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Tellurium solar panels. Emiliano Bellini

Tellurium solar panels. Emiliano Bellini

    Tellurium solar panels

    Home / Energy Power / Cadmium Telluride Photovoltaic Market

    Cadmium Telluride Photovoltaic Market Size, Share Industry Analysis, By Application (Residential, Industrial Commercial, Utilities) And Regional Forecast 2023-2030

    Cadmium telluride photovoltaics is also called Cadmium telluride solar cell or cadmium telluride thin film, a photovoltaic device that produces electricity from sunlight by using a thin film of cadmium telluride. Cadmium Telluride photovoltaic are less efficient than crystalline silicon devices but are cheaper to produce and technology has the potential to surpass silicon in terms of cost per kilowatt of installed capacity. The rising adoption of cadmium telluride in the electro-optic modulator, owing to the high electro-optic coefficient is another factor expected to further support the growth of the market during the forecast period.

    Based on the application, the global cadmium telluride photovoltaic market can be segmented into residential, industrial commercial, and utilities. The utility segment held a dominant share of the market expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. Several ongoing utility-scale solar projects are in pipeline across the globe. Recently in May 2020, Amazon Announces Five New Utility-Scale Solar Projects to Power Global Operations in China, Australia, and the U.S.

    The residential segment is expected to contribute significantly during the forecast period. The increasing number of residential construction projects and growing public awareness regarding the usage of renewable and efficient energy sources are estimated to drive the residential segment during the forecast period.

    Growing awareness among the consumers coupled with rising government investment in renewable energy, especially solar energy is a major factor expected to drive the growth of the global cadmium telluride photovoltaic market. over, the introduction of Feed-in Tariff (FIT) by developing countries such as China and India is resulting in increasing demand for cadmium telluride in solar cells which is another factor expected to boost the growth of the global market over the forecast period. However, stringent government regulations related to the harmfulness of cadmium and lower productivity of cadmium telluride solar cells are some of the major factors restraining the growth of the global market

    Key Players Covered:

    Some of the major companies in the global cadmium telluride photovoltaic market are First Solar, Advanced Solar Power, Antec Solar, Calyxo, CNBM Optoelectronic Materials, CTF Solar, D2solar, Dmsolar, RSI, UPT Solar, and Willard Kelsey (WK) Solar, among others.

    The global cadmium telluride photovoltaic market is studied across different regions like North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East Africa. Europe dominated the cadmium telluride photovoltaic market owing to the rising government FOCUS toward the adoption of sustainable energy. Due to the implementation of stringent emission norms in European countries, the dependence on renewable sources is rising for the production of electricity. Additionally, the emerging research activities in the field of thin-film solar cells are projected to open up new avenues for the cadmium telluride photovoltaic market growth in the upcoming years. North American is another major region for the cadmium telluride photovoltaic market. The U.S. dominating the North America cadmium telluride photovoltaic market owing to the growing demand for photovoltaic installation in the residential commercial sectors.

    The market in the Asia Pacific region expected to grow at a significant pace during the forecast period, owing to increasing government initiatives towards using renewable energy sources, increasing construction activities, and rising adoption of solar PV. China, India, and Southeast Asia countries are a lucrative region for the market.


    By Application

    By Geography

    • North America (U.S. and Canada)
    • Europe (UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Rest of Europe)
    • Asia Pacific (Japan, China, India, Southeast Asia, and Rest of Asia Pacific)
    • Latin America (Brazil, Mexico, and Rest of Latin America)
    • Middle East Africa (South Africa, GCC and Rest of Middle East Africa)


    pv magazine: Prof. Arvind, you dedicate a long chapter in “Solar Cells and Modules” to thin-film PV technologies such as cadmium telluride (CdTe) solar cells. Panels built with such cells are the only thin-film products that have been able to reach all market segments in the solar sector. Why is that?

    Arvind Shah: The reasons are the following: relatively high efficiencies, low market prices, and the presence of U.S.-based manufacturer First Solar as a major provider of CdTe modules. (It) claims justifiably to be committed to sustainable PV manufacturing, responsible construction practices and minimizing the environmental impacts of its products across their life cycle, from raw material sourcing through end-of-life recycling. Indeed, end-of-life recycling is not provided for any other solar technology.

