US firms develop new process to make ultra-pure polysilicon

14 November 2012 14:06  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Two US firms have jointly developed an environmentally friendly and cost-effective process to produce ultra-pure polysilicon for use in photovoltaic and electronics applications, the companies said on Wednesday.

Mayaterials and Wadham Energy said their process uses rice hull ash as feedstock.

A commercial plant using the new process to produce more than 40 tonnes/day of ultra-pure polysilicon could achieve significant reductions in capital and operating costs, compared with conventional production methods, the firms said.

The pair, which developed the process with the help of research funding from the US Department of Energy, are looking for financial or strategic partners to fund additional research and a $5m (€4m) pilot plant, they said.

"We have made great progress at the pre-pilot level achieving ultra-pure silicon, and look forward to proving out the technology at an industrial scale," said Mayaterials CEO Richard Laine.

Mayaterials develops process solutions for the production of silicon-containing materials and chemicals.

Wadham Energy operates a 26.5MW rice hull-fired steam-electric biomass plant in Colusa County, California.

($1 = €0.79)


By: Stefan Baumgarten
+1 713 525 2653



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