Better. Cheaper. Scalable.
Industry Technology Background
A standard solar panel or module consisting of usually 60 or 72 interconnected solar cells.
Standard solar cell
A closer look at one of those solar cells which use traditional silver electrodes to collect current.
Close up graphic cross section of the solar cell showing silver electrodes on the surface.
What we are building and why we are building it.
Solar has near unlimited energy potential, however there are two fundamental issues preventing humanity from harnessing this.
1. Silver usage is limiting future growth.
Solar already consumes 20% of the world’s annual industrial silver, yet only 1% of the world’s energy comes from solar. The demand for solar energy is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years and today’s technology was never designed for this.
2. Today's technology is at its limits.
Current technology is nearing its efficiency limits (percentage of sunlight which can be converted into electrical energy) and more efficient next generation ‘passivated contact’ solar technology requires 2 to 3 times more silver. What is needed is an ultra-efficient passivated contact solar technology which is free of silver.
To realise a world where our main energy source is the sun, we need to look beyond the design of the traditional solar cell.
Introducing SunDrive's Copper Solar Cell.
SunDrive's Technology Advantage.
SunDrive's unique copper plating technology can be applied to much thinner wafers, reducing bulk silicon cost (the use of silver and silicon are the two most expensive material inputs for making solar cells).
Copper is 100 times cheaper and 1000 times more abundant than silver. Aside from cost and abundancy, SunDrive's plated copper is more conductive than silver paste, reducing resistive losses and improving efficiency.
SunDrive is able to produce a higher density of narrower electrode lines. With less distance between electrode lines, the solar cells layer/s at or near the surface providing lateral conduction can be less conductive, enabling more light absorption and further improving efficiency.
In 2021, SunDrive successfully fabricated such a solar cell, and in doing so, made the most efficient commercial-size solar cell ever created worldwide.
A proud step in continuing the advancement of solar technology in Australia - today’s commercial solar cells were invented in Australia 30 years ago.