    Alessandro Romeo: CdTe is a very robust material that can be successfully deposited with a large variety of deposition techniques with no issues on secondary phases. This is a unique feature in the panorama of thin-film solar cells. Also like other thin-film technologies, CdTe modules can be fabricated on pure glass with an all-in-line fabrication process at much lower temperatures than crystalline silicon.

    tellurium, solar, panels, emiliano

    Compared to crystalline silicon modules, cadmium telluride products can be produced at lower costs and with simpler production processes. How much room for improvement do you expect in this regard?

    Shah: As far as I can personally judge, there is not much room for further improvement in the production process.

    Romeo: CdTe is produced, compared to crystalline silicon, at a relatively low scale. Crystalline silicon has benefited from the large number of different companies involved in high-scale manufacturing that has strongly reduced the manufacturing cost per watt. Thin-film solar technology has not yet benefited from such a development. However, the costs are currently already very competitive with crystalline silicon. A higher scaling of the production processes with an increase of the module area and with a further reduction of process temperatures would reduce even more the final production cost.

    What kind of improvements can be expected for this technology in terms of performance, efficiency and sustainability?

    Shah: I would expect that the efficiency of commercial modules will be further increased and could attain 25% in the next decade.

    Romeo: CdTe has been limited in performance by the relatively low open-circuit voltage due to the high compensation of the defects that reduces the carrier concentration. For this reason, one of the main research topics is CdTe doping. With a suitably controlled doping of the material, the efficiencies can be improved further, towards the Shockley-Queisser limit which is over 30%.

    CdTe panels have suffered from instability in the past. Do you believe this issue has been completely overcome?

    Shah: There is ample evidence that the problem of stability has been overcome.

    Romeo: Stability was an issue as long as copper was not controlled in the device, as copper tends to diffuse into the material with time and degrades the solar cell. But this was definitely solved by applying a new type of contact where copper remains embedded in the zinc telluride (ZnTe) back contact. Since then, the cells have shown remarkable stability. At the moment, CdTe modules have a certified degradation of 0.2% per year.

    Compared to crystalline silicon modules, CdTe panels are said to more effectively maintain efficiency at higher temperatures. Do you think this gap between the two technologies still exists?

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    Shah: CdTe modules have excellent high-temperature behavior, with a relative temperature coefficient of the efficiency of.0.25% to.0.32% per degree Celsius. However, the newest crystalline silicon modules such as TOPCon and heterojunction modules have similar values. On the other hand, the older types of crystalline silicon modules had relative temperature coefficients of up to.0.4 % per degree Celsius and were clearly less favorable than CdTe modules. As shown in our book, the temperature coefficient of a module can be improved, if recombination is reduced and efficiency increased. There is more room for such an improvement in CdTe modules than in crystalline silicon modules. So we can expect that in the future CdTe with much better high-temperature behavior and relative temperature coefficients of down to.0.2% per degree Celsius should become available.

    Romeo: At the moment, the temperature coefficient of CdTe modules is.0.28% per degree Celsius, which is one of the best available on the market. This advantage, which is intrinsic of the CdTe physical properties, will remain.

    For this kind of technology, the right choice of soda lime glass as a substrate is a decisive factor to achieve low module prices. How could this influence production costs? What are the main issues with this kind of substrate?

    Shah: This is not an issue, as glass producers all over the world are currently able to produce, at a very reasonable cost, soda lime glass, at a quality which is fully suitable for CdTe modules.

    Romeo: CdTe modules can be in principle deposited on any type of low-cost soda lime glass if the front layers are engineered accordingly, so this is not a real issue.

    tellurium, solar, panels, emiliano

    Several kinds of CdTe deposition techniques are currently being adopted. Which ones might prevail in the future?

    Shah: We expect the Vapor Transport Deposition (VTD) technique, already used today by First Solar, to continue to prevail in the future.

    Romeo: High-temperature processes like VTD or close space sublimation (CSS) can deliver higher efficiencies. For this reason, these technologies are the best candidates for dominating the future of CdTe module production. However, production processes with lower temperatures are interesting because of their lower energy consumption and because they have a high potential for use in flexible modules.

    Cadmium is a toxic compound and has always raised concerns about the potential environmental impacts of CdTe modules. Do you think these concerns are excessive?

