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Sunpower Corporation
Sunpower Corporation Systems

Sunpower Corporation patents


Recent patent applications related to Sunpower Corporation. Sunpower Corporation is listed as an Agent/Assignee. Note: Sunpower Corporation may have other listings under different names/spellings. We're not affiliated with Sunpower Corporation, we're just tracking patents.

ARCHIVE: New 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 | Company Directory "S" | Sunpower Corporation-related inventors


Passivation of light-receiving surfaces of solar cells with high energy gap (eg) materials

Methods of passivating light-receiving surfaces of solar cells with high energy gap (Eg) materials, and the resulting solar cells, are described. In an example, a solar cell includes a substrate having a light-receiving surface. A passivating dielectric layer is disposed on the light-receiving surface of the substrate. A Group III-nitride... Sunpower Corporation

High throughput system for photovoltaic uv degradation testing

High throughput systems for photovoltaic UV degradation testing of solar cells, and methods of testing for UV degradation of solar cell during manufacture, are described herein. In an example, a high throughput solar cell testing apparatus includes a plurality of real time ultra-violet (RTUV) testing modules. Each of the RTUV... Sunpower Corporation

Metal-foil-assisted fabrication of thin-silicon solar cell

One embodiment relates to a method of fabricating a solar cell. A silicon lamina is cleaved from the silicon substrate. The backside of the silicon lamina includes the P-type and N-type doped regions. A metal foil is attached to the backside of the silicon lamina. The metal foil may be... Sunpower Corporation

Shingled solar cells overlapping along non-linear edges

Solar devices and methods for producing solar devices are disclosed. In some examples, a solar device includes solar cells arranged in a shingled manner such that adjacent long edges of adjacent ones of the solar cells overlap. The adjacent long edges have a non-linear shape that has protruding portions. The... Sunpower Corporation

Solar roof mounting surface transition

A fixture may be installed on a mounting surface such as a roof of a structure. The fixture may be coupled to round elongated components such as wires, cables, conduits, pipes, or tubes that need to be transitioned from the exterior of the structure on top of the mounting surface... Sunpower Corporation

Bonds for solar cell metallization

A solar cell can include a substrate and a semiconductor region disposed in or above the substrate. The solar cell can also include a conductive contact disposed on the semiconductor region with the conductive contact including a conductive foil bonded to the semiconductor region.... Sunpower Corporation

Wafer alignment with restricted visual access

Wafer alignment with restricted visual access has been disclosed. In an example, a method of processing a substrate for fabricating a solar cell involves supporting the substrate over a stage. The method involves forming a substantially opaque layer over the substrate. The substantially opaque layer at least partially covers edges... Sunpower Corporation

Multi-axis flattening tool and method

A multi-axis flattening tool and method are described. In an example, the multi-axis flattening tool includes a support structure to constrain a bowed wafer along a support perimeter, and a pair of flattening structures independently movable relative to the support structure. For example, a first flattening structure may grip the... Sunpower Corporation

Protective region for metallization of solar cells

Methods of fabricating a solar cell including metallization techniques and resulting solar cells, are described. In an example, a first and second semiconductor regions can be formed in or above a substrate, where a separation region is disposed between the first and second semiconductor regions. A protective region can be... Sunpower Corporation

Laser techniques for foil-based metallization of solar cells

Methods of fabricating a solar cell including metallization techniques and resulting solar cells, are described. In an example, a semiconductor region can be formed in or above a substrate. A first metal layer can be formed over the semiconductor region. A laser can be applied over a first region of... Sunpower Corporation

Metallization structures for solar cells

Solar cells having conductive contacts are described. In an example, a solar cell can include a protective layer disposed over a substrate, where the protective layer comprises a contact hole. A first metal layer disposed over the protective layer, where the first metal layer is electrically connected to the substrate... Sunpower Corporation

Microinverter systems and subsystems

An alternating current (AC) module system includes branch circuits and a main service panel to receive power from the branch circuits. A photovoltaic (PV) supervisor is located between the branch circuits and the panel. The PV supervisor aggregates the power from the branch circuits. The PV supervisor also performs a... Sunpower Corporation

