Chemnitz, Germany, June 13, 2023— In order to strengthen the competitiveness of the European photovoltaic industry and create appeals for investments, the EU funding project “HighLite” was launched in 2020. The project, which involved 18 European partners from research and industry, ended in May 2023.
3D-Micromac AG, the industry leader in laser micromachining and roll-to-roll laser systems for the semiconductor, photovoltaic, glass, and display markets, developed within the framework of the “HighLite” project the new microCELL MCS, a high-throughput system for cutting solar cells.
At one of the final meetings at the Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre (imec), Belgium, the project results were presented to representatives of the European Commission.
The project’s main goal was to develop knowledge-based production solutions for solar modules with high performance, low cost, and excellent environmental characteristics. One part of the project was developing production solutions for cutting and assembling 100 to 160 µm thin silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells into modules in shingle design with high efficiencies. Therefore 3D-Micromac developed the high throughput system microCELL MCS for cutting half cells, 1/3 cells up to 1/6 cell strips for wafer sizes up to M12+ (G12+). Based on the patented TLS-Dicing® technology, the high-precision laser system separates solar cells with clean and microcrack-free edges. The laser system significantly contributes to increasing module output with a throughput of more than 6,000 wafers per hour. The development of this system was an essential step toward achieving the HighLite project goals.
Well-known representatives of the European photovoltaic product industry have successfully applied the microCELL MCS laser system. Among them are, for example, Heckert Solar GmbH from Germany and the Italian energy group Enel S.p.A. At the 3D-Micromac site in Chemnitz, microCELL MCS systems are permanently available to process applications and contract manufacturing orders.