Paving the Way for Sustainable Solar: Marius Peters Leads Recycling Initiatives

Copyright HI ERN/Jessica Pölloth

Silicon solar panels have become a part of everyday life in Germany, providing us with green energy. But what happens to the solar cells and the valuable raw materials they contain when they reach the end of their service life? Currently, nearly 10,000 tons of decommissioned solar modules are processed annually in Germany, with projections indicating a sixfold increase by 2024 and a potential annual disposal of up to a million tons by 2029. Globally, it is estimated that around 27 million tons of discarded photovoltaic systems could be generated by 2040, with China, the USA, Japan, and India leading in the amount of solar waste. Despite the growing waste stream, effective recycling processes are still in the experimental stage. Marius Peters investigates the recycling of solar cells with a cradle-to-cradle approach. More about recycling and Marius’ point of view can be found in the recent article.