Wafer manufacturing returns to Spain

May 19, 2020 07:10 PM ET
  • Rivas-Vaciamadrid-based firm Aurinka is intending to begin wafer production in Puertollano, Castile-La Mancha, this year. The business claims its copyrighted low-carbon manufacturing procedure supplies reduced sufficient making prices to take on Asian opponents
Wafer manufacturing returns to Spain
Image: Aurinka pv Group

The intense pledge of Spain's PV production field at the start of the solar power age in Europe was erased a years or two back by plans such as the duplicated charge of retroactive cuts to solar motivations.

Nevertheless, Spanish company Aurinka Photovoltaic Group today revealed it means to begin wafer manufacturing in the country this year, bringing hopes of a resurgence of PV production in Europe's best unsubsidized solar market.

Aurinka CEO Benjamín Llaneza informed pv magazine his business has actually established an affordable, unique metallurgical-grade-silicon filtration procedure, with a joint endeavor (JV) with power generation design, building and also purchase providers Técnicas Reunidas as well as Madrid-based, U.S. and also Canadian-owned solar firm X-Elio.

Llaneza stated the production procedure had around a fifth of the carbon impact generally used by Asian competitors, also prior to transportation exhausts are considered.

" In the nineties, when silicon [price greater than] $400 (EUR365) per kilo, the cost of a photovoltaic panel was EUR7 per Watt," stated Llaneza." [After that we saw] silicon costs of $7 per kilo and also module costs of EUR0.20 per Watt. The pureness of the silicon and also the performance of the components have actually been boosted however the huge power usage needed to generate silicon is almost the exact same, considering that the filtration procedure has actually not transformed ... we remain to distill it. We, that have actually invested 20 years establishing and also spending R&D, have [performed study] to show that a silicon with a pureness of in between 99.9999% as well as 99.999999% provides electric and also durability results comparable to components of 99.99999999%. So with standard procedures we are squandering power."

Aurinka and also its JV companions mean to thaw, as opposed to boil down, silicon utilizing succeeding stages throughout which pollutants and also unsafe aspects such as boron and also phosphorus will certainly be eliminated.


" It is cleansed to a pureness of 99.999999 as well as we market it to Asian wafer makers," included the president.

Llaneza stated Aurinka has actually currently made 20 lots of silicon utilizing this procedure as well as German screening institute TÜV Rheinland has actually accredited the approach, assuring traceability of the product from its first stage to last production of the 2 MW of components that resulted. The 20 lots of silicon were wafer-converted in Ukraine as well as delivered to China to 2 of the leading 5 worldwide solar makers.

" With these wafers, we produced 2 MW of components of numerous innovations with incredible outcomes, accredited once again by TÜV Rheinland," included Llaneza. The components revealed the very same resistance to damage as items made with traditional wafers and also their effectiveness was just 0.47% substandard, with destruction the same, according to the CEO.

Examination project

Some 14 of the low-carbon components have actually been mounted in an R&D project run by Spanish facilities and also renewables international Acciona in Tudela, Spain. The examination center will certainly compete 16 months with the efficiency of the dissolved silicon panels contrasted to conventional components including the exact same modern technology design.

" From there [Tudela], they send us regular monthly records and also the deterioration equals," stated Llaneza. "In sight of the great outcomes, we chose to establish a project found in Puertollano that needed a financial investment of virtually EUR60 million and also which was extremely well obtained, with the Reindus program [for moneying medium-sized as well as tiny enterprizes] of the ministry of market offering it the greatest rating got that year ... We are really delighted concerning the opportunity of re-floating that market in which Spain was a leader."

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