Amorton - amorphous silicon solar cells
Using solar cells is a convenient way to supply devices like solar wrist watches, autarkic sensors, displays, pocket calculators and many more with power. No more changing of batteries or complicated connections to the grid. The solar cells are an environmentally friendly source of energy since they do not produce CO2 or any other greenhouse gases during operation. In addition, they do not emit any noise, are cheap to maintain and reach a long lifetime.
A common way to classify solar cells is by the material used for the semiconductor: crystalline silicon, amorphous silicon, or compound semiconductors. Unlike crystalline silicon in which atomic arrangements are regular, amorphous silicon features irregular atomic arrangements. Consequently, a layer of amorphous silicon absorbs more light than a layer of crystalline silicon when the layer thickness is the same. Thus, films less than 1μm thick can be used to produce efficient amorphous solar cells, whereas the film thickness for crystalline silicon has to be about 100μm.
Panasonic is a world leader in developing Amorton, which is a high quality amorphous silicon solar cell. Amorton layers are created by chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of materials. Due to the low processing temperatures it is possible to use a variety of different substrates like glass, plastic film, or stainless steel. As a result, flexible, thin and durable solar cells can be produced in complex shapes. During production it is easy to separate individual cells on the substrate and to create a serial connection between them. This allows any desired voltage level to be obtained (please refer to the catalog in the download section for more information).
The human eye is sensitive to light from a range of about 380 to 780nm wavelengths. Since amorphous silicon solar cells absorb light in essentially the same wavelength range, they can also be used as visible light sensors (brightness sensors).
Panasonic offers a line-up with standard cells as well as customized cells. The choice of different substrates allows you to tailor the solar cell perfectly for your device.