Cell manufacturers worldwide, are in the process of transitioning to advanced cell structures in order to boost cell efficiencies and drive down the cost per watt. The photovoltaic (PV) learning curve has traditionally seen a 20% decline in module prices for every doubling of total installed modules. While this rate of reduction has primarily been driven by scale, we are now at a point where cell efficiency will become crucial in accelerating cost reduction.
Applied Materials launched its new Applied Baccini® Pegaso™ solar cell manufacturing platform today. The Pegaso system represents the new state of the art in solar cell manufacturing and will help to drive the solar industry into the future.
But that’s not why I’m posting this video. I’m posting it because the Pegaso system is one of the most elegant pieces of machinery I’ve ever seen.
InterSolar Europe, the industry’s largest tradeshow was held in Munich, Germany last week. With more than 2,200 exhibitors and more than 75,000visitors, one of the most important industry shows took place at an important inflection point in the industry.
This was Applied Materials’ fourth year participating in InterSolar Europe and our theme this year, ‘Powering the c-Si Roadmap’ set the stage for the various activities that took place including equipment demos at the booth, executive presentations, a software symposium and customer meetings.
Applied Materials’ Baccini screen printers are the solar industry’s long-time standard for low-cost, high-volume deposition of metal contacts on solar cells. But do not imagine that this long history represents the end of the road. In fact new advances in screen printing are major contributors to the solar industry’s ongoing reductions in solar cell processing costs.
Applied Materials is participating in this year's Solar Power International 2010 (SPI) which is touted as North America's largest business-to-business solar event, running from Oct 12-14th in Los Angeles, California.
The President of Applied Materials' Solar division, Dr. Charlie Gay, is featured in a Q&A article in the August issue of the global photovoltaic business magazine, InterPV. The following is a brief except of the article.
Applied Materials was founded in 1967 and has since become the leading supplier of manufacturing equipment to the semiconductor, display and more recently, the Photovoltaic (PV) industry. Today, virtually every semiconductor chip and liquid crystal flat panel display in the world is produced using Applied Materials manufacturing equipment.
During yesterday’s earnings call Applied Materials CEO Mike Splinter and CFO George Davis discussed the company’s third quarter results. Overall the company exceeded its third quarter guidance driven by strong results in our semiconductor, display and crystalline silicon solar businesses.
A look at our Solar Business
Net sales for the Energy and Environmental Solutions (EES) segment was $387 million dollars, an increase of 133% and was the third highest booking quarter for EES despite the absence of any thin film orders.
In addition to market demand and government incentives, extremely advanced technologies are required to support the steadily decreasing price of power generated by photovoltaic (PV) cells. One of the most crucial technologies is the metallization on the two sides of the wafer to conduct the electrons, that is, electric power, out of the cell. This is mostly done with screen printing, where a conductive paste is forced through the openings of a fabric (called a screen) to establish contact with the wafer.