EasyEngineering Interview with Ecoprogetti - ECOPROGETTI - Specialist in photovoltaic production process




Ecoprogetti is the only 100% European company specialized in the design and assembly of complete production lines for solar panels. The company was born 25 years ago and since then it consistently brought easy to use, modular and flexible production and testing technologies to the solar market.

Interview with Michele Caddeo, Marketing Manager at Ecoprogetti.

Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company?

Michele Caddeo: Ecoprogetti offers machines and automation for the PV industry, consisting in a complete range of manufacturing equipment, automation, tools and testing machines for photovoltaic panels and it also provides trainings, custom designs, raw material selection, business plans and everything our customers need to efficiently start producing their photovoltaic panels.

E.E: What’s the news about new products?

M.C: Ecoprogetti’s clients are the biggest and most competitive European players in the solar market and they demand the best fully automatic production lines to assemble and test high-efficiency solar panels (from 480W to 600W and 700W), using the newest and biggest sizes of solar cells, ideal for both residential and industrial applications.

To handle the larger cells, the production machines require an increased size and, in some cases, technology upgrades for which Ecoprogetti is always ready. Longer and broader equipment, such as laminators and stringers, are required for the larger module formats. Alongside this, their adoption is driving increased automation in processes.

Ecoprogetti recently developed a fully automatic machine for junction box application and soldering and upgraded the LED based sun simulator which is still one of the most appreciated and most accurate testing machines on the market. 

E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active?

M.C: The energy and gas crisis that is underway in Europe (Germany, Austria, France, Holland) has raised electricity prices and thus Europe has accelerated strongly on the subject of solar energy and currently it has strong interest.

We have also noticed that in recent months the countries of greatest interest for export unexpectedly are also Eastern Europe Serbia, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Macedonia and so on. These countries that are actively entering European politics and business are making large investments in the sector of renewables.

And certainly, the countries that continue to provide opportunities for export are the USA, Canada, which with Biden are pushing for renewables, and also Middle East, Central Africa and North Africa. India, which has always been a main market, is now saturating itself (it is the second largest producer of solar panels in the world) while Oman and Pakistan are just starting.

E.E: What can you tell us about market trends?

M.C: Between 2021 and 2022 we’ve seen a great demand for 450W, 500W, 550W, 600W high efficiency solar panels using the new and bigger solar cells (166mm, 182mm, 210mm), N-Type heterojunction and P-Type PERC half-cut solar cells are the main ones.  According to the report published by ITRPV, M2 (156,75mm) wafer will disappear within five years. M6 (166 mm) and larger wafer formats will make up 90% of the monocrystalline market by 2030. Many companies are planning to switch to M10 (182 mm) wafers by 2024, reaching power efficiencies over 700W.

E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed?

M.C: Ecoprogetti is proud to announce two main innovative products, the latest LED sun simulator and the Automatic Bussing.

Ecoprogetti’s new solution for PV module testing and I-V curve measurements with A+A+A++ class certified by TÜV InterCert, is suitable for testing all new generation of solar modules and high efficiency solar cells. Extended spectrum= 300nm to 1200nm, fully compliant to the IEC 60904-9 ED. 3.

Ecoprogetti’s Automatic Bussing machine performs the induction soldering of the interconnections between the strings. Today, this state of the art machine is optimized to work on the head, middle (centralized panels) and lower part of the module, providing a complete and high quality bussing performance that a human operator could’t keep up with.

E.E: What estimations do you have for 2022?

M.C: We’ve noticed an increased demand for bigger production lines, with more MW per Year, due to the current market demand the new average to start a competitive production line is 200-300MW/year.