New Product: Air Products ChemGuard 1000 safely handles delivery of POCl3 solar cell dopant

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Product Briefing Outline: The Air Products ChemGuard 1000 Automated Chemical Delivery system was developed exclusively for the photovoltaics market to help customers reduce phosphorus oxychloride (POCl3) dopant bubbler refill costs by more than 45%.  The system will enable users to minimize their cost of operation and risk of contamination, while improving delivery system safety and reliability.

Problem: POCl3 is commonly used as an n-dopant in solar cell manufacturing.  The molecule is very reactive and hygroscopic – exposure to moisture will generate phosphoric acid, so experience in safely handling this molecule is vital. Conventional dopant bubbler refill procedures affect tool uptime, generate chemical waste and increase overall shipping and handling costs.

Solution: The ChemGuard system is designed to improve delivery system safety and reliability with the risk exposure to a highly-toxic chemical is virtually eliminated. Productivity in enhanced with the elimination of tool downtime Each system saves up to 460 hours/year of production critical downtime), due to host container replacements and cost reductions due to the elimination of chemical waste (typically 15% or up to 77.6kg/year). Another benefit of the system is its ability to improve and maintain material quality and minimize contamination as the opening of wetted-surface connections would be reduced by up to 20 times. The system ensures clean connections by implementing proven purge sequences and h/w designs. Multiple redundant sensors are in place to prevent liquid and vapor flow to wrong end-points. Leak checking is also automatic and interlocked to protect operators and equipment. A full menu of alarms, events and diagnostic functions is available to prevent exposure and equipment damage.

Applications: Crystalline PV manufacturers who use POCl3 doping furnaces.

Platform: Air Products offers a comprehensive POCl3 Solution, including molecules, bulk containers, and related delivery equipment and is part of Air Products’ ‘SunSource’ range of products and services for the photovoltaic industry.

Availability: Currently available.

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