    Shah: Cadmium itself is toxic, but when bound to telluride, it is not toxic at all. In our book, we show evidence that it is extremely unlikely, even in the case of catastrophes, like fires, floods, or other unforeseen events, that cadmium telluride modules will decompose into cadmium and tellurium.

    tellurium, solar, panels, emiliano

    Romeo: As explained in our book, CdTe is a non-soluble material; soluble neither in water nor in other solvents. For this reason, the probability that broken pieces of this material left in water or in the soil might release cadmium is extremely low, as proven by different scientific reports. over, we have to recall that this is a thin-film technology where a large solar module with a size of 1 square meter has a cadmium content that is lower than the cadmium contained in an AAA-size Ni-Cd battery. Furthermore, the cadmium within the solar module is bound to tellurium, unlike the cadmium contained in a nickel-cadmium (Ni-Cd) battery. The cadmium within the solar module is, therefore, no threat to the environment.

    Prof. Shah has previously spoken to pv magazine about the future of heterojunction PV modules and amorphous silicon solar cells. Shah and co-author Sylvère Leu wrote “Solar Cells and Modules,” which was recently published by Springer. The book includes other contributions from Christophe Ballif, Adinath Funde, Detlef Sontag, Alessandro Romeo, Alessandro Virtuani, Mauro Pravettoni, Urs Muntwyler, and Stefan Nowak.

    This content is protected by copyright and may not be reused. If you want to cooperate with us and would like to reuse some of our content, please contact:


    Emiliano joined pv magazine in March 2017. He has been reporting on solar and renewable energy since 2009.

    Tellurium solar panels

    Tellurium-containing polymer-based solar cells can absorb light across an exceptionally broad spectrum and have the potential to enhance power conversion efficiencies.

    The investigation of light absorbing organic semiconductors is important for the development of lightweight flexible solar cells. Replacing sulfur atoms in commonly used, polymer-based solar cells with tellurium atoms results in materials that absorb a wider range of wavelengths of sunlight. A tellurophene-containing low-bandgap polymer (PDPPTe2T) was synthesized by microwave-assisted palladium-catalyzed ipso-arylative polymerization of 2,5-bis[(α-hydroxy-α,α-diphenyl)methyl]tellurophene with a diketopyrrolopyrrole (DPP) monomer. This work has demonstrated that solar cells constructed from such polymers can convert sunlight into electrical current with an efficiency of 4.4% at wavelengths up to 1.0 microns. This result is a benchmark for tellurium-based polymer solar cells. Density functional theory calculations (DFT) suggest that the switch from sulfur to tellurium shifts the absorption spectrum toward longer wavelengths in the solar spectrum.

    Why Does This Matter?

    These are the first reported solar cells comprised of such tellurium-based polymers. As well, these polymers absorb light across a broad range of wavelengths from ultraviolet to infrared, generating electricity at 4% efficiency.

    • CFN Capabilities: CFN’s Materials Synthesis Characterization and Theory Computation Facilities were used for polymer synthesis, device preparation, electrical characterization, and computation assistance.

    Publication Reference

    Polymerization of Tellurophene Derivatives by Microwave-Assisted Palladium-Catalyzed ipso-Arylative Polymerization

    Dr. Young S. Park 1. Dr. Qin Wu 1. Dr. Chang-Yong Nam1 and Prof. Robert B. Grubbs 1,2

    1 Center for Functional Nanomaterials, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, NY 11973 (USA) 2 Department of Chemistry, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794 (USA)

    Angewandte Chemie International Edition 53 10691-10695 (2014).

    CdTe’s impact on green energy

    The consortium, funded by the U.S. Dept. of Energy’s Solar Energy Technologies Office, has been focused on CdTe photovoltaics, a type of thin-film solar cell made from a combination of cadmium, tellurium and other materials. CdTe cells offer several advantages over traditional silicon-based solar cells, including lower production costs and higher efficiency at converting sunlight into electricity.

    With a theoretical maximum conversion efficiency of over 31%, CdTe solar technology has yet to reach its full potential for growth. CdTe is already a powerful solar PV product, historically powering the utility-scale markets.

    However, CdTe products face significant competition from Chinese-made silicon solar panels, a logistical and human rights problem, increasing the need for American-made solar solutions. Chinese solar companies have been connected to forced labor in the Xinjiang region, prompting the U.S. government to ban more than 1,000 shipments of solar energy components following a June law banning imports from the solar manufacturing region.

