German wafer manufacturer Nexwafe is currently trying to commercialize its highly efficient monocrystalline wafer technology.
The company said it will use the funds to advance the construction of its planned wafer factory in Bitterfeld in the Anhalt-Bitterfeld region of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany.
“The funds come from NexWafe’s existing group of investors, including Reliance New Energy Limited, Aramco Ventures and Athos Venture GmbH, as well as new investors such as the Honorable Malcolm Turnbull AC and Keshik Capital, led by Alex Turnbull,” the company said. states that it plans to raise additional funds in the second half of this year.
The wafer maker also announced plans to build a new production facility in Saudi Arabia with the support of the country’s Sustainability Fund and Aramco Ventures, the investment arm of Saudi oil group Aramco.
“NexWafe’s process supports urgent US and European efforts to re-shore domestic solar wafer manufacturing and cell production by increasing diversity and flexibility in the supply chain,” the company said, without providing details on the Saudi project.
In October 2021, Reliance New Energy Solar Limited (RNESL), an arm of Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Limited, invested EUR 25 million in NexWafe.
The manufacturer claims that its EpiWafers technology could help module producers achieve dramatically higher efficiency without having to upgrade their production lines. It also claims that its technology can enable the production of ultra-thin wafers. It has already demonstrated this with its pilot line in Freiburg, Germany. In addition to ultra-thin wafers, Nexwafe plans to use a tandem architecture in the future.
NexWafe develops and manufactures monocrystalline silicon wafers, which are grown directly from inexpensive raw materials. The continuous, direct gas-to-wafer manufacturing process eliminates the expensive and energy-intensive intermediate steps, such as polysilicon production and ingot pulling, on which traditional wafer manufacturing is based. The process is also said to minimize waste and cut wafer production costs by up to 30%. According to the company, it also offers a 70 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions during manufacturing.