Solar Thin Film Technology
Thin-film forming and flexibility are the future and general trend of the development of the photovoltaic industry. On June 5, 2012, Hanergy Holdings purchased a CIGS thin film battery manufacturer Solibro, a subsidiary of Germany's Q-CELLS.
The company's copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) thin-film solar cells have the highest module conversion efficiency in the world, with R&D conversion rates of up to 21%, and have been certified by the German Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (Fraunhofer ISE). On January 9, 2013, Hanergy Holding Group announced the completion of M&A of American company MiaSolé at its Beijing headquarters, taking the second step of overseas technology integration.
This M&A made Hanergy obtain the copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) technology with the world's highest conversion rate, achieving a mass production conversion rate of 15.5%, becoming a thin-film solar energy company that is globally leading in scale and technology.
The era of mobile energy has already come
Our focus on thin film solar: the most advanced solar technology worldwide
Glass-Based CIGS Thin Film
CIGS Sputtering Thin Film
CIGS Co-evaporation Thin Film
Flexible GaAs Thin Film
Alta Devices (U.S.A)
Alta Devices was founded in 2008 on California's Silicon Valley. The enterprise is mainly devoted to the R&D and manufacturing of highly-efficient GaAs thin-film solar technology. Its founders are among the world's three to five most authoritative characters in the semi-conductor technology fields. They are Professor Harry Atwater at the California Institute of Technology and Professor Eli Yablonovltch at the University of California, Berkeley.
Alta devices envisions "Powering the unplugged world" as its main endeavor. Their single-junction solar cells and modules hold the highest photoelectric conversion efficiency in the world. They are the thinnest, most flexible product with the best power generation performance. The GaAs highly-efficient thin-film solar cells from Alta Devices can be perfectly integrated into the end user system. This is an ideal PV product for unmanned systems, consumer electronics, automobiles, wearable devices and other equipment with specific
Global Solar Energy ® (U.S.A)
Global Solar Energy, an enterprise founded on 1996, has now become the world's leading provider of thin-film (made of copper indium gallium and selenium, CIGS) solar power technology solutions. Global Solar Energy's light, flexible solar modules are globally used in commercial, residential, governmental and mobile applications. Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) is the most innovative of Global Solar Energy's achievements. By integrating solar technology onto buildings, Global Solar Energy is certainly redefining the meaning of solar power. They have industry-leading, efficient thin-film solar materials, and cooperate with leading enterprises in the construction industry to produce innovative, efficient and practical products. Energy and construction now march ahead hand by hand.
MiaSolé Hi-Tech (USA)
MiaSolé Hi-Tech launched its CIGS technology R&D and equipment development program in 2003. The company's R&D team believes CIGS technology is very promising, and is thus devoted to developing equipment and technology which can be produced at a low cost. Based upon the reliable and repeated operation of equipment, its conversion efficiency can be compared with that of silicon.
The MiaSolé Hi-Tech R&D team is devoted to developing equipment, deposition technology and thin-film power-generating products. The group has developed a large number of technical experts. It has a leading role in the fields of sputtering equipment, roll-to-roll process, sputtering deposition techniques, materials, and equipment characterization and reliability. MiaSole's researchers include engineers and scientists with years of experience, as well as university graduates with new skills and ideas. Most members of its R&D team hold a bachelor's degree or above.
MiaSolé Hi-Tech also collaborates with academic institutions and research laboratories to further promote the development of CIGS technology.
Solibro Hi-Tech (Germany)
Solibro Hi-Tech was established in 2012. Currently, it is devoted to the development of Solibro's CIGS thin film power generation technology and equipment engineering. Solibro Hi-Tech is currently carrying out process development and new equipment testing on the German Bitterfeld-Wolfen production line. After carrying out an inspection of the actual production status, new technologies can be introduced at will upon any produced equipment. In addition, Solibro Hi-Tech has established a production management department to manage the certification of new technologies, thus ensuring that newly developed products are recognized by the market. At the same time, the production management department is also responsible for the certification of system components and for system design. In the future, Solibro Hi-Tech could become a paradigmatic example of a technology supplier for production lines in China. There are 73 employees working in this institution.
