Italian companies, competitiveness in green technologies and 3SUN's 'recipe'
On 23 October, an event organized by Confindustria, in partnership with Deloitte, was held in Rome, to present the conclusions of a survey to leading Italian companies involved in the energy transition process, including 3SUN. Among the main conclusions, the need to rely on a concrete national strategy, to schedule an investment plan over the long period
When we talk about decarbonization - one of the main topics for humanity, the Planet and global economies - the first word that comes to mind is change. The need to reduce CO2 emissions - the goals of the European plan Fit For 55 require 55% less compared to 1990 levels within 2030 - entails a fundamental and mandatory reconfiguration of the industrial systems, the implementation of industrial policies rewriting the traditions and vocations of a Country, and a radical transformation of production, consumption and lifestyle. An actual change, rather than an aspirational one. This was the topic of the presentation conference held on 23 October, on "Italian Companies and Competitiveness in Green Technologies" - a survey promoted by Confindustria, in partnership with Deloitte, which gathered the standpoint of leading Italian businesses in the renewable energy sector - such as 3SUN, Elettricità Futura, Magaldi Green Energy - and key players - such as Federazione ANIE, MIMIT.
Green technologies: the role of photovoltaic
Environmental sustainability is a global priority, and Italy, just like other Countries, must adopt significant measures to achieve the goals of the Green Deal, Fit-for-55 and REPowerEU, and improve the clean technology production capacity, as stated in the Net-Zero Industry Act (NZIA). While describing the study - a detailed series of measures to drive an organic development of the supply chains of those industries active in five renewable sectors: photovoltaic, wind power, networks, storage and heat pumps - Angelo Era, Energy, Resources & Industrial Leader at Deloitte Central Mediterranean, highlighted the need for transversal and vertical measures, specific to each sector. Concerning the first, the focus lies on the establishment of a long-term (at least 10 years) national energy policy setting clear guidelines; implementing know-how and production capacity; developing infrastructures, attracting talents toward green technologies; offering incentives and also social support to the territory. And streamlining and accelerating authorization practices to build industrial plants, identifying areas to built the plants, promoting circular economy, driving the traceability concept, and governing the dependence on foreign markets for raw materials. The same recommendations are valid "vertically" in the set of specific indications for each sector considered, with particular attention to the photovoltaic field, which takes on a significant role, in reaching the +70 GW goal for Italy before 2030, as stated in the Fit-for-55, and guiding the ascent of Made in Europe. To this end, the study advises the segmentation into two sub-supply chains - raw material processing and wafer production upstream, and cell, module and plant assembly and production downstream - along with strategic investments to promote the technological development of innovative solutions, allowing strategic independence and reshoring in Italy. Change needs new paths.
3SUN technological innovation
And we have started down these two new paths for quite some time now, thanks to an accurate interpretation of the photovoltaic industry, a punctual long-term plan, and the technological research that allowed our solar factory in Catania to position itself as one of the leading photovoltaic industries in Europe, and to create a social, local development, and industrial process. "We are playing a technological game", explained Eliano Russo, 3SUN CEO, to the audience, adding: "Thanks to our bi-facial heterojunction cells, we hold a technological advantage over TOPCON and PERC traditional technologies. However, we are aware that this competitive advantage could be swiftly bridged, and that's why we strive to bring the challenge forward, through technological innovation." Our technological roadmap entails the development of a new PV technology called Tandem, based on the coupling of silica cells with perovskite cells, which capture a broader light spectrum, to overcome the limits of silica and increase cell efficiency beyond 30%.
The same goes for quality. Sustainability is a change that starts from production materials and processes. According to Russo: "We need to introduce ESG-related quality standards in Europe, to make PV product materials traceable, and also consider the carbon footprint of material production. At 3SUN, we follow sustainable processes, our modules are more efficient with a lower degradation level; therefore, we can ensure the same investment profitability to those who buy our modules." An essential point that refers to another need: changing the story of renewable energy, which is not just an obligation, an expense and a sacrifice, but also a healthy bearer of benefits, and a catalyst for talents and growth. And of change, because only real change generates opportunities.