BASF and Schmid have jointly developed a new, contact-free laser transfer printing (LTP) process for metallizing the front and back of solar cells. At present, it is mainly the screen printing process that is used for metallization. The printer and paste system now developed by BASF and Schmid is based on a contact-free laser process and not only offers customers advantages with regard to handling, but also increases the efficiency of cell production. Thus, for example, the breakage rate is reduced and the throughput increased, and it is possible to handle solar cells below 180 µm. Furthermore, because they contain no lead, the BASF pastes are especially environment-friendly. The silver and aluminum pastes are also available as water-based products, i.e. free of solvents, which should lead to significant production improvements, especially in cell manufacturing.