Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > Solar research center may spur innovation, industry development in Oregon

Abstract:
A newly-created signature research center at Oregon State University may give Oregon the potential to become an international leader in solar cell innovation and manufacturing.

Solar research center may spur innovation, industry development in Oregon

Corvallis, OR | Posted on January 8th, 2010

The Oregon Process Innovation Center for Sustainable Solar Cell Manufacturing has now been set up at OSU with almost $2.7 million in new funding, and researchers believe the technologies that may emerge from it could dramatically change the global solar energy industry.

"We're reaching the limits of what can be done through incremental improvements in traditional, silicon-based solar cell technology," said Greg Herman, an associate professor of chemical engineering at OSU and associate director of the center. "We're aiming for a revolution in solar cell processing and manufacturing that might drop costs by as much as 90 percent while being more environmentally sensitive."

The center will involve the efforts of more than 20 faculty and researchers from OSU, the University of Oregon, Portland State University and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, allow collaboration with private industry, and provide unique student educational opportunities in some of the newest concepts in solar energy.

The center has already acquired some of its new equipment and will be fully operational by this May, officials say. It is a signature research facility of the Oregon Built Environment and Sustainable Technologies Center, or Oregon BEST, which provided an initial investment of $232,000 and helped to obtain additional funding.

The facilities are being set up at the Microproducts Breakthrough Institute, a signature research facility of the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute. Additional support comes from OSU, ONAMI, and a three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to OSU, CH2M HILL, Voxtel and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

Both Oregon BEST and ONAMI were established by the Oregon legislature to connect Oregon businesses with a network of university laboratories and turn research in products, services and jobs.

The new center will help solar energy companies improve existing technologies, and also move toward next-generation solar cell concepts. It will provide a shared laboratory and equipment, serve as a resource to solve industry manufacturing problems, and be an educational training ground for solar energy engineers and scientists of the future.

The key to these advances - and the businesses and jobs they may produce - is a completely new approach to solar cell manufacturing, according to Chih-hung Chang, director of the center and the Sharp Laboratories Faculty Scholar at OSU.

"The current silicon technology has its limits," said Chang, an associate professor in the School of Chemical, Biological and Environmental Engineering. "We need huge improvements in lowering solar cell manufacturing cost that current technology will probably not give us."

An example of the alternative approaches, Chang said, may be such processes as "microreactor-assisted nanomaterial deposition," in which thin-film deposition is made on various substrates from a chemical stream, one application of which can reduce the reflectance of light striking the material. Approaches such as this, and other evolving technologies, may make solar energy more efficient than previous systems, while reducing use of water, energy and hazardous chemicals.

The center will work closely with some of the leaders in solar energy in Oregon and around the world, Chang said. Collaboration is planned with Oregon companies such as SolarWorld, Voxtel and CH2M Hill, as well as leading universities in Germany, Taiwan and South Korea.

"With the research and innovation that will emerge from this center, we believe it's possible for solar energy manufacturing to help fill the void left in Oregon by the loss of some semiconductor companies," Herman said. "We have a well-trained high technology workforce, supporting companies, the necessary supply chain, and other infrastructure in place to make this happen."

Additional funding to support more research initiatives will be sought from federal agencies such as the Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, Department of Defense and others. A range of existing and new processes for photovoltaic products will be studied, international collaboration will be expanded and other initiatives considered.

####

About OSU College of Engineering
The OSU College of Engineering is among the nationís largest and most productive engineering programs. In the past six years, the College has more than doubled its research expenditures to $27.5 million by emphasizing highly collaborative research that solves global problems, spins out new companies, and produces opportunity for students through hands-on learning.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Media Contact
David Stauth
541-737-0787

Source
Chih-hung Chang
541-737-8548

Greg Herman
541-737-2496

Copyright © Oregon State University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Iran to Hold 3rd Int'l Engineering Materials, Metallurgy Conference October 25th, 2014

Haydale Secures Exclusive Development and Supply Agreement with Tantec A/S: New reactors to be built and commissioned by Tantec A/S represent another step forward towards the commercialisation of graphene October 24th, 2014

QuantumWise guides the semiconductor industry towards the atomic scale October 24th, 2014

SUNY Polytechnic Institute Invites the Public to Attend its Popular Statewide 'NANOvember' Series of Outreach and Educational Events October 23rd, 2014

Openings/New facilities/Groundbreaking/Expansion

HP Supercomputer at NREL Garners Top Honor October 19th, 2014

Graphenea opens US branch October 16th, 2014

Raytheon, UMass Lowell open on-campus research institute: Industry leaderís researchers to collaborate with faculty, students to move key technologies forward through first-of-its-kind partnership October 11th, 2014

Yale University and Leica Microsystems Partner to Establish Microscopy Center of Excellence: Yale Welcomes Scientists to Participate in Core Facility Opening and Super- Resolution Workshops October 20 Through 31, 2014 September 30th, 2014

