PV module size changes again: escalating competition or management chaos

· PV Industry News

In 2023, the PV industry will once again enter the era of "size chaos"! From debating what the optimal size is to reaching a consensus on the 182mm and 210mm sizes, PV people have spent 2 years, and this year, 2 years later, the standard module size consensus has been broken again!

Looking back at history, in November 2020, Trina Solar joined forces with eight module manufacturers, including Rising East, Atlas and Central, to unify 210 module product sizes and form the 210 Alliance; in September 2021, three PV module giants, Longi, JA and Jinko, announced the unification of 182 module sizes and mounting hole spacing standards, forming the 182 Alliance. In September 2021, Longi, JA and Jinko announced the unification of 182 module size and installation hole pitch, forming the 182 Alliance.

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Who is changing PV module size?

Previously, both camps were pushing module versions based on 182mm or 210mm square cells cut evenly, but the square wafer stereotype has been broken since Trina Solar's official announcement of the 210R Supreme module on 15 April 2022, which uses 210*182mm wafer cells. And according to the PV Market Intelligence Quarterly Report released by leading-edge agency Clean Energy Associates in 2022, 182 silicon wafers have formed a rectangular size of 182*185mm. And in the recent past, according to my research, the three traditional 182 representatives have formed three different specifications, namely 182*183.75mm (Longi, micro pitch, module size remains the same), 182*185mm (JA, using zero pitch technology, module size remains the same), 182*186.8mm (JinkoSolar, module length becomes 2335mm); and a 210 alliance company has launched a module with 182*192mm cells ......

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System advantages drive size re-revolution, upstream management reappears chaotic

It is undeniable that the innovative rectangular silicon wafer concept has opened up a new direction of cost reduction and efficiency increase for each enterprise. According to Trina Solar's public introduction, the 210R 66 version type module power is 30W higher than conventional 182 PERC modules, reaching 580W, saving 0.33 Euro cents/W in system cost compared to conventional 182mm 545W modules, and after stacking N-type technology, the power is close to 600W Rectangular silicon wafers have obvious advantages at the system end, but once again cause problems at the upstream supply end, according to senior industry sources, "the non-uniformity of silicon wafer sizes first overwhelms upstream production, both in terms of raw material procurement and inventory management, capacity planning and equipment automation rates, all of which place a huge burden on us ".

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Size changes may trigger a reshuffle in the PV industry

You can see that the companies that have fine-tuned their sizes are all highly integrated, basically the TOP 10 PV module manufacturers in the world, and the silicon wafers used are all self-produced and self-sold, with the ultimate goal of making their module products more competitive. The industry needs to develop, technology needs to iterate, costs need to fall, and reducing costs and increasing efficiency is the eternal law of the string. For non-integrated enterprises, rectangular silicon wafers are currently not open for sale, they can only produce traditional 182 or 210 components, a big difference in product competitiveness, market share is once again squeezed, the brand effect is further weakened. It can be said that this is a nightmare, originally thought that after the unification of 182/210, the industry can usher in a peaceful development, I do not know that PV itself comes with the properties of chaos, traditional giants steadily expanding production, the new emerging capital a big stroke, and finally half-dead enterprises a chicken feather! Since then, integrated companies have built size moats, whether the PV industry will enter another round of reshuffling stage, let us wait and see.

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Maysun Solar, as a PV module manufacturer with 15 years of professional experience, has long been aware of this change and reacted quickly, recently launching a module product with 182*210mm rectangular cells, interested parties can click the button below for product details.