1366 Technologies and Hanwha Q CELLS hit record 19.6% efficiency with ‘Direct Wafer’ technology

Credit: 1366 Technologies

US-Based wafer producer 1366 Technologies and ‘Silicon Module Super League’ (SMSL) member Hanwha Q CELLS have jointly hit a new record of 19.6% efficiency for cells using 1366's 'Direct wafer' process.

The record, independently confirmed by the Fraunhofer ISE CalLab, was achieved using 1366’s kerfless, drop-in 156mm multicrystalline wafers using its ‘Direct Wafer’ method and Hanwha’s Q.ANTUM passivated emitter rear contact (PERC) cell process.

The previous record of 19.1% was achieved by the two firms in November last year.

According to a 1366 Technologies statement, the Direct Wafer process creates multicrystalline wafers directly from molten silicon instead of taking several steps that require more energy and expense. The firm also claimed that its technology can be adopted by 60% of the PV market, without manufacturers having to add any new equipment.

The wafers for the new record cell were produced at 1366’s current production furnaces in Bedford, Massachusetts, while the cell fabrication was completed at Hanwha Q CELLS’ Center for Technology Innovation and Quality in Thalheim, Germany.

Back In May this year, 1366 Technologies secured US$10 million in funding from private equity firm, Hanwha Investment Corporation, to support the building of its first major production facility at the at high-tech Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park (STAMP) in Genesee County, New York. The wafer producer plans a first phase construction of a 250MW nameplate capacity facility. The funders said that 1366 Technologies had moved from proof of concept to commercial-ready technology in a short period of time.

A 1366 Technologies spokesperson also said: “In a recent head-to-head comparison on the pilot line with standard four busbar processes used in mass production, our Direct Wafer products’ solar cell efficiency exceeded that of the high-performance multi (HPM) reference group.”

Polysilicon producer Wacker Chemie has also invested US$15 million in the company.

Frank van Mierlo, chief executive of 1366 Technologies, said: “This year we’ve been focused on mass production trials and, together with Hanwha Q CELLS, we’ve continued to push the performance limits of multicrystalline cells while dramatically reducing their costs. The Direct Wafer process provides an ultra-low cost option to manufacturers to extend multicrystalline’s dominant market position. This latest technical achievement is an impressive demonstration of our wafers’ compatibility with new cell architectures that provide long-term differentiation.”

Read Next

August 12, 2022
Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker has signed on Thursday a climate bill that will bolster the growth of renewables project.
August 11, 2022
US solar tracker supplier Array Technologies has bounced back from a difficult 2021 by posting strong Q2 2022 financial results mainly due to its acquisition of STI Norland, while upcoming tailwinds could buoy its performance further still moving through the year.
August 10, 2022
OMERS Private Equity has acquired a minority stake in the Arizona-headquartered solar operations & maintenance (O&M) provider NovaSource Power Services.
August 10, 2022
US solar tracker manufacturer FTC Solar has cut its net losses compared with last quarter and Q2 2021 but has seen its revenue collapse, blaming a hostile solar environment in the US that has seen project delays and cancellations, which it said it now hoped was coming to an end.
August 9, 2022
The Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia (DCPSC) has approved a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with renewables developer Invenergy for 73MW of solar power to meet a 5% renewables target for district’s default electricity supply.
August 8, 2022
The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), which includes US$369 billion in energy security and climate change programmes over the next ten years, passed in the US Senate on Sunday, paving the way for its movement to the House of Representatives and subsequent signing by President Joe Biden.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
September 7, 2022
15:30 AEST (UTC +10)
Solar Media Events
September 14, 2022
Solar Media Events
October 4, 2022
New York, USA
Solar Media Events
October 11, 2022
Virtual event