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Solar Products and Representatives

A reader of this blog recently mentioned: "I am interested in what products could be sold by manufacturer's representatives."  That is a large question, considering the evolution that we have come to expect in the solar industry.  To answer that question involves first breaking up the industry into 2 separate sections, front and back end solar assembly.  Front end assembly involves the process of making the solar cell.  Back end involves connecting cells together and assembling them to create a useable device.

 

 

 

 

 

Both front and back end products are going to be geared to the customer's technology.  For instance, if I was purchasing materials for a large thin-film manufacturing company and someone boldly offered me glass filled high-temperature metallization paste, I would tell them to come back when they know what they are talking about.  (In reality, I'd be nice – even though it's an incredibly ignorant mistake.)  With that in mind, let's focus on what back end products a representative might be offering for crystalline and thin film solar customers – assuming that back end begins after metallization:

 

 

 

 

 

  • Outsourced Solar Cells

     

  • Tabbing Ribbon

     

  • Bus Ribbon

     

  • Tabbing Flux

     

  • Solder Paste

     

  • Preforms

     

  • Solder Wire

     

  • Tacky-type Fluxes

     

  • Tabbing Equipment

     

  • Rework Equipment

     

  • Test Equipment/Services

     

  • Packaging Materials

     

  • Junction Boxes

     

  • Laminate Materials

     

  • Silicone/Sealing Materials

     

  • Passive Components

     

  • Ovens

     

  • Frames

     

  • Gloves / Lab Coats / Safety Equipment

     

 

 

 

I probably left out as many possible line items as I included, but I hope you get the idea.  Feel free to add the ones I forgot in the comment section below.

 

 

 

 

 

~Jim