DayStar LightFoil flexible solar cells
Stephan DeLuca, the former COO, and now CEO, of solar cell manufacturer DayStar Technologies Inc. has just received a healthy $50,000 pay rise, plus access to a healthy vehicle. DeLuca, who, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, is allowed to replace his vehicle every two years has been given some green ground rules to follow when he goes shopping. His new vehicle must be a gasoline-electric hybrid, a fuel-efficient, low-emission diesel engine, or equally "environmentally friendly" automobile in keeping with his company's green image.
DayStar manufactures a range of photovoltaic cell products including their flexible, high specific power LightFoil which is aimed at airborne craft and mobile terrestrial applications. LightFoil's design consists of high efficiency Copper Indium Gallium diSelenide (CIGS) solar cells deposited on thin titanium foil less than the thickness of common household aluminum foil. The resulting product is flexible enough to be moulded to curved surfaces or cut into complex geometric shapes. This is clear contrast with traditional solar cells which are brittle and require rigid, heavy module packaging to protect the cells.
Another significant difference between CIGS Photovoltaic Foil and silicon based products is the relative amount of raw materials needed to produce each solar cell. On average, a CIGS cell requires 1/50th to 1/100th of the total raw materials needed for a typical silicon solar cell.
Analysis: Its great to see business link employee benefits to green technology like low-emissions vehicles as we also saw recently with BP's paid parking program. LightFoil is a pretty interesting product too - imagine covering your car in it!