In August 2010, Konica Minolta Sensing Americas, Inc. (KMSA), previewed its new line of reference cells during the SPIE Optics and Photonics conference to much industry excitement. The AK reference cells are used as a standard point of calibration to ensure consistent measurements of newly developed photovoltaic cells. They were created with the cooperation of The National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) and Konica Minolta Sensing utilizing their advanced optical filter technology to provide high-accuracy measurement for adjusting the intensity of solar simulators used for evaluation of solar cells including tandem cells.
Initial offerings in the AK Series will include the AK-100 (for amorphous silicon cells), the AK-110 (for microcrystalline silicon cells), and the AK-200 (for crystalline silicon cells). In addition to commercial & university research and development labs, manufacturers of thin film & optical glass who supply components to the PV industry are also prime candidates. Component manufacturers now have a way to accurately test new materials in the same way a R&D lab would.