October 28 (Renewables Now) - Enel Green Power, part of Italian utility Enel SpA (BIT:ENEL), last week officially opened a new production line at its 3SUN photovoltaic (PV) panel factory in Catania where it will make bifacial solar panels.
The new manufacturing line will produce panels using heterojunction technology (HJT), combining amorphous and crystalline silicon. Its opening is part of a technological conversion project at the 3SUN site in Sicily, which Enel initiated in the second quarter of 2018. The so-called 3SUN 2.0 scheme was split into three phases, with this being the last one, through which the factory will reach a nominal production capacity of about 200 MW per year.
Following the conversion project’s completion, the Italian company will be able to produce about 1,400 PV panels at the Catania base daily. It explained it aims to “overcome the theoretical limit of silicon efficiency” in the next five years and potentially reach an efficiency of 28% for the HJT bifacial panels.
The conversion project was partly funded by Europe's Horizon 2020 programme, the Italian Ministry of Economic Development and by the Region of Sicily, as well as by incentives for Smart Factory 4.0 development.