RSI's core technology is rapid electroplating using distributed contacts. This technology enables high throughput electroplating of cadmium telluride on large substrates, leading to dramatic cost savings in manufacturing and installed cost. RSI's technology is protected by international patents.
The specifications of solar modules may vary depending on the regional manufacturing partner's infrastructure and selected options. A typical module will be 1 m x 2 m in size and have a power output of 250-300W . Electrical output is in the range of 40-50V and 6-8A.
CdTe photvoltaics have proven efficiency, reliability, sustainability and profitability. Modules produced using RSI technology offer the following additional benefits:
- Compared to conventional CdTe modules, RSI modules are almost three times the size, leading to greater power per module and therefore lower manufacturing & installation costs.
- Modules will be produced at less than 25 cents per Watt in 2018, with a path to less than 20 cents per Watt.
- RSI provides the option to use conventional solar glass or tempered glass with or without frames.
- Excellent high temperature and low light performance leading to superior kWh/kWp production.
- Panel size and output similar to 60 or 72 cell silicon modules, leading to similar balance of system and installation costs.
- RSI modules are two-thirds the cost for the same module size and energy output as compared to crystalline silicon modules.
- Industry standard CdTe module architecture with metal back contact, giving proven reliability.
RSI's reference designs are initially targeted to commercial and utility scale ground mount applications. Future products will cater to residential and commercial rooftops, as well as BIPV applications such as windows and roof tiles.
RSI Process and Tools
RSI manufactures the key tools for electro-deposition of cadmium telluride. Electro-deposition tools are very simple to operate and maintain compared to conventional thin film deposition equipment, and the capital and operating costs are much less.
The rest of the manufacturing line is industry standard and available from our selected equipment vendors. RSI essentially offers a "virtual turnkey" line at an unprecedented low cost of ownership.
As the manufacturing cost of modules falls relative to shipping costs and duties, regional manufacturing becomes increasingly viable. RSI has also brought down the capital cost of setting up local PV manufacturing. With RSI technology every region can enjoy local manufacturing jobs and energy security.
Sustainable Advantage of the RSI Process
The main source of RSI's cost advantage is easy to understand. RSI uses a proprietary low temperature deposition process. Using a low temperature process means that RSI can make large modules. The cost benefits are analogous to those experienced in the semiconductor industry when moving from 100 mm wafers to 300 mm wafers. The raw materials costs using RSI technology is also less expensive compared to materials required in high temperature, vacuum deposition processes.
The first chart below illustrates the manufacturing and installation cost benefits compared to other thin film modules and crystalline silicon module.
The second chart shows the major cost categories for PV manufacturing and installation, illustrating the benefits of CdTe panels which are the same size as crystalline silicon modules.
We invite potential partners to "run the numbers"; the advantages of large CdTe modules are clear and sustainable.