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Title: Capital intensity of photovoltaics manufacturing: Barrier to scale and opportunity for innovation

In this study, using a bottom-up cost model, we assess the impact of initial factory capital expenditure (capex) on photovoltaic (PV) module minimum sustainable price (MSP) and industry-wide trends. We find capex to have two important impacts on PV manufacturing. First, capex strongly influences the per-unit MSP of a c-Si module: we calculate that the capex-related elements sum to 22% of MSP for an integrated wafer, cell, and module manufacturer. This fraction provides a significant opportunity to reduce MSP toward the U.S. DOE SunShot module price target through capex innovation.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [1]
  1. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
  2. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-6A20-63703
Journal ID: ISSN 1754-5692; EESNBY
Grant/Contract Number:
AC36-08GO28308
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Energy & Environmental Science
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 12; Related Information: Energy and Environmental Science; Journal ID: ISSN 1754-5692
Publisher:
Royal Society of Chemistry
Research Org:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Solar Energy Technologies Office (EE-4S)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY, AND ECONOMY; initial factory capital expenditure; capex; photovoltaic; pv; minimum sustainable price; msp; manufacturing
OSTI Identifier:
1235418

Powell, Douglas M., Fu, Ran, Horowitz, Kelsey, Basore, Paul A., Woodhouse, Michael, and Buonassisi, Tonio. Capital intensity of photovoltaics manufacturing: Barrier to scale and opportunity for innovation. United States: N. p., Web. doi:10.1039/C5EE01509J.
Powell, Douglas M., Fu, Ran, Horowitz, Kelsey, Basore, Paul A., Woodhouse, Michael, & Buonassisi, Tonio. Capital intensity of photovoltaics manufacturing: Barrier to scale and opportunity for innovation. United States. doi:10.1039/C5EE01509J.
Powell, Douglas M., Fu, Ran, Horowitz, Kelsey, Basore, Paul A., Woodhouse, Michael, and Buonassisi, Tonio. 2015. "Capital intensity of photovoltaics manufacturing: Barrier to scale and opportunity for innovation". United States. doi:10.1039/C5EE01509J. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1235418.
@article{osti_1235418,
title = {Capital intensity of photovoltaics manufacturing: Barrier to scale and opportunity for innovation},
author = {Powell, Douglas M. and Fu, Ran and Horowitz, Kelsey and Basore, Paul A. and Woodhouse, Michael and Buonassisi, Tonio},
abstractNote = {In this study, using a bottom-up cost model, we assess the impact of initial factory capital expenditure (capex) on photovoltaic (PV) module minimum sustainable price (MSP) and industry-wide trends. We find capex to have two important impacts on PV manufacturing. First, capex strongly influences the per-unit MSP of a c-Si module: we calculate that the capex-related elements sum to 22% of MSP for an integrated wafer, cell, and module manufacturer. This fraction provides a significant opportunity to reduce MSP toward the U.S. DOE SunShot module price target through capex innovation.},
doi = {10.1039/C5EE01509J},
journal = {Energy & Environmental Science},
number = 12,
volume = 8,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {9}
}