i-PERC technology enables Si solar cell efficiencies beyond 20%


By Filip Duerinckx, Principal Engineer, IMEC; Emanuele Cornagliotti, Research Scientis, IMEC; Angel Uruena, Research Engineer, IMEC; Victor Prajapati, Silicon PV Researcher, IMEC; Patrick Choulat, R&D Engineer, IMEC; Philip Pieters, Director of Business Development for Energy, IMEC; Jef Poortmans, Director of the Solar and Organic Technologies Department, IMEC

A cost-effective and industrial version of the well-known passivated-emitter
and rear cell (PERC) concept has been developed by imec. The imec i-PERC technology comprises a large-area p-type monocrystalline Si solar cell with, on its front, a homogeneous emitter, a thin thermal oxide layer and fine-line Ag screen-printed contacts; on its rear, the cell has a chemically polished surface, low-cost rear dielectric stack layers and local Al contacts. Yielding certified efficiencies of up to 20% and fill factors of 80%, these cells clearly outperform aluminium back-surface field (Al-BSF) cells. During the development stages, process complexity and additional tool investment were kept to a minimum. It is
therefore believed that this technology can be picked up by companies in a straightforward way as the next-generation industrial solar cell technology.

Published In

For manufacturers who had their heads in the bunker during 2012, fighting falling ASPs and eroding margins, the nineteenth edition brings you details of what lies in store for this coming year. Wright Williams & Kelly return in this issue with their popular analysis of payback on technology buys; crucially they analyze n-type wafers, Al2O3 passivation and copper metallization. SERIS shows us how to achieve 18.7% efficiencies using low-cost etching techniques on diffused wafers. We also have two important technology roundups: CIGS from Helmholtz Berlin, and PV module encapsulation techniques from Fraunhofer ISE.

Read Next

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Solar Media Events
May 1, 2024
Dallas, Texas
Solar Media Events
May 21, 2024
Sydney, Australia