Tandem PV, a pioneering force in perovskite solar technology, has raised an additional $6 million, bringing its total to $27 million in venture capital and government support. The company will use the funds to advance research and development and plans to build its first manufacturing facility.
The funding round was led by existing investor Planetary Technologies, an early-stage venture capital firm with deep expertise in climate tech. Other institutional investors participated, including new investor Uncorrelated Ventures, as well as executives from a variety of corporate sectors and such solar industry leaders as Tom Werner, former chairman, president and CEO of SunPower Corp.
Tandem PV named entrepreneur Scott Wharton CEO last summer in a leap closer to commercialization with a focus on panels that combine high efficiency and durability. Wharton is speaking about renewable energy at a conference complementing the World Economic Forum gathering in Davos.
"We have been consistently told by some of the world's foremost solar industry experts that Tandem PV has the best combination of high efficiency and durability of any perovskite panel in commercial development," Wharton said. "The new investments validate that leadership position in the global perovskite market and will help us bring in customer agreements to begin building our first plant.”
Said Werner: “Perovskite solar panels promise the kind of powerful and cost-effective solutions we need to combat climate change. I have been impressed with Tandem PV’s team and the progress they’ve made to take their innovations out of the lab and into the market.”
Tandem PV’s design boosts the output of conventional silicon solar cells by stacking them with thin-film perovskite materials that absorb different wavelengths of sunlight. The company is producing tandem perovskite panels with 26% efficiency, which is roughly 25% more powerful than the average silicon solar panel. More power at the same price per watt leads to lower labor costs for installation, lower land-acquisition costs and a lower total cost of ownership for customers.
Tandem PV has demonstrated the equivalent of decades of projected durability in the lab. The company plans to obtain independent industry-standard validation of efficiency and durability, expected to rise further, during 2024.
Wharton joined Tandem PV from Logitech, where he grew the company’s video collaboration business from $62 million to a global market leader with over $1 billion in annual revenue. Prior to Tandem, he led three successful startups, including two that went public, and one he founded that was sold to a Fortune 500 company.
The company was founded by its CTO, Colin Bailie, who published the first peer-reviewed studies on perovskite-silicon tandem solar panels as a Stanford University doctoral candidate. Tandem co-founder Chris Eberspacher is an industry pioneer who has led technology at some of the world's largest solar companies. Bailie and Eberspacher launched the company while at Activate (formerly Cyclotron Road), the U.S. Dept. of Energy startup accelerator at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory supporting entrepreneurial innovations with potential for global commercial impact.
Click here to learn more about Tandem PV's Perovskite Technology.