Trade Resources Industry Views Short Supply of Mono-Si Solar Wafers May Remain

Short Supply of Mono-Si Solar Wafers May Remain

The ongoing shortage of global supply of mono-Si solar wafers is likely to remain until third-quarter 2018, according to China-based makers of such wafers.

The China government, encouraging adoption of PV modules made of mono-Si solar cells for model power-generating stations, has set favorable minimum energy conversion rates for such PV modules compared to rates set for poly-Si ones, the sources said. Consequently, mono-Si solar wafers have been in short supply and prices have stood at high levels, while prices for poly-Si models have been dropping, the sources noted.

China-based mono-Si solar wafer makers are expanding production capacities and most of the new capacities will come online in second-half 2017. The makers are expected to bring additional annual production capacity of nearly 8.0GWp in total into operation in second-half 2017, the sources indicated.

If China-based makers produce sufficient solar-grade polycrystalline black silicon wafers, short supply of mono-Si wafers can may ease, the sources analyzed. This is because polycrystalline black silicon wafers are competitive enough due to higher energy conversion rates than non-black ones and use of diamond wire to slice ingots to decrease overall production cost, the sources indicated.

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Short Supply of Mono-Si Solar Wafers May Remain Until 3Q18