Meyer Burger (SIX Swiss Exchange: MBTN) and Oerlikon Systems signed a strategic distribution, cooperation & license agreement for the SOLARIS thin-film coating equipment. As part of the agreement, Meyer Burger’s sales & service organization will represent the SOLARIS equipment for crystalline Silicon PV application in most regions, such as China, Taiwan, Europe, Middle East, India & the Americas. Furthermore, the two tech nology firms will work together to further increase the capabilities of the SOLARIS system for anti-reflective coatings and to develop other innovative process steps within the solar cell manufacturing process.
The SOLARIS system is a high speed single wafer sputter system based on advanced nanotechnology. The system is similar in design to other high performance manufacturing systems from Oerlikon for optical discs and semiconductors. In solar cell or photovoltaic production very thin layers of silicon nitride are applied on the front of the cells. Each wafer is handled and coated separately. With six coating chambers, a special carrier transport mechanism and a wide range of potential layer material,.the system is very flexible in its possible configurations, such as for anti-reflective coatings and back-side passivation & metallization for crystalline solar cells. The machine is able to treat standard wafer formats from 125 mm2 to 156 mm2, with an average amounting up to 1,200 wafers per hour. Changing substrate formats, layer materials or processes takes less than an hour. A new system can be ramped up in less than one week.
With a footprint of only 2 by 3.3 meters, SOLARIS requires 80 % less floor space than comparable systems in the industry. Another remarkable characteristic is the leading low energy consumption of less then 50 percent compared to the industry standard. SOLARIS also shows an impressive high uptime thanks to very low main tenance requirements. The recent live demo of the system at the EU PVSEC tradeshow in Hamburg generated a lot of interest & excitement in the industry.
“Meyer Burger’s focus, strength and experience in the crystalline silicon PV market will enable us to reach out to cell manufacturers faster & more efficiently. Furthermore, we see significant synergies by leveraging our own organisation with Meyer Burger’s capabilities in automation, wafer & cell measurement tools and – last but not least – with Meyer Burger’s expertise in wafer surface design.” says Andreas Dill, Head of Oerlikon Systems.
“We are very happy to start a new partnership with Oerlikon Systems – a true leader in thin film technology. This agreement is in line with our growth strategy to expand our successful model of providing core technologies in photovoltaics – to the benefit of our customers by further reducing cost of ownership while increasing conver sion efficiencies and plant output” adds Peter Pauli, CEO of Meyer Burger.
Pictures showing the Solaris System designed for front- and back side coating of crystalline Silicon Solar Cells:
For further information see www.oerlikon.com/systems/solaris
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