TFI is currently working with the University of Sherbrooke and xVI Technologies to greatly reduce the cost of ultra-efficient photovoltaics. TFI has designed the Trough-Lens-Cone (TLC) optics, module format and module assembly process for TLC, and has simultaneously co-optimized the optics, the cell size and grid, the receivers, and the cooling, all for high efficiency, high durability and very low cost.
Low-cost dish overlaps the foci of 64 stress-shaped single-axis mirrors into a 1000X compound focus, avoiding the need to mold glass. Secondary mirrors (also non-molded) shape the focus and even-out its intensity on one axis for photo-current matching of rows of tandem cells.
A Shingled-Cell Dense Receiver Array greatly reduces gaps in the photo-receptive surface. The receiverlet has 10 rows of cells with 10 cells in each row. The cells in a row are in parallel, while the cells in each row are shingled onto the bus-bars of the cells in the previous row, interconnecting the rows in series without bond wires.
TFI designed the cell array, and also the bonding equipment used to obtain large-area void-free solder bonds of the receiver substrate layers to the low-CTE micro-channel cold plate. TFI also worked with xVI Technologies to build the bonding equipment and perform the bonding, and worked with the University of Sherbrooke to install and test the dense receiver array segment.