Concentrating solar power


Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) is used to generate clean electricity from the sun, normally at utility scale. It is particularly suitable for areas with high Direct Normal Solar Irradiance (such as Spain, California and the Middle East). In Concentrating Solar Power, a set of mirrors is used to concentrate the sun’s rays on a central receiver. This heats up a liquid which is then used to generate electricity in a conventional thermodynamic cycle.


There are currently four types of CSP technology, namely Parabolic Trough, Tower, Fresnel and Dish. For all of these, AGC provides extra clear glass (thick and thin) to leading manufacturers of solar mirrors, designed to maximise the amount of energy reflected onto the receiver. For technologies that use such mirrors, AGC builds on its experience as a glass processor to also provide flat mirrors and thin mirrors.




SunEwat XL is a glazing that generates power using photovoltaic technology. 
The principle behind SunEwat XL is simple: monocrystalline or polycrystalline photovoltaic cells are embedded in a sheet of laminated safety glass. The product is then installed instead of conventional construction elements in the shell of the building. Since the photovoltaic cells are built right into the glazing, it is not necessary to install a separate photovoltaic system. 


The modules are made to order (various sizes and electrical capacities are possible) and can be customised for each project. They can also be combined with other glass products (double glazing, screen-printed glass, coloured glass, etc.) to boost comfort levels, for example thermal insulation, or for design purposes. Moreover, SunEwat XL modules comply with the latest regulations and have received EN 14449 (buildings), IEC 61215 and IEC 61730 (photovoltaic) certification.


For several years now, SunEwat XL has been offering architects numerous applications in facades, glass roofs, sunscreens, balustrades and louvres. As technological improvements in the product make it able to withstand higher temperatures, AGC Glass Europe can offer another application for SunEwat XL: spandrels. By leveraging non-vision glass, the entire surface of the facade can now be used to generate energy, maximising the building’s energy performance. AGC guarantees product performance at temperatures of up to 100°C. SunEwat XL is specifically intended for non-ventilated spandrels.


As shown in our Sustainable Building chapter, SunEwat XL modules can make a significant contribution to winning points for LEED certification (up to 7 points for version 3 and 3 points for version 4 in the Renewable Energy Production category) and credits for the BREEAM International New Construction certification system (up to 2 credits in the Low and Zero Carbon Technologies category). These international certifications, used to rate the environmental performance of buildings, are increasingly valued by architects and specifiers during the project design phase.