Why 210mm Wafer Will Be the Future Industry Standard

The latest trend in the PV industry seems to be for bigger, heavier, and much more powerful modules. This raises a question: Where does this leave the rooftops segments where smaller size and weight distribution are already crucial for project designs? 

At present, the variety of wafer sizes in the PV industry leads to difficulty in module selection for customers. The 210mm is predicted to be the ultimate size for the PV industry in the next 5-10 years. 

Trina Solar offers a solution by introducing the new Vertex S Series which follows some of the latest technology trends with the large 210mm wafer, cells cut into three pieces, with minimum gaps between the cells. These technologies are packed into a slightly smaller package weighting just over 20kg and designed with existing rooftop racking systems in mind. 

Evolution of PV Wafer Sizes

Introducing the Vertex S Series 

Vertex S ? Small in Size, Big on Power 

Vertex S was introduced in 2020. Mass production started in January 2021. 5GW production is planned for 2021, increasing to 10GW in 2022 and 15GW in 2023. 

Requirements of Residential and Commercial Photovoltaic Systems

Contrary to the previous products, Vertex S Series is dedicated to the commercial and residential rooftop segment. It was designed with the following focus points in mind: 

  • Power efficiency ? the main driver for developing Vertex S was the fact that a new generation product needs to be more powerful and more efficient. 
  • Durability ? Vertex S includes an improved warranty. It has a thinner but stronger frame and higher mechanical load capability. The snow load value is 6,000Pa (as compared to the previous 5,400Pa), and the wind load value is 4,000Pa. 
  • Appearance ? a full black module has been included in this series for those who have a special dedication to the visual of the module and like the full black appearance on the roof. It was designed with aesthetics in mind; an excellent cell color control was achieved by dedicated cell blackening treatment and machine selection. Thinner wires that appear all black at a distance have also been used. 
  • Size ? rooftop segment is sensitive to the size and weight of modules. The handling of modules is also important. 
  • Universal solution ? due to the diversity of roof types, diverse installation solutions need to be available. Vertex S is flexible for different system deployments, like 4 points short and long side mounting, shared rail and slide-in mounting, crossed beam mounting, etc. 
Universal Solution for Residential and C&I Roofs

Vertex S Specifications 

  • Maximum power: 405W 
  • Size: 1754/1096/30mm. From the dimensional point of view, the module fits well into the segment. The module fits into the range of the existing products from the length perspective and is a little bit wider. It has the highest efficiency and power density overall. The size of the module allows for better utilization of the rooftop space and provides higher efficiency ? it generates 23% more power than 158 60 mono and 10% more than 166 60 mono in 25 years. Design changes have been made to the frame. New alloy was used for the frame that allows it to be thinner yet stiffer and more durable. 
  • Weight: 21kg ? reasonable for the rooftop segment 
Small in Size, Big in Power
  • Temperature coefficient: -0.34%/K 
  • 1st-year degradation: 2% 
  • Annual degradation from year 2 to 25: 0.55% ? generates extra power and extra money 
  • Product workmanship warranty: 15 years ? given exclusively for Vertex S products 
  • Power warranty: 25 years 
  • Maximum efficiency: 21.1%+ ? the highest efficiency in Trina?s portfolio for commercial and residential rooftops 
  • 210mm cells (aka G12 or M12) 
  • Multi-busbar 
  • Non-destructive cutting ? the latest technology cutting technique enhances durability and doesn?t introduce any mechanical damage into the cell separation 
  • High-density cell interconnection technology ? the cell gap of 0.5mm is the most durable design you can apply to the existing module technology (as compared to the conventional 2mm gap or the overlapping options) 
  • 5*8 layout 
  • 1/3-cut cell technology keeps the current in the module low and is compatible with the existing downstream components (string inverters). However, the higher maximum power current (11.70A compared to 9.94A) requires that the choice of the inverter be in line with the current specifications. 

How to Implement Larger New Generation Modules on Rooftops? 

Layout and Designing Array 

Layout & Design

The size of Vertex S allows you to design the layout in a way that generates more power using fewer modules (when compared to the Trina Honey M 120c – 340Wp module). 

Electrical Configuration 

Electrical configuration

The electrical configuration is fairly easy and beneficial. Let?s take as an example a 100kVA inverter with outputs of 10 MPPT with 2 strings per MPPT. We can configure the inverter using the same voltage (34.2V) and the same number of modules per string. 

With Trina 120c. ? 340Wp module (Honey M), we need 360 modules with 122 kW per inverter and 18 strings (20 modules per string). 

With Trina 120c. ? 400Wp module (Vertex S), we need 300 modules with 120 kW per inverter and 15 strings (20 modules per string). 

The result is fewer modules, fewer cables, and fewer connectors, which means shorter installation time and optimized cost. 

Mounting Systems & Compatibility

Some systems are already ready to accept the new generation modules, but some are not. In some systems, the width may not be permissible. It is important to check the mounting system specification with the supplier to make sure they are compatible. 

This new generation of modules optimizes power, time, and cost while keeping reasonable dimensions and weight for rooftop work without introducing new big challenges for design and construction. 

The sweet spot for this module is a large-scale rooftop. The dimensions and weight of this module are a good compromise between 72c and 60c mainstream modules. It may be less attractive for smaller or complex roofs. 

Below are three examples of three mounting variants: 

Mounting Variants

Conclusion 

Trina is one of the top solar panel manufacturers, in terms of volume, quality and reliable deliveries. The new Vertex S module comes with a fantastic warranty (15 years on product and 25 years on power). The degradation levels and temperature coefficients are outstanding. It?s a great product that uses cutting-edge technology (M12 wafer with MBB). The weight is suitable for both commercial and residential installation. The size below 2m2 is also within the acceptable brackets for residential installations. Due to the new design, the 30mm frame is strong and gives an added benefit as regards storage and transportation. It enables you to fit 36 pieces per box and 936 per standard 40?? container, which gives a total of 380kW in each container. Vertex S can be installed on all kinds of commercial and residential roofs (tile, flat, trapezoidal) with landscape or portrait modules, using a single layer, double layer, or cross railed system with either clamping or insertion system. 

Vertex S, with its maximum power of 400W and maximum efficiency of 21.1%+, surely proves to be small in size yet big on power. Its size and power allow you to better utilize the available space, to put more power on the same rooftop (compared to former generations of products), and to harvest more energy. It provides a universal solution for both residential and C&I rooftops together with high reliability and outstanding visual appearance. 

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