What makes the Schott ICR® collector tube so unique is that it is designed much like a thermos flask: Absorber and mirror are safely tucked inside the glass tube and therefore completely protected. This innovative collector tube concept features two eccentrically encased glass tubes, i.e. two glass tubes fit into one another in a non-concentric fashion. The inner tubes exterior surface is covered by a sputtered-on absorber layer. In parallel, the outer tubes interior surface is covered with a silver mirror which serves to channel the full volume of the incoming sunlight onto the absorber layer. Finally, the two tubes encased within one another are fused at one end. The space between the tubes is evacuated.
Since the beginning of this year, Schott-Rohrglas has been engaged in the fully-automatic production of the ICR® collector tube, with a potential production capacity of 80,000 m².Prior to market launch, major investments were made in special production facilities, in keeping with Schotts strategy of backing solar technology as a future market.
While up until now merely the supplier of the ICR® collector tubes used in the collectors manufactured and marketed by Ikarus Solar AG, Schott will for future reference upgrade its range of products with a collector of its own.
The collector module was first presented at the INTERSOLAR trade show in Freiburg in late June 2002, where it was met with great response. Starting in early 2003, this collector will be introduced on the market under the name "Schott Collector ETC 16".