EU PVSEC: centrotherm photovoltaics pushing CIGS to 11% and c-Si to 20%

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Verified by Fraunhofer ISE, centrotherm photovoltaics has claimed c-Si solar cells, using its own process technology have achieved 20% cell efficiencies. The major equipment and technology provider to the PV industry is also touting efforts at Taiwan-based CIGS thin film producer, Sunshine of moving close to obtaining module efficiencies of 11%, while using nonhazardous and recyclable elementary selenium instead of highly toxic hydrogen selenide (H2Se).

“We are on the way to 20% cell efficiencies in industrial production,” noted Dr. Peter Fath, CTO at centrotherm photovoltaics. “We have already reached this magic threshold in the laboratory, and we have current ISE certification for a sensational 20% efficiency level. We will be working flat out on transferring these excellent figures to mass production,” added Dr. Fath.

centrotherm photovoltaics developments were done using a wafer size of 156 mm x 156 mm on mono-crystalline silicon.

The company also noted that it had successfully concluded the development of its new second-generation selenium (Se) systems to manufacture CIGS thin film modules, which were claimed to have reached and exceeded the planned performance improvements in terms of homogeneity and uptime in acceptance tests. The systems were said to be offered in the future as single equipment items.

FHR Anlagenbau, a wholly-owned centrotherm photovoltaics subsidiary, will demonstrating its roll-to-roll system concepts that deploy PVD or PECVD technology for foil of solar cells that are based on CIGS and a-Si.

FHR is reporting that several customers are moving from pilot production to mass production.

At EU PVSEC in Hamburg next week, another of its subsidiary, centrotherm SiTec is showcasing a newly developed Medium Voltage Ignition System (MVI) in the polysilicon power supply area, which was developed to optimize CVD reactors.

The MVI is claimed to ignite the rods within a significantly shorter process time, enabling higher production capacities and lower operating costs.

The company also noted that centrotherm SiTec received a major order from Taiwan to supply multi-crystalline ingot furnaces to produce ingots with an annual capacity of around 140MW. The first multi-crystalline ingot furnaces will be shipped in October, with the last delivery occurring in the first quarter of 2012.

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