Screen printing with metallization pastes has been the workhorse for applying electrical contacts on solar cells. While other approaches are under evaluation for some time, this ‘traditional’ cell contacting procedure is expected to retain its clear dominance for the next decade, and probably beyond.
Metallization pastes, the process consumables in screen printing, are key in reducing costs and improving the performance of solar cells. A standard solar cell requires 3 types of pastes and every advanced cell architecture demands for at least one special paste formulation.
For our market survey on metallization pastes 2018, 11 suppliers provided data for 118 products. These paste models are listed in 7 different categories according to their application:
- Front contacting silver pastes
- Pastes used in double and dual printing
- Rear tabbing silver pastes
- Aluminum back surface field (BSF) paste
- Complete paste system for Passivated Emitter and Rear Cell (PERC) architecture
- Pastes for n-type cells
- Low temperature curable pastes, typically used for heterojunction cells and some thin film PV technologies
Still dominated by non-Chinese suppliers from Europe, US and Korea, like in any other PV segment, companies from China are increasingly penetrating the paste segment as well. Today, Chinese paste suppliers not only have accessed tier 2 and tier 3 cell producers, they have been able to enter also the supply chain of tier 1 cell manufacturers – for both back and front contacting pastes.
What has not changed is the focus on front contacting silver pastes and PERC. Within the front contact pastes segment, companies are increasingly coming up with formulations specific to monocrystalline and multicrystalline separately. Special pastes are increasingly hitting the market, such as for wire sawn multicrystalline wafers subjected to special texturization schemes.
Market survey on Metallization Pastes in detail:
After an introduction (1), an overview (2), and providing the most important aspects of pastes – silver & paste consumption, finger opening & dimension, and emitter profiles (3), we look ad advanced front contacting technologies (4) as well as advanced cell technologies – PERC, n-type, heterojunction (5). The market survey includes product descriptions for the different paste models listed (6). A conclusions chapter analyses the survey content (7), followed by a table with detailed product specifications (8) and an interview with Weiming Zhang, CTO of market leader Heraeus Photovoltaics (9).
The TaiyangNews Market Survey on Metallization Pastes 2018 is for download free of charge here.