You are here

US solar firm to start producing next generation CdTe thin film PV modules

Production of 82.8W modules expected to have 12 per cent aperture efficiency

Production of 82.8W next-generation CdTe thin-film PV modules to start this year
Mass production of the thin film PV modules will start at Abound Solar’s factory in Colorado later this year

US thin film manufacturer Abound Solar has announced production of 82.8W next generation PV technology with 12 per cent aperture efficiency. The company, which manufactures next-generation thin film cadmium telluride (CdTe) photovoltaic technology, is producing the modules factory in Longmont, Colorado.

The 82.8W module represents a 12.2 per cent aperture efficiency and is being verified by the US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL).

The first 82W module was produced in January this year on existing production equipment. Several hundred modules reaching that wattage have been manufactured thus far. The company expects to begin mass production of the new modules in the second half of 2012. Production of 85W modules is slated for the first half of 2013.

Craig Witsoe, president and chief executive office of Abound Solar said the development “underscores the tremendous capabilities of CdTe thin film technology as a leading solution for competitive, reliable solar power made in the US”. He added the company expects to continue increasing its module efficiency and performance.

“We believe thin-film will soon outpace other forms of PV in regards to cost-efficiency,” he said.

Abound Solar produced its one-millionth module in December 2011. Expansion of the Longmont factory is currently underway, with plans to further expand within the US next year. The company “uses a robust, commercial-scale, continuous manufacturing process that results in low-cost, high-quality modules that provide superior performance in high-heat and diffuse light conditions.”

The company recently commissioned a 1MW solar PV plant in Kadiri, Andhra Pradesh, India, developed in partnership with Solar Integration Systems India Private Limited (Solarsis), a solar system integration company in India. The project was commissioned under the Rooftop and Other Small Solar Power Generation Plant Scheme administered by IREDA under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission.

It is the first project in the state of Andhra Pradesh to use Abound Solar CdTe thin-film modules. “The combination of Abound Solar’s low-cost modules and Solarsis’ homegrown racking and mounting solution cuts down on the overall balance-of-system (BoS) cost of the project,” the US firm said.

“India is a key market for Abound Solar,” said Witsoe. “We have a significant installed base in India and see this growing in 2012.”