Solutia Debuts Anti-Corrosion PV Module Encapsulant


Solutia Inc. has introduced Saflex PS41 PVB, a new encapsulant designed to prevent corrosion in solar cells. The new encapsulant also inhibits discoloration, making it an ideal module encapsulant for use in building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV), according to the company.

‘Metal electromigration has long been a reliability concern in the electronics industry,’ says Francois Koran, Solutia's photovoltaic development manager. ‘It's highly problematic for the photovoltaic market as well because of panel discoloration.’

Metal electromigration is an electrochemical process where metal (e.g., silver) in contact with an insulating material in a humid environment and under an applied electric field migrates into the insulating material. The net result of metal migration can be either a reduction in insulation resistance or a short circuit, which may lead to circuit failure, Solutia says. For solar applications, module manufacturers are concerned that metal migration will affect the long-term performance of solar modules, particularly in BIPV applications.

Saflex PS41's patent-pending technology can prevent electromigration when in contact with certain metals such as silver, nickel and vanadium. It is often the presence of these oxides that leads to module discoloration. Silver, for example, is a widely used metal in solar cell stacks and conductive adhesives. Elemental analysis shows reduced silver levels in Saflex PS41 compared to other standard encapsulants, Solutia says.

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SOURCE: Solutia Inc.

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