Solar power is energy from the sun that is converted into thermal or electrical energy. Solar energy is the cleanest and most abundant renewable energy source available, and the U.S. has some of the richest solar resources in the world. Modern technology can harness this energy for a variety of uses, including generating electricity, providing light or a comfortable interior environment, and heating water for domestic, commercial, or industrial use for the solar industry.
The U.S. solar market faces both challenges and opportunities; the industry is working to scale up the production of solar technology, and drive down manufacturing and installation costs. SRP can help offset these costs by providing materials with the technology to advance the way solar panels and installation boxes are manufactured to provide more efficient, cost-effective converted products such as gaskets, seals, thermal pads and barriers. We work directly with engineers to create the best possible solution for each product by helping select the right materials, and discussing which method of manufacturing would be the most effective.
Materials Engineered to Improve Product Reliability and Reduce Your Costs
SRP manufactures custom non-metallic components for the following Solar products:
- PV Inverters (Micro, String, and Central)
- String Combiners
- Solar Panels
- Solar Testing Equipment
- Junction Boxes
These solar products require a variety of high performance materials depending on the application of the component. Some of the materials we commonly convert in our Elk Grove Village facility include:
- Adhesives and Tapes for Attaching, Bonding, and Gap Filling
- Foam and Sponge for Gasketing and Environmental Seals
- Silicone for High Temperature Gasketing for high heat and UV protection
- Electrical Insulation for protection against electrical currents and heat
- Thermal Interface Tapes and Pads for solar heatsinks
These materials offer proven performance in the manufacturing of solar panels and other components, where they are increasingly being used to help control costs, speed assembly and potentially improve product reliability.
Adhesives and Tapes for the Solar Industry
- Acrylic Foam Tapes in Solar Applications can provide for durable attachment, bonding and sealing solutions during solar panel and module manufacturing.
- Pressure-sensitive tapes offer excellent conformability and gap filling with environmental resistant properties. These single and double coated tapes help seal module frame edges and junction boxes, and can be used for thin film applications, including front and back sheet encapsulation.
- Dielectric Tapes perform as reliable insulators when used in conjunction with buses/foils in thin film solar panels. They consist of a polymeric film with acrylic adhesive on one or both sides.
Foam and Sponge for the Solar Industry
- SRP can fabricate custom gaskets and environmental seals using a variety of high performance foam and sponge materials to help protect your products from dust, dirt, and rain.
- We can fabricate custom enclosure gaskets, such as NEMA or UL enclosures, to protect solar inverters that house sensitive electronics. Using materials such as Roger’s line of high performance PORON® polyurethane foams, silicone foams, and silicone sponge, you are not only sealing the solar component from harsh weather conditions, but their unique formulation will not take a set or relax, maintaining an effective seal over the life of the product.
- Enclosure gaskets can be die-cut as a dovetail gasket, resulting in material utilization efficiency, creating a cost effective to solution to many solar applications. All gaskets can be supplied with pressure sensitive adhesives to create a product that adheres to just about anything.
Silicone Materials for the Solar Industry
- Silicone materials are known for their performance in high temperature applications. Since Solar panels attract the sun, the area the solar panels are contained in can become extremely hot depending on the location.
- Protection against high temperatures are crucial to the performance and life of the product. SRP can die-cut solid silicone rubber, foam, and sponge to your exact specifications to create enclosure gaskets, environmental seals, and thermal pads that are custom to your product.
- Rogers line of BISCO® Silicones, as well as DSP Silicone products are a great example of a high-performance silicone materials that create cost-effective solutions for the life of the product. These materials can also be supplied with pressure sensitive adhesives for a gasket or pad that adheres to just about anything.
- Silicone can be fabricated into gaskets, heat shields, fire stops, seals, cushions, and insulation. They will provide resistance to temperature extremes, UV, and ozone. Silicone is extremely resilient to mechanical fatigue, has excellent compression-set and creep resistance, and meet the most stringent UL flame ratings.
Electrical + Heat Insulation Materials for the Solar Industry
- Products pertaining to the solar industry such as inverters and junction boxes use electricity, and can generate electrical interference and high heat within the component.
- To manage these conditions, SRP can fabricate materials that are specifically formulated for electrical and heat insulation to provide a barrier over the electronics to contain the electricity within a certain area to prevent electrical fires.
- Specific materials include Nomex® and Formex®. Nomex® provides lightweight, heat and flame-resistant performance for many applications. Formex® flame retardant materials provide superior electrical insulation and barrier materials for use in industrial and consumer electronic equipment. Both materials comply with UL 94 ratings.
Thermal Interface Materials for the Solar Industry
- Heat generation is inevitable when it comes to electrical components enclosed in a housing. It is one thing to use high temperature gaskets to keep the housing intact, but it is another thing to keep the components working properly to keep maintenance costs down.
- To help combat this issue, SRP can custom fabricate Thermal Gap Pads that adheres directly to the heat sinks that are attached to the electrical components. Thermal Gap Pads work to pull heat away from these heat sinks, and dissipate the heat throughout the pad.
- When considering the possible maintenance costs associated with fixing damaged electrical components in solar inverters, thermal gap pads are an ideal and cost-effective solution to a more efficient, better performing inverter.
For more information, you can reach SRP at firstname.lastname@example.org or 847-593-5630. To see what other industries we custom fabricate components for, visit our dedicated Markets page. SRP has worked in a variety of markets in the course of its existence since 1951. We are not limited to who we will work with. As long as we can provide the necessary custom parts you need, we will be here to provide our service.