AGL’s Power-Packed Plan to Transform Solar Panel Recycling and Beyond

AGL’s Power-Packed Plan to Transform Solar Panel Recycling and Beyond

June 9, 2023 0 By Erin Kilgore

The Australian utility intends to convert one of its sites into a clean energy industrial hub.

AGL has signed a deal with Melbourne-based Solar Recovery Corp (SRC) to explore the viability of establishing a solar panel recycling facility at its Loy Yang power station site, located in the Australian state of Victoria, which it plans to transform into a clean energy industrial hub.

The facility would remanufacture end-of-life solar panels.

The partners’ feasibility study will look at establishing a facility to remanufacture end-of-life solar panels at the utility’s planned Latrobe Valley Energy Hub. It will also investigate training and employment opportunities for the local community so that the new skillsets which are needed can be established for the energy and manufacturing industries of the future.

The solar panel recycling process that will be used has been developed by La Mia Energia, an Italian consortium, with whom SRC is the Australian-owned partner. According to La Mia Energia, it can recover as much as 99% of raw materials from all types of solar PV panels that have reached their end of life.

AGL is exploring other proposals beyond solar panel recycling for its intended clean energy hub.

Presently, Loy Yang A operates as a 2,210 MW coal-fired power station and, last year, AGL announced that it would close the station in 2035, in favor of developing 12 GW of renewable and firming capacity by 2036.

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More recently, however, the company has revealed its plans to transform the station into an integrated low-carbon industrial energy hub dominated by a 200 MW/800 MWh battery energy storage system, according to PV Magazine article.

What’s even more interesting, is that beyond being a site for solar panel recycling, the major energy utility is also exploring proposals for hydrogen supply chain facilities, electrothermal solar storage, and floating solar for the site.

SRC will be the first to explore being apart of transforming the Loy Yang site.

hydrogen news ebook“It’s clear that the world is changing, and so is AGL,” said AGL Chief Operating Officer Markus Brokhof. “We are proud to be supporting SRC’s mission to find new ways to deal with end-of-life solar PV panels.” Brokhof added that the agreement between the companies marks a significant first step in Loy Yang’s transition and that AGL will also recycle its end-of-life solar panels at the company’s facilities.

SRC Chairman Rob Gell added that signing the deal with AGL aligns with SRC’s goals to make certain that solar production meets the promise of delivering clean energy throughout its life cycle.

“It feels fitting that we are working with AGL as part of their ambition to reimagine the end-of-site transformation of AGL Loy Yang into a cleaner low-carbon hub,” Gell said.

SRC was founded as part of a closed-loop solution for end-of-life PV panels and to repurpose the materials via solar panel recycling for manufacturing industries.

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