Kyocera solar modules show the “Cathedral of the Holy Cross” in the right light

25 October 2010

Kyoto / Neuss − The Armenian “Cathedral of the Holy Cross” is located on the Turkish island of Akdamar. In 2010, a Christian church service has been held there again after a break of 90 years. Because it is an important site of cultural interest, the church is illuminated in the evenings throughout the year. The energy required for this is supplied by solar modules from the Japanese technology corporation Kyocera, one of the leading manufacturers in the field of photovoltaics. This installation is the largest solar powered lighting system in Turkey. It was installed by the Turkish company Ezinc A.S.

The uninhabited island of Akdamar in Lake Van, the largest lake in Turkey, is the location of the Armenian Cathedral of the Holy Cross. In the past this Christian house of worship was merely used as a museum. Now, with the permission of the Turkish government, a church service is again to take place there every year. Illumination outside of the church is provided by solar modules from Kyocera.

The Province of Van, which also includes the island of Akdamar, records the third highest sunlight values in Turkey. In combination with the cool island weather, the location offers ideal conditions for the operation of a solar plant. In the installation, 145 modules of the type KD135GH-2PU supply an above-average energy yield of 25,000 kilowatt-hours per year.

Before the installation of the solar plant, the power supply for the church came from a diesel generator, which, even when operated for only three hours a day, incurred high costs of 25,000 euros per year. As a result, the amortization period for the solar installation is only three years.

The KD135GH-2PU offers a nominal output of 135 watts. The 36 solar cells each measure 156 times 156 millimetres and have an efficiency of 16 per cent. A strong frame guarantees high mechanical stability, enabling the module to withstand a high load of up to 5,400 N/m². The black frame also blends well with the dark cells and enhances the aesthetics of the installation.

In the contacts for the junction boxes, Kyocera opts for high-quality soldered joints rather than clamped joints, and thus offers dependable protection against fire hazards. The junction box meets the requirements of the highest non-combustibility rating of 5V-A in compliance with UL94.

Kyocera is one of the few companies in the market that carries out all production steps itself, without buying in any intermediate products. The 100 per cent level of control that this permits, in conjunction with fully automated production processes, results in a product quality far exceeding the average.

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