Higher efficiency for solar cells by optimizing all aspects of the PV production process

From the wafer production, about diffusion, heating and metallization the business challenge in the Photovoltaics industry is the reduction of Levelized Cost Of Electricity (LCOE). This kind of cost calculation is the most important aspect to be competitive. To reach the highest efficiency within the production of solar modules we need efficiency gains along the whole PV manufacturing process.

PV value chain - Heraeus cell efficiency gain

Pillars for your success to optimize production processes and lower the cost per Wp

As a PV module manufacturer you need to look into all aspects of the fabrication process to continuously lower the LCOE per Wp. For this you need a partner that understands your process and helps you to win an overall picture. Together, more can be achieved than if looking into single aspects.

24 hours research for higher efficiency

Heraeus Photovoltaics innovative capacity helps to provide new efficient products.

Innovations are crucial in order to tackle the additional efficiency that needs to be delivered to the next lifecycle waiting already behind the next corner. The race for the fastest technology innovation that brings better efficiency is going on with extreme speed.

In order to win this race innovation teams of manufacturers and suppliers work hand in hand each on the core of their competence. A big team of Research & Development engineers as well as application engineers all around the world build the foundation for the high innovation power a partner needs to provide.

With such a global R&D footprint a partner provides 24 hours research to deliver the required 0.2% efficiency gain every 12 months. Together with your own innovation team, this innovative capacity enables you to drive the efficiency of the PV industry.

Scale Up perfectly matching Pastes

Heraeus: from first sample to full size batch in only two to three months.

The paste is a crucial aspect for the cell efficiency, as well as one of the cost drivers. To be able to tackle efficiency gains to fractions of a percent, it needs to match perfectly to all aspects of your materials and production process. Also there, you rely on a really good partner that is able to lead the pack for paste modification and deliver to your production.

First the matching is achieved in laboratory scale. You need frequent samples of pastes that are modified even in nuances of their traits. Once the match is done and the most efficient product mixture is found, you need a partner that is able to scale up very fast from a kilogram range to tons of silver paste.

Full process perspective for highest efficiency

Heraeus offers complementing products and services for highest efficiency.

Consistent quality of output and process stability are essential for profitability. In order to achieve it, all steps of a production process needs to perfectly fit to each other and to the used materials.

Deep analysis helps to decide for the best cell design and layout, paste selection and the optimal printing and firing process. A good partner needs to contribute expert knowledge in the application of pastes but also deep understanding of manufacturing processes. This broad experience can only be gained by a long-lasting track record in the industry.

In addition, advanced infrastructure at the supplier can make the difference for a competitive edge. For example, an own application lab enables a supplier to simulate the specific production settings in order to find individual solutions. With a global footprint, application engineers can also join the customer’s experts at his site and directly collaborate for best results. Ramp up cycles are accelerated and at the same time provide better results.

Many paste supplier focus on the metallization paste as such. However for the full process perspective a higher commitment is needed. With complementing services like scientific cooperation for best cell design or complementing products a partner helps you to leverage your goals.

Quality assurance for smooth manufacturing

Heraeus shows lowest batch-to-bath variations.

Quality is one of the most important cost drivers in any production, and one of the most crucial points is the quality of used materials.

In order to be able to deliver high quality materials your suppliers need to employ an end-to-end quality assurance: From their suppliers of raw materials to their processes and testing methods in order to show the lowest batch-to-batch variation, CPk > 1.67.

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