By >Akihabara News Team
Sanyo unveiled HIT-N230, World’s most energy efficient solar module
I am just back from the press conference organized by Sanyo Electric’s Solar Division where we have been introduced to Sanyo’s new solar module, the HIT-N230 and have been informed about their recent Solar business strategy.
Since I am not sure if you are already familiar with solar panel business and in particular, I would like to give you some brief background: Sanyo is one of World’s leading Solar panel producers and have 5 factories around the world. Among them 3 are in Japan and 2 are in abroad. They produce N and HD series of Hetero-junction with Intrinsic Thin-layer (HIT) Solar modules. HD series, which are bigger than N series, are only produced in the company’s European production basis in Hungary and are sold across Europe from there. In Japan, Shiga Factory (Shiga Prefecture) is the major production basis of the N series HIT solar modules while the Shimane Sanyo Electric Co (Shimane prefecture) facility is one of the two production sites for the N series HIT solar cells. The Nishikihoma factory (Osaka prefecture) serves both for the production of solar cells and solar modules. The solar modules produced in these sites are only sold in the domestic market. As for the second biggest solar cell market, the U.S., Sanyo has the Monterrey Factory in Mexico.
And this time, we had the good news that they started to implement their production capacity increase plan in their plants in Japan in order to meet the growing domestic demand. Accordingly, the current capacities of Sanyo’s own HIT solar module factories will be increased from the current 100MW to 250MW for the Shiga Factory and 35MW to 40MW for the Nishikikoma factory by March 2011. In relation to that, the solar cell production capacities will be increased from 210MW to 345MW for Nishikikoma factory and 130MW to 220MW for the Shimane factory. Within this framework we were also informed that the capacity of the Hungarian factory will be increased from the current 165MW to 315MW until the same deadline.
Regarding the new N series HIT solar module, the N230, it boasts to have the World’s highest level energy conversion efficiency as 20.7%. Sanyo achieved this by increasing the number of tabs from 2 to 3, making the tabs thinner, and applying AG coated glass, which allowed “light trapping”, or in other words, allowed the reduction of reflection and scattering of light.
Sanyo N series HIT modules including the N225 (225W) along with the latest N230 (230W) are scheduled to be launched in Japan in Autumn 2010 while the HD series HIT solar modules, the H250 (250W) and the H245 (245W) are planned to be launched in Europe in early 2011.