Journal article Open Access

Life cycle impact analysis of Cadmium in CdTe PV production

Fthenakis, Vasilis M.

This paper describes the material flows and emissions in all the life stages of CdTe PV modules, from extracting refining and purifying raw materials through the production, use, and disposal or recycling of the modules. The prime focus is on cadmium flows and cadmium emissions into the environment. This assessment also compares the cadmium environmental inventories in CdTe PV modules with those of Ni–Cd batteries and of coal fuel in power plants. Previous studies are reviewed and their findings assessed in light of new data.

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