Suntech announces 20% efficiency for mass-production multi-PERC cell

Suntech will now be able to offer 330 W modules, a 15 W increase on its previous model. According to a Suntech press release, the company first released its monocrystalline “Hypro” module in April 2015, and in June 2016 achieved 21.3% efficiency with these cells.

The release also states that hydrogenation technology, developed by Suntech and the University of New South Wales in Australia, can reduce light induced degradation to zero in multicrystalline cells.

Suntech is one of many manufacturers to devote much of its resources to research & development, as efficiency and performance continue to be key differentiators in the current climate of low module prices.

Parent company Shunfeng International Clean Energy (SFCE) acquired Suntech in 2014 after it had declared bankruptcy. SFCE recently announced that it expects to post a loss of around US$133 million for 2016, citing curtailment issues in China and loans taken out to expand its downstream solar business as the main causes of its poor performance.

The group also announced it had abandoned plans to sell its group unit Jiangsu Shunfeng Photovoltaic Technology, which includes the Suntech business, to Hong Kong based Asia-Pacific Investment Management Ltd., a company owned by investor Kin Ming Cheng, who is already a substantial shareholder in SFCE.