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Solar Impulse 2 recently completed its maiden flight in Switzerland using 15000 SunPower Maxeon™ high efficiency monocrystalline silicon cells which were hand crafted into panels to cover the entire wingspan and vertical stabiliser of this ultra light-weight aircraft.

Developed by Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg and now holder of 8 world records, 2015 will see Solar Impulse 2 take on the challenge of the first round-the world flight.

The power innovation displayed in combining light weight solar technology integrated into the profile of the wings and stabiliser together with high efficiency lithium polymer batteries makes this the ultimate ‘offgrid PV’ experiment.

Source - BBC News / BBC Sport / bbc.co.uk - © 2014 BBC

CoolRoof supply partner SABIC Innovative Plastics, recently received an innovation award from the European Polycarbonate Sheet Extruders (EPSE) for use of its LEXAN BIPV (building-integrated photovoltaic) panel used in the Grotte de la Salamandre Visitors’ Centre in France. Constructing the visitor centre in a rock cave situated in a low and dense forest in southern France required a design concept that mirrors the natural beauty of the landscape and minimizes the building’s environmental impact. To achieve these functional and aesthetic requirements, architect Jean-Francois Daures incorporated 600 square meters of SABIC’s flexible LEXAN BIPV panels into the three vaulted arches of the visitor centre’s roof. The LEXAN BIPV panels, which now generate all of the building’s energy, were selected as an alternative to glass due to their combination of enhanced design freedom, thermal insulation, easy installation and energy production, all in a single lightweight material.