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German photovoltaics (PV) manufacturing equipment suppliers say orders have been rising steadily over the past four quarters, especially from Asia.
In the second quarter (Q2) of 2016, order intake grew by 23% year-on-year and 47% quarter-on-quarter, according to the German Engineering Federation (VDMA). Asia accounted for 89%, leaving just 4% for the US, 2% for Germany and 4% for the rest of Europe.
Jutta Trube, head of Photovoltaic Equipment at VDMA, said that there is strong interest in technologies for high efficiency crystalline applications such as PERC and PERT. Crystalline solar cell manufacturers choose increasingly the Heterojunction technology too. Many existing PV plants will be equipped with more efficient technologies.
German PV machinery suppliers saw their revenues in Q2 2016 jump by 63% on the year and 55% on the quarter. The share of exports reached 95%. Revenues in the first half of the year combined with forecast sales for the third quarter reach 92% of the volume for the full 2015.
East Asia brought 68% of Q2 revenues for the German companies, followed by the US with 22% and Germany with 6%. In terms of technology, PV cell production equipment remained the number-one source of revenue in with a share of 60%, then came ingots and wafer with 21%, crystalline backend-module production with 14%, and thin-film PV with 5%.