The main focus of this vTech, the second of the summer, will be to review cell efficiency and manufacturing data gathered by select customers and partners utilizing Varian's Solion Blue process. Solion Blue is designed to produce high efficiency P-type mono-crystalline solar cells utilizing the proprietary patterned implant technology of Varian's Solion ion implant platform. Solion Blue fully exploits all the inherent advantages of ion implant including high throughput, high precision and superior junction formation.
The Solion Blue process reduces manufacturing costs and increases cell efficiency by increasing the blue-light response of the solar cell and eliminating the so called "dead zone" from the cell surface. By using Varian's Precision Patterned Implant (PPI) technology, contact regions on the cell surface can be doped to 50 ohms/sq while the field is doped more lightly at 80 ohms/sq. The lighter-doped field region will have inherently better blue response than cells utilizing blanket doping with phosphorous oxychloride (POCl3). Typically, average conversion efficiencies of a standard POCl3 process will increase to greater than 18.5% by implementing Solion Blue. Current champion data has shown cell efficiencies approaching 19%.
By eliminating the use of POCl3, Solion Blue users will achieve a simplified process flow that is easy to integrate into existing manufacturing lines. Edge-isolation process steps are eliminated, and the phosphor-silicate glass surface passivation layer created by the POCl3 process is replaced by a superior thermal oxide layer, further increasing efficiency.
Jim Mullin, GM of Varian's Solar Products group said, "The vTech at Valencia will be the first public presentation of Solion Blue customer data. We are very excited to provide proof of how our groundbreaking process technology increases cell efficiency and decreases manufacturing costs." Added Mullin, "Customer response to our Solion announcement at Intersolar earlier this year has been tremendous. As a result, we are expanding our solar cell manufacturing capability at our facility in Gloucester, Mass., to keep up with demo demand."
Those interested in attending the vTech conference in Valencia are invited to email Email Contact to request a reservation.
About Varian Semiconductor
Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates is the leading supplier of ion implant equipment to semiconductor manufacturers, enabling them to pack more, higher performing transistors into computer chips that are revolutionizing the electronics industry. Varian Semiconductor's products are used by chip manufacturers worldwide to produce high-performance semiconductor devices. Customers have made Varian Semiconductor the market leader in ion implant because of its architecturally superior products that lower their costs and improve their productivity. Varian Semiconductor operates globally and is headquartered in Gloucester, Massachusetts. More information can be found on Varian Semiconductor's web site at www.vsea.com.
Contacts: Bob Halliday Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer 978.282.7597 or Tom Baker Vice President, Finance 978.282.2301