Sputtering Technology Advances in Germany

May 26, 2004 [SolarAccess.com] In close co-operation with the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy (ISE) in Freiburg (Germany), Applied Films Corporation successfully developed a new coating technology for wafer-based solar cells. The commonly used silicon nitride layer (SiN) which is applied at the front surface of polycrystalline solar cells serves as an anti-reflection coating and acts as a passivation layer for electronic defects in the bulk material – both effects significantly increase the efficiency of the solar cell. During the project, which was funded by the ministry of environment (BMU), efficiencies of 15% were achieved with sputtered silicon nitride layer – this result is equivalent to the best values achieved with the commonly used PECVD technology so far. Applied Films is a leading provider of thin film deposition equipment to diverse markets such as the flat panel display, the architectural, automotive and solar glass, and the consumer products packaging and electronics industries.
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