Project information

StarFire is a joint Dutch project of ECN (Energie Onderzoek Centrum Nederland) in Petten, Ferro Electronic Material Systems in Uden, and Solland Solar in Heerlen. All three parties are active players in the field of silicon wafer based solar cells: ECN as Research institute, Ferro as supplier of metal pastes, and Solland as manufacturer of solar cells.

In the recent years ECN has developed the so-called "PUM cell", a back-contact cell based on the MWT (metal wrap-through) technology (see figure below). Solland has licensed the technology from ECN and will bring this new cell technology to the market in 2007.

Objective of the StarFire project is the development of the next generation "PUM cell" with focus on thinner wafers (down to 150 µm) and higher efficiencies. The major technological challenges are the development of more shallow emitters, the replacement of the Aluminum BSF by a dielectric passivation layer, and the development of the respective concept for the rear side base contact. These research topics are summarized in the figure below.

The project is financially supported by the Dutch EOS-ES program under the project number IS063024 ("Dunne en grote PUM-zonnecellen van de toekomst").