Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Chance for competition in photovoltaic industry

02.10.2014

Low cost highly efficient industrial solar cells

With 8 to 10 Cents per kilowatt hour, the production cost of photovoltaic electricity in Germany ranges below electricity cost from gas-fired or coal-fired power plants. Photovoltaic electricity will be even cheaper for high efficient solar cells and modules manufactured by laser techniques.

One year ago, scientists from the Institute for Photovoltaics (ipv) of the University of Stuttgart demonstrated 22 % efficiency by fabricating back-contacted solar cells by laser processes. This world record efficiency was obtained on small 20 mm x 20 mm large cells. In a new project, financed by the German Federal Ministry of Economic affairs and Energy, the ipv will now scale up all their processes to industrial cells of 125 mm x 125 mm area with 22 % efficiency.

Standard silicon solar cells feature silver based front side contacts which shadow parts of the cell. Under the metallic contacts no radiation will reach the cell, no electrons will be generated; thus, the efficiency is considerably reduced. In case of back contacted solar cells, as the name implies, all contacts are located on the backside. The front side rests bare and without hindrance for energy production.

However, conventional back contact cells suffer from high production cost: Fine structures and tedious work is required to supply many doped areas and contacts on the backside. In standard silicon solar cells between the front and the back, two differently doped areas induce an electric field, the so-called large area pn-junction.

Usually the doping is done by a single large-area diffusion of impurity atoms, like boron or phosphor, in silicon at high temperatures. Back contacted solar cells, instead, need a lot but tiny pn-junctions on the backside. Thus, complex and expensive masking steps are necessary in cell processing.

To solve this problem, researchers of the ipv developed laser processes for the production of back contacted solar cells without any masking. Lasers allow to locally structure and contact the doped areas with a resolution of less than a three-hundredth millimeter. Compared to other processes for back contact solar cells, the laser-process at ipv is fast, simple, and cost-efficient but yields highly efficient cells.

Therefore, this project is able to contribute to a restart of the German photovoltaic (PV) industry: Large-area PV modules with efficiencies above 20 % will be produced at costs below 50 Cent per Watt. Such German high tech modules, produced under German standards, are able to compete with the much lower efficient modules produced in Far East - highly subsidized and manufactured under low social and environmental standards.

Further informations:
Prof. Dr. J. H. Werner, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Photovoltaics, Tel. +49-711-685-67141,
E-Mail: juergen.werner (at) ipv.uni-stuttgart.de
Dr. Renate Zapf-Gottwick, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Photovoltaics, Tel. +49-711-685-69225,
E-Mail: renate.zapf-gottwick (at) ipv.uni-stuttgart.de
Andrea Mayer-Grenu, University of Stuttgart, Dep. Hochschulkommunikation, Tel. 0711/685-82176,
E-Mail: andrea.mayer-grenu (at) hkom.uni-stuttgart.de

Andrea Mayer-Grenu | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Further information:
http://www.uni-stuttgart.de/

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Scientists print sensors on gummi candy: creating microelectrode arrays on soft materials
21.06.2018 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Electron sandwich doubles thermoelectric performance
20.06.2018 | Hokkaido University

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Temperature-controlled fiber-optic light source with liquid core

In a recent publication in the renowned journal Optica, scientists of Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) in Jena showed that they can accurately control the optical properties of liquid-core fiber lasers and therefore their spectral band width by temperature and pressure tuning.

Already last year, the researchers provided experimental proof of a new dynamic of hybrid solitons– temporally and spectrally stationary light waves resulting...

Im Focus: Overdosing on Calcium

Nano crystals impact stem cell fate during bone formation

Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...

Im Focus: AchemAsia 2019 will take place in Shanghai

Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.

Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...

Im Focus: First real-time test of Li-Fi utilization for the industrial Internet of Things

The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.

Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.

Im Focus: Sharp images with flexible fibers

An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.

Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Munich conference on asteroid detection, tracking and defense

13.06.2018 | Event News

2nd International Baltic Earth Conference in Denmark: “The Baltic Sea region in Transition”

08.06.2018 | Event News

ISEKI_Food 2018: Conference with Holistic View of Food Production

05.06.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Graphene assembled film shows higher thermal conductivity than graphite film

22.06.2018 | Materials Sciences

Fast rising bedrock below West Antarctica reveals an extremely fluid Earth mantle

22.06.2018 | Earth Sciences

Zebrafish's near 360 degree UV-vision knocks stripes off Google Street View

22.06.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>