Innovative screen printing process allows significant reduction of silver consumption

At the Photovoltaic Technology Evaluation Center PV-TEC of Freiburg, Germany based Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, scientists in cooperation with Koenen GmbH, Murakami Co. Ltd. and Kissel + Wolf GmbH have developed a novel screen printing process for the »fine line metallization« of silicon solar cells, i.e. the application of extremely narrow and thin contacts for deriving the current.
According to Fraunhofer ISE, the contacts are only 19 micrometers wide and 18 micrometers high. This can reduce the consumption of silver by up to 30 percent compared to conventional processes. Despite the reduced use of materials, the electrical properties of the contacts are so good that, especially with newer technologies such as multi-busbar interconnection with eight to 15 busbars, a » a notable reduction of the power loss in the contact fingers« is possible.

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