California, United States [RenewableEnergyWorld.com] Silicon Genesis (SiGen) announced that it has produced its first ever 20um thickness solar-cell foils. The 125 mm square monocrystalline silicon (mono c-Si) foils were found to be robust and highly flexible. Neither a thin-film or a wafer, the new form-factor was named a “foil” to better describe its unique physical characteristics as a thin, flexible yet free-standing material, the company said.
The 20um solar-cell foil combines the advantages of the low poly utilization of thin-film PV with the high efficiency potential of mono c-Si PV. It is anticipated that the 20um foil will extend the reach of conventional silicon PV absorber technology well into the future. This mono c-Si foil is the result of continuous development of recently demonstrated pilot line production of full size wafers with thicknesses of 150um and 50um. These pilot capabilities are now being used for development of high volume manufacturing equipment.
The availability of 20um mono c-Si foils will allow PV cell manufacturers to explore new applications and formats with cost effective production. The kerf-free nature of the PolyMax system enables savings of material and the development of a new category using thinner mono c-Si wafers and foils.
“The high efficiency potential of our 20um c-Si foil technology creates new opportunities for the solar PV industry. The flexibility of the 20um foils allows for development of diverse applications such as BIPV and flexible PV. This strengthens my belief that thin-film technology adoption will be limited by the cost and performance advantages of ultra-thin PolyMax technology,” said Francois Henley, CEO of SiGen.