Leading Edge Crystal Technologies

A Solar Power Revolution

At Leading Edge Crystal Technologies, we believe solar power will drive the future of renewable energy generation throughout the world. We’re out to lower solar panel cost and increase efficiency through dramatically improved silicon wafer production.

At Leading Edge, we’ve developed a breakthrough crystal growth technology that creates kerfless, single-crystal silicon wafers for solar panel manufacturing. We provide “drop-in” manufacturing equipment to existing solar manufacturers that can reduce all-in module production costs by up to 50%. Our process also produces low-oxygen wafers that eliminate the degradation mechanisms that currently limit solar cell efficiencies.

Floating Silicon Method - Leading Edge Crystal Technologies

The Innovation of Floating Silicon Method™

All solar manufacturers produce silicon wafers for solar panels using a 7-step process that wire-saws large crystal ingots. This extremely consumable-intensive process wastes 40% of the ingot (saw dust), consumes diamond-coated sawing wire, and requires disposable chemicals to remove sawing damage. Furthermore, existing wafers have high oxygen contamination that limits the final panel efficiency.

Our patented “Floating Silicon Method” (FSM) process can produce wafers in one step, eliminating sawing, silicon waste, and chemical usage. It also results in lower oxygen contamination thereby improving final panel efficiency. Our low-waste technology can reduce the industry’s carbon footprint by over 60%, corresponding to 1.5 GT/year of CO2 elimination with full-market penetration.

Our Leadership

Chief Executive Officer

Rick Schwerdtfeger - CEO

Rick Schwerdtfeger

Rick has over 30 years of developing original semiconductor growth furnaces and scaling production and sales in Asia. Most recently as the CTO of ARC Energy (sapphire furnace manufacturer), Rick oversaw the development of an original tool, built a US-based supply chain and assembly line, started a customer support office in Shanghai, and generated a $500M+ backlog of contracts.

Chief Technology Officer

Nathan Stoddard - CTO

Nathan Stoddard

Nathan has developed, from concept to pilot production, three independent silicon wafer technologies for the solar industry. First, he invented and brought a cast-mono process to production for BPSolar. Second, he was part of the original 1366 Technologies team that architected the kerfless Direct Wafer platform. Most recently, he invented and brought to a pilot low-oxygen single crystal 450mm bulk technology for SolarWorld.

Founder, Chief Commercial Officer

Alison Greenlee - CCO

Alison Greenlee

As the founder of Leading Edge and multiple successful startups like Sandymount Technologies, Alison has a strong track record in early-stage company development. She also has extensive experience with developing original company business plans, customer engagement, and commercialization plans. Alison did her MIT graduate work under Professor Ely Sachs (inventor of String Ribbon and 1366’s Direct Wafer technology) and worked previously for 1366 as an equipment engineer.

Our Investors

Supporting Agencies

Contact Us

400 Research Drive
Wilmington, MA 01887

More information

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