Jobs

Secretary Vilsack Announces Partnership to Advance Commercial Potential of Cellulosic Nanomaterial from Wood December 11th, 2013

Cutting Away at the NRC's Research Capability December 6th, 2013

Project aims to mass-produce 'nanopetals' for sensors, batteries October 22nd, 2013

Governor Cuomo Announces 'Nano Utica' $1.5 Billion Public-Private Investment That Will Make the Mohawk Valley New York's Next Major Hub of Nanotech Research October 12th, 2013

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Novel Rocket Design Flight Tested: New Rocket Propellant and Motor Design Offers High Performance and Safety October 23rd, 2014

Strengthening thin-film bonds with ultrafast data collection October 23rd, 2014

Brookhaven Lab Launches Computational Science Initiative:Leveraging computational science expertise and investments across the Laboratory to tackle "big data" challenges October 22nd, 2014

Bipolar Disorder Discovery at the Nano Level: Tiny structures found in brain synapses help scientists better understand disorder October 22nd, 2014

Possible Futures

Imaging electric charge propagating along microbial nanowires October 20th, 2014

Superconducting circuits, simplified: New circuit design could unlock the power of experimental superconducting computer chips October 18th, 2014

Nanocoatings Market By Product Is Expected To Reach USD 8.17 Billion By 2020: Grand View Research, Inc. October 15th, 2014

Perpetuus Carbon Group Receives Independent Verification of its Production Capacity for Graphenes at 140 Tonnes per Annum: Perpetuus Becomes the First Manufacturer in the Sector to Allow Third Party Audit October 7th, 2014

Academic/Education

SUNY Polytechnic Institute Invites the Public to Attend its Popular Statewide 'NANOvember' Series of Outreach and Educational Events October 23rd, 2014

First Canada Excellence Research Chair gets $10 million from the federal government for oilsands research at the University of Calgary: Federal government announces prestigious research chair to study improving oil production efficiency October 19th, 2014

Raytheon, UMass Lowell open on-campus research institute: Industry leaderís researchers to collaborate with faculty, students to move key technologies forward through first-of-its-kind partnership October 11th, 2014

SUNY Colleges of Nanoscale Science and Engineering and National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Announce Expanded Partnership October 2nd, 2014

Announcements

Iran to Hold 3rd Int'l Engineering Materials, Metallurgy Conference October 25th, 2014

Haydale Secures Exclusive Development and Supply Agreement with Tantec A/S: New reactors to be built and commissioned by Tantec A/S represent another step forward towards the commercialisation of graphene October 24th, 2014

QuantumWise guides the semiconductor industry towards the atomic scale October 24th, 2014

Strengthening thin-film bonds with ultrafast data collection October 23rd, 2014

Environment

Iranian, Malaysian Scientists Study Nanophotocatalysts for Water Purification October 23rd, 2014

Imaging electric charge propagating along microbial nanowires October 20th, 2014

Physicists build reversible laser tractor beam October 20th, 2014

Plastic nanoparticles also harm freshwater organisms October 18th, 2014

Grants/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

Special UO microscope captures defects in nanotubes: University of Oregon chemists provide a detailed view of traps that disrupt energy flow, possibly pointing toward improved charge-carrying devices October 21st, 2014

Crystallizing the DNA nanotechnology dream: Scientists have designed the first large DNA crystals with precisely prescribed depths and complex 3D features, which could create revolutionary nanodevices October 20th, 2014

QD Vision Wins Prestigious Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency October 16th, 2014

Beyond LEDs: Brighter, new energy-saving flat panel lights based on carbon nanotubes - Planar light source using a phosphor screen with highly crystalline single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) as field emitters demonstrates its potential for energy-efficient lighting device October 14th, 2014

Alliances/Partnerships/Distributorships

European Commission opens the gate towards the implementation of Nanomedicine Translation Hub October 16th, 2014

IRLYNX and CEA-Leti to Streamline New CMOS-based Infrared Sensing Modules Dedicated to Human-activities Characterization October 15th, 2014

New VDMA Association "Electronics, Micro and Nano Technologies" founded: Inaugural Meeting in Frankfurt/Main, Germany October 15th, 2014

VDMA photonics steering committee with new members stronger than ever October 14th, 2014

Solar/Photovoltaic

Advancing thin film research with nanostructured AZO: Innovnanoís unique and cost-effective AZO sputtering targets for the production of transparent conducting oxides October 23rd, 2014

Magnetic mirrors enable new technologies by reflecting light in uncanny ways October 16th, 2014

Dyesol Signs Letter of Intent with Tata Steel October 13th, 2014

DNA nano-foundries cast custom-shaped metal nanoparticles: DNA's programmable assembly is leveraged to form precise 3D nanomaterials for disease detection, environmental testing, electronics and beyond October 10th, 2014

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE





  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More














ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2014 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE