The substantial incentives and dropping prices enabled a surge in the installation of solar panels. Australia has more than 23 million panels, which equals to one panel for every man, woman, and child. However, once the panels reach the end of their lifespan, there is going to be a pile of panels. With solar energy industry catering to renewable energy, sending old panels to landfills is not an answer.
The only answer to deal with old solar panels is recycling. Most of the components of the solar panel are recyclable. These include the glass, aluminum rakes, and semiconductors. It is possible to reuse them given that the condition of the components is “healthy.” Photovoltaic manufacturers take some responsibility for the products they manufactured. It is essential to create a system that enables the consumer and the manufacturer to collect the expired modules and make the entire process a routine.
Founded in the year 2014, RECLAIM aims at recycling the unusable and old solar panels. They recognized the importance of PV recycling and the waste management the industry is facing.The company is working closely with the Flinders University to develop best practices that improve the PV recycling procedures. In this process, they came up with a scalable model with the predictions of the lifespan of the panels. The company is working towards establishing a detailed action that helps in offering better PV recycling solutions.
RECLAIM offers simple solutions right from pick up and separation of the usable components from decommissioned PV modules. The collection and drop off is possible by utilizing the existing business partners. The best part is the collection solutions that cover the entire country.The unique process developed in accordance with the University assists in reclaiming the efficient or working cells from decommissioned panels. It, thus, reduces the energy needed to recycle solar cells.The company is working closely with manufacturers, Government agencies, and recycling partners, and consultants. The close working relationship is helping the company to build the necessary infrastructure across the country for recycling and waste management system for the PV industry. RECLAIM’s success lies with recycling partners. Furthermore, the company is creating alliances with several private entities that are aiming to provide universal element communications for the PV industry. With such an outlook, there is every possibility to create greener products and produce a process manufacturing sector in the country.