PV Group Announces New SEMI Standards Committees in Japan and Taiwan

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PV Group Announces New SEMI Standards Committees in Japan and Taiwan

Important Milestones Follow Successful European and North American Models

Hamburg, Germany (EU PVSEC, Stand B2U/16a) – September 21, 2009 – The PV Group today announced an important milestone in the scope and coverage of PV global standards efforts through the formation of Photovoltaic Standards Committees in Japan and Taiwan. The initial focus of work in the Japan Committee will be to standardize the dimensions of thin-film substrates, while Taiwan recently started developing standards for crystalline-silicon cell appearance as well as a vibration test method. The new standards development groups join SEMI Standards committees in Europe and North America, which have been active since 2006.

Industry stakeholders believe that creation of consistent cross-border manufacturing standards and safety guidelines can dramatically lower costs, improve quality and accelerate innovation in the PV industry. SEMI has 36 years of experience and proven expertise in this area with nearly 800 manufacturing standards and safety guidelines currently in place. The PV Group, a special interest group of SEMI, promotes standards development for all aspects of PV manufacturing including thin films, machine interface, process control and others through the SEMI International Standards process and in collaboration with partner associations around the globe.

The PV Standards Committee’s charter is to explore, evaluate, discuss, and create consensus-based standard measurement methods, specifications, guidelines, and practices. Through voluntary compliance, these consensus-based standards will promote mutual understanding and improved communication between users and suppliers of photovoltaic manufacturing equipment, materials and services— enhancing manufacturing efficiency, shortening time-to-market, and reducing PV industry manufacturing cost.

In 2008, a Taiwan PV Standards Working Group was formed. The group held more than 30 meetings over the last year, consolidating the needs and requirements of the Taiwan PV industry. The Taiwan PV Standards Committee consists of key players from all segments of the PV manufacturing chain— manufacturers of materials, equipment, wafers, cells, modules, thin films, as well as academia, local industry associations and research institutes. Committee leaders include staff from Chroma, DelSolar, UL Taiwan, and ITRI.

The Japan PV Committee will work to include liaisons and synergies with other SEMI technical committees for the development of PV-related standards. The PV Standards Committee will explore and develop standards that pertain to common criteria, guidelines, methods for control and comparison of PV-related process / metrology equipment, materials, components, or manufacturing operations. It will seek to support the international need for increasing PV product / process yield and reducing related PV costs per Watt peak. This committee will investigate opportunities towards harmonization of PV-related efforts with other SDOs. In addition to the above, the committee will facilitate any industry initiatives towards product standardization needs.

Recently, the SEMI PV Group released a Standards Guidance Document that identified 64 SEMI Standards topics as “Applicable” to the PV industry. Thirty-one SEMI Standards topics were rated as “Top Priority” for their potential to deliver immediate cost benefits to the industry with limited revision. This summer, an important Standard was passed that defines a unified equipment communication interface for PV production systems (PV2-0709). Earlier in the year, a standardized test method for detecting elemental impurities in photovoltaic silicon feedstock was approved (PV1-0309).

About SEMI PV Group:

The PV Group is a SEMI special interest group that serves the photovoltaic supply chain. Participating companies provide manufacturing equipment, materials, cells, modules, sub-systems, and components to the solar energy industry worldwide. The PV Group mission is to advance industry growth, support continuous efficiency improvements and promote sustainable business practices through international standards development, events, public policy advocacy, EHS support, market intelligence, and other services. For more information, visit: www.pvgroup.org

Association Contact:
Deborah Geiger/SEMI
Ph: 408.943.7988
E-mail: dgeiger@semi.org