Kerfless Silicon Precursor Wafer Formed by Rapid Solidification: October 2009 - March 2010

Research output: NRELSubcontract Report


1366 Direct Wafer technology is an ultra-low-cost, kerfless method of producing crystalline silicon wafers compatible with the existing dominant silicon PV supply chain. By doubling utilization of silicon and simplifying the wafering process and equipment, Direct Wafers will support drastic reductions in wafer cost and enable module manufacturing costs < $1/W. This Pre-Incubator subcontractenabled us to accelerate the critical advances necessary to commercialize the technology by 2012. Starting from a promising concept that was initially demonstrated using a model material, we built custom equipment necessary to validate the process in silicon, then developed sufficient understanding of the underlying physics to successfully fabricate wafers meeting target specifications. Thesewafers, 50 mm x 50 mm x 200 thick, were used to make prototype solar cells via standard industrial processes as the project final deliverable. The demonstrated 10% efficiency is already impressive when compared to most thin films, but still offers considerable room for improvement when compared to typical crystalline silicon solar cells.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages11
StatePublished - 2011

Bibliographical note

Work performed by 1366 Technologies, Inc., North Lexington, Massachusetts

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/SR-5200-51934


  • kerfless silicon
  • PV
  • rapid solidification


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