Trina Solar sets efficiency record with c-Si cell

Trina Solar’s State Key Laboratory of PV Science and Technology of China has set a new record for industrial high-efficiency p-type mono-crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells, the company reported Wednesday.

The cell was fabricated on a large-size industrial boron-doped Cz-Si substrate with an advanced Honey Plus process that integrated both front and back surface passivation. The 156 x 156-square-millimeter solar cell reached a total-area efficiency of 22.13%. Germany’s Fraunhofer ISE CalLab confirmed the result.

This efficiency record breaks the previous record of 21.4% for the same type of solar cell that was also established by the State Key Laboratory of Trina Solar in 2014, demonstrating an efficiency improvement of 0.73 percentage points within a year.

"We believe that this is the highest efficiency ever reported to date for a p-type industrial solar cell," said Pierre Verlinden, Trina Solar vice president and chief scientist. "This Honey Plus solar cell, fabricated with a low-cost industrial process, sits on the efficiency scale which is just 2.87% below the world record of 25% established by the University of New South Wales with a 2 x 2-square-centimeter laboratory solar cell."

Verlinden added that Trina Solar’s research and development teams have achieved two significant records with PERC solar cell technologies this year: "We reached an efficiency of 21.25% with multi-crystalline silicon PERC cells, followed a few weeks later with a 22.13% efficiency record for mono-crystalline silicon cells. This also demonstrates the enormous potential of p-type substrates."

Verlinden said the company would continue pushing technological innovations and implementing laboratory breakthroughs into commercial production. "We will continue to develop high efficiency solar cell products to further reduce the cost of photovoltaic power generation," adding that the company was committed to making solar electricity as competitive as traditional baseload fossil fuel power generation.