DEK Solar Helps Break New Barriers for Low-Cost, High-Efficiency Solar Cells
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Rolling Meadows, IL, 60006
Press release date: October 4, 2013
Building on earlier work conducted in conjunction with the Institute for Solar Energy Research Hamelin (ISFH), DEK Solar has further optimized its Dual Print stencils and screens to push past previous industry cost and cell efficiency benchmarks. In the company’s latest project with ISFH, a record 20.2% cell efficiency on a PERC solar cell has been achieved via a Dual Print process with a remarkable frontside metallization silver cost of less than $0.01 per Wp.
The ground-breaking research was carried out last month at the ISFH facilities in Emmerthal, Germany and utilized ISFH’s PERC solar cells, DEK Solar’s Eclipse metallization platform as well as its Dual Print screens and stencils, and optimized frontside silver metallization pastes from Heraeus. This combination of robust manufacturing techniques, high performance materials and exceptionally accurate metallization systems has delivered on the industry’s ultimate goal: high efficiency and low cost.
“Pushing the efficiency envelope without raising manufacturing costs isn’t just the ultimate objective of the PV industry; it’s a necessity,” says DEK Solar’s Principal Engineer, Tom Falcon. “With this recent collaborative breakthrough, the efficiency-cost balance is now better than ever before.”
In earlier success, DEK Solar and ISFH conducted a research effort that also leveraged DEK Solar’s equipment, precision screens and stencils in a Dual Print process that utilizes precision screens to first print the busbars and ultra fine-line stencils to then print the grid/fingers. With the Dual Print technique, very narrow lines with high aspect ratios can be printed with reduced amounts of silver frontside paste. In this former work, 19.8% cell efficiency was achieved with an incredibly low silver paste consumption of only 67.7 mg per wafer. Now, with only 7 mg more paste per wafer, a huge improvement in cell efficiency has been realized.
“Obviously, DEK Solar is not one to rest on its laurels,” concludes DEK Solar Director, Brian Lau, in reference to the company’s continuous innovation model and alignment with PV industry roadmaps. “PERC solar cells are likely to be a dominant technology for solar cell architecture in the near future and DEK Solar, along with key industry partners, has already engineered a PERC metallization solution for next-generation high-efficiency, low-cost manufacturing which supports profitable growth for our customers.”
For more information regarding DEK Solar’s research, PV platforms and technologies, log onto www.dek.com.
About DEK Solar
DEK is a global provider of next-generation technologies and process support to solar cell manufacturers with solutions that include modular metallization platforms, precision screens and materials applications used in back side field coating, current-collector pattern and termination deposition for photovoltaic substrate production. For more information, visit DEK Solar at www.deksolar.com.
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