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Fraunhofer ISE To Build New Centre For Solar Cell Research

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Impression of the new Centre for High-Efficiency Solar Cells in Freiburg, Germany

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE is constructing a new building with a clean room equipped to handle the latest technological challenges.

The cornerstone of the 'Centre for High-Efficiency Solar Cells' was laid on October 4, 2017 in Freiburg, Germany.

Fraunhofer ISE has recently set several records for solar cell efficiencies: the world record for multicrystalline silicon solar cells at 22.3 percent efficiency, a 25.8 percent efficiency rate for a monocrystalline cell based on TOPCon technology, and – exceeding the limits of silicon as a material – 31.3 percent efficiency for a tandem solar cell comprising a III-V multi-junction solar cell on a silicon cell. With its III-V multi-junction concentrator solar cell, the institute also achieved the overall world record for photovoltaic efficiency at 46.1 percent.

Fraunhofer ISE’s new Cenyte will include infrastructure to replace the outdated clean room for solar cell development and is also perfectly equipped for the next generation of solar cells.

“We are delighted that in designing the new clean room facilities, we were able to adjust the infrastructure to meet the latest technological challenges," says institute director Andreas Bett, adding: “We are grateful to the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg for financing the new laboratory building. With their contributions, they are recognising the importance of German research activities in the area of photovoltaics."

Hans-Martin Henning, the other institute director under Fraunhofer ISE’s new joint leadership system, stresses the prominent role that photovoltaics will play in a future sustainable energy system based on renewable energies: “When it comes to the cost-effective realisation of the energy transition, our energy system analyses make clear that photovoltaics and wind energy will be the pillars of our future energy supply."

Baden-Württemberg’s Minister of Economic Affairs, Labor and Housing, Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut emphasised that with its work, Fraunhofer ISE is making a “major contribution to the affordability and success of the energy transition." She also noted the institute’s international standing and excellent reputation in solar research. “The new Centre for High-Efficiency Solar Cells is an important element in maintaining this position."

The federal and state governments provided a total of 32.6 million euros for the project. Baden-Württemberg’s contribution also communicates its strength as a Centre for the photovoltaics industry.


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