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  • Press Release #15 / 2017

    Two Directors Take Over as Head of Fraunhofer ISE

    10.7.2017

    Doppelspitze übernimmt Leitung des Fraunhofer ISE
    © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    As of July 10, 2017 it is official: Prof. Dr. Hans-Martin Henning and Dr. Andreas Bett will assume a dual leadership position as the new institute directors of the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE. Both have been at Fraunhofer ISE, the largest institute for solar energy research in Europe, for many years. The two scientists are internationally renowned throughout the world in their field and collectively hold expertise in the areas of photovoltaics, building energy technology and energy system analysis. Both Henning and Bett were division directors and formerly deputy institute directors of the institute. Now that the appointment procedure has been finalized, they can officially succeed Prof. Dr. Eicke R. Weber as the next institute directors of Fraunhofer ISE.

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  • © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    On July 6-7, 2017 the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE is hosting the 7th PV Module Reliability workshop. This year the workshop will be held at the Solar Info Center, which is in close proximity to the laboratories of Fraunhofer ISE in Freiburg. The location provides an ideal setting for technical tours and discussions. This year the workshop focuses on the reliability of PV modules and systems, and speakers from throughout the world will be presenting talks related to this theme. The topics range from the newest improvements in measurement and test procedures to service life tests for PV modules.

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  • Testanordnung für die Vermessung bifacialer Module
    © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    The calibration laboratory at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE has achieved a best value: Photovoltaic modules can now be calibrated with an even higher measurement precision of 1.3 percent. Repeatability lies at 0.4 percent. Measurement precision is a decisive factor for quality assurance in the module production and for investments in PV plants. For a volume of 10 MW, for example, each percentage point increase in measurement precision corresponds to a monetary value of about 60,000 euros.

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  • Schnittbild durch das PV-Wechselrichtermodell
    © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    The efficiency and reliability of solar power generation are largely determined by the properties of the PV inverter used. As a key component of a PV installation, the inverter converts direct current generated by the PV modules into alternating current for the power grid. Until now, research into electronic power converters has typically focused on increasing power density by using the latest semiconductor technologies and circuit topologies. However, new research approaches are needed to tackle the ever increasing cost pressures of a globalized PV economy. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE and its project partners have teamed up to investigate what a new generation of PV inverters aimed at reducing costs could look like. Assembly, cooling and packaging technologies were identified as key areas where adjustments could be made.

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  • Principle of the vehicle-integrated PV modules
    © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    Thanks to considerable cost reductions in photovoltaic modules, solar energy holds increasing appeal for use in the mobility sector. Depending on the type of application, even diesel fuel for trucks can be replaced by photovoltaics to some extent. Fraunhofer ISE has carried out and evaluated yield analyses of PV power supply for commercial vehicles, such as refrigerated transport vehicles, using real-life solar irradiance data. Based on its findings, the institute sees great potential in this field and is working together with partners from the logistics and automotive sectors to conduct research into special PV modules for use in commercial vehicles. The aim is to integrate the modules in the truck roofs to supply power for driving the vehicle or for cooling goods.

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  • The Silicon PV – International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics is coming back to Freiburg where it began in 2011. The conference series was founded with the goal of offering an outstanding high-class scientific program on advanced technologies, materials and concepts for crystalline silicon solar cells and modules. This year, 370 participants from 25 countries have registered to attend. A special highlight of the program are the invited speakers: Prof Henry J Snaith, whose talk "Perovskite on Silicon Tandem Cells" focuses on a new concept for increasing the efficiency of today’s silicon solar cells; Dr. Kunta Yoshikawa, KANEKA Corporation, will present the company’s world record efficiency for a monocrystalline silicon solar cell in his talk entitled "Exceeding Conversion Efficiency of 26% by Silicon Heterojunction Technology."

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  • © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    With the grid expansion and modernization process for the German energy transformation, a growing number of applications for advanced power electronics and grid technologies arise. Power electronic devices, or converters, are key for connecting power supplies, consumers and storage systems and are playing an ever more important role in our energy supply. Further, these devices must be tailored to meet the increasingly complex requirements that ensure the flexible and reliable operation of our future energy system. Against this background, the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE is constructing a new lab site for the research, development and testing of the grid integration of renewable power, including controls for the low, medium and high voltage grids. Already most of the impressive lab infrastructure has been acquired and installed, and the new facility in the industrial area in North Freiburg is taking concrete shape.

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  • Multikristalline Weltrekordsolarzelle aus n-Typ HPM Siliciummaterial
    © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    The potential of photovoltaics (PV) has not yet been exhausted. Both industry and research continue to work intensively on increasing the efficiency and reducing the costs of solar cells, the basic component of every PV power plant. Now researchers at Fraunhofer ISE have produced a multicrystalline silicon solar cell with 21.9 percent efficiency, successfully bringing the world record back to Freiburg.

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  • Multikristalliner Silicium-Wafer
    © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    From March 8-10, 2017, an International Conference on Crystal Growth is to be held in Freiburg under the auspices of the German Association of Crystal Growth DGKK and the Swiss Society for Crystallography SGK-SSCR. The conference, jointly organized by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, the Crystallography department of the Institute of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University Freiburg and the University of Geneva, is to be held in the seminar rooms of the Chemistry Faculty of the University of Freiburg. Furthermore, the Young DGKK will hold a seminar for young scientists at Fraunhofer ISE on March 7, 2017.

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  • Press Release #4 / 2017

    Reliability of TPedge PV Modules Successfully Tested

    7.2.2017

    TPedge-Modul mit 2 mm-Dünnglas während der Flächenlastprüfung
    © Photo Fraunhofer ISE

    The TPedge concept reduces the material and production costs of PV modules, since encapsulation foils and the lamination process are no longer needed. At the same time, the aging stability of the PV module increases appreciably. In the project “TPedge,” researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with their partners have developed processes so that the innovative PV modules can be manufactured on an industrial scale.

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