N type cell mainly includes N-PERT/N-PERL cell, IBC cell and HJT cell etc., it is expecting towards the theoretical highest efficiency of c-Si solar cells. Compare with P type c-Si cell, N type c-Si cell has advantages of high minority carrier lifetime, no LID, good low-light effect and small temperature coefficient etc. ITRPV 2017 estimates that, market share of N type silicon will continue increasing to more than 10% in 2019 and more than 26% in 2027.
N type cell technology and capacity expansion
In Feb 2017, Taizhou Jolywood 2.1GW N type mono-Si bifacial solar cell Phase-2 started construction. The project total investment is CNY 1.65bn, will construct 14 N type mono-Si bifacial solar cell production lines. Phase-1, 1GW Project, started construction in May 2016, first piece N type mono-Si bifacial solar cell successfully came off the assembly line in Sep 2016. Jolywood N-PERT bifacial solar cell transfer efficiency exceeds 22%, back side cell efficiency is more than 19%; 60-pc module front side power is as high as 330W, back side power has 10-30% gain, and module comprehensive output power can reach 380W. In Sep., multi kinds of N type mono-Si modules independently R&D by Jolywood successfully passed CQC’s mono-Si PV module ‘Top Runner’ level-1 authentication.
In Feb 2017, China Intellectual Electric Power Technology Co.,Ltd. (CIE) HJT solar cell production line started installation. This production line is China first HJT solar cell production line, and designed capacity is 160MW, currently the production line is under testing. Zhongzhi Power high efficiency HJT solar cell industrialization Phase-1 engineering project EIA shows that, the project total investment is CNY 2bn. After project is construction, high efficiency HJT solar cell and high efficiency solar cell module’s capacity will reach 1GW.
In Mar 2017, Germany Fraunhofer ISE used N type TOPCon Technology and increased multi-Si cell’s efficiency to 21.9%.
In Apr 2017, Jolywood signed 10GW N type IBC bifacial PV cell investment agreement with Quzhou, Zhejiang. The project total investment is estimated to be CNY 20bn. Phase-1, 3GW project, will start construction before end of 2017, investment is about CNY 6bn, and plans to finish construction within 18 months after starts construction. In Jun, Jolywood M2 sized N type IBC cell transfer efficiency broke 23% and reached 23.04%.
In May, 2017, Jinneng Group ultra high efficiency HJT cell module project put into operation. Jinneng Group 2GW HJT c-Si high efficiency PV cell module project total investment is CNY 5.6bn, construction by 2 phases. Among, Phase-1, 500MW project, started construction in 2016. Currently, Phase-1 has construction 100MW HJT cell module production line, cell highest efficiency exceeds 23%.
In May 2017, large area 6 inches IBC solar cell, which independent R&D by Trina Solar PV Science and Technology National Key Laboratory, efficiency hit a historic high once again, reaches 24.13%, open circuit voltage exceeds 700mV.
In Aug 2017, Japan Kaneka Co. combined IBC and HJT technology, R&D HBC structured c-Si cell (180cm2) reached 26.63%, world highest transfer efficiency, which breaks the record of 26.33%, created by the company in 2016.
In Aug 2017, Linyang PV first piece N type high efficiency mono-Si bifacial cell came off the assembly line successfully. Linyang PV 2GW high efficiency mono-Si bifacial cell and module project started construction in Oct 2016, total investment is CNY 2bn and construction by 3 phases. Currently, Phase-1 has entered trial production stage, Phase-2 and Phase-3 project plan to implement in 2018 and 2019. What is more, Linyang PV successfully passed TüV Rheinland N type high efficiency bifacial solar cell module test recently.
In Aug 2017, International and China Science and Technology Cooperation Program ‘21% High Efficiency N Type Mono-Si Solar Cell Co-Development’, undertaken by Yingli, passed acceptance and approval of MOST expert group successfully. The project was cooperated and developed by Yingli and NERCTE and PI Berlin, using ion implantation technology and silicon surface micro processing technology, realized more than 1% increase of N type mono-Si cell transfer efficiency, demonstration line cell efficiency reached 21.56%, solar cell bifacial power generation module (60-pc) reached more than 300W.
N type cell device
In Mar 2017, Swiss PV device manufacturer INDEOtec announced that, the company gained new order from KAUST, which would be used in high efficiency HJT solar cell’s OCTOPUS II – PECVD /PVD deposition system. In Jun, INDEOtech gained OCTOPUS II–PECVD/PVD deposition system order from Fraunhofer ISE.
In Jul 2017, Ideal Energy announced that, its PECVD device gained 2 clients’ 3 HJT mass production lines’ new orders. In Aug, Ideal Energy announced that its PECVD device gained 2 HJT mass production lines’ new orders.
In Aug 2017, Amtech released announcement, its 2017 Fiscal Year Q3 PV new increased sales order amount is USD 54.2M. This achievement mainly comes from bifacial N type technology whole production line orders from China clients.
In Oct 2017, Meyer Burger confirmed that it gained main orders from an Italian PV manufacturer, and would provide it with HJT solar cell coating technology. The order valued about USD 45.6M, including installation of HELiA platform, HJT cell coating system, on-site training and service etc., and can realize 200MW’s cell annual output. It is reported that, related device will be delivered one after another from middle of 2018, and estimates to start production business at the beginning of 2019.
In Oct 2017, Singulus announced that, it gained new device orders from clients from China and the US, including its SILEX II wet cleaning batch processing systems, mainly using in high efficiency HJT solar cell technology.
In Oct 2017, HJT solar cell localization high-end device (sino-foreign JV) project signing ceremony was held in Taixing High-tech Zone, three parties of signing come from GCL (Group) Holdings, CIE and Germany Singulus. The project’s signing plans to further promote HJT solar cell’s industrialization and high-end device manufacturing’s localization.
N type cell metallization technology
In Apr 2017, PV metallization paste manufacturer Heraeus promoted a series of new products and services on SNEC 2017, including 9360 series metallization paste, which special used for N type cell. SOL9360A is fit for P+ emitter electrode N type cell, it can guarantee good contact performance, and improve fine wire screen printing’s printability. Its ultra fine fingers are benefit for realizing 0.1% efficiency gains, Besides, Heraeus and Meyer Burger will launch cooperation, promote development of metallization paste which suits for HJT solar cell.
N type cell industry meeting
In Dec 2017, ASIACHEM, famous energy and chemical industry research institute, announces that, will hold 2nd N Type c-Si Cell and Bifacial Module Forum in Changzhou, Jiangsu on Dec 12. The upcoming conference will discuss PV industrial outlook & N-type solar cell & bifacial module market; N-type silicon wafer quality improvement & cost reduction outlook; N-PERT/N-PERL, HJT & IBC cells technology updates and mass production; N-type cell performance improvement potential & cost reduction; N-type solar cell metallization process & advanced pastes; bifacial module system optimization and real power generation benefits, etc.