The Q-Cells research line: a development tool for new silicon solar cell technologies


By Markus Fischer, Director of R&D Processes, Q-Cells SE; Peter Wawer, Senior Staff Expert, Q-Cells SE; Helmut Hinneburg, Chief Technology Consultant, Q-Cells SE; Christian Klenke, Q-Cells SE; Andreas Mohr, Q-Cells SE; Jörg Müller, Q-Cells SE; Sven Schmidt, Head of the Research Line and Module Test Line, Q-Cells SE; Kevin Wachsmuth, Q-Cells SE; Peter Englehart, Q-Cells SE

This paper presents the Q-Cells research line (RL) as a core of the Reiner Lemoine Research Centre, including the technical set-up, the organization of the operation and current results of cell concepts processed in the RL on a regular basis. Trends of cell parameters for those processes are shown, and a focus is presented regarding the results of our high-efficiency cell concepts for multi- and monocyrstalline material processed in the RL with stabilized record efficiencies of 18.4% and 19.2%, respectively. In addition, we discuss the process flow and the results of a monitoring procedure that is used to check the rear-side passivation quality of the company’s equipment. Results of our current passivation stack show a surface recombination velocity of below Srear < 10cm/s, well suited to fabricating p-type Si solar cells with efficiencies above 20%.

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The 12th Edition was published in May 2011. Highlights from this edition include Conergy’s in-depth study of MES in PV facilities; University of Konstanz heralds the return of UMG-Si; RWTH Aachen University details the gettering options available for selective emitters; TU Delft presents an overview of breakage issues for silicon wafers and cells; and the University of Toledo outlines the benefits of RTSE in polarized light metroscopy.

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