TGFS Technologiegründerfonds Sachsen is investing in Sunmaxx PVT, together with MAHLE New Ventures.
The Dresden-based cleantech company was founded with the goal of completely decarbonising the power and heat supply of buildings, neighbourhoods, and industrial sites. Its photovoltaic-thermal solar modules (PVT) offer a novel approach to the heat energy transition, which is currently making slow progress.
Dresden, 31 January 2023: Sunmaxx PVT GmbH has finalized its latest financing round of 3.25 million euros from TGFS Technologiegründerfonds Sachsen and MAHLE New Ventures. MAHLE New Ventures has already worked with the start-up as a technology and financing partner since the end of 2021. Going forward, TGFS will also support the further development of the company as a local, institutional financing partner. With the newly acquired capital, Sunmaxx will expand their team, further develop their technology, and complete their market entry. The ultimate goal of the financing round is to set up a 50 MW production line in Saxony. Production is planned to start in the second half of this year.
Unlike conventional PV modules which only generate electricity, the PVT modules developed by Sunmaxx enable the simultaneous generation of electricity and heat. “At its core, the energy transition is about efficiency,“ underscores Dr. Wilhelm Stein, founder and CEO of Sunmaxx. He explains, “Our PVT modules take the use of solar energy to a new level with an overall efficiency of more than 80% – and an economical cost of production. As a result, our modules form a key component for the complete decarbonisation of electricity and heat production for neighbourhoods, industrial sites, and commercial buildings. Integration into cold district heating networks is also an application that has exciting potential.“ To implement its modules, Sunmaxx is working with a strong partner network that can offer CO2-free solutions thanks to its broad expertise. The first trial plants are already under construction and will soon be operational.
Sunmaxx’s PVT modules uses a unique heat exchanger technology to remove their usable heat, differentiating them from other PVT modules on the market. This technology is based on MAHLE’s advanced thermal management solutions, which are already widely used in the automotive industry. The heat exchanger technology is cost-optimised and highly scalable, making the PVT modules significantly cheaper overall. In addition, they are more compact and lighter than existing PVT modules.
“We see Sunmaxx PVT on a strong path to growth. With its singular technology, the company has the potential to make solar energy even more efficient and usable,“ says Johannes Diem, Head of Corporate Planning Innovation at MAHLE New Ventures.
“The solar industry in Germany and Europe has been experiencing an important upswing for the past two or three years – not the least due to innovative business models and services. However, in order to fully realise the energy transition, fundamentally new technologies are also particularly needed,“ states Sören Schuster, CEO of TGFS. He elaborates, “We see great potential here to be able to re-situate part of the solar value chain in Europe, and to do so with a technology that is several years ahead of the competition. We are very pleased to be accompanying this development here in Saxony along with the experienced teams of Sunmaxx PVT and MAHLE New Ventures.“