Silicon PV cell technology
Silicon solar cells are the workhorse of the photovoltaic industry, having a market share of about 85% of the world production of solar cells. Imec’s crystalline silicon solar research aims to increase the energy conversion efficiency and the total energy yield, while at the same time reducing the manufacturing cost.
Imec’s developments involve new process step development (e.g. new passivation, doped layers, patterning, metallization, epitaxial processes, thin wafer handling & processing, ...) and the implementation of these new processing steps in monofacial and bifacial n-type PERT solar cells.
Monofacial solar cells
Imec’s monofacial n-PERT cells have record efficiencies up to 22.5% and are using electro-plated NiCu front metallisation.
Bifacial solar cells
With high efficiency bifacial solar cells the energy yield of PV production plants in kWh/kWp can be increased. Our bifacial cells have close to 100% bifaciality and with a monofacial efficiency up to 22.6%. The metallization can be made with fine-line plated Ni contacts which are then further interconnected with a multi-wire technology, or they can be made with standard screen printed metallisation.
PV Module technology
To further reduce the cost and improve the reliability of silicon solar cell modules, imec is developing an innovative and patented technology in which the wires connecting the different cells are woven into the encapsulant material. This enables an enormous module manufacturing simplification, while at the same time the reduced stress on the wafers increases the module life time.
Energy yield modeling
Starting from the physical parameters of solar cells and modules, combined with accurate weather data, imec has developed a very accurate simulation model for the determination of the electricity generation from PV cell and modules in varying weather circumstances. This model can be used the optimize solar cells for different climatological regions, or to better forecast the real-time production of power plants.
Through participation in our silicon-PV affiliation program or via direct bilateral collaborations we can provide companies with innovative cutting edge solar cell and PV module technology solutions.
How can we help you?
Some examples of what we have done
At imec bright people build a bright future.
You could be one of these builders. Whether you are an engineer or an operator, a consultant or PhD student, we need a versatile group of people to help us create positive change.Join the forward thinkers
Modelling sun-tracking PV systems installed on uneven terrain
Join the energy transition: tackle the challenges of real-life PV systems design with advanced computing
Surface passivation of CIGS solar cell devices
High efficiency thin Film CIGS solar cell development
Development of reproducible ultra-thin Cu(In,Ga)Se2 absorber material for solar cell production
High efficiency and low cost thin film CIGS solar cells
Ultra-high band gap transparent solar cells
Development of transparent solar cellsMore job opportunities