Backfeed power supply for solar power system

A solar collection system may collect energy from the sun to generate electricity for distribution on an electrical grid. In addition to generating electricity, a solar collection system may include support devices such as motors, controllers, sensors, and other support devices to perform various tasks to allow the solar collection... Sunpower Corporation

Converter topologies and control

Systems, methods, and articles of manufacture are provided wherein inverter topologies and inverter control employ primary and secondary windings with a half-bridge circuit and an unfolding bridge circuit positioned between the second winding and an AC grid. Certain topologies may employ control circuits for controlling the bridges suitable for a... Sunpower Corporation

Photovoltaic panel having an adhered support frame

A photovoltaic panel having a distributed support frame adhered to a photovoltaic module is described. For example, the distributed support frame may include one or more support member or support mounts adhered to the photovoltaic module by an adhesive layer. The photovoltaic module may include layers bound together by an... Sunpower Corporation

Photovoltaic panel having a distributed support frame

A photovoltaic panel having a photovoltaic module supported by a distributed support frame is described. The distributed support frame may include a support member extending over a back surface of the photovoltaic module. For example, one or more support members may extend laterally from a support hub mounted on the... Sunpower Corporation

Photovoltaic module having an external electrical connector

A photovoltaic module having an external electrical connector is described. For example, the photovoltaic module may include a plug receptacle mounted on a module laminate, and a contact may extend from a photovoltaic cell within the module laminate into a plug channel of the plug receptacle. The plug receptacle may... Sunpower Corporation

Photovoltaic systems comprising docking assemblies

Photovoltaic (PV) assemblies and modules comprising electronic component docking assemblies are described herein. Docking assemblies can comprise a junction box and an electronic component housing configured to be reversibly connected or “docked.” The photovoltaic assemblies and modules described herein facilitate field replacement or removal of electronic components e.g. microinverters from... Sunpower Corporation

Systems and methods for reworking shingled solar cell modules

A high efficiency configuration for a solar cell module comprises solar cells arranged in a shingled manner to form super cells, which may be arranged to efficiently use the area of the solar module, reduce series resistance, and increase module efficiency. Removing a defective solar cell from a super cell... Sunpower Corporation

Junction box thermal management

An electrical assembly may include an enclosure having a base portion to attach the enclosure to a panel and a heat dissipating portion opposite the base portion, a circuit board having a first thermal interface on a first side of the board, a second thermal interface on a second side... Sunpower Corporation

Verifying status of a termination end cap of a microinverter chain

A photovoltaic (PV) system includes a system control module that determines the presence of a microinverter chain termination end cap. The end cap includes an embedded circuit. The embedded circuit includes components having resistive, reactive, or impedance values. A signal source provides a signal through the microinverter chain. A parameter... Sunpower Corporation

Trench process and structure for backside contact solar cells with polysilicon doped regions

A solar cell includes polysilicon P-type and N-type doped regions on a backside of a substrate, such as a silicon wafer. A trench structure separates the P-type doped region from the N-type doped region. Each of the P-type and N-type doped regions may be formed over a thin dielectric layer.... Sunpower Corporation

Roll-to-roll metallization of solar cells

Disclosed herein are approaches to fabricating solar cells, solar cell strings and solar modules using roll-to-roll foil-based metallization approaches. Methods disclosed herein can comprise the steps of providing at least one solar cell wafer on a first roll unit and conveying a metal foil to the first roll unit. The... Sunpower Corporation

Epitaxial silicon solar cells with moisture barrier

A thin epitaxial silicon solar cell includes one or more layers of doped oxides on the backside. A silicon nitride layer that serves as a moisture barrier is formed on the one or more layers of doped oxides. The doped oxides provide dopants for forming doped regions in an epitaxial... Sunpower Corporation

Device and electrically decoupling a solar module from a solar system

Devices and methods for electrically decoupling a solar module from a solar system are described. In one embodiment, a solar system includes a string of a plurality of solar modules coupled with an inverter through a DC power line. An AC input is coupled with the DC power line. A... Sunpower Corporation

