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[PV EXPO/SYSTEM 2017] Taiwanese PV Firms Seek to Stand Out with Technology and Applications

published: 2017-03-09 12:01

Taiwanese photovoltaic manufacturers sought to differentiate themselves from competitors with technology and applications at this year’s PV Expo in Japan, EnergyTrend reported. Taiwanese makers have made up an important part of past expos and other international events. At this year’s event in Tokyo, most Taiwanese firms exhibited their latest offerings inside Taiwan Pavilion, set for a few larger manufacturers who ran standalone booths.

Neo Solar Power (NSP), a Taiwan-based solar cell and module manufacturer, again brought its high-efficiency battery cells and modules to the global stage. NSP unveiled Glory BIFI, a p-type bifacial PERC mono cells, which was measured at 290-300W. Glory BIFi was one of the few bifacial PERC modules at the expo and it is designed to sustain harsh environment from deserts and coasts to areas with gusty winds -- the module withstood wind load of 6,000 Pa. The system also touts minimal wear and tear, pledging to maintain nominal power output at 97 percent or above in the first year and a 0.5 percent decrease per year thereafter. By that standard, the module is expected to run at 82.5 percent of its nominal power output 30 years after installation. NSP also showed some of its products that had previously been displayed at PV Taiwan 2016, including mono PERC half-cut module PEACH and HJT solar cell HELLO.

Also at the expo, Taiwan’s TSEC Corp. showed some 10 modules, from those that had been commercialized to ones that are still in progress. In addition to bifacial and half-cut modules, which came under the spotlight at the expo, multi-si black silicon modules were also seen at TSEC’s booth. TSEC mainly uses wet etching in its black silicon process, Ho Hsien, a manager with TSEC’s Japan division, told EnergyTrend.

TSEC has its eyes set on becoming a world class battery and module manufacturer. Its current equipment produces p-type products, but TSEC has put in investment for n-type silicon production. TSEC also displayed a bifacial n-type 4BB mono-si cell, which averages 300W with a maximum power of 345W, as well as n-type bifacial PERT solar cells.

According to Ho, TSEC is currently working on bettering its n-type products but it will take another two years or so for the products to become sophisticated. TSEC also unveiled a HJT battery with a conversion efficiency of 22.5 percent and up. Although the battery was still a work in progress, it showed TSEC’s ambition in the technology.

TSEC also displayed solar module equipment that combined energy storage and electronic display, as well as a charger for electric motorcycles. This piece of equipment, designed by a TSEC client in Kyushu, Japan, converts power from the solar panel and stores the energy in a suitcase-sized device. The same concept was applied to the facilities at Diver City Tokyo.

Green Energy Technology (GET), which won a Red Dot Award with its ultra-lightweight waveguide solar module last year, featured this product front-and-center at the PV Expo. GET’s walkway model was considered one of the most impressive designs at the expo. In order to apply the waveguide module to a solar-powered road, the surface of the walkway was made with slip resistant features.  Lin Shih-yuan, president at GET, said Taiwanese makers need to find their respective niche market, instead of fixating on prices. Within hours after the expo opened, several potential clients came up to inquire the feasibility of the waveguide in walkways. Lin said this was the best exemplification of how to integrate the product in actual applications. Lin said he could see many other product opportunities, as the waveguide can be used with a variety of batteries and modules. GET also displayed bifacial and half-cut modules at the event.

EEPV Corp., Ming Hwei Energy, Solartech Energy Corp. and a few other Taiwanese firms exhibited their products inside Taiwan Pavilion. Each of these companies made public their latest development and technology. Another Taiwanese firm, BIG SUN, exhibited in the PV Systems pavilion, showing its ambition in iPV tracker and its slow transition in its business focus.

BIG SUN’s display was relatively spot-on; an iPV tracker with six modules were assembled and designated to snowing mode. Under this mode, snow accumulation can be quickly removed for the module to resume functions. The company also invited its clients to share success stories at the booth. For a young company with growing experiences in systems development, the success of the iPV tracker is seen as a boost t to the budding industry.

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