IR Solutions for The Solar Equipment Industry

Story by Raytek & Ircon

Solar Industry ApplicationSanta Cruz CA, USA — Raytek?? and Ircon??, two leading names in infrared (IR) noncontact temperature measurement, have announced a complete line of infrared sensors, linescanners and process imaging systems designed for temperature monitoring applications in the solar manufacturing industry.

Raytek and Ircon infrared thermometers provide an effective solution for online process monitoring, where measuring and controlling temperature is critical to productivity and product quality. Solar applications range from silicon and wafer production, to photovoltaic cell and module manufacturing.

In polysilicon production, for example, the Raytek/Ircon IR solution is ideal for noncontact temperature measurement in CVD reactor environments.

The Modline?? 5, Marathon MR and FR two-color ratio thermometers are insensitive to sight path obstructions, including deposits on reactor windows and cloudy process conditions inside the reactor. Employing variable focus, high-resolution optics, they allow users to properly target small diameter polysilicon rods.

The high performance Modline 5, 5R, Marathon MR and Marathon MM thermometers offer critical features for single crystal silicon production.

These short wavelength, single-color and two-color ratio thermometers include variable focus, high resolution optics, and provide a very small measurement spot size at the silicon liquid/solid interface. This is necessary for controlling the crystal pulling process.

An integrated video camera allows for real-time video output of the process environment, and built-in sensor, self-calibration/field calibration capabilities reduce maintenance requirements.

During thin film deposition/lamination, improper process temperatures can lead to voids or delaminations, and poor PV module performance and failure. In this application, the GS150 Process Imaging System with complete image capture and analysis software provides a 3-5 micron spectral response ??? allowing the linescanner to accurately measure the process temperature of the underlying film.

The system???s high-resolution scan rate helps to detect the smallest process anomalies or defects. Advanced measurement software allows easy image capture, analysis and archiving, and Ethernet communications with OPC connectivity ensures fast, low cost process control system integration.

In addition, the Maxline 2 Thermal Imaging System with image analysis software enables users to identify bad cell interconnects in thin film silicon PV modules. Defects in the cell interconnection can be readily identified by a precise thermal signature.

Throughout the solar industry, Raytek/Ircon IR noncontact temperature measurement solutions help manufacturers to recognize equipment malfunctions and process problems before they result in costly downtime. This makes them valuable additional tools for plant and equipment maintenance and repair prevention.

Best of all, Infrared is Green???, with:
??? Increased yield
??? Extended equipment life
??? Reduced energy and waste
??? Paperless reporting and storage

About Raytek and Ircon

Headquartered in Santa Cruz, California, Ircon has joined with Raytek to offer a complete IR solution, including the industry???s most complete line of infrared sensors, linescanners and process imaging systems.

Raytek, a Fluke company, is the worldwide leader in noncontact temperature measurement.