Automated commissioning and inspection for pv systems

An electric system includes a local power controller and solar panel system that includes a plurality of solar modules on one or more branch circuits. A method for commissioning the electric system includes an installer using a commissioning device to send and receive information from a remote system and the... Sunpower Corporation

Soft switching technique for a grid-tied inverter

A method, system, and computer-readable medium facilitate a soft switching technique for operating an inverter. In a full bridge inverter, a one of first set of transistors in the inverter may be rapidly activated and deactivated in pulses while one of a second set of transistor may be activated during... Sunpower Corporation

Module level solution to solar cell polarization using an encapsulant with opened uv transmission curve

A solar cell module includes interconnected solar cells, a transparent cover over the front sides of the solar cells, and a backsheet on the backside of the solar cells. An encapsulant protectively packages the solar cells. The encapsulant and the transparent cover forms a top protection package that has a... Sunpower Corporation

Method of fabricating an emitter region of a solar cell

Methods of fabricating emitter regions of solar cells are described. Methods of forming layers on substrates of solar cells, and the resulting solar cells, are also described.... Sunpower Corporation

Photovoltaic cell and laminate metallization

A photovoltaic laminate is disclosed. Embodiments include placing a first encapsulant on a substantially transparent layer that includes a front side of a photovoltaic laminate. Embodiments also include placing a first solar cell on the first encapsulant. Embodiments include placing a metal foil on the first solar cell, where the... Sunpower Corporation

Solar panel

A high efficiency configuration for a solar cell module comprises solar cells arranged in an overlapping shingled manner and conductively bonded to each other in their overlapping regions to form super cells, which may be arranged to efficiently use the area of the solar module.... Sunpower Corporation

Solar panel

A high efficiency configuration for a solar cell module comprises solar cells arranged in an overlapping shingled manner and conductively bonded to each other in their overlapping regions to form super cells, which may be arranged to efficiently use the area of the solar module.... Sunpower Corporation

Solar tracker system

Solar tracker systems having several rows of photovoltaic strings individually actuated by respective tracker control systems, are described. In an example, a solar tracker system includes a tracker control system having a tracker controller powered by forward-fed power from a photovoltaic string, e.g., during daytime, and powered by back-fed power... Sunpower Corporation

Pv wind performance enhancing methods

Pressure equalization between upper and lower surfaces of PV modules of an array of PV modules can be enhanced in several ways. Air gaps opening into the air volume, defined between the PV modules and the support surface, should be provided between adjacent PV modules and along the periphery of... Sunpower Corporation

Etching of solar cell materials

A solar cell is fabricated by etching one or more of its layers without substantially etching another layer of the solar cell. In one embodiment, a copper layer in the solar cell is etched without substantially etching a topmost metallic layer comprising tin. For example, an etchant comprising sulfuric acid... Sunpower Corporation

06/08/17 / #20170163042

Distributed energy conversion systems

A distributed energy conversion system may include one or more DC power sources and two or more inverters to convert DC power from the power sources to AC power. The AC power from the two or more inverters may be combined to provide a single AC output. A module may... Sunpower Corporation

05/25/17 / #20170149278

Inverter communications using output signal

Technologies for communicating information from an inverter configured for the conversion of direct current (DC) power generated from an alternative source to alternating current (AC) power are disclosed. The technologies include determining information to be transmitted from the inverter over a power line cable connected to the inverter and controlling... Sunpower Corporation

04/27/17 / #20170115119

Automated photovoltaic geospatial location

Location functionality to determine the geospatial location of a PV module is described. This functionality may be performed at the PV module site itself as well as remote from the PV module site. The location functionality may involve the analysis of data collected from the location of the PV module... Sunpower Corporation

04/13/17 / #20170104447

Photovoltaic management and module-level power electronics

A photovoltaic (PV) system includes module-level power electronic (MLPE) devices that produce energy. The PV system includes a gateway to receive and send data to MLPE devices. The gateway also connects the PV system with a network, such as a local area network, that allows access to the Internet. The... Sunpower Corporation

