Power Electronics

Company To Ramp Up Solar Cell Production And Efficiency

SANYO will invest 10 billion yen in fiscal year (FY) 2007 and a total of 40 billion yen or more in heterojunction with intrinsic thin-layer (HIT)* solar cells by FY 2010. In FY 2007, SANYO will increase solar cell production capacity by 100 MW at the Osaka, Nishikinohama factory to a total of 210 MW. SANYO’s overall solar cell production capacity will increase to 260 MW in FY 2007, by combining the solar cell production capacity at Shimane SANYO Industrial Co.

Along with increased production capacity, SANYO will strengthen its photovoltaic products by raising its HIT solar cell conversion efficiency. SANYO will make thinner wafers to deal with the silicon material problem and at the same time increase solar cell conversion efficiency. In normal conditions making thinner multi-crystal silicon solar cells decreases efficiency but SANYO plans by FY 2010, to have wafers thinner than 150 µm and cell conversion efficiency higher than 22%.

SANYO will add a new type HIT solar cell that uses multi-crystal silicon-based wafers to meet a wide range of customer needs. SANYO has previously used single- crystal silicon wafers but now will also use multi-crystal silicon wafers as well. In FY 2007, SANYO will sell multi-crystal silicon based photovoltaic modules which cells have 15%-16% cell conversion efficiency, but by 2008 will aim to sell photovoltaic modules with cell conversion efficiency higher than 18%, by building on SANYO’s hybrid technology of amorphous and crystalline silicon.

In addition, SANYO will look at forming a new alliance to expand procurement of silicon material which will clear any bottlenecks for business expansion. SANYO will examine the realignment of production bases in Japan and overseas to optimize production.

*HIT (Heterojunction with Intrinsic Thin-layer) hybrid solar cells are composed of a thin single-crystal silicon wafer surrounded by ultra thin amorphous silicon layers.

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