Carillion becomes first in UK to install lighter form of solar panels that could be used for a wide range of roofs

Contractor Carillion has become the first in the UK to install a lighter form of solar panels, which could open up the market for many more roofs in the UK to have PV installations.

The 50kW installation on the head offices of building society Nationwide in Swindon uses panels that are 50% lighter than conventional panels meaning they can be specified for a much larger variety of flat roofs than conventional models. It is the first time they have been installed in the UK and just the second time worldwide, after an installation in Germany.

German manufacturer Conergy, is aerodynamically shaped to create downforce when exposed to wind, much like the wings of Formula One cars.
Robert Goss, managing director of Conergy, said: “This opens up a whole range of buildings for PV installations.”

Goss added that firms could now quote for big contract jobs on a wide range of roofs without concern for differences in roof construction and lengthy assessments.

John Timmins, from Carillion Facilities Management, said: “We are supporting Nationwide with a number of energy-related initiatives and have already contributed to a 9.1% reduction in electricity consumption at the Swindon head office year to date compared with the same period in 2010/11. This solar install takes the process to the next level.”