Silver paste from DuPont offers lower processing temperatures for thin film solar cells

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DuPont Microcircuit Materials (MCM) has introduced ‘DuPont Solamet PV416’ photovoltaic metallization paste used to raise the efficiency of thin film photovoltaic cells. The front-side silver paste material has the capability to be processed at temperatures below 140°C, and is designed to provide improved contact resistance, conductivity, adhesion and fine line resolution when printed on Transparent Conductive Oxides (TCOs). The new paste has been claimed to have boosted CIGS thin-film manufacturer, Midsummer AB’s cell efficiencies by as much as 0.5%.

Problem

Improving thin film cell efficiencies, requires the ability to print fine lines with a high aspect ratio for greater conductivity, while maintaining a low-cost process.

Solution

DuPont’s Solamet PV416 photovoltaic metallization paste can be processed at lower temperatures than similar pastes used in crystalline silicon cells, and its special chemistry provides essential performance characteristics such as high conductivity, adhesion and line resolution.  With improved printed conductivity (10mOhm/sq@25micron), low contact resistance (3mOhm.cm2), and improved line resolution (<100 micron), it is ideal for solar cells built on thin film photovoltaic substrates whether flexible or stainless steel. It offers excellent fine line printability with minimal flow-out on TCOs as well as excellent electrical properties. It is particularly suited for use on CIGS and other thin film PV technologies.

Applications

Designed for screen printing front-side conductor in CIGS, a-Si and other thin film solar cells.

Platform

Solamet PV416 photovoltaic metallization paste has a silver-based polymer composition and is designed to be screen printed in high volume applications. Depending on the temperature tolerance of the cell and substrate it can be dried at temperatures between 130°C and 180°C. Drying times can vary depending on the efficiency of the drier. Longer drying times and higher drying temperatures will improve the adhesion, resistivity and abrasion resistance.

Availability

April 2012 onwards.

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