Ceramic Industry

Corning and Oerlikon Create Solar Cell with 11.9% Efficiency

September 21, 2010

Corning Inc. and Oerlikon Solar recently announced that they have achieved a record-breaking 11.9% stabilized conversion efficiency in a silicon-tandem, research-sized photovoltaic (PV) cell. Results were confirmed by the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

Based on the combination of Oerlikon Solar’s Micromorph® technology and Corning’s thin specialty glass, the resulting solar cell’s energy conversion efficiency exceeds the current 11.7% industry record (set in 2004) and was achieved without the use of anti-reflective coating.

Increasing conversion efficiency, or the rate at which sunlight energy is converted into electric current, is a key industry challenge. This new technology is significant in the advancement of thin-film PVs, a rapidly progressing segment of the solar energy industry.

“The 11.9% efficiency achievement is an important step forward in thin-film innovation for our customers,” said Jurg Henz, Ph.D., Oerlikon Solar CEO. “We look forward to continued work with Corning on a roadmap to advance this technology to cell efficiencies of 12% and beyond.”

“We are thrilled with the milestone reached through this very strong collaboration between Oerlikon Solar and Corning,” said Gary Calabrese, Ph.D., vice president of Science and Technology and director of Corning Photovoltaic Glass Technologies. “More importantly, we are strongly encouraged by the great opportunities that these advancements make possible for the photovoltaics industry as the combined efforts of these two companies move forward to achieve even higher efficiencies with silicon tandem.”

For more information, visit www.oerlikon.com/solar  or www.corning.com.