The heart of the solar panel is the solar cell consisting of multiple square-shaped wafers of monocrystalline or polycrystalline silicon (Si). Blocks or ingots of silicon are grown in vacuum furnaces and then ground and sawn into solid beams. Sophisticated wire saws cut the beams either with diamond coated wire or slurry of silicon carbide (SiC). Many thousands of wafers are sawn simultaneously on production wire systems and a wire failure must be avoided to prevent the loss of multiple, expensive wafers.
The wire condition is affected by many process variables and the application of the optimum coolant for diamond wire or the optimum silicon carbide slurry for plain, uncoated wire is mandatory to enhance wire life and provide consistent sawing results with minimum ingot kerf loss, uniform wafer geometry and surface finish.
Chemetall Precision Microchemicals develops and manufactures coolants, lubricants, abrasive suspension vehicles and cleaners for all aspects of solar silicon machining:
- Ingot Shaping/Grinding/Sawing — Coolants
- Diamond Wire Saw — Coolants
- Silicon Carbide Slurry/Wire Saw — Abrasive Suspension Vehicles
- In & Post Process — Cleaners
Wire sawing continues to evolve as the demand for thinner wafers grows (more wafers per unit length of ingot). Thinner wire more prone to breakage requires new formulations of coolants, vehicles and abrasive slurries and Chemetall Precision Microchemicals is at the forefront of this emerging technology.
Wire Saw engineers, R&D and Production Staff are encouraged to contact Chemetall Precision Microchemicals for detailed product information.