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Meeting 2022 TMS Annual Meeting & Exhibition
Symposium REWAS 2022: Sustainable Production and Development Perspectives
Presentation Title Environmental Benefits of Closing the Solar Manufacturing and Recycling Loop
Author(s) Robert J. Flores, Haoyang He, Parikhit Sinha, Garvin Heath, Paul Leu, Julie Schoenung
On-Site Speaker (Planned) Robert J. Flores
Abstract Scope The cumulative global solar panel waste stream is projected to reach between 60 and 78 million tonnes by 2050. Steps towards developing, demonstrating, and implementing processes that recover glass, metals, and semiconductor materials from end-of-life solar panels have already been taken. However, these processes result in the downcycling of most secondary solar materials. Critically, the costs and benefits of capturing these secondary materials for use in new solar panels is unknown. This presentation reviews work that evaluates the environmental impact associated with recycling and remanufacturing of end-of-life cadmium-telluride panel materials for use in next generation solar. This work also addresses the potential impact of recovering panel components for reuse in future panels. The results demonstrate the environmental benefit of recycling and component reuse, diminishing environmental impact associated with solar panel production. Although specific to a cadmium-telluride panel, this work demonstrates the benefits of working towards closed-loop solar panel production.
Proceedings Inclusion? Planned:
Keywords Energy Conversion and Storage, Recycling and Secondary Recovery, Sustainability


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Environmental Benefits of Closing the Solar Manufacturing and Recycling Loop
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