30 November 2022
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Perovskites are a class of materials that share a similar structure, which display a myriad of exciting properties like superconductivity, magnetoresistance and more. These easily synthesized materials are considered the future of solar cells, as their distinctive structure makes them perfect for enabling low-cost, extremely efficient photovoltaics. They are also predicted to play a role in next-gen electric vehicle batteries, sensors, lasers and much more.
Perovskite has a crystal structure that takes its name from a Russian researcher. Using perovskite as a semiconductor in PV modules has important advantages. A few of these advantages are that raw materials that are required to produce this semiconductor perovskite are very cheap. You only need a very thin layer of perovskite in a solar cell, resulting in even lower material costs and Perovskite can be applied with a relatively simple deposition process (the application of the layers on a given substrate), so that no expensive machines are required.
Solliance is a global forerunner when it comes to research into this new technology. The research the organization does into the deposition methods (sheet-to-sheet and roll-to-roll processing) are quite unique in the world. Roll-to-roll processing is a scalable, industrial process which is cost-efficient. It can be printed and used in a customized manner.
“Our team is entirely international,” Yulia continues: “we work with team-members that come from all over the world. I originally come from the Ukraine, but have lived in Eindhoven for ten years now. It is a great place to work with a good infrastructure, a lot of internationals and a lot of experts. Education for children is also good. My daughter is in a multi-langual secondary school.”
“In this program a lot of R&D institutes and industrial partners are involved. This makes it easy to experience what chances other organisations offer you. This offers professionals various career opportunities and possibilities for personal growth.”
Other future applications or products for example could be screens of smart devices or rooftops of cars. In this way the screens or rooftop could charge the device or car. Technologies similar to perovskite are already on the market today. But not with such a high efficiency and not without seeing pixels on the glass or foil. There are a few approaches towards translucent pv windows. Solliance’s approach makes it possible to make windows fifty percent more transparent which is needed to make glass or foil that is suitable for various purposes, such as windows in apartments.
“We want to make PV beautiful,” says Sjoerd. “And that is what we are experimenting with. Making it flexible, giving it another colour… etc. For realising this you have to think in a reversed way. We want the application to be leading and add the elements that are needed.”
“Moreover, we have got all the research facilities and equipment we could think of at our disposal,” programme manager Sjoerd Veenstra adds. “The only limiting factor is our own brain. We have got all the facilities needed for experimenting to our hearts’ content.”
“The advantages of the fact that Solliance is located in the Brainport Eindhoven region are that we can quickly connect expertise. If we need laser expertise, a good laser researcher is available, it is good that there are many tech companies here with a lot of experience that are willing to cooperate, We need creative people and they are available in Brainport. It is also good that the Eindhoven area has a strong link with an international knowledge structure. Basically we compete with other strong regions in the world, if you want to compete and have impact you’d better collaborate.”