PARIS – Nanoelectronics research center IMEC (Leuven, Belgium) and photovoltaics manufacturer SolarWorld AG said they have demonstrated ultra-thin (100 µm), large-area (156x156mm˛) PERC-type (passivated emitter, rear cell) mono-silicon solar cells integrated in a 255Wp class A module.
IMEC and SolarWorld said they co-developed PERC-based modules had been manufactured on SolarWorld's fully automated production line without significant wafer breakage.
[Get a 10% discount on ARM TechCon 2012 conference passes by using promo code EDIT. Click here to learn about the show and register.]
The research partners said modules contain 60 randomly selected i-PERC cells, co-fabricated by Imec’s PV research group and SolarWorld Innovations (SWIN), starting from 120-µm thin Cz-silicon wafer material. After surface decoupling and junction formation at SWIN, IMEC said it performed rear-side passivation and rear laser ablation. The rear aluminum metalization was deposited at SWIN, while IMECconducted the silver screen-printing, co-firing and characterization.
They also claimed they have measured an averaged cell efficiency of 18.5 percent (+/- 0.5 percent), with a best cell performing at 19 percent efficiency. Eventually, enough cells for module production with 18.5 percent (+/-0.2 percent) were implemented in 60cell class A standard modules using SolarWorld’s module manufacturing line.
The modules demonstrated a power higher than 255 Wp measured at SolarWorld’s Module Testing Lab.
"The low breakage rate in the i-PERC production and in the fully automated module fabrication, together with the narrow processing distribution of the cell results demonstrate that a serious reduction of silicon material is feasible in highly efficient PERC solar cell production,” said Joachim John, IMEC's R&D PV project manager.
See related links:
IMEC, Solvay claim record efficiency for OPV modules
Increasing energy yield of PV panels
CZTSe thin-film solar cells results
Anti-aging elixir for solar cells
Photovoltaics market outlook until 2016
If you found this article to be of interest, visit SmartEnergy Designline
where you will find the latest and greatest design, technology,
product, and news articles with regard to all aspects of clean
technologies. And, to register to our weekly newsletter, click here.