As part of its long-term cost reduction goals for its turnkey Micromorph thin film silicon ‘ThinFab’ production lines, Oerlikon Solar has teamed with gas suppliers Air Liquide and Linde to provide more than a 20% reduction in total cost of all gases and precursors. As a result, its ThinFab (120MWp) lines, going into full production by end of 2012, can reduce module production costs by up to 5%. The total gas budget was said to be less than €8.50 per panel.
“Thanks to the strong support from leading gas suppliers, we are now able to further reinforce the competitiveness of our Micromorph technology for current and future market conditions,” commented Helmut Frankenberger, CEO of Oerlikon Solar.
As part of collaboration with Oerlikon Solar, both Air Liquide and Linde will support ThinFab lines with the infrastructure and supply chain requirements of customers with the aim of further cost reduction strategies.
“Linde has worked successfully with many major end-users to reduce their cost per watt and the opportunity to work more closely with the leading global equipment manufacturer will deliver even more benefits to module producers,” noted Peter Owen, head of Linde Electronics. “This partnership further strengthens the existing R&D collaboration between Linde and Oerlikon on the EU funded PEPPER project, which was announced in November 2010.”
“Air Liquide is proud to demonstrate that high-volume supply solutions, innovation in new precursors and global project and services infrastructure can help Oerlikon Solar – the leading thin film silicon equipment supplier – to further improve the competitiveness of its thin film silicon technology,” said Olivier Blachier, vice president electronics and solar markets for Air Liquide.