California, United States [RenewableEnergyWorld.com] Silicon Genesis (SiGen) announced today that it has started producing some of the first ever kerf-free 150-micrometer (um) solar-cell substrates at its new solar development and pilot production facility. The facility includes more than 50,000 square feet of specially designed space to house the company’s PolyMax pilot and prototype high-volume manufacturing equipment.
SiGen’s pilot line started producing 150um thick, full size 125mm wafers and will soon start manufacturing 156mm wafers. The expanded pilot line will be used to produce substrate samples and further develop the PolyMax high-volume manufacturing equipment to convert silicon ingots into thin silicon wafers ranging from 50-150um in thickness. The production of 150um thick wafers will allow immediate adoption by PV cell manufacturers using existing processes and automation, the company said.
“The manufacturing of 150um wafers in the new pilot line facility with higher production capacity represents a significant milestone in our growth strategy. The introduction of non-sawed wafers is a major cost reduction throughout the entire PV value chain. We predict that this method will be so effective in reducing the cost of high-efficiency monocrystalline PV that it will reverse thin-film technology adoption,” said Francois Henley, president and CEO of SiGen.