French partners to create PV manufacturing ‘gigafactory’ focused on tandem perovskite-silicon modules

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The gigafactory will aim to boost local PV manufacturing as part of the ‘France PV Industrie’ project. Image: INTEC Energy Solutions via Twitter.

Alsace-based Voltec Solar and the Institut Photovoltaïque d’Île-de-France (IPVF) are partnering to create a solar panel gigafactory in France in efforts to boost French domestic PV manufacturing.

The factory will be part of the two companies’ ‘France PV Industrie’ project, which aims to make photovoltaics one of the country’s major national industrial sectors, they said in a statement last week. The project will also introduce a ‘breakthrough’ technology, the 4T perovskite/silicon tandem.

“This is a technological revolution that not only allows us to achieve a 30% efficiency at the photovoltaic module level, compared to the best efficiency currently achieved by traditional technologies, but also reduces the consumption of energy and materials necessary for manufacturing and makes use of materials from recycling,” said Roch Drozdowski-Strehl, managing director of the IPVF.

The IPVF said that it plans to market the technology by 2025 and scale up to 5GW of production by 2030. Both companies said that they foresee this technology being instrumental in the renewable energy transition in France and the rest of the world.

“Tandem technology will be the dominant photovoltaic technology of the next decade,” said Lucas Weiss, managing director of Voltec Solar, a French solar manufacturer.

“It is likely to shake up the competitive situation and France is currently ahead of the game, provided that the industrial deployment, which is intended to be ambitious, takes place. This is one of the conditions for success in photovoltaics.”

In 2019, France’s government committed to boosting solar PV manufacturing with a ten-year scaling plan.

This Voltec/IPVF announcement aligns itself with the France 2030 investment plan, which aims to ‘become the leader’ in green and renewable energies by 2030.

Last month, PV Tech Premium published an analysis of the European PV manufacturing landscape, which puts a spotlight on European domestic manufacturing as a way to reduce the continent’s dependency on Chinese-made solar equipment.

Voltec is targeting a production capacity of 500MW by 2023.

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