Hungary: EcoSolifer’s 100 MW HJT cell production line back on track

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The EcoSolifer Group today announced work is back on track at its planned 100 MWp HJT bifacial PV cell production line in Csorna, Hungary, after a two year pause.

“Subsequent to successful restructuring EcoSolifer Group and consequently new arranging its international appearance project of establishment 100MWp HeteroJunction photovoltaic cell manufacturing plant in Csorna (Hungary) can be continued with intensified activities,” it wrote in a statement.

The plant is expected to be commissioned in Q4 2018, while the first cells are set to come off the production line in Q1 or Q2 2019.

EcoSolifer says it will produce 6-inch HJT bifacial cells, with an average front side efficiency of 23,5%. This is expected to be “increased significantly in the near future to 25.5% and at module level over 22% by utilizing, amongst others, the results of the DISC (Double side contact cells with innovative carrier-selective contacts) Research and Innovation Program, Horizon 2020 – EcoSolifer is partnered in – funded by the European Union.”

In August 2015, EcoSolifer signed an around CHF 23 million (approx. US$29.5 million) agreement with Switzerland-based Meyer Burger Technology Ltd for the delivery of the necessary HJT equipment. Delivery was scheduled for late 2015, with EcoSolifer aiming to bring the first cells out in Q1 2016. It added at the time that it was planning to ramp up to 500 MW “in the short term.”

CEO, Ákos Haidegger stated, “the combination of Meyer Burger’s high efficiency bifacial heterojunction cell technology with EcoSolifer’s broad know-how in PV development and industrial scale production capability could trigger an extraordinarily dynamic impulse and influence the entire solar market.”

While production was delayed, Meyer Burger did deliver the equipment. In today’s statement, EcoSolifer says it was temporarily stored near the factory.

Cells of the future

In a white paper published in the August edition of pv magazine, scientists at Meyer Burger argued that high efficiency cell concepts, and in particular heterojunction, will be among the best technologies solar can bet on to achieve further innovation focused on cost reduction.

“HJT cell technology combines the advantages of monocrystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells with the good absorption and superior passivation characteristics of amorphous silicon (a-Si), which have been observed in a-Si thin film technology using readily available materials,” wrote Mario Schubert, senior product marketing specialist at Meyer Burger.

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