CdTe – Cadmium Telluride
CdTe PV combines the performance advantages of thin-film technologies with affordable high-volume manufacturing, making it ideal for commercial rooftop and utility-scale ground-mount applications. In addition to their performance advantage in hotter climates, CdTe PV modules are less sensitive to reductions in wavelengths caused by humidity which results in a global energy density advantage over crystalline silicon PV. Utility-scale CdTe PV applications have played a pivotal role in driving down the cost of solar electricity and transforming PV into a mainstream energy source. According to Lazard’s latest unsubsidised levelised cost of energy comparison, utility-scale thin-film PV electricity is less expensive than new conventional generation technologies in the U.S. Southwest. Utility-Scale thin-film PV applications enable solar to be truly affordable and accessible to all.
First Solar: utility-scale PV application
Calyxo: CdTe rooftop example
CIGS – Copper Indium Gallium Selenide
CIGS PV modules are well suited to vertical installation in building-integrated PV (BIPV) applications due to their high efficiency, physical flexibility, aesthetics, and lightweight and superior performance in diffuse light conditions. BIPV solutions help protect building facades from weathering while generating clean electricity. Like CdTe, CIGS modules have a low temperature coefficient which results in a superior energy yield at higher module temperatures. With buildings being one of the biggest consumers of energy worldwide, CIGS modules provide an innovative solution for net-zero buildings by replacing conventional building materials with solar PV.
Manz AG: building-integrated CIGS PV application
Manz AG: building integrated PV CIGS technology example
Perovskite & Tandem PV
Perovskite based solar cell materials are extremely effective absorbers over a broad part of the solar spectrum and can be used for high efficiency solar cells. Coupled with their low fabrication cost, this allows for a low-cost and attractive PV option. Additionally, perovskite solar cells can be built on top of traditional solar cells in a tandem configuration to increase the power output of PV modules beyond anything achievable today.
Commercial-sized perovskite silicon solar cell