Entech Solar, Inc. announced that the company has made noteworthy progress for their solar and skylight products. Recently, Entech suspended manufacturing operations for previous generation solar systems, but has made developmental progress for their next generation products. The company has completed the initial design phase for their ThermaVolt II product, including the construction and operation of a prototype. This product was able to successfully produce both electric and thermal energy.
Dr. Frank W. Smith, Entech Solarâ€™s Chief Executive Officer, stated, â€œThermaVolt IIâ€™s combined output of electricity and thermal energy produces four to five times the amount of energy compared to traditional photovoltaic systems. Through the net metering of electricity and the offset of natural gas, ThermaVolt II has the potential to be highly disruptive in the solar energy marketplace.â€
In addition to Entechâ€™s previous patents, the company has also filed a number of new patent applications associated with ThermaVolt II design and manufacturing process. These patents will ensure the protection of the companyâ€™s property while also allowing public disclosure of certain product features.
Mark Oâ€™neil, Chief Technology Officer, added, â€œFor the past 25 years, our arched Fresnel lenses have demonstrated outstanding performance in the real-world environment, and ThermaVolt II will continue to use this proven optical concentrating technology.â€
The ThermaVolt II moduleâ€™s size and shape are similar to those of a standard flat-plate PV module. This standardization will enable easy adoption in the marketplace and allow Entech to enter the rooftop application market. The standard size also allows for a more conventional installation approach, greatly increasing the potential dealer and installer channels to market. Additional product details and images of the ThermaVolt II prototype may be found on Entech Solarâ€™s website: www.entechsolar.com.
Since March, the company has also been dedicating resources to develop their patented tubular skylight. Because the company has received funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the company has renewed their commitment to commercialize their state-of-the-art tubular skylight.
Dr. Smith stated, â€œWe view the skylight opportunity as a possible means to diversify and grow our near-term revenue. Skylight customers benefit from reduced electricity bills and increased productivity from the natural light, resulting in an expected payback period of approximately five years. The manufacturing of the skylight can be easily outsourced, requiring very little capital investment from the Company.â€
As Entech Solar progresses, it will continue to focus on the commercialization of both the ThermaVolt II and tubular skylight products. The companyâ€™s next steps is further developing the ThermaVolt II system and build a supply chain, completing the UL-certification process, and installing beta sites. Entech Solarâ€™s next steps for their tubular skylight product line include building a supply chain and working with roofing companies and energy service companies.