Advent Solar, Inc., a leading manufacturer of innovative solar cells and modules, today announced an agreement with Deutsche Solar AG, a subsidiary of SolarWorld AG and one of the largest global producers of mono- and multi-crystalline silicon wafers for the photovoltaic (PV) industry.
Under the agreement, Deutsche Solar will provide Advent Solar with its SOLSIX(R) wafers through 2018 with a total value of more than $350M. This steady silicon wafer supply will enable Advent Solar's rapid business expansion through the introduction and delivery of next-generation solar modules based on its Ventura Technology, the solar industry's first comprehensive cell-to-module solar architecture.
"Advent Solar(R) Ventura(TM) Technology is designed to increase efficiencies at every stage of development, from cell design to manufacturing and production, and wafers are a critical component of this approach," said Peter Green, president and chief executive officer of Advent Solar. "Advent Solar is excited about SolarWorld's SOLSIX wafers and their proven ability to obtain top values during cell manufacturing. Our agreement with Deutsche Solar significantly increases Advent Solar's secured wafers and will allow us to quickly begin offering modules based on Ventura Solar Technology."
SolarWorld's subsidiary Deutsche Solar has served the solar industry since 1994 and is one of the most established manufacturers of solar wafers. Deutsche Solar is known as a reliable supplier of high-quality wafers, securing its silicon by a three-pronged strategy of purchasing from established players, manufacturing within the SolarWorld Group using a proprietary technology and using a recycling process based on its own developments. The SolarWorld SOLSIX wafers are made in Germany in a location with more than 50 years of manufacturing experience in the field of crystalline silicon using processes which are certified to ISO 9001 and ISO 14001.
Peter Woditsch, chief executive officer of Deutsche Solar explained, "Advent Solar is one of the technology-pioneers in PV. Deutsche Solar is excited to apply our industry-leading silicon wafers to the Advent Solar Ventura Technology and is committed to the mission of delivering innovative solar solutions that bring the industry closer to grid parity."
Advent Solar will use silicon wafers supplied by Deutsche Solar to begin developing products based on its Ventura Solar Technology. Advent Solar Ventura Technology provides a system-level design approach by combining Emitter-Wrap Through (EWT) back-contact cells with semiconductor device manufacturing methods to create a highly scalable platform for module manufacturing. Ventura Solar Technology also enables Advent Solar to reduce silicon thickness by minimizing the handling of cells during the manufacturing process. The fully automated, soft-handling manufacturing flow can accommodate silicon wafers that are much thinner than conventional assembly methods, providing scalability for silicon cost reductions and higher yields.
"The SOLSIX wafers have shown excellent results during initial testing with our high-performance solar modules," said Martin Hermann, Advent Solar's chief strategy officer, who is responsible for the company's sourcing strategy. "SolarWorld and its subsidiary Deutsche Solar have a solid reputation for consistently supplying quality silicon wafers, which made them an ideal sourcing candidate for Advent Solar."
Ventura Technology enables Advent Solar to develop solar cells and modules that deliver high-energy output by optimizing silicon light capture, and dramatically improving cell and module-level connectivity to minimize resistive losses. The architecture provides higher cell-to-module efficiency, while using thinner silicon wafers to reduce costs.