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Honda Solar
Jamais Cascio, 20 Dec 05

Honda Motor Company announced yesterday that it would soon begin manufacturing thin-film solar cells, building a new production facility on the site of a current auto factory. Because the thin-film cells won't require silicon, they won't be affected by current shortages in high-quality Si used for traditional photovoltaics, and they will require less energy to produce. Honda plans to make over 27 megawatts worth of solar cells per year at the new factory.

By using thin film made from a compound of copper, indium, gallium and selenium (CIGS), Honda’s next-generation solar cell achieved a major reduction in energy consumed during the manufacturing process to approximately 50% of the amount required by conventional crystal silicon solar cells. [...] The mass production of Honda’s next-generation solar cell became possible with a new mass production process for thin film solar cells developed independently by Honda Engineering.

(Also see this post at Environmental Economics, and check out this solar power tower design at Honda's Thailand headquarters.)

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Honda is first and foremost, an engineering company. They have an impressive record of "Firsts" and of quality engineering. I'm pleased to see them entering the solar market. I expect they will soon lead the world in advanced solar manufacture.

Posted by: Timetrvlr on 21 Dec 05

I don't think they will lead the world, because that type of cell already exists and there are already better solar cells than that being used today.

Posted by: nick on 28 Dec 05

I don't think the point is that they will be better, but that they will be cheaper due to manuf. efficiency

Posted by: matty on 30 Dec 05



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