The Mindelheim, Germany–based company BBG GmbH & Co. KG enjoyed particular success at EuroMold 2007 in December by winning the silver EuroMold Award for its PV-Therm 160 combination photovoltaic/solar thermal energy module. It was only the second time that this manufacturer of moulds, machinery, and plants submitted an entry for the “Academy Award” of the product development community, as the organizers dub the much-coveted prize.
The PV-Therm 160 exploits solar energy for simultaneous warm-water generation, heating support, and power generation, thus combining the benefits offered by separate solar collectors and photovoltaic modules. The idea for the combination module was born in the Solarzentrum Allgäu situated at Biessenhofen-Altdorf near Kempten. BBG has developed a production unit for the individual components and now manufactures moulds, machinery, and plants for the series production of PV-Therm modules.
The managing directors of the companies involved, Willi Bihler from Solarzentrum Allgäu and Hans Brandner from BBG, accepted the silver award on December 6 during a ceremony at the trade fair in Frankfurt.
In addition to drawing attention for winning the prestigious award, BBG won the interest even of longstanding customers in some new products it displayed at its EuroMold stand. Chief among the innovations exhibited by the company were nonhydraulic encapsulation tools with electrically driven sliders. These complement BBG’s range of mould carriers that are driven electrically. Both electrical systems offer advantages in terms of speed and cleanliness. Also, nonhydraulic encapsulation tools provide reproducibility of almost 100% after a mould change.
BBG supplies products to customers worldwide, primarily in the automotive supply industry. Exports accounted for more than 70% of output in 2006.