TOPCon technology will continue to be used in next-generation PV products, says Fraunhofer ISE’s Stefan W. Glunz

Trina Solar’s i-TOPCon is playing an important role in the process of industrial transfer, says Professor Stefan W. Glunz of Fraunhofer ISE, the largest solar research institute in Europe. He made the comment in an address themed TOPCon- FROM LAB TO INDUSTRY, at 700W+ i-TOPCon module conference that Trina Solar organized in December 2023. Trina Solar, with five other leading manufacturers, unveiled the 700W+ PV Open Innovation Ecological Alliance at this conference. “I would like to congratulate Trina Solar for its fantastic achievements,” Glunz said.



i-TOPCon cells had led TOPCon technology from the laboratory to industrialization, he said, expressing optimism over the technology’s development. He forecast that the TOPCon technology besides heterojunction cells would continue to be used in the next generation of products. The implementation of tandem technology, which is expected to considerably improve cell efficiency, will be based on passivating contact technology as TOPCon, he said. Fraunhofer ISE introduced the concept of Tunnel Oxide Passivating Contact (TOPCon) cell technology in 2013. TOPCon laboratory cells achieved an efficiency of 26% in 2021.


Trina Solar leads the way in the industrial application of i-TOPCon technology

Trina Solar redesigned the laboratory TOPCon cell structure, and the company introduced both sides contacted TOPCon solar cells and optimized technological process flow, further promoting TOPCon cell technology from the laboratory to industrialization. The company named it i-TOPCon, a term also adopted by the head of Photovoltaic division of Fraunhofer ISE in his overview paper on TOPCon. i-TOPCon has since become an exclusive label of Trina Solar.


TOPCon technology keeps leading in next-generation PV products

“The achievements of TOPCon technology have laid a foundation for the industry’s development,” Glunz told attendees. The efficiency of industrial TOPCon cells has exceeded 25%, an encouraging result, he said. TOPCon cell efficiency is expected to achieve even greater breakthroughs through the implementation of passivating front contact cell technology and tandem technology.

Trina Solar continues to innovate in its mainstream n-type i-TOPCon technology and products. As Yifeng Chen, Trina Solar technical leader and associate vice president 

of technology, said the efficiency of i-TOPCon cells is expected to exceed 27% in mass production with the application of front-side full passivation contact cell technology.  Besides, the efficiency of tandem technology based on i-TOPCon bottom cells is forecast to surpass 30%.

The upgrade and maturity of i-TOPCon technology have accelerated the industrialization of n-type products, propelling the industry into a higher power era of 700W+.