04/06/17 / #20170099028

Clamps for solar systems

A solar power system can include a rail and a solar module disposed on the rail. A clamp assembly can couple the solar module to the rail. The clamp assembly can have a clamped configuration in which the solar module is secured to the rail and an unclamped configuration. The... Sunpower Corporation

03/30/17 / #20170091842

Methods, systems, and computer readable media for selecting a proposed utility rate structure for a residential electric system

Methods, systems, and computer readable media are disclosed for selecting a proposed utility rate structure for a residential electric system. In some examples, a method is performed by one or more computers and includes receiving a historic consumption time series of electric consumption measurements of a residential electric system. The... Sunpower Corporation

03/30/17 / #20170093163

Methods and systems for maintaining photovoltaic power plant reactive power capability

Methods, systems, and computer readable media are disclosed for maintaining photovoltaic power plant reactive power capability, e.g., through the manipulation of direct current (DC) voltage. In some examples, A control system includes a monitor input for receiving a monitor signal indicative of an input voltage of an inverter system and... Sunpower Corporation

03/30/17 / #20170093330

Self-cleaning solar power system

A photovoltaic (PV) module cleaning system can include a robotic cleaning device and a support system. The support system can be configured to provide a metered fill to the robotic cleaning device.... Sunpower Corporation

03/30/17 / #20170093333

Power inverter docking system for photovoltaic modules

An electronics module docking system includes docking member removably coupled to a photovoltaic module. The docking system includes a first connector port electrically coupled to one or more photovoltaic cells of the photovoltaic module. The photovoltaic module is selectively coupleable to the docking member. The docking system includes a housing... Sunpower Corporation

03/23/17 / #20170085215

Solar power generation assembly and providing same

The present invention relates to a solar power generation assembly and method for providing same involving an array of solar generating modules on a dual-incline structure, which can achieve high energy yields over a wide range of azimuths/orientations. The assembly consists of canopy wings providing for the dual-incline structure, where,... Sunpower Corporation

03/23/17 / #20170085217

High efficiency configuration for solar cell string

A high efficiency configuration for a string of solar cells comprises series-connected solar cells arranged in an overlapping shingle pattern. Front and back surface metallization patterns may provide further increases in efficiency.... Sunpower Corporation

03/23/17 / #20170085288

Communication systems adaptable to power line communications

A communication system and method of operating the same that includes, in one embodiment, a transmit filter including a transmit filter capacitor, and a receive filter coupled to the transmit filter. The communication system also includes a switch, coupled to an auxiliary winding of a transformer and to the transmit... Sunpower Corporation

03/23/17 / #20170086013

Communicating with arrays of module units

Methods and systems include moving a mobile communication unit along a plurality of module units, and exchanging data with one of the plurality of module units based at least upon the mobile communication unit being in proximity to the one of the plurality of module units.... Sunpower Corporation

03/16/17 / #20170077343

Shingled solar cell module

A high efficiency configuration for a solar cell module comprises solar cells conductively bonded to each other in a shingled manner to form super cells, which may be arranged to efficiently use the area of the solar module, reduce series resistance, and increase module efficiency. The front surface metallization patterns... Sunpower Corporation

03/09/17 / #20170069777

Patterned thin foil

An adhesive may be applied to a surface of a reusable carrier. Metal foil may be attached to the adhesive to couple the metal foil to the surface of the reusable carrier. The metal foil may be patterned without damaging the reusable carrier. A semiconductor structure (e.g., a solar cell)... Sunpower Corporation

03/09/17 / #20170070156

Communication within a power inverter using transformer voltage frequency

Communicating across a power transformer is provided. Processes can include outputting a cyclical voltage at an alternating frequency across a multiple winding transformer and modulating the frequency of the alternating voltage to provide communication across the transformer. Devices and systems can also be employed with applicable features and designs.... Sunpower Corporation

