Modules & Upstream Manufacturing

1366 chooses New York to build its first commercial-scale wafer facility

After years of delays, 1366 Technologies has announced plans to break ground on the factory to produce its proprietary Direct Wafers no later than the second quarter of 2016.

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SolarCity to begin production of >22% efficient PV modules this month

Calling it the “world’s most efficient rooftop solar panel”, the company says it will produce PV modules with greater than 22% efficiency at a pilot facility.

Fraunhofer debuts world record 25.1% efficient TOPCon solar cell

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE has achieved an efficiency of 25.1% on a both sides-contacted silicon solar cell. In addition to increasing efficiencies, the TOPCon technology is said to simplify manufacturing processes.

GTM Research: BoS cost reductions drive falling PV system prices

GTM Research’s latest report estimates that global PV system prices will fall an average of 40% by 2020, driven by balance of systems cost reductions.

3 GW of potential solar capacity on San Francisco roofs

Solar mapping provider Mapdwell has expanded to San Francisco, estimating that the city can host up to 3 GW of rooftop PV. This is a higher capacity per square mile than other cities.

Applied Materials eliminates wafer sawing and solar implant lines

Applied announced it would cut two of its solar product lines in its latest quarterly results, which caused a further bleeding of red ink in its Energy and Environmental Solutions business unit.

REC Group becomes third-largest PV supplier to US residential market

REC Group has risen rapidly in the U.S. residential sector, growing its market share five-fold in one year. It expects to grow this share further in 2015. The company has benefited from both technology innovation and political factors.

Jordan’s net metering expands into rural areas

Jordan has designed an effective net metering scheme that is now about to expand into rural areas. Net metering installations are projected to double at the end of 2015.

Expert analysis: The solar storage story

Led by the charge of Tesla’s headline-hogging Powerwall announcement, the selection of storage technologies unveiled at this year’s Intersolar Europe was refreshingly innovative, says IHS’s Sam Wilkinson.

BYD: EVA-free solar modules, 3 new energy storage batteries

At this year’s Intersolar Europe, BYD introduced a solar PV module without EVA, which promises an extended service life and improved efficiencies. Production is expected to reach up to 500 MW in 2016. It also unveiled a new battery and two energy storage systems.

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