NREL, Fraunhofer ISE certify 18% efficiency for Innovalight’s silicon-ink processed solar cells

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The U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems in Germany have both independently certified that Innovalight has demonstrated 18% conversion efficiency with silicon-ink processed solar cells–said to be a record for this type of technology.

Innovalight says its proprietary silicon ink and processing technologies allow crystalline-silicon photovoltaic cell manufacturers to significantly increase output capacity and cell performance as well as reduce costs with a simplified additional step to already installed manufacturing lines.

The  venture-backed company, which is ramping production of silicon ink, says it is working with a number of  PV cell manufacturers and is developing technologies based on silicon ink to ultimately bring conversion efficiencies of cSi cells to more than 20%.

A high-throughput silicon-inkjet printing system capable of depositing materials on ultrathin silicon wafers was engineered and manufactured by OTB Solar and installed earlier this year at Innovalight’s Sunnyvale, CA, facility.

“Innovalight’s silicon ink and processing technologies provide a compelling solution in an otherwise undifferentiated marketplace for solar cells”, said company CTO Homer Antoniadis. “Optimized for use with industry standard deposition tools, Innovalight’s solution improves the economics of solar cell
manufacturing.”

Calling the NREL-verified 18% efficiency “a very significant achievement,” Martha Symko-Davies, senior program manager at the national lab, said that “we also are pleased Innovalight has recently been awarded a $3 million Technology Incubator subcontract through the National Renewable
Energy Laboratory, funded under the Department of Energy.”

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