03/02/17 / #20170063094

Power processing

Differential power processing (DPP) converters are used within circuit architecture of solar power modules to process the mismatched power between solar elements in a power module. The DPP converters use various topologies to process the mismatched power. These topologies can include a housekeeping power supply where the housekeeping power is... Sunpower Corporation

03/02/17 / #20170063294

Concentrating solar reflector and power system

Concentrating reflectors for solar energy systems can include compound curvatures producing distinct beams of light which can be aimed and shaped so as to be superimposed at a desired location, such as a plane or a solar energy receiver. Additionally, the distinct beams can have different converging characteristics producing different... Sunpower Corporation

02/23/17 / #20170054047

Solar panel

A high efficiency configuration for a solar cell module comprises solar cells arranged in an overlapping shingled manner and conductively bonded to each other in their overlapping regions to form super cells, which may be arranged to efficiently use the area of the solar module. Rear surface electrical connections between... Sunpower Corporation

02/16/17 / #20170047888

Preventing harmful polarization of solar cells

In one embodiment, harmful solar cell polarization is prevented or minimized by providing a conductive path that bleeds charge from a front side of a solar cell to the bulk of a wafer. The conductive path may include patterned holes in a dielectric passivation layer, a conductive anti-reflective coating, or... Sunpower Corporation

02/09/17 / #20170038098

End clamps for solar systems

A solar power system can include an array of solar modules. The system can include a rail and a solar module positioned at an outer end of the array. The solar module can have a frame around a periphery of the solar module. The frame can include a flange along... Sunpower Corporation

02/02/17 / #20170030950

Solar energy metering, communications, and control system

Methods, systems, and computer readable media are disclosed for monitoring photovoltaic solar systems. In some examples, the system includes a solar power measurement input for coupling to a solar panel system, a measurement circuit configured to measure power produced by the solar panel system using the solar power measurement input,... Sunpower Corporation

02/02/17 / #20170033248

Preventing harmful polarization of solar cells

In one embodiment, harmful solar cell polarization is prevented or minimized by providing a conductive path that bleeds charge from a front side of a solar cell to the bulk of a wafer. The conductive path may include patterned holes in a dielectric passivation layer, a conductive anti-reflective coating, or... Sunpower Corporation

02/02/17 / #20170033251

Front contact solar cell with formed electrically conducting layers on the front side and backside

A bipolar solar cell includes a backside junction formed by a silicon substrate and a first doped layer of a first dopant type on the backside of the solar cell. A second doped layer of a second dopant type makes an electrical connection to the substrate from the front side... Sunpower Corporation

02/02/17 / #20170033734

Thermal management of systems with electric components

Methods, systems, and computer readable media are disclosed for thermal management of a system of one or more electric components. In some examples, the system includes a housing, one or more electric components, one or more temperature sensors on or in the housing, and a thermal management circuit coupled to... Sunpower Corporation

01/19/17 / #20170019060

Pv system with wind performance enhancement

Pressure equalization between upper and lower surfaces of PV modules of an array of PV modules can be enhanced in several ways. Air gaps opening into the air volume, defined between the PV modules and the support surface, should be provided between adjacent PV modules and along the periphery of... Sunpower Corporation

01/12/17 / #20170012152

Module assembly for thin solar cells

Solar cells are packaged by placing the solar cells between sheets of encapsulants. The encapsulants are exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light to cure the encapsulants and bond the encapsulants together to encapsulate the solar cells. The UV curing steps may be performed to bond one of the encapsulants to a... Sunpower Corporation

01/12/17 / #20170012437

Device and global maximum power point tracking

A device, system, and method for global maximum power point tracking comprises monitoring an output power of a DC power source while executing a maximum power point tracking algorithm and adjusting a maximum power point tracking command signal in response to the output power being less than a reference output... Sunpower Corporation

01/05/17 / #20170005614

Support for solar energy collectors

A solar energy collection system can include support devices configured to accommodate misalignment of components during assembly. For example, the system can include piles fixed to the earth and an adjustable bearing assembly at the upper end of the pile. The adjustable bearing assembly can include at least one of... Sunpower Corporation








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