How the lamination process can affect the quality of your solar panels
In a standard PV module manufacturing line, the most important process that will affect the quality and the lifespan of solar panels is the lamination process. Good quality solar panels will last more than 25 years, increasing the return on investment for the end user with each year of high performance.
So what makes a solar panel perform well over the years? Exposure to extreme conditions can reduce the power output performance over the years. Really all solar panels are exposed to extreme conditions no matter where they are installed because the sun creates high temperatures and UV radiation that will tend to reduce output power by generally up to 0.8% per year. In addition, these conditions can cause light and elevated temperature induced degradation (LeTID) to cells if the producer has not taken measures to protect them. N-type silicon cells do not suffer the effects of LeTID, but the module can still be damaged over time by other weather conditions like freezing temperatures, heavy and prolonged rainy seasons and the weight of snow because, if the module has not been properly laminated, the componenents inside the solar panel may be exposed to humidity.
This article goes into detail about how important the lamination process is in safeguarding the internal components of the module over time.
The article discusses some of the current issues with mainstream lamination equipment:
– glass warping due to large temperature difference between lamination surface and PV module layup, thus the need for pins and a slower initial heating up of the layup
– up to 20 minutes of process time required to remove air between layers, seal edges and allow EVA to crosslink, meaning lamination is usually the bottleneck in the production line
– large floorspace required for mainstream lamination equipment
– highly expensive equipment
The article closes with this phrase: “Lamination is multifaceted process with interchange of variety of processing parameters like pressure, time and temperature. Systematic research is needed to optimize the lamination process towards the fastest cycle time guaranteeing the highest quality and a robust process window.”
Teknisolar has invested several years and a lot of resources into research to optimize the lamination process.
With our latest technology:
– there is no glass warping even though there are no pins and the initial heating up of the layup is both quick and uniform
– total process time for a GLASS-BACKSHEET module using quality ultra-fast-cure EVA is 9,5 minutes (2 extra minutes required for fast-cure EVA), with a cycle time of 120 seconds!
– total process time for a GLASS-GLASS module using POE is 14,5 minutes, with a cycle time of as low as 150 seconds!
– compact design and faster cycle time = smaller floorspace required
– faster cycle time = fewer laminators required to fulfill production requirements, therefore captial investment is lower than competitors of similar quality
Teknisolar’s unique lamination technology uses a process that guarantees the best lamination quality and speed available on the market for both GLASS-BACKSHEET and GLASS-GLASS modules. Our lamination line has been designed to be flexible, meaning it will produce the best quality of lamination possible on all types of modules. Our lamination line has been designed to be fast, increasing production capacity with the lowest cycle time of any other PV panel laminator in the world. Our lamination line has been designed to be maintenance-friendly and to guarantee very high uptime with low OPEX costs.