- Published: February 1, 2013
- Written by Chris Meehan
To bring next-generation photovoltaics to market in a way that’s standardized both for manufacturers and end-users, SEMI, a semiconductor manufacturers industry organization has partnered with the U.S. Photovoltaic Manufacturing Consortium (PVMC), a DOE SunShot Initiative program focussed on reducing the costs of installing PV. The two organizations announced Jan. 29 a memorandum of understanding to more directly co-develop solar thin-film standards and roadmap activities.
"PVMC is delighted to partner with SEMI to drive the development of standards and roadmaps that will guide next-generation PV research and advanced manufacturing," said Dr. Pradeep Haldar, PVMC chief operating and technical officer and CNSE vice president for Clean Energy Programs. "This collaboration further highlights the ability of public-private partnerships to enable leading-edge technologies while supporting the critical needs of industry."
Basically the understanding is taking steps to ensure that as new technologies come to market that there are standards in place to make it easier for everyone to work together. This makes it easier for downstream companies like integrators or inverter manufacturers to make products that work with a wide variety of PV modules, and for upstream suppliers to make equipment and materials that can benefit a number of companies. Standards and roadmaps also reassure investors and makes it easier for them to understand the technology, the value proposition and lowered risk. All of which help to reduce the cost of solar and its various components.
Under the partnership SEMI will use its resources as a standards development organization to work collaboratively with PV manufacturers through the SEMI International Standards program and provide technology roadmap development services through the International Technology Roadmap for PV (ITRPV). Meanwhile PVMC will use its resources to together industry, academia and government working on solar to accelerate development, commercialization and manufacturing of next-generation solar photovoltaic (PV) systems.
"By joining forces with PVMC and by leveraging lessons learned from SEMI’s ITRPV roadmap and PV standards activity, we intend to create synergies along the PV thin-film manufacturing supply chain, enabling cost reductions and efficiency gains that will benefit the entire global solar industry," said Bettina Weiss, vice president, business development, SEMI.
The project is being undertaken by PVMC as part of it and SunShot Initiative’s mission to reduce the cost of installed solar by 75 percent by 2020. While SEMI works on a more international basis, PVMC is primarily concerned with the U.S. market.