Switzerland's largest solar PV module manufacturing facility in production

The Pramac Group has begun producing thin film PV modules at its new 30 MWp facility near Locarno, Switzerland.

The plant uses Oerlikon Solar's Micromorph end-to-end manufacturing solution, and Pramac says it has reached production around 7 months after completing the facility.

According to sources at Pramac, this phase of the facility will produce approximately 250,000 solar PV modules each year. One year's worth of output from the facility "would be able to cover the approximate area of all of the currently installed photovoltaic installations in Switzerland", a statement explained.

In the capital-intensive solar module manufacturing business, minimising the amount of time between the start of construction and the start of commercial production and revenues is important. Implementing an end-to-end solution can reduce the delay and uncertainty of construction time, production ramp-up and module certification.

"Working with our partners, we are committed to making solar power affordable and competitive with other forms of electricity generation," said Jeannine Sargent, ceo of Oerlikon Solar.

Oerlikon Solar's proprietary micromorph process significantly boosts solar cell efficiency by adding a second microcrystalline absorber layer to an amorphous silicon (a-Si) layer. This layer converts the energy of the red- and near infrared spectrum, facilitating efficiency increases of up to 50%, the company says. The micromorph technology also bolsters overall module power, enabling customers to produce cost effective thin film silicon solar modules.

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Photovoltaics (PV)