PARIS – Nanoelectronics research center IMEC (Leuven, Belgium) and photovoltaics manufacturer SolarWorld AG said they have demonstrated ultra-thin (100 µm), large-area (156x156mm²) 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 modulesIncreasing energy yield of PV panelsCZTSe thin-film solar cells resultsAnti-aging elixir for solar cellsPhotovoltaics market outlook until 2016------------------------
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