in News Departments > New & Noteworthy
print the content item

comments: 0

Generous funding of photovoltaic research and development (R&D) will generate disruptive next-generation technologies that will drive down cost per watt and restore profit margins to low double-digits by 2014, according to a new report from Lux Research.

The company created a Disruptive PV Technology Grid, which quantitatively evaluates new PV technologies for their cost-reduction potential (in $/W) and time to market (in years to widespread adoption). The grid shows that innovations in materials and cell designs will help stabilize module prices at $0.90/W, while the cost of goods sold will fall on account of improved cell efficiencies, cheaper processes and thinner wafers.

"Emerging PV technologies that are easy to scale, result in module efficiency gains, and [reduce] capital and materials costs will be game-changers for struggling module makers," says Fatima Toor, Lux research analyst and the lead author of the report.

Analysts evaluated various solar technologies on the horizon to assess which will be game changers and which will likely never be commercialized.

Among other findings, the report predicts that direct solidification will provide cheaper wafers, and that direct solidification of molten silicon offers the best way toward kerfless wafering (which eliminates losses from sawing). This technology is a top target on the Disruptive PV Technology Grid, with a market size of up to $600 million. 1366 Technologies is the clear leader and is expected to be the first to reach commercialization by 2013, according to Lux Research.

Alternatives to cell efficiency will increase. Anti-reflective and light-trapping coatings are second-tier technologies, but they are among the top targets, with a market size of more than $600 million. These technologies provide cost-effective alternatives for efficiency gains. According to Lux Research, Natcore is the leader in this space with likely commercialization this year.

Finally, new active layers are over the horizon. Copper zinc tin sulfide (CZTS) cell technology will eventually cannibalize thin-film copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) technology's market share through use of cheaper materials, eliminating the use of indium and gallium, the report predicts. Epitaxial Si technology - thin monocrystalline silicon - has the potential to replace amorphous silicon (a-Si) infrastructure and reach higher efficiencies than a-Si modules.



SolarEnergyTradeShow_id1384

Solar Careers
Latest Top Stories

Hawaiian Electric's Solar Plans Put New Focus On DG Interconnection

Hawaiian Electric Co.'s proposed energy plan includes ambitious goals for solar integration that address grid integrity issues. Installers, however, find little to cheer in the short run.


N.Y. Property Tax Exemption For Renewables Bill Ready For Signature

In a move that is expected to boost renewable energy in the state, the New York legislature has sent Gov. Andrew Cuomo a bill that would extend property tax exemptions for certain solar, wind and biomass projects to Jan. 1, 2025.


Are Solar Shingles Coming To A Rooftop Near You?

Despite the initial hype, the new technology has been slow to make inroads against conventional rooftop solar.


Solar Cell Production Line Upgrades Driving Higher PV Performance

Manufacturers of multicrystalline solar cells are seeking to improve performance by implementing new technologies on existing lines.


Own Or Lease? Think Of Rooftop Solar As A Car That Makes Money

While upfront cost is often the first issue on the prospective solar customer's mind, it should not be the only one.

SilcoTek
S&C Electric_id1352
Lufft_id1410
WIP_id1320
PVcobra_id1394