The high-tech engineering firm Manz AG presented the latest developments in its production lines for photovoltaic manufacturers at the World Smart Energy Week in Japan. The main focus of interest was the Manz CIGSfab, a fully integrated, turnkey line for manufacturing CIGS thin-film modules, which is scalable for an output from 40 to 340 MW. CIGS technology is based on a semiconductor made of copper, indium, gallium, and selenium, and currently offers module manufacturers – who are facing significant margin pressure – the greatest potential to cut costs while simultaneously increasing module efficiency.
The World Smart Energy Week Japan unites various trade fairs under one roof, including the 5th PV Expo Japan, the 3rd Rechargeable Battery Expo Japan, and the 3rd Processing Technology Expo Japan. That’s why Manz also presented new production systems for lithium-ion batteries in Tokyo. “The combined trade fair in Tokyo was the perfect stage for two areas of our business and demonstrates how the topic of Smart Energy is understood in Asia – only powerful energy storage media will help a decentralized energy generation system based on photovoltaics to move mainstream,” said Dieter Manz, founder and CEO of the Swabian company.
The World Smart Energy Week 2012 in Tokyo had almost 2,000 exhibitors and drew 120,000 industry experts from 80 countries. In addition to the Manz CIGSfab, Manz also provided information on individual pieces of equipment for manufacturing crystalline solar cells and thin-film solar modules. For li-ion battery manufacturing, Manz presented machines for manufacturing individual cells (reel to cell) as well for assembling the cells into battery systems (cell to pack). In both manufacturing steps, Manz benefits from its many years of expertise in automation, laser processing technology, and measurement technology. “As a mechanical engineering company, we play a significant role in setting the tempo toward the profitable mass production of batteries,” said Dieter Manz. Lithium-ion batteries have been mass-produced on a production line from Manz since the beginning of 2011.