Solibro Research AB (Sweden)
Solibro Research AB was founded in 2007 with the aim of developing and improving Solibro's CIGS co-evaporation technology.
The R&D team was formed as early as 2003. It currently has 30 employees, 10 of whom have Doctorate degrees. This institution has obtained the world's leading laboratories' conversion efficiency for cells and miniature components: the German Fraunhofer - ISE (Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems) certified a 21.0% conversion efficiency rate for the 1 cm2 cell; and a 18.7% conversion efficiency rate for the 16 cm2 cell, which is composed of four single battery miniature modules. The independently developed small-sized equipment, which is the R&D team’s latest technological achievement, can also be applied through cooperation with Uppsela University's thin-film solar technology group .
Solibro Research AB has a complete pilot line which is used to make full-size prototype components. In addition to CIGS development, Solibro Research AB is also developing system components and reliability testing.
Chengdu R&D Center
Founded in 2011, the Chengdu Research and Development Center is the world's largest research and development center for thin-film technology research.
During its early stages, it mainly focused on the fabrication techniques of amorphous silicon/silicon-germanium multi-junction photovoltaic components. Upon this basis, the center leased one of Hanergy Sichuan Photovoltaic Co., Ltd.’s fully-equipped production lines. Therefore, the production process, especially the manufacturing and development of PECVD, can be completed directly under the production environment, and can also be seamlessly connected with all of Hanergy's production bases. Since the beginning of 2012, a large number of R&D efforts have been launched in the development of nanocrystalline silicon, which will further enhance the production capacity of silicon-based thin-film photov-
taic modules. One of the key components of research and development is to test, adjust and verify the core devices used in large-scale production of low-cost components, especially regarding the autonomously designed PECVD devices. Another key part of R&D is to conduct research based upon the now existent silicon-based thin-film devices and their processes.
A fully equipped photovoltaic components reliable laboratory is now assessing and validating the life and durability of a product working at full capacity. Both R&C centers have a wide range of laboratory equipment as well as many tools to study the characterization of material devices.
With around 120 engineers and 60 technicians, about 100 patents and numerous papers have been submitted and published respectively.
Beijing R&D Center
Founded in 2009, the Beijing Research and Development Center is devoted to the development and fabrication of thin-film power-generation equipment, while it delivers cutting-edge technology and low-cost integrated production line solutions. The center was approved ISO 9001 Certification in 2009, and awarded the title of "High-tech Enterprise" by the Beijing Municipal Science & Technology Commission in 2010.
The main products of the center include PECVD, PVD and low pressure chemical vapor deposition (LPCVD) systems, as well as some specialized vacuum equipment. The center's 72 glass single-room PECVD equipment is the largest single PECVD system in the world, with a deposition area of 57 square meters. Since its establishment, the center has delivered PECVD and PVD systems to several photovoltaic manufacturers, with a cumulative annual capacity of about 2GW. The center’s equipment is mainly used for the production of silicon germanium, nanocrystalline silicon and CIGS thin film photovoltaics.
Wujin product developing center
Also known as Hanergy Global Photovoltaic Application Group's product development center and Jiangsu Zhengguang Photovoltaic Co., Ltd., the Wujin Product Developing Center was founded in November 2014. The center is located in Changzhou, Jiangsu province, a beautiful city on the shores of Taihu Lake just south of the Yangtze River. The Wujin Product Development Center is mainly devoted to building an application platform for thin-film power generation products. It conducts research on thin-film solar cells, modules and their various applications, all with the aim of providing customers with end-to-end solutions to meet their every need.
At present, the Wujin Product Development Center has dozen of workers, including engineers and researchers. Among them, senior researchers account for nearly 80% of the workforce, and are led by several experts in the industry distributed across various specialized fields such as curtain walls, structures, agriculture, and system integration.