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Overview of automation in the photovoltaic industry

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By Kevin Reddig, Team Leader, Fraunhofer IPA

The aim of this paper is to provide an overview of the methods of automation and their application areas. Current technologies and their applications in both crystalline and thin-film technology will be the main focus, with detailing of the value chain, starting from the feedstock to the finished product. For ease of discussion, the focus is on the part of the value chain where discrete manufacturing on the substrates takes place: for thin film, the feed-in of substrates into the line, and for crystalline technologies, the focus is on wafer manufacturing.

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The fourth edition of Photovoltaics International was published in May 2009. It features an exclusive interview with First Solar’s Bruce Sohn on manufacturing and the future. SunPower also outlines the economic benefits of LCOE drivers in Power Generation and Fraunhofer IPA gives an overview of automation in the photovoltaic industry.

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