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The race to prepare silicon heterojunction solar photovoltaic systems for manufacturing is on, and a new milestone was recently reached. Liten, a CEA Tech institute, produced a batch of the cells with a record yield of 24% and a peak yield of 24.25% certified by CalTec for the best-performing cells. The results are even more impressive given that the measurements were taken over the entire surface of the M2 format, 244 cm2 of cells.
Liten, which has been developing silicon heterojunction cell technology for around fifteen years, produced the cells using industrial equipment at 2,400 units per hour. These results were made possible in part by improving the PECVD deposition of amorphous silicon nanolayers and the conductive and antireflective transparent oxide layers, as well as by reducing wafer-handling damage during manufacturing.
The test runs confirm that silicon heterojunction cell technology is viable both in terms of the technology and manufacturability. The researchers are now focusing on further improvements to manufacturability (lower cost and higher quality and productivity) while pushing conversion yields above 24%.
CEA is a French government-funded technological research organisation in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defense and security, information technologies and health technologies. A prominent player in the European Research Area, it is involved in setting up collaborative projects with many partners around the world.