Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > Sol Voltaics Unveils SolInk™ to Boost Performance of Solar Modules by 25 Percent: Manufacturing in the Air: Aerotaxy™ Process Reduces the Cost and Complexity of Producing Nanowires for Solar Modules, LED Bulbs and Other Products

Abstract:
Sol Voltaics today unveiled SolInk™, an economical nanomaterial that promises to increase the efficiency of crystalline silicon or thin film solar modules by up to 25 percent or more, leading to solar power plants and rooftop solar arrays that will generate far more electricity than today's best commercially available systems.

Sol Voltaics Unveils SolInk™ to Boost Performance of Solar Modules by 25 Percent: Manufacturing in the Air: Aerotaxy™ Process Reduces the Cost and Complexity of Producing Nanowires for Solar Modules, LED Bulbs and Other Products

Lund, Sweden | Posted on April 9th, 2013

he increase in efficiency will allow SolInk-enhanced panels to deliver power at prices that competes directly against electricity from fossil fuel plants while improving the economics for manufacturers. Global demand for solar energy is expected to grow from 29.8 gigawatts of new solar installations in 2012 to 50.8 gigawatts in 2016, according to Greentech Media.

"The best way to lower the cost of solar power is to raise the efficiency of solar modules," explained David Epstein, CEO of Sol Voltaics. "Approximately two-thirds of the cost of commercial solar systems revolves around land, labor costs and other factors that solar developers can't directly control. By raising the efficiency of solar modules, we give solar manufacturers the opportunity to sell more valuable, higher-margin products and solar developers the opportunity to generate more power -- at a lower price -- with essentially the same physical assets."

To date, Sol Voltaics has raised $11 million from private investors including Industrifonden, Foundation Asset Management of Sweden, Teknoinvest, Provider, Nano Future Invest and Scatec Energy of Norway. The company additionally has received public funding from the European Union, Vinnova, Nordic Innovation Center, and others. Sol Voltaics will raise $10 to $20 million this year.

Sol Voltaics' strategy revolves around two fundamental technologies: gallium arsenide nanowires, thin strands of material that constitute the active ingredient in SolInk, and Aerotaxy™, an innovative process for producing nanowires created by company founder and Lund University professor Lars Samuelson.

Gallium arsenide has been used in solar for years because of its reliability and high conversion efficiencies: orbiting satellites employ solar cells made from the material to power their internal systems. Gallium arsenide solar cells, however, typically cost far more to produce than crystalline silicon or thin film cells, thereby confining the material to niche market segments.

SolInk dramatically reduces the cost by minimizing materials: less than a gram of nanowires is added to crystalline silicon panels. With SolInk, module manufacturers can make commercially feasible, high efficiency gallium arsenide solar modules or multi-junction solar modules combining gallium arsenide and crystalline silicon.

SolInk also enables light concentration without the use of optics or mechanical components. Nanowires need only cover a small portion of the surface area of a crystalline silicon or thin film solar cell to achieve substantially all of the benefits of adding gallium arsenide. In a research paper published in Science earlier this year, Lund University and Sol Voltaics researchers demonstrated that indium phosphide nanowires covering just 12 percent of the substrate surface produced a solar cell with an efficiency of 13.8 percent. The results were certified by the Fraunhofer Institute. The phenomenon, called Wave Concentrated Photovoltaics (WCPV), combined with the other advantages of gallium arsenide nanowires leads to ground-breaking performance for SolInk.

Aerotaxy: A New Way to Manufacture Materials

Aerotaxy represents a new paradigm for mass producing the smallest structures inside electronic devices. Nanowires and nanotubes are typically produced through an epitaxial process, i.e. slowly grown as crystals on substrates. Because of the inherent physical limits of the epitaxial process, nanoparticles often need to be grown in place or harvested and sorted in batch processes that can be both time-consuming and expensive.

Aerotaxy creates nanomaterials by suspending and mixing active materials in carrier gas streams. The active materials bond to form larger, uniform structures while in flight: nanowires are literally grown in air. In this way, Aerotaxy can generate tens of billions of nanowires per second on a continuous basis.

The finished nanowires can be integrated into a solar panel or other products, or can be stored indefinitely. A 2012 paper published in Nature details how professor Samuelson and his team manufactured gallium arsenide nanowires with Aerotaxy.

"The results have been far better than we ever expected," said Samuelson. "We understand how different materials react or bond to one another. With Aerotaxy, we essentially create an atmosphere where we can better harness those physical and chemical properties."

Business Model: SolInk, Not Modules

Rather than produce modules or sell capital equipment, Sol Voltaics will produce and sell SolInk to solar cell and module manufacturers: a single, relatively small, manufacturing facility will be able to provide megawatts worth of materials to module makers worldwide. Module manufacturers likewise will be able to integrate new materials into their products without replacing existing production lines.

Sol Voltaics anticipates producing functional solar cells with gallium arsenide nanowires for demonstration by the end of 2013. Commercial production of SolInk-enhanced modules will begin in 2015 and move into volume production in 2016. Total invested capital to get into high-volume commercial production will come to less than $50 million.

Other potential applications for Aerotaxy include producing nanomaterials for power electronics, LEDs, batteries and energy storage.

"The promise of nanotechnology has been held back by complexity, low yields and cost. Aerotaxy paves the way for integrating new materials into products in a streamlined manner. This is nanotechnology made simple," said Alf Bjorseth, Chairman of Scatec.

####

About Sol Voltaics
Based in Lund, Sweden, Sol Voltaics develops novel nanomaterials and production processes for enhancing solar panels and other products.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Michael Kanellos
Vice President
Eastwick Communications
(415) 820-4176

Copyright © Marketwire

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

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

Design of micro and nanoparticles to improve treatments for Alzheimers and Parkinsons: At the Faculty of Pharmacy of the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country encapsulation techniques are being developed to deliver correctly and effectively certain drugs October 20th, 2014

Physicists build reversible laser tractor beam October 20th, 2014

Removal of Limitations of Composites at Superheat Temperatures October 20th, 2014

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

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

Aledia’s Nanowire LED Technology Endorsed By 2014 Physics Nobel Prize Winner: Hiroshi Amano Serves on Company’s Scientific Advisory Board October 13th, 2014

'Greener,' low-cost transistor heralds advance in flexible electronics September 24th, 2014

Announcements

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

Design of micro and nanoparticles to improve treatments for Alzheimers and Parkinsons: At the Faculty of Pharmacy of the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country encapsulation techniques are being developed to deliver correctly and effectively certain drugs October 20th, 2014

Physicists build reversible laser tractor beam October 20th, 2014

Removal of Limitations of Composites at Superheat Temperatures October 20th, 2014

Energy

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

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

Unique catalysts for hydrogen fuel cells synthesized in ordinary kitchen microwave oven October 14th, 2014

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

Solar/Photovoltaic

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

Over 100 European experts meet in Barcelona thanks to a COST Action coordinated from ICN2: The ISOS-7 Summit discusses the future of organic photovoltaic devices October 7th, 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