Sunfilm, AG and Applied
Materials, Inc., today announced that the world's first tandem junction
SunFab Thin Film Line installed at Sunfilm's Grossroehrsdorf facility achieved
factory acceptance on April 14, 2009. Using 5.7m2 substrates, the line passed
final acceptance test certification, verifying that it has met specifications
for producing solar photovoltaic modules with efficiencies of up to 8%, as well
as yield and overall annual capacity specifications. The line is now beginning
"We are pleased to have demonstrated that tandem junction technology
is scalable to large-size panels and that these higher efficiency panels can
be produced at volumes that make them ideal for utility scale solar installations,"
said Mike Splinter, chairman and CEO of Applied Materials. "The ramp of
SunFab tandem junction lines is an important business and technological achievement
that brings the industry another step closer to dramatically changing the way
the world generates energy."
"This is a major milestone in the ramp-up of our factory," said
Wolfgang Heinze, Sunfilm's COO and Chairman of the Executive Board. "The
engineering teams from Sunfilm and Applied Materials have worked together intensively
to get our performance to this impressive level. We are proud to have the first
tandem junction production line in the world where this certification has been
"This is an outstanding accomplishment for both Sunfilm and Applied.
It demonstrates technical excellence and our ability to collaborate and execute
to enable our customer's success," said Dr. Randhir Thakur, senior
vice president, general manager SunFab Thin Film Solar and Display Business
Group. "Rapidly driving leading edge technology into manufacturing is
a core capability of Applied and this milestone is another demonstration of
our ability to quickly move tandem junction technology from the lab to commercial
Thin film tandem junction panels use about 1/50th of the amount of silicon
per watt of electricity produced compared with traditional solar modules fabricated
using crystalline silicon wafers. By combining tandem junction technology with
ultra-large 5.7m2 substrates and volume manufacturing capabilities, Sunfilm
expects to meet a wide range of customer applications for full-, half- and quarter-size
panels, which can substantially reduce the cost of installed solar electricity.
A quarter-size 1.4m2 module generates up to 115Wp, while a full-size 5.7m2 panel
will deliver about 450Wp.
"We are very pleased with this achievement. This success makes tandem
junction thin film silicon a reality and positions Sunfilm to serve the market
with an environmentally-friendly product that achieves high kilowatt hours at
attractive costs," said Dr. Sven Hansen, Chief Investment Officer of Good
Energies and Chairman of Sunfilm's Supervisory Board.
"This is excellent news for our existing and future customers,"
said Dr. Sicco W.T. Westra, Chief Business Development Officer of Sunfilm. "We
can now begin delivery of our products in larger quantities. With a total annualized
capacity of over 120MWp between this first production line and our second production
line that we plan to start up later this year, we are in a strong position to
fulfill market demand."