European research and innovation hub centre imec has detailed a path for its nPERT (n-type Passivated Emitter and Rear Totally diffused) solar cell technology to reach conversion efficiencies in excess of 24% for volume production applications.
Nanoelectronics R&D organisation imec has reported a record 4-terminal Perovskite/silicon tandem photovoltaic cell with a conversion efficiency of 27.1%, while claiming further microcrystal engineering leads a path of efficiencies of over 30%.
China-based PV module materials and N-type mono and IBC (Interdigitated Back Contact) bifacial module manufacturer Jolywood is partnering with European research and innovation hub centre, imec to bring to market an industrialized bifacial solar cells with an average front-side conversion efficiency up to 21.9%.
Nanoelectronics R&D organisation imec has been appointed as the lead to a three-year €5 million EU funded R&D program on perovskite solar cells that brings together a number of European research and commercial partners.
Nanoelectronics research centre imec has taken a perovskite/silicon tandem mini-module-on-cell stack to a record 23.9% conversion efficiency, significantly exceeding its 20.2% efficiency figures reported in 2016.
Despite the major exhibition having a European tag, Intersolar Europe remains one of the most ‘international’ solar trade shows on the event calendar. As a result, new products launched at this show predominantly reflect trends and developments across multiple markets. On the first day of the exhibition, several new products stand-out for attention. More Day 1 updates are to follow.
Imec and EnergyVille are introducing new simulation software that accurately predicts the daily energy yield of solar cells and solar modules under varying meteorological and irradiation conditions at Intersolar Europe. Imec’s model combines optical, thermal and electrical parameters to provide detailed insight on thermal gradients in the solar module.
For many applications, bifacial modules offer a cost-effective way of increasing energy yields, which explains why the interest in bifacial cells in the PV industry is steadily growing and is expected to continue. However, the metallization of bifacial cells creates new challenges, as the same materials and techniques developed for n surfaces are generally not directly, or simultaneously, applicable to p surfaces; this necessitates sequential metallization of each side, resulting in added cost and/or complexity. This paper introduces a simple co-plating approach with the objective of simplifying the metallization of bifacial cells in a cost-effective way, and which is designed for multi-wire module integration. The metallization route is described, and high cell efficiencies of up to 22.4% are demonstrated using this co-plating approach with bifacial nPERT+ cells (where ‘+’ signifies the bifacial nature of these cells). Initial thermal-cycling reliability data of test structures and 1-cell laminates is presented. Finally, cost-of-ownership (COO) estimates are given, which predict the co-plating approach to be ~40% cheaper than bifacial screen-printed metallization. It is shown that the combination of the high efficiency potential of nPERT+ cells and the reduced costs of co-plating has the potential to deliver module-level costs of ~$0.25/Wpe (glass–glass configuration).
Nanoelectronics research centre imec said that copper-based solar cells have reached the same reliability standards as traditional silver-based solar cells in recently completed rapid-cycle testing of a limited number of specially prepared modules.
European scientists have teamed from imec, KIT and ZSW to fabricate a thin-film solar module (lab) stack made up of perovskite and Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) with a conversion efficiency of 17.8%, which surpasses the highest efficiencies of separate perovskite and CIGS modules.
A €2 million ERC (European Research Council) Starting Grant has been awarded to a young researcher at IMOMEC, imec’s associated lab at the Hasselt University to make processing breakthroughs with primarily CIGS (e) (copper indium gallium selenide) solar cells to achieve conversion efficiencies between 23% and 26% with an improved stability and reliability.
Work carried out by nanoelectronic research centre imec and equipment supplier BESI and wholly owned subsidiary, Meco Equipment Engineers has shown PV modules featuring copper plated solar cells are highly reliable and outperform IEC61215 life test criteria with only 1% degradation.