Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Boosting European competitiveness in photovoltaics: Empa joins consortium to develop solar cells

Photovoltaics at Empa
Photovoltaics at Empa

Abstract:
With 13 partners from all over Europe, Empa, the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, has launched an EU-funded project to develop affordable, more efficient solar cells. With an overall budget of 10 million Euro, the SCALENANO project aims at achieving breakthroughs in the cost-efficiency of photovoltaic devices and modules based on advanced thin film technologies.

Boosting European competitiveness in photovoltaics: Empa joins consortium to develop solar cells

Duebendorf, Switzerland | Posted on July 14th, 2012

Thin film solar cell technologies have a potential to offer a higher material utilization and lower module costs compared to classical wafer-based silicon solar cells because they employ light-absorbing materials that are about 100-times thinner than silicon wafers. Devices based on the substance class of chalcogenides, such as copper indium gallium (di)selenide (also known as CIGS), exhibit the highest efficiencies of all thin film photovoltaic technologies and have already entered the stage of mass production. However, current production methods typically rely on vacuum-based deposition processes that are difficult to control over large surfaces and require expensive equipment. This counteracts the potential reduction of material costs that are inherent to thin film technologies.

To take up this challenge, the EU-funded international project SCALENANO ("Development and scale-up of nanostructure-based materials and processes for low-cost, high-efficiency chalcogenide-based photovoltaics") - which runs until mid-2015 - will develop alternative, vacuum-free processes based on the electro-deposition of nanostructured precursors. The project also includes the exploration and development of alternative processes with high-throughput and process rates, as well as their extension to the next generation of Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)2-based absorbers (so-called kesterites) that only use cheap and abundant elements. Altogether, this should be a strong boost for European competitiveness in photovoltaic technologies.

Empa's laboratory for Thin Films and Photovoltaics, led by Ayodhya Tiwari, will contribute to the project by investigating solution- and nanoparticle-based deposition of kesterite absorbers, front electrical contacts of transparent conducting oxides (TCOs) and supplying reference solar cells prepared by vacuum-based techniques. Project leader Yaroslav Romanyuk anticipates that "SCALENANO findings may find applications not only in photovoltaics but also in other fields such as smart windows and batteries."

####

About Empa
Empa as a Swiss Materials Science and Technology Institution within the ETH domain is part of the Swiss Science-Technology-Education community. It specializes in applied research and development as well as sophisticated services in the field of sustainable materials science and technology. Its core activities are innovative collaboration with industry and public institutions to ensure the safety of humankind and the environment, knowledge propagation and university-level teaching. The Empa Academy disseminates the latest results of our work at events and in publications. The focal points of our activities are: modern materials, their surfaces and interfaces, construction materials and systems, materials and systems that protect the human body and ensure its wellbeing, information, simulation and reliability technology, and mobility, energy and the environment. Approximately 820 employees work in over 30 specialist fields in nationally and internationally funded research programs, partnership-based development projects and interdisciplinary customer-specific service assignments.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Sabine Charlotte Voser Moebus
+41 44 823 45 99

Copyright © AlphaGalileo

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

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat May 18th, 2018

New blood test rapidly detects signs of pancreatic cancer May 17th, 2018

Disability Can Be a Superpower in Space Disabled astronauts offer unique solutions to emergencies in space May 17th, 2018

Deeper understanding of quantum chaos may be the key to quantum computers May 16th, 2018

Thin films

Organic solar cells reach record efficiency, benchmark for commercialization April 23rd, 2018

High efficiency solar power conversion allowed by a novel composite material: A composite thin film developed at INRS improves significantly solar cells' power conversion efficiency April 10th, 2018

Researchers develop nanoparticle films for high-density data storage: April 3rd, 2018

Monocrystalline silicon thin film for cost-cutting solar cells with 10-times faster growth rate fabricated: Controlling nano surface roughness of porous silicon March 20th, 2018

Announcements

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat May 18th, 2018

New blood test rapidly detects signs of pancreatic cancer May 17th, 2018

Disability Can Be a Superpower in Space Disabled astronauts offer unique solutions to emergencies in space May 17th, 2018

Deeper understanding of quantum chaos may be the key to quantum computers May 16th, 2018

Energy

Team achieves two-electron chemical reactions using light energy, gold May 15th, 2018

Hematene joins parade of new 2D materials: Rice University-led team extracts 3-atom-thick sheets from common iron oxide May 8th, 2018

A designer's toolkit for constructing complex nanoparticles May 5th, 2018

Scientists Pinpoint Energy Flowing Through Vibrations in Superconducting Crystals: Interactions between electrons and the atomic structure of high-temperature superconductors impacted by elusive and powerful vibrations May 4th, 2018

Alliances/Trade associations/Partnerships/Distributorships

Leti and Cellmic Join Forces to Speed Market Adoption of Lens-Free Imaging and Sensing Techniques May 3rd, 2018

Nanobiotix and Weill Cornell Medicine Partner on Pre-Clinical Research Inbox x May 3rd, 2018

New era in high field superconducting magnets opening new frontiers in science, nanotechnology and materials discovery January 9th, 2018

Leti Field Trials Demonstrate New Multicarrier Waveform for Rural, Maritime Broadband Radio: Field Trial in Orkney Islands Used New Filtered Multicarrier Waveform at 700MHz Band with Flexible Bandwidth Usage (Fragmented and Continuous Spectrum) December 18th, 2017

Solar/Photovoltaic

Team achieves two-electron chemical reactions using light energy, gold May 15th, 2018

Hematene joins parade of new 2D materials: Rice University-led team extracts 3-atom-thick sheets from common iron oxide May 8th, 2018

Harvesting clean hydrogen fuel through artificial photosynthesis May 3rd, 2018

Research gives new ray of hope for solar fuel April 27th, 2018

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



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project