The Insight M series in-line process control/optimization tool is specifically designed for thin-film solar cell manufacturing …
Inline process control for TF
The Insight M series in-line process control/optimization tool is specifically designed for thin-film solar cell manufacturing (including single- or multijunction silicon). A wide-area metrology offers continuous monitoring and whole-panel mapping of critical material and process parameters with the actual product stack “on the fly” at full production throughput. Software modules allow easy implementation and customization of intelligent line monitoring recipes, spanning all production stages, from process integration, through pilot and multi-location volume manufacturing.
The Pulseo 355-10 Q-switched diode-pumped solid-state industrial laser provides 10W of 355nm output at 90kHz with a short pulse width of <23ns; combined with higher repetition rates, reduce undesired thermal effects and results in higher throughput with less damage to the parts. Key application is in crystalline silicon photovoltaic solar cell manufacturing processes such as wafer scribing and dicing, drilling, and marking.
Santa Clara, CA;
The Blaze incorporates patented “SpotLock” pumping technology to minimize thermal effects in the laser crystal, which can negatively affect performance and stability of high-power laser systems. This system meets needs of emitter wrap-through solar cell technology, capable of producing >10,000 holes/sec (vs. 3000-5000 holes/sec with conventional laser systems) at 120µm wafer thickness. Versions are available with 80W in IR and 50W in green; the short-pulse version is specified at <60ns, the long-pulse version at <700ns.
RPMC Lasers Inc., O’Fallon, MO;
Passivation coating for mc-Si
The Silexium antireflective passivation coating nearly eliminates light-induced degradation (LID), which can reduce module efficiencies by up to 5% in first hours of sun exposure — up to 88% less LID than traditional silane-based SiNx coatings. They also increase shunt (i.e. leakage) resistance and reduce reverse current (due to shading/low light) “by an order of magnitude,” the company claims. The precursor for the films is delivered to industry standard PECVD tools using the company’s silane-free gas generation system.
Sixtron Advanced Materials, Dorval, QC Canada;
PV output monitoring
The MaxVisio touchscreen unit displays actual output of a photovoltaic plant as well as a record of its monthly, yearly, and total outputs (and with an additional MaxMeteo sensor, irradiation data and solar cell temperatures). An integrated data logger stores the measurement values of as many as 20 inverters for ten years. The system can be hung on a wall or placed on a desktop, and connected to SolarMax inverters via Ethernet or RS485 interface. It can be used as a standalone data logger for smaller PV plants without remote monitoring, or used with Internet-based data logger MaxWeb as a local display unit.
Sputnik Engineering, Biel, Switzerland;
+41 (0) 32-346-5600,
Silicone potting, sealing materials
A new line of silicon-based products targets potting and sealing applications in solar PV. Four potting materials (KE-200, KE-200F, KE-210, KE-210F) are designed to weatherproof solar panel junction boxes to protect electronics; the two-component silicone materials quickly cure at room temperature (panels turned over in 60min), and offer adhesion strength and heat stability to various substrates. Three sealing materials (KE-45, KE-4828, KE-220) are engineered to seal the junction box to the backsheet and provide a waterproof seal between the PV panel and frame. Features include strong adhesion to backsheet materials (e.g. PVF, PET), fast room-temperature cure, and elasticity over a wide temperature range (-40°C to 180°C).
The System SMX-ISI in situ x-ray fluorescence metrology platform provides composition and thickness measurements for thin-film solar photovoltaic metal film stacks on flexible roll-to-roll substrates such as stainless steel, aluminum, and polyimide, or rigid substrates such as float glass. Typical measurement applications include Mo thickness and all copper indium gallium selenide combinations.
Solar Metrology, Holbrook, NY;
Drying addition to metallization line
The PVD3000, an enhancement to the PV3000 metallization line codeveloped with Heller Industries, adds solar cell drying based on hot air convection, which is conducive to precision thermal control at lower drying temperatures. The technology creates improved air exchange within the process chamber which enables the dryer to manage the increased VOC volume associated with raised throughput. A specialist catalyst incorporated within the process chamber converts the VOCs to simpler compounds such as carbon dioxide and water; byproduct heat is used to enhance the drying process and reduce overall power consumption.
DEK Solar, Weymouth, UK;
+44 1305 760760,
[email protected], www.deksolar.com
Inline wafer precleaner
This inline cleaning technology, developed in cooperation with Swiss company N. Bugher AG, moves the sawn wafer block inline on a carrier through the system; the cleaning process takes directly in the cutting gap with special ceramic carrier plates. The cleaning agent flows into interior channels through the kerfs created in the sawing process, to be distributed evenly across the wafer surface. Benefits include low breakage rate, cleaning capacity of up to 4 wafer blocks/hour, and improvements in bonding, separating, and final cleaning. The system is suitable for 500-100mm panel (beam) and ultrathin mono- and multicrystalline wafers.
Gebr. Schmid GmbH + Co., Freudenstadt, Germany;
[email protected], www.schmid-group.com.