Start-up: Next generation solar simulation

Dutch start-up Eternal Sun has developed an accurate testing system for solar systems. The product determines the performance and reliability characteristics of any type of solar system. 

The system enables testing, inspection and certification of solar panels and thermal collectors. So far, no competitor has yet been able to develop a similarly affordable steady-state solar simulation system.

Unique solar simulation

Eternal Sun’s system can be used as a stand-alone machine, or can be integrated with a climate chamber for degradation studies. It can also be integrated at the end of a production line for final assembly testing purposes.

The solar simulator continuously generates sun irradiance, which is not possible with current methods.

Climate-KIC support

Eternal Sun has received a €20.000 grant as winner of the Dutch rounds of Climate-KIC’s Venture Competition and has enrolled in Climate-KIC’s Acceleration Programme.

The start-up is a frequent participant in Climate-KIC’s master classes and has taken part in a tour of Silicon Valley organised by Climate-KIC in 2012.

€100 billion market

The current solar industry has a market size of €100 billion. Market analysts predict a new market rise, with a compound annual growth rate of 15% until 2017. 

Many new solar energy technologies and applications enter the market. As a result, stakeholders have great difficulties in judging and comparing the quality and reliability of solar energy products.

Within a research project on the development of a new type of solar panel, Chokri Mousaoui and Stefan Roest were faced with the lack of an accurate testing system.

With the help of pre-seed funding from the university, they were able to develop a testing system that gained the highest norm of an international standard of sun simulation.

Eternal Sun was founded and the technology was patented in cooperation with the Valorisation Centre of Delft University of Technology.

Revenue

The company’s revenue comes from selling, installing and annually maintaining the system. 

Eternal Sun has generated a turnover of €100.000 in 2011 and €350.000 in 2012.

The ambition is to surpass the milestone of €1.000.000 in this year. Eternal Sun expects to reach about €5.000.000 within three years.

A reliable energy source

Eternal Sun wants to contribute to the development and growth of solar energy as a sustainable and reliable energy source. the testing system establishes confidence and trust in current and future solar panels, which ultimately could become the standard in energy usage.

This way, a definite goodbye to nuclear and other conventional energy may be possible in the near future.

Off-the-shelf systems

In close partnerships with the Solar Cell Departments of Delft University of Technology and Research Institute TNO, Eternal Sun is developing new systems. The start-up is currently in the process of developing off-the-shelf systems to meet the increasing demand of the solar energy market.

Eternal Sun delivers its products to the solar energy, bio energy, chemical, aerospace, automotive and electronic industries. The company is planning to further expand its footprint abroad with large sales deals in Asia.

The company currently has twelve employees and plans to hire ten more each year for the next five years. Forty people may be employed by Eternal Sun by the year 2017.

Further information

Eternal Sun is located in the Netherlands. Please find more information on the company’s website www.eternalsun.com or get in touch directly by phone +31 15 744 0161.