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Solar Frontier CIS cells set new efficiency record

The copper indium sulphide modules have an efficiency of almost 15 percent - which is similar to polycrystalline silicon cells
Solar Frontier says it has set a a new efficiency record from its Kunitomi Plant in Miyazaki, Japan.

The cell achieved 14.6% conversion efficiency.

The rated capacity of this 1257mm x 977mm module has been certified by Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL) at 179.8W.

This achievement is similar to the efficiency of mass-marketed polycrystalline silicon modules.

Solar Frontier’s success in manufacturing this new CIS module on a production line at the Kunitomi Plant suggests an accelerated outlook for transferring this technology to volume production.



Solar Frontier Kunitomi solar facility

CIS technology has the potential to achieve even higher energy conversion efficiency, and there is also room for further production cost reductions.

The company's manufacturing process requires a lower quantity of raw materials and energy, which also means its CIS solar modules are more energy friendly.

The higher efficiencies strengthen the competitive edge of a CIS solar module that is rapidly gaining a reputation for higher actual output in the real world.

“Champion modules are a key validation of technology transfer from Solar Frontier’s laboratories,” says Solar Frontier CTO, Satoru Kuriyagawa. “This is the kind of result we look for in the production factory once we have confirmed experimental results and simulation in our pilot plant at Atsugi Research Center.”

According to Shyam Mehta, Senior Solar Analyst at GTM Research in the article, “The module market landscape”, GTM Solar Summit 2013, the conversion efficiency of polycrystalline silicon modules was considered to be around 15 percent in April, 2013.
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