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The new approach , developed by Lausanne-based Insolight , concentrates light onto an array of multi-junction photovoltaic cells. The Insolight panel’s protective glass comprises a grid of lenses which concentrate light several hundred times on an array of high-performance solar cells. So that it can follow the sun’s movement, this cell array is mobile and shifts by just a few millimeters each day. The whole system is encased in a slim module, which keeps mechanical parts protected.

Insolight’s concept was tested in a laboratory at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in 2016 and subsequently further developed. In November 2018, the Solar Energy Institute of the Technical University of Madrid ( IES-UPM ) validated the Swiss company’s solar modules at a nominal peak efficiency of 29%; standard modules typically show an efficiency of just 17-19%. Insolight is currently working on an industrialization strategy for large-scale production and is in talks with a number of solar manufacturers on licensing its technology.