Sequential, high Uniformity, Cost Competitive Elemental Selenization and Sulphurization for CIGSSe2
Septembre 2019 - Août 2022
Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie GmbH
Smit Thermal Solutions BV
With a cell record efficiency of 23.35% [A1], Copper-Indium-Gallium-Sulfur-Selenide (“CIGS”) is a leading thin-film solar cell technology. Its record efficiency is above mc-Si (22.3%) [A2], the technology currently dominating the PV-market [A3]. Over the past two years, CIGS has been the fastest growing thin film PV technology. Around 600 MW of CIGS production capacity was added in 2018, with expansion plans for
multiple GWs of production in the next years.
The SUCCESS project will bring together the full value chain for CIGS development: PV module manufacturer Avancis (AVS), equipment supplier Smit Thermal Solutions (Smit), R&D institutions HZB and TNO and research lab CNRS-IMN.
The project has two goals:
Cost-reduction of sequential CIGS.
The project will deliver industrially viable technology for OPEX and CAPEX reduction by optimizing an in-line, vacuum-free CIGS formation process, which uses elemental selenium vapor. This absorber formation process is cheaper than the industrially-dominant batch process, which uses the expensive and highly toxic gas H2Se.
Efficiency-improvement of sequential CIGS.
Heavy alkali metal doping led to great CIGS efficiency improvement in the past few years. Thanks to this, CIGS now outperforms mc-Si at the record cell level. However, CIGS efficiencies still lags behind mc-Si at the module scale, where heavy alkali doping has yet to be implemented in an industrially viable manner. This consortium will bridge this efficiency gap by co-optimizing the CIGS formation, the alkali doping and the buffer interface using state-of-the-art semi-fabricates of AVS.
The expertise on heavy alkali doping still lies mainly in labs using co-evaporation CIGS, whereas AVS uses the industry-dominant sequential CIGS route. Hence, CNRS-IMN and HZB, who demonstrated high efficiencies with alkali doping for co-evaporated CIGS, will apply their expertise to sequential CIGS for implementation at AVS, one of the largest CIGS module manufacturers in the world