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US materials producer agrees R&D deal with China solar firm

DuPont signs agreement with GD Solar to collaborate in materials research for China company’s PV panels and systems

PV panel materials
The collaboration aims to teach companies more about the performance of potential PV panel materials.

A US solar material producer has signed a R&D deal to help a Chinese PV firm develop its solar panel materials. Under the agreement, US firm DuPont will undertake field research on panel reliability with China's GD Solar. The collaboration aims to allow the companies to learn more about the durability and performance of potential PV panel materials.

DuPont will supply the PV materials needed to work with GD Solar to optimise the firm's solar cells, panels, frames and backsheets.
GD Solar specialises in metallisation paste used to manufacture solar panels. Company officials have said the pastes almost doubled solar cell efficiency in the past 12 years. DuPont also produces a component designed for backsheet solar panels.

This is the second deal DuPont has made with a Chinese PV manufacturer in the past few months. In June, DuPont agreed to sell metalisation pastes, which increase solar cell performance and polyvinyl fluoride film to protect panels, to Yingli Green Energy. The deal included plans for Yingli to build a solar power plant at a DuPont facility in China.

Walt Cheng, managing director, DuPont Electronics & Communications in China, said through the company's work with GD Solar: "We can further assess the impact of materials on systems and continue to improve their performance."

Xu Zhong, general manager, GD Solar, talked about the importance of solar power in the future. He said: "Solar energy is clean and sustainable. With the development and transformation of energy resources, solar energy will become a key part of our future energy mix.''

DuPont follows other companies which have agreed deals with Chinese solar firms in the last twelve months. Chinese solar company Singyes Solar signed a deal with British accountancy business Mitchell Charlesworth in April to help break into the UK renewable energy market.