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control over it. The IPM eliminates the inspection recipes, detection criteria,
need to code complex business rules. classification schemes, etc., and run
System set-up, use, and maintenance are these off-line on their reference set.
incredibly simple and fast. Virtually instantaneous feedback is
As a manufacturing efficiency product, it provided as to what the impact of their
is considered easy to implement, change is on production. If beneficial
customise and use. such change can then be deployed over
the various AOI systems in use on the
lines. By doing so no materials, operator-
KLA-Tencor, ICOS
and/or production time is being wasted.
Tune 1000 is available for the PVI-6
Division inspection modules from KLA-Tencor’s
Tune 1000 Yield optimization tool ICOS division. Several companies have
inspection modules and some a form of
AOI systems are commonly used in the CMM, but Tune 1000 is something ‘out of
PV industry to gate product quality and the ordinary’.
monitor processes. Such systems build
on an equipment engineers’ expertise to
set inspection limits, quality thresholds,
etc., — decisions which have a very large
KUKA Systems
impact on overall yield. Yet these ROBO FRAME Module are also possible.
engineers are short of tools to judge the The separate feeding of the long and
impact of any setting, or change in KUKA Systems ROBO FRAME module short frame parts prevents relative
setting, they want to implement on such uses an industrial robot with a high motions from occurring and thus
AOI system on the production line’s payload capacity for the automatic eliminates the risk of scratches on the
bottomline. Typically they act on a trial framing of solar modules. The advantages profiles.The tools can be adapted to
and error scheme, with a very limited set of this production process are the various frame sizes. The KUKA robot
of samples, to judge the impact of the prevention of deformation and scratching, allows combination with additional
change they want to implement. The improved quality of the end product, and automation tasks, thus facilitating
outcome is never conclusive and has to greater throughput of the production scalability of the system, e.g. for lines with
be tested on small production runs, and system. an annual power output of 50 or 100MW.
is typically optimized in several iterations.
Each of these is costly in lost production The framing of solar modules typically The ROBO FRAME unit consists of the
time and material. involves slightly over-dimensioned frames KUKA robot with framing gripper, a station
in order to accommodate the tolerances for pressing in the corners, two framing
Tune 1000 enables engineers to gather a of the glass and the frame parts. During tables, an optional vertical buffer for one
large set of production data for later the joining process, the laminate must not hour’s production volume, an optional
analysis. At any time they can alter be pressed right up against the frame, but corner key separator and the wetting
must be joined according to specified channel for the adhesive tape. The
dimensions. ROBO FRAME system is system is complemented by automatic
claimed to handle large tolerance ranges trimming with KUKA’s ROBO TRIM,
Issue III 2009
reliably, thereby ensuring high quality of automatic application of the adhesive
the end product. tape with KUKA ROBO TAPE, a camera
system for frame inspection, and KUKA
In the ROBO FRAME system, the robot ROBO FINISH for the permanent closure
grips the prepared laminate on the glass of the edges by means of crimping or
side and guides it precisely into the screws and for deburring the edges.
prepared frame parts. In a sequence of
four steps, the long frame parts are joined
first, the short frame parts into which the
corner connectors have already been
Newport Corporation
inserted automatically are also joined. PV IsoStation
Additional clips and a level support plate
ensure that the forces applied to the Newport’s PV IsoStation Workstation is a,
laminate during assembly of the frame 36”x 60” ergonomic workstation
parts are kept to a minimum, thereby specifically designed for PV test and
preventing deformation. At 1.2 tons, the development applications. It features
joining forces that can be achieved are integrated storage and shelving for
comparable to those of a conventional instruments, solar simulators and other
frame press. The process is not rigidly devices and a specially treated work
configured for use of double-sided surface that reduces light reflectivity by a
adhesive tape so other sealing methods factor of six compared to typical optical
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