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High performance, high production rate... Heterojunction photovoltaic cells seem to be the future of solar energy. ENEL Green Power, the renewable energy division of the Italian electricity company, has just inaugurated the very first industrial production line in Europe for bifacial photovoltaic panels based on this technology combining crystalline and amorphous silicon in its 3SUN plant. The Liten, an institute of CEA Tech, played a major role in this first European project resulting from the development and pre-industrialization of its technology from 15 years of work.
The Sicilian plant will continuously produce about 500,000 panels per year. Double-sided photovoltaic panels have an efficiency of more than 20% and a nominal power of 400 W. The " bifacial " function will also make it possible to capture solar radiation from the rear surface and achieve an energy production that is 30% higher in relative terms. In addition, while the previous modules had a life cycle of up to 25 years, the new panels are durable enough to last more than 35 years, with high performance even in extreme weather conditions.
In the meantime, the Liten continues its collaboration with ENEL to exceed the theoretical limit of silicon efficiency over the next five years, thanks to constant technological innovation, and achieve more than 25% cell efficiency combined with advanced module and system designs.
CEA is a French government-funded technological research organisation in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defense and security, information technologies and health technologies. A prominent player in the European Research Area, it is involved in setting up collaborative projects with many partners around the world.