    As a result, demand for American-made CdTe solar is outpacing supply, making it difficult for suppliers to lower costs. CdTe solar panels are an essential part of the energy transition, with most utility-scale projects in the United States powered by CdTe technology. Making CdTe more broadly accessible for consumers is Toledo Solar and CTAC’s principal FOCUS.

    Already, the consortium has experienced a growing number of students and faculty working together with the solar industry to accelerate CdTe research, eradicating information silos and leveraging collaboration to facilitate long-term improvements.

    Specifically, the consortium aims to enable CdTe cell efficiencies above 24% and module costs below 20¢/W by 2025, and cell efficiencies above 26% and module costs below 15¢/W by 2030.

    tellurium, solar, panels, emiliano

    Enabling American-made solar at scale

    Historically, global energy market trends are tied to natural gas prices. The cost of fossil fuels increased sharply this past year, and geopolitical conflict is reminding many people that adversarial energy partners are a bad long-term energy strategy.

    Consequently, nearly 70% of homeowners say they are interested in installing solar panels to lower long-term costs and reduce their carbon footprint.

    With lower production costs and higher efficiency compared to traditional silicon-based solar cells, CdTe technology has the potential to increase the adoption and use of renewable energy sources. What’s more, CdTe has the lowest carbon footprint in the solar industry, and U.S.-based production facilities help mitigate ethical or supply chain concerns plaguing the industry.

    Solar panel demand is expected to increase for the next several decades. CdTe development alone won’t make solar power a success. However, it’s a foundational product with long-term implications for countries striving to meet climate targets, communities investing in more sustainable energy solutions and homeowners looking to lower costs.

    Simply put, more affordable and cleaner energy from ethical products with long-term benefits like recyclability that can support solar adoption at scale are in high demand. CTAC is hastening accessibility and affordability, leveraging the power of public/private partnership to power the green energy transition.

    Комментарии и мнения владельцев

    These are great Questions: to take a few of them: 1. TSI modules power output are equivalent to the First Solar series 4, not 3 or 2. After Series 4, First Solar went to a larger module in Series 6, but the technology remained the same. 2. RSD costs are the same or lower on a per watt basis by using a supplied parallel wiring harness from TSI. 3. TSI modules are frameless. 4. The CdTe RD effort is fairly collaborative in the U.S.- including First Solar, Toledo Solar, many other companies and research institutions. Overall average efficiencies are ~18% modules that are expected to reach 22-25% in the next several years. I really appreciate the great Комментарии и мнения владельцев, and that someone read the article! Thank you so much. For more information, please visit Our live engineers and sales folks are happy to answer questions.

    “Specifically, the consortium aims to enable CdTe cell efficiencies above 24% and module costs below 20¢/W by 2025, and cell efficiencies above 26% and module costs below 15¢/W by 2030.” Interesting, First Solar owns the CdTe panel operations. Unfortunately it seems at some point First Solar is now focusing on utility scale panels in the 24 to 32 square foot panel size and right at 80 pounds for the larger panels used in utility scale projects, that are designed to put out a nominal 220VDC per panel instead of the usually expected 35VDC to 45VDC of most other panel brands. The picture of the Toledo solar PV panels go from 105 watts STC to 120 Watts STC one would want to use the NOCT of the panels to design a robust system and get something like 90 Watts NOCT for the 120 Watt panel. The down side these Toledo Solar panels look like First Solar series 2 or 3 panels and are smaller about 7.8 square feet which means it would take more panels per array than the standard 20 square foot crystalline silicon solar PV panels that put out around 370 to 400 Watts STC. Another down side to the Toledo CdTe panels is the output voltage can be from around 70VDC to 65VDC, is one needs RSD devices for each panel one will spend more money to apply RSD to the array. Either Toledo Solar or First Solar should go to frameless solar PV panels in the 18 to 20 square foot area for residential rooftop solar. Why can’t First Solar or Toledo Solar accelerate that panel efficiency timeline and use IRA and DOE funds to develop the 26% efficiency modules by 2024 instead of 2030? Now is the time to right size China’s influence over the solar PV industry in the U.S.

    articles like this. Are these panels available to the private homeowner and who would be the distributor? Thank you

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