Erlangen, 20. June 2011, Siemens has acquired a minority stake of about 16 percent in the U.S. pioneering solar company Semprius. Headquartered in Durham, North Carolina, Semprius has developed high concentrating photovoltaic (HCPV) modules. HCPV systems are a prime alternative to conventional photovoltaics and are especially suitable for regions with high direct irradiation like the Earth´s sunbelt. Construction of its first production facility will begin in July, 2011. This investment gives Siemens early access to a highly promising technology for CO2-free power generation from solar energy. Siemens will help Semprius to scale up its innovative technology to market maturity. The parties have agreed not to disclose the details of the investment.
The prospects are bright: high concentrating photovoltaic systems enable significantly higher efficiencies than conventional PV modules and at the same time offer enormous potential to achieve competitive levelized costs of electricity. Semprius’ HCPV modules use high-performance lenses to focus the sun's light onto very small, highly efficient cells which convert the solar energy directly into electric current. The first full test installation has been operational in Arizona since August 2010; additional installations are scheduled to follow before the end of this year.
The market for HCPV installations is still in its early stages but is expected to grow to a volume of as much as six gigawatts by 2020. Solar and wind power power are two in the key drivers in the renewables sector. The share of renewables in power generation worldwide will rise from 4 percent in 2010 to as much as 17 percent in the year 2030.
Components for photovoltaic installations are part of Siemens’ Environmental Portfolio with which the company earned revenues of nearly EUR28 billion in fiscal year 2010. This makes Siemens the world's largest provider of environmentally compatible technology. In the same period, our products and solutions enabled customers to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions by 270 million tons, an amount equal to the total annual CO2 emissions of Hong Kong, London, New York, Tokyo, Delhi and Singapore.
Source: Siemens Energy Sector