SiOnyx Inc., developer of a semiconductor process known as Black Silicon, says its patented laser texturing technology has achieved a 0.3% (absolute) efficiency boost over industry-standard baseline solar cells. The SiOnyx 156 mm multicrystalline silicon cells, made in collaboration with German research institute ISC Konstanz, achieved average absolute efficiencies of over 17%.
SiOnyx Black Silicon boosts efficiency in thinner wafers, which is vital for reducing the cost of silicon-based solar cells, the company explains. Average efficiencies of 16.9% were achieved for 150-micron-thick multicrystalline cells that are 20% thinner than wafers in production today and represent a cost reduction of 10% to 15%.
All cells were processed and tested at ISC Konstanz using a standard emitter screen-printed metal and an aluminum back surface field. Black Silicon texturing was performed using a Coherent Aethon tool with a Talisker picosecond laser.