Tempe, AZ, United States
Tempe, AZ, United States

First Solar, Inc. is an American photovoltaic manufacturer of rigid thin film modules, or solar panels, and a provider of utility-scale PV power plants and supporting services that include finance, construction, maintenance and end-of-life panel recycling. First Solar uses cadmium telluride as a semiconductor to produce CdTe-panels, that are competing successfully with conventional crystalline silicon technology. In 2009, First Solar became the first solar panel manufacturing company to lower its manufacturing cost to $1 per watt and produced CdTe-panels with an efficiency of about 14 percent at a reported cost of 59 cents per watt in 2013.The company was founded in 1990 by inventor Harold McMaster as Solar Cells, Inc. and the Florida Corporation in 1993 with JD Polk. In 1999 it was purchased by True North Partners, LLC, who rebranded it as First Solar, Inc. The company went public in 2006, trading on the NASDAQ. Its current chief executive is James Hughes, who succeeded interim CEO Mike Ahearn on May 3, 2012. First Solar is based in Tempe, Arizona. As of 2010, First Solar was considered the second-largest maker of PV modules worldwide and ranked sixth in Fast Company’s list of the world's 50 most innovative companies. In 2011, it ranked first on Forbes’s list of America’s 25 fastest-growing technology companies. It is listed on the Photovoltaik Global 30 Index since the beginning of this stock index in 2009. The company was also listed as No. 1 in Solar Power World magazine’s 2012 and 2013 rankings of solar contractors. Wikipedia.


Time filter

Source Type

Patent
First Solar | Date: 2016-11-22

A photovoltaic cell can include a substrate having a copper-doped semiconductor layer. The doping can be mediated with a salt.


Patent
First Solar | Date: 2016-12-05

A photovoltaic cell can include a dopant in contact with a semiconductor layer.


A method for producing, apparatus for producing and photovoltaic device including semiconductor layers with halide heat treated surfaces that increase grain growth within at least one of the semiconductor layers and improve the interface between the semiconductor layers. The halide heat treatment includes applying and heating multiple coatings of a halide compound on surfaces adjacent to or part of the semiconductor layers.


A method for manufacturing a photovoltaic device includes a step of depositing one of an amorphous layer of ZnTe and a multilayer stack of Zn and Te adjacent a semiconductor layer. The one of the amorphous layer and the multilayer stack is then subjected to an energy impulse at a temperature equal to or greater than its critical temperature. The energy impulse results in an explosive crystallization to form a polycrystalline layer of ZnTe from the one of the amorphous layer and the multilayer stack.


An improved feeder system and method for continuous vapor transport deposition that includes at least two vaporizers couple to a common distributor through an improved seal for separately vaporizing and collecting at least any two vaporizable materials for deposition as a material layer on a substrate. Multiple vaporizer provide redundancy and allow for continuous deposition during vaporizer maintenance and repair.


A solar tracking system comprising: at least one solar tracking bearing atop a support post, the solar tracking bearing comprising a pair of stationary outer bearing races attached on either side of a bearing support element, and a rotatable inner bearing race held by the pair of outer bearing races, the rotatable inner bearing race having an beam slot for seating a torque tube beam therein; a torque tube beam seated in the beam slot; a frame on which one or more photovoltaic modules can be mounted, the frame being secured to the torque tube beam; and an electromechanical actuator operable to control the inclination angle of the frame by causing the torque tube beam to rotate in the at least one solar tracking bearing. A solar tracker bearing comprises: a bearing support element; a stationary outer bearing race on a bearing securing element mounted to the bearing support element and providing a bearing surface for seating a torque tube beam therein.


Patent
First Solar | Date: 2016-03-01

A method of curing anti-reflective coatings, and photovoltaic modules produced using the method, are described.


Patent
First Solar | Date: 2016-01-06

A support system for a solar panel includes a triangular truss with connection points for mounting a photovoltaic module, and a cradle structure that supports the triangular truss and is connected to at least two side supports of the triangular truss. The cradle structure may be driven for rotation about an axis for tracking the sun and several cradle structures can be linked together for tracking movement using a buried linkage system. The truss may also be foldable for ease of transportation and storage.


Patent
First Solar | Date: 2016-03-01

Methods for treating a semiconductor layer including a semiconductor material are presented. A method includes contacting at least a portion of the semiconductor material with a passivating agent. The method further includes forming a first region in the semiconductor layer by introducing a dopant into the semiconductor material; and forming a chalcogen-rich region. The method further includes forming a second region in the semiconductor layer, the second region including a dopant, wherein an average atomic concentration of the dopant in the second region is greater than an average atomic concentration of the dopant in the first region. Photovoltaic devices are also presented.


A method of manufacturing a transparent oxide layer is provided. The manufacturing method includes disposing a cadmium tin oxide layer on a support, placing the support with the cadmium tin oxide layer within a chamber of a rapid thermal annealing system, and rapidly thermally annealing the cadmium tin oxide layer by exposing the cadmium tin oxide layer to electromagnetic radiation to form the transparent oxide layer, wherein the rapid thermal anneal is performed without first pumping down the chamber.

Loading First Solar collaborators
Loading First Solar collaborators