CIRCUSOL will develop and demonstrate Product-Service System (PSS) business models for the solar power sector. What does this mean and how is this different from what happens today?
Today by default, a supplier sells new PV panels and batteries to a user. The user then manages the solar power generation and storage. When their use life at the site reaches the end, the PVs/batteries enter the waste stream and get recycled or disposed.
In a PSS model envisioned by CIRCUSOL, a supplier provides solar power generation and storage to a user as a service. The PV and batteries are installed at the user’s site, but the supplier remains as the owner and is responsible for their optimal functioning. When their use life at the site reaches the end, the supplier takes them back and decides whether they can get a second life and be installed somewhere else, or should be sent for recycling.
Why would this be better? A PSS model can be a triple-win for the environment, for the user, and for the supplier:
- For the environment, a PSS model could reduce waste by enabling longer product life with e.g. proper maintenance, and by encouraging market adoption of second-life products, since their performance, lifetime and safety will be assured by the supplier;
- For the user, a PSS model could significantly reduce initial investment, ensure optimal performance of the installed system, and minimize hassles throughout the whole process;
- For the supplier, a PSS model could provide diversified, recurring revenue and long-term relationship with the customers.
Circular PSS Model = Circular Product Management + Value-added Product-Service
CIRCUSOL will work on three key success factors to realize this triple-win potential of the PSS business models:
- Environmental benefits, by paving way for high-quality supply and market adoption of second-life PV modules and batteries;
- Market competitiveness, by co-creating value propositions which answer to real user needs;
- Financial health, by reducing costs with new operational processes and digital technologies; and by creating new revenue streams and financing mechanisms.
More specifically, CIRCUSOL will deliver:
- Circular PSS business models with real environmental benefits and economic feasibility, validated in five real-life commercial demonstrators, and suitable for replication;
- Second-life PV modules and second-life batteries labeling and certification protocols;
- Business case for circular product designs in the PV supply chain;
- Validated systemic circular business model innovation methodologies and tools for broader use in business and academia;
- Policy recommendations;
- New ICT platform for data generation, storage, analysis and sharing throughout the value chain.
Find out who are the CIRCUSOL partners.
Or go back to why CIRCUSOL wants to do all this.