German-Croatian Cooperation in Photovoltaics

January 31, 2019

The Croatian Minister for Regional Development and EU Funds, Mrs. Gabrijela Žalac, accompanied by the Croatian Ambassador in Germany, Dr. Gordan Grlić, and Consulate General Ivan Sablić visited the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Freiburg on 28th and 29th of January 2019. The visit was organized to concretize the cooperation in research and development between the two countries as well as to establish a fully integrated photovoltaic manufacturing line (10GW – GreenFAB) in Croatia in the context of regional development.

© Fraunhofer ISE
(f.l.t.r) Consulate General Ivan Sablić, Consulate General of Croatia in Stuttgart; Prof. Dr. Volker Wittwer, Chief Advisor to Directors of Fraunhofer ISE; Dr. Andreas Bett, Institute Director of Fraunhofer ISE; Gabrijela Žalac, Croatian Minister for Regional Development and EU-Funds; Dr. Gordan Grlić, Croatian Ambassador in Germany; Prof. Dr. Hans-Martin Henning, Institute Director of Fraunhofer ISE; Zeljko Selak, Director of Vallis Solaris Croatia.

Minister Žalac’s visit to Fraunhofer ISE signifies an important step for the Vallis Solaris Program in Croatia, which has been in preparation for several years. In meetings with the institute directors of Fraunhofer ISE, Prof. Dr. Hans-Martin Henning and Dr. Andreas Bett, and Fraunhofer ISE researchers involved in the planned project, the steps for concretizing the German-Croatian cooperation were discussed.

Program with Three Key Components

One aim of the cooperation is to promote the technology transfer between Fraunhofer ISE and the universities and institutes in Croatia. In particular, the focus is on smart systems such as smart cities, smart islands and smart ports as well as on photovoltaic applications, e.g. building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) and agro-photovoltaics.

Additionally, a fully integrated production of photovoltaic modules shall be built up, starting with the materials, through wafers and cells and up to modules, inverters and system components. In the final project phase, a silicon and solar glass production shall be established. Also the transfer and establishment of technologies for electrical energy storage and the production of stationary and mobile battery systems in Croatia are on the agenda.

Currently under preparation is a Memorandum of Understanding with the Croatian Government to support the project realization. The signing of the document by all parties is anticipated to take place in March.