By Gary Thomas
PowerShield 3W is the latest offering in solar panel protection from New Jersey based technology and manufacturing major, Honeywell. This third-generation laminate film has been developed on the strength of Honeywell’s three decade long experience in manufacturing high-barrier films used for packaging in various industries such as healthcare, food and industrial applications.
The PowerShield 3W serves as a backsheet for the photovoltaic cells in solar panels and serves a dual purpose of protection and optimization of power output. The laminate film prevents moisture seepage into the electrical module hence providing electrical safety and retains the electrical charges within the module resulting in increased power output. Honeywell attributes the durability of the laminate to their proprietary adhesive by means of which the film is bound to the solar panels. The adhesive offers an additional benefit of maintenance of the solar panels’ reflectivity by deterring discoloration caused by aging. PowerShield 3W offers protection against not just the elements of nature like cold, heat and humidity, but also against harmful effects of chemicals.
Jerry Buchanan, global manager for Honeywell’s photovoltaic film business, stated that the cost effective third-generation film has been subjected to rigorous testing. Under conditions of 85% relative humidity and 85°C temperature, laboratory tests run on the PowerShield 3W expose it to 3000 hours of accelerated ageing and does not affect the structural integrity of the product.
PowerShield 3W is already available in the market. Manufacturers of solar modules have begun incorporating the product while designing their modules. Procurement has been simplified for module makers by providing them with a single stop shop for all components needed for use in backsheets.