Greta is assisted by Styrian technologies
10. August 2019
Environmental activist Greta Thunberg arrived in New York on the zero-emission, ocean-going yacht “Malizia II”. The on-board solar power system was specially made by the Graz company, Sailectron. The system uses curved solar panels, but instead of a thick glass surface they use a thin plastic layer, which also allows the panels to be walked on. Another special feature is the integrated bypass diodes and control system, which enables the solar system to work at a high efficiency despite the shadow cast by the sails.
Styrians build solar system for Thunberg yacht
Greta Thunberg will sail across the Atlantic to New York with the zero-emission ocean-going yacht “Malizia II” with the Hamburg skipper Boris Herrmann. The Graz-based company Sailectron is responsible for the solar system on board.
The Graz-based company has designed and supplied the custom-made solar panels for the 18-meter-long yacht together with its Italian partner Solbian. After just one month of planning, the “Malizia II” was rebuilt over the winter months and equipped with the Grazer solar system.
The Styrian panels are special: “Classic modules have a relatively thick glass surface and therefore need to be ventilated and cooled through the back. Ours, on the other hand, have a thin layer of plastic as the surface. This will cool the panels. This saves us the ventilation from the rear and can attach the modules directly to the boat, which can even be walked on, “says Sailectron CEO Michael Körner.The biggest challenge was not the curved panels, but the shadow of the sails and the mast. Usually, solar panels suffer a heavy performance drop as soon as some shade falls on them. Not so the system from Graz: “We have installed bypass diodes and separate controllers. This gives us a high shadow tolerance and higher efficiency, “explained Körner.
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