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Fab-Tech Blog

Handling Corrosive Fume Exhaust In Solar Cell Manufacturing

Posted by Mike Baranski on Aug 2, 2017 8:35:42 AM
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Emerging Solar Cell Manufacturing Process Meets Tried-and-True Fume Exhaust Solution 

Recent innovations in photovoltaic technology have allowed solar cells to be manufactured using thousands of tiny silicon beads bonded in an aluminum foil. The resulting product is a flexible PV material that is lightweight, pliable and break-resistant, which can be formed into a variety of shapes and sizes. This opens the door to a broad range of industrial, commercial and residential applications.Flexible Solar Cell.png

You’ve probably heard of next-generation roofing products, those roof shingles that double as solar panels? These "fully integrated photovoltaic roofing products," as they've come to be known, are just one of the potential applications arising from advancements in solar cell manufacturing technology.

At the heart of this flexible solar cell technology is a process in which silicon feedstock is refined and rolled into tiny spheres, then diffused and front-bonded to perforated aluminum foil. The bonded material then undergoes chemical etching and shunt passivation, and finally, back-bonding to another layer of aluminum foil. 

As with microelectronics and semiconductor production, this solar cell adhesion and surfacing process involves certain chemicals and agents that can produce a potent mix of corrosive fume byproducts. 

When Canada’s first full-scale flexible solar cell manufacturing facility was developed, it had to be cost-optimized for competition on the international stage while still meeting stringent goals for performance and safety. 

Double contained chemical areas, hazardous vapor sniffers, and many other cutting-edge safety measures were incorporated into the project design plan.

Since the design team had first-hand experience in microelectronics and semiconductor facilities around North America, they were familiar with the best available solution to reliably and safely handle their corrosive fume exhaust needs.

PermaShield Pipe fume exhaust system at solar cell manufacturing facility

Fab-Tech’s 300 series fluoropolymer coated stainless steel duct, PermaShield Pipe (PSP®), was proposed on the basis of its superior corrosion resistance, safety, and lifetime performance.

In a project-cost-analysis of several corrosion resistant duct systems, PermaShield Pipe® fluoropolymer coated stainless steel duct emerged as the most valuable option based on its:

  • Ease of installation and assembly
  • Proven performance in extreme mixed acid vapor and liquid corrosive applications
  • Proven resistance to variable weather extremes
  • Superior fire-safety performance rating
  • Lowest maintenance profile
  • Lowest lifetime cost-of-ownership

If you would like more information about PSP® corrosive fume vent pipe and duct, please feel free to download our general information guide below:

Corrosive Fume and Odor Control Exhaust Duct Information Guide


Read More About PermaShield Fluoropolymer Coated Fume Exhaust Duct Here

Topics: Solar Cell Manufacturing, fume exhaust

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