will be “sufficient to equip several hundred thousand vehicles per year with photovoltaic modules developed specifically for this purpose”, according to the company.
Robert Händel, CEO of OPES Solar Mobility, commented on the development, “Solar panels for vehicles are particularly lightweight and robust products that we continuously optimize for the use on the road. The proximity to esteemed research institutions such as Fraunhofer CSP and the University of Leipzig is truly invaluable.”
Excellent transport infrastructure and connections as well as proximity to European customers are attributed to the selection of Zwenkau as the production site for the company. “In today’s landscape, supply chain security is a key consideration for vehicle manufacturers. Production outside the EU would entail significantly higher risks,” added Händel.
The plant will produce automotive solar panels with an output of 95W to more than 500W, which are characterized by very high area efficiency and a low weight of 2,9 kg per square meter.
OPES Solar Mobility is a joint venture between the solar module specialist OPES Solutions and a strategic investor from Germany. The company’s specialization lies in the production of lightweight and flexible solar panels capable of withstanding high temperatures, impacts, vibrations or even high-pressure cleaning.
Compliance of vehicle standards, a high durability and outstanding price-performance ratio are achieved by its patented manufacturing processes, the company claims. This is achieved through the utilization of a unique machinery lineup.
Moreover, OPES Solar Mobility holds multiple patents related to production processes and module designs. The company’s technology has evolved from extensive production experience gained by the team at OPES Solutions plant in China.
Since 2015, OPES Solutions has produced over 10 million compact solar panels, employed in off-grid solutions and mobile applications.