Solar cells to get more efficient; big solar power deal in the desert

by Antonio Pasolini on February 14, 2009

Picosun Oy, a leading Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) systems manufacturer from Finland, announced it is taking part in an EU funded research project aiming at dramatically increasing the efficiency of solar cells.

The project, named ROD-SOL (short for Rods for Novel Solar Cells) endeavors to create new, more cost effective nanomaterials for solar cells. The European Union has allocated 2.9 million euros from its 7th European Research Programme for the 4 million euro budget of ROD-SOL.

“Picosun is extremely proud to be one of only four industrial partners in this enormously important project”, says Juhana Kostamo, Managing Director of Picosun. “Thin films are going to be the key for success in this project. Picosun focuses exclusively on ALD and ALD is key to advanced thin films”, Kostamo says.

According to Dr. Silke Christiansen, the coordinator of ROD-SOL from the Institute of Photonic Technology in Germany, one of seven science partners of the project, the optimization of the growth of silicon nanorods on inexpensive substrates, such as glass or synthetic foil for future thin film solar cells is one of the goals of the project. These nanorods are expected to serve as ideal light traps to capture the energy of light for transformation into electricity.

In order to cover current world-wide requirements of electric power with photovoltaics, a square having 380 km sides would be sufficient. This corresponds to the surface area of countries like Tajikistan, Bangladesh or Nepal, or less than half of the surface area of countries like Italy, the Philippines or Finland.

“The more effective solar cells are is the make and break of the future potential use of photovoltaics. ROD-SOL aims at raising the efficiency of solar cells by more than half from their current capacity,” says Kostamo. “The urgency to find sustainable new ways to generate energy is obvious to us all.”

More solar power news via Wired: 1,300 plus megawatt solar power installation is planned for the desert outside Los Angeles, according to a new deal between the utility Southern California Edison and solar power plant maker, BrightSource. The deal will deliver more electricity than even the largest nuclear plant. The first of a total of seven facilities will start in 2013 and provide electricity to power 845,000 homes.

Related Posts:

  • No Related Posts Found! Go find some...

Previous post:

Next post: