All pumped up
Eric Taberlet, President of the Business Unit Semiconductor & Coating at Pfeiffer Vacuum, joined us at PES to bring us up-to-date with their latest vacuum advances and ‘Green LabFab’ in France.
PES: Welcome back to PES Solar/PV magazine. Thanks for talking with us. Would you like to begin by explaining a little about the background of your organisation and how you currently serve the solar industry?
Eric Taberlet: Vacuum design and technology are very critical for a number of key enabling processes serving major industries that are changing our daily life, such as telecommunications, connectivity, medical, food, aerospace, advanced research…. just to list a few.
Pfeiffer Vacuum has been active in these industries for more than 125 years. It is just a natural move to develop our activities in key emerging vacuum industries that have been gaining momentum over the last ten years, like solar, LED and AMOLED.
The combination of strong vacuum process know-how and a complete range of vacuum solutions is positioning our organisation as a leading vacuum player in the solar manufacturing area. Our business development in solar started more than ten years ago, and we are constantly evolving with the market to meet both thin film and wafer based technologies’ needs.
PES: You are active in a number of industry sectors. How important is the solar business to Pfeiffer Vacuum?
ET: As mentioned before, the solar segment has been a focus for Pfeiffer Vacuum for the past 10 years. Of course, as you know, this industry is still undergoing development and still facing lot of challenges, both industrial and technical. These are forcing a number of consolidations and up-down cycles.
Despite these challenges, we believe in the long-term development of solar and our organisation is committed to supporting the growth of the industry and of course, taking part in it.
As a global company, Pfeiffer Vacuum is part of major investment projects in both thin film and wafer based technologies. These projects are mainly Asia-driven investments, but we still have a strong equipment base in Europe and particularly Germany that contributes a lot to this business.