XsunX, developer of thin-film PV solar cell technologies and manufacturing processes, and Intevac, provider of magnetic media deposition equipment to the hard disk drive (HDD) industry, are working under a Joint Business Agreement to develop techniques and equipment for the production of commercially marketable processes and equipment for the manufacture of CIGS thin-film solar cells. Through the combination of cross-industry specialties, XsunX and Intevac plan to develop a new breed of thin-film PV manufacturing techniques to produce thin-film solar cells.
By joining forces, the companies plan to effectively combine their experience in each industry. Both companies are adapting high-rate production tools from the disk drive industry with process knowledge from the CIGS and thin-film industry. This approach focuses on maintaining a relatively small deposition area; initially about five-inch squares similar in size to silicon solar wafers, which the companies believe reduces a significant challenge that has faced the CIGS industry in the past: maintaining cell performance while scaling commercial production.
“We are thrilled to establish this relationship with Intevac, whose HDD manufacturing techniques are the standard of the industry,” said Tom Djokovich, chief executive officer, XsunX, “Intevac has the capacity to bring tremendous value to XsunX through their existing engineering and process development advancements. Likewise, our resources and expertise in the development of evaporative technologies, and the best processing parameters for the CIGS thin film layers, will help lay the foundation for the rapid development of this first-of-its-kind cross-industry technology.”