New from CMC: amorphous Silicon (a-Si) thin film solar photovoltaic (PV) panels generating 87-137 watts each!
CMC introduces Sun Well Solar as a fully owned subsidiary of CMC Magnetics Corp. Established in 2007, Sun Well Solar has already commenced production of photovoltaic (PV) thin film solar panels, using the amorphous silicon (a-Si) process developed by Oerlikon (www.oerlikon.com). Our flagship PV plant is located in Taoyuan, Taiwan, and is currently producing at a rate of 1500 panels per day, equivalent to a 40MW/year rate. This production will increase to 95MW/year in 2009. CMC is a 10 year customer of Oerlikon equipment and is experienced in rapidly achieving high efficiencies with their processes. CMC’s specialty in all of its businesses is producing items characterized by precision applied multiple thin film coatings in clean room environments. The Sun Well Solar a-SI thin film PV panels’ technology benefits from CMC ‘s 30 year knowhow in making reliable, quality thin film high tech items in a mass environment, resulting in ever lower cost curves.
The CMC Sun Well a-SI thin film PV panels enjoy numerous advantages over conventional crystalline wafer based panels:
- Uses only 1/600 th of the scarce silicon used in crystalline wafers.
- Uses no heavy metals or other toxic chemicals used in many other PV products.
- Excellent efficiency, particularly in high temperature environments such as summer time, compared to crystalline wafers whose performance dramatically degrades in high temperature climates. Peak power requirements in the modern world typically are driven by air conditioning requirements during the hottest hours of the day. Sun Well a-SI thin film PV panels have a clear advantage!
- Excellent light absorption. Thin film a-Si panels start generating power at first light in the morning through sunset, unlike crystalline wafers which have a much narrower power generation curve. While the nominal efficiency of a crystalline wafer may be higher than a a-si thin film wafer at high noon, the actual daily, monthly and annual efficiency output of a thin film a-si PV panel is, even in its current state of the art, dramatically higher than for crystalline PV.
- Proven road map to dramatically achieve higher efficiencies: CMC Sun Well is already investing in the Oerlikon dual tandem process which will dramatically increase power output of our panels starting in mid 2009 from the current 87W per panel to 114W per panel.
- Ability to produce semi-transparent a-SI thin film panels suitable for installation as high-rise glass walls at a minor power output reduction. Building occupants can see the outside directly through PV panels that are powering the building!
- The Sun Well PV panels have dimension of 1300mm x 1100mm size, (approx 4’2’’x3’8’’), meaning a much lower interconnect requirement compared to arrays of small crystalline wafers, leading to greater system reliability. The Sun Well panels can be handled, installed and moved with conventional construction equipment and tools. Each panel weighs just 25 kgs (55 lbs).
- CMC’s Sun Well Solar is a new division of a US$ 1 billion, publicly traded ( Taiwan) 30 year young corporation committed to a win–win strategy with its customers.