Suntech and a solar PV research team at the University of New South Wales have set a new world record for conversion efficiency for solar cells.

Suntech CEO, Zhengrong Shi, said that 20.3% converging efficiency had been achieved utilizing a standard P type mono-crystalline silicon PV cell which is suitable for mass production.

The achievement was announced by Zhengrong Shi during a discussion of the company’s 2011 performance in which he said that, in 2011, Suntech  "shipped 2.1GW, which is 33% higher than our 2010 shipments. According to IMS Research, we increased our market share and retained our position as the world’s largest supplier of solar module for the second year running."

Despite this, he said that excess capacity in the industry had pushed prices down to an unsustainable level but he expects that "as weaker players to exit the industry, pricestol rationalize and large efficient module producers to generate a low-teen gross margin."