3D-Micromac has introduced the new ‘microDICE’ OTF volume production system designed for the separation of full (156mm x 156mm) silicon solar cells into half cells. The system uses Thermal-Laser-Separation (TLS) technology for cutting of cells. With TLS, the separated cells show a significantly higher mechanical strength, better edge quality as well as a lower power reduction compared to laser scribing and cleaving approaches. By using half cell technology the average module power yield can be increased significantly.
The standard technology for half cell cutting, laser scribing and mechanical cleaving, results in chippings and generation of micro cracks at the cutting edge. As a result, a significant mechanical strength reduction of about 30% of the separated half cells occurs with negative impacts on the final module lifetime and efficiency.
The microDICE OTF TLS process does not require any additional mechanical breaking by external applied forces. It allows the ablation free cleaving to separate solar cells with a high edge quality. The process is based on thermal induced mechanical stress, generated by a well-adjusted combination of a laser (heating) and cooling. The separation by cleaving is a one pass-process. The mechanical strength of the half cells is retained in addition to lower yield loss due to no micro-cracks and lower efficiency loss due to the very smooth cutting edge.
Volume production, half cell cutting.
The microDICE OTF achieves a throughput of 7,200 cells per hour. The optical set-up relies on the industry-proven on-the-fly technology successfully used at 3D-Micromac’s laser structuring tools for processing of PERC cells. The laser processing is realized during the continuous transport of the cells under the laser source, whereby the relative motion of the cells is automatically compensated for. The beam delivery unit includes two processing heads for initial scribing and TLS cleaving. The system is a fully automatic 24/7 production solution and can be offered as stand-alone or inline System.
May 2015 onwards