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Rise of thin-film technologies

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By Denis Lenardič, PV Resources, Jesenice, Slovenia

Until the year 2002, wafer-based crystalline silicon solar cells were almost exclusively the solar cell technology used for large-scale power plants. Since then, steady growth in the market share for thin-film technologies has been observed, although crystalline silicon technology still remains the most important solar cell technology used in large-scale PV power plants. The market share of thin-film modules, especially CdTe modules, has been continuously increasing in recent years, most notably in the German market. However, other countries like Spain, the USA, Italy and France have seen some large-scale CdTe-based modules being installed in power plants recently.

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The fifth edition of Photovoltaics International was published in August 2009. This issue grants a first look at SolarWorld’s new U.S. facilities, IMEC tackles inline processing of thinner c-Si wafers in Cell Processing and our PV Modules section reveals a new method of EVA encapsulant cross-link density measurement by BP Solar.

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