1366 Technologies and Hanwha Q CELLS Boost Direct Wafer® Champion Cell Efficiency to 20.3% and Cell Efficiency Average to 20.1%
Direct Wafer Products Exceed the Average of the Multi Reference Group While Enabling Ultra-Low Cost
BEDFORD, Mass. & SEOUL, South Korea--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Silicon wafer manufacturer 1366 Technologies today announced a new performance record for 1366's Direct Wafer® technology with the achievement of 20.3% cell efficiency, independently confirmed by Fraunhofer ISE CalLab. The company achieved this repeated efficiency record in a joint effort together with its development partner Hanwha Q CELLS. 1366's Direct Wafer products in combination with Hanwha Q CELLS' Q.ANTUM cell technology also achieved an average efficiency of 20.1% on the pilot line with standard processes used in mass production. The collaboration between the two companies has boosted the cell efficiency of the Direct Wafer technology by an average of 0.8% per year.
"Our strategic partnership with Hanwha Q CELLS is paving the way for a solar future where high-efficiency cells are realized at a substantially lower cost," said Frank van Mierlo, CEO, 1366 Technologies. "Working at the melt level, rather than an ingot, means you can play with the make-up of the wafer as it is being formed. The wafer is no longer a commodity but a source for efficiency gains and differentiation. With the combined benefits of our Direct Wafer products and Hanwha's Q.ANTUM cell technologies, we are rapidly closing in on 21% efficiency and demonstrating performance previously only achievable with monocrystalline wafers."
"Together, Hanwha Q CELLS and 1366 have made meaningful progress in increasing the efficiency of solar cells based on Direct Wafers. The latest performance record again shows the potential that lies in combining 1366's innovative Direct Wafer® technology with our established Q.ANTUM cell technology," said Daniel Jeong, Global CTO and Executive Vice President at Hanwha Q CELLS.
"The simple fact is sawing ingots - whether cast multi or pulled mono - is wasteful and energy intensive. It's an old process for a modern industry. While streamlining the supply chain has lowered costs, the ability to provide further value through innovation is severely constrained," continued van Mierlo. "Direct Wafer products deliver the lowest LCOE for a cost-driven industry and we do it without sacrificing performance, using just 1/3 the energy."
The wafers were produced with 1366's current production furnaces in Bedford, MA and the cell fabrication was completed using production process equipment at Hanwha Q CELLS' Center for Technology, Innovation, and Quality in Thalheim, Germany.
ABOUT 1366 TECHNOLOGIES
1366 Technologies aims to make solar energy the cheapest form of power the world has ever known. The Company's Direct Wafer® technology replaces a decades-old solar manufacturing process to make a superior class of silicon wafers, the building blocks of solar panels, at a fraction of today's cost. These wafers deliver high performance and an unbeatable cost advantage to cell and module manufacturers that seek innovative products without having to make significant investments in new equipment and processes. Developed by a veteran team of scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs, the company's novel approach breaks the historic efficiency and cost tradeoffs of photovoltaics. 1366 Technologies is headquartered in Bedford, MA. For more information, please visit www.1366tech.com.
ABOUT HANWHA Q CELLS
Hanwha Q CELLS Co., Ltd. (NASDAQ:HQCL) is one of the world's largest and most recognized photovoltaic manufacturers for its high-performance, high-quality solar cells and modules. It is headquartered in Seoul, South Korea (Global Executive HQ) and Thalheim, Germany (Technology & Innovation HQ) with its diverse international manufacturing facilities in Malaysia and China. Hanwha Q CELLS offers the full spectrum of photovoltaic products, applications and solutions, from modules to kits to systems to large scale solar power plants. Through its growing global business network spanning Europe, North America, Asia, South America, Africa and the Middle East, the company provides excellent services and long-term partnerships to its customers in the utility, commercial, governmental and residential markets. Hanwha Q CELLS is a flagship company of Hanwha Group, a FORTUNE Global 500 firm and a Top 10 business enterprise in South Korea. For more information, visit: http://www.hanwha-qcells.com/.