Fundacion Institut Recerca Energia de Catalunya (IREC)

Main Role: Project Coordination. Development of quality control and process monitoring methodologies for assessment of new encapsulation processes;

IREC is a Foundation with the participation of the Catalan Regional Government (Generalitat de Catalunya), the Spanish Ministries of Economy and Competitiveness and of Industry, the University of Barcelona, the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, the University Rovira Virgili and private companies from the Energy Sector. The Institute constitutes a research organization committed to carry out, promote, spread, transfer and improve research activities in the energy and environment sectors of knowledge and of their applications. IREC group involved in DURACIS is the Solar Energy Materials and Systems (SEMS) group. The group has a strong background and expertise in advanced characterisation of CIGS processes and devices, including the development of light scattering based methodologies for quality assessment and process monitoring in advanced CIGS processes for improvement of process yield and reliability.

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Ecopol Tech SL

Main Role: Design and synthesis of moisture and oxygen barrier encapsulation coatings. ECOPOL will take advantage of their research experience related to moisture and oxygen barrier encapsulants in OPVs

ECOPOL TECH is a technological based company founded in 2005 with the experience of its promoter Dr. Josep Rocas Sorolla. The company has three main divisions, all based on specialty polymers: Industrial polymeric specialities (mainly adhesives, coatings and additives), Nanotechnological polymers and Nanobiotechnological polymers. The company expertise is the design and synthesis of water based and solvent free nanostructured polymers that could be applied as thermoplastics for adhesives, coatings and additives, polymer applied nanotechnology and polymer micro/nano encapsulation. One of the company focuses is the micro and nanoencapsulation of different hydrophobic compounds and the development of high performance coatings that show different properties such as hydrophobia, oleophobia and abrasion resistance. A new technology obtained by mixing the encapsulation and coatings "know-how" will be a key point in the development of moisture and oxygen barrier coatings. The company background in polymeric specialties (adhesives and coatings) and the expertise in nano and microencapsulation will allow ECOPOL to fulfil the objectives of the project and obtain a product portfolio of high performance moisture and oxygen barrier products. The products developed could be used not only in photovoltaic devices (DURACIS consortium objective) but also in other areas such as flexible lamination for packaging, antifouling and anticorrosive coatings.

Main role: Design and synthesis of moisture and oxygen barrier encapsulation coatings. ECOPOL will take advantage of their research experience related to moisture and oxygen barrier encapsulants in OPVs.

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Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)

Main Role: Preparation of CIGS cells and minimodules by coevaporation without monolithic interconnection onto polyimide substrates. Special emphasis will be given to the advanced characterisation of flexible CIGS cells.

The Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) is a government-funded research organisation under the administrative authority of France's Ministry of Research. CNRS is organised in different types of laboratories in partnership with universities, other research organisations or industry, corresponding to joint research units. The CNRS group involved in DURACIS is the group at IRDEP (Institute for Research and Development of Photovoltaic Energy). IRDEP (UMR 7174) was created in 2005, based on 30 years of experience in photovoltaics at CNRS Chimie Paristech, between Electricité de France (EDF), the CNRS and the Engineering School Chimie-ParisTech. The aim of IRDEP is to contribute the emergence of solar electricity from PV as a major contribution in the energy mix within the next years, as an immediate response to the energy and climate concerns. Three main lines are considered, the reduction of production costs of PV modules, the increase of the conversion efficiencies and the development of large scale deposition processes. IRDEP approach is thus focused on thin film technologies (2nd generation PV) and high efficiency concepts (3rd generation PV) going beyond the existing bulk crystalline silicon technologies, with a specific attention to CIGS technologies.

Main role: Preparation of CIGS cells and minimodules by coevaporation without monolithic interconnection onto polyimide substrates. ALD encapsulation solutions. Special emphasis will be given to the advanced characterisation of flexible CIGS cells.

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Main Role: Development of cost efficient hybrid encapsulation strategies involving fast UV cured liquid encapsulants and ALD/sputtered high barrier layers. Economical and life cycle assessment of the developed processes

The EDF group involved in DURACIS is the EDF-IRDEP group from EDF R&D. IRDEP is about 50 research staff from CNRS, EDF and Chimie-Paris Tech, PhD students, postdocs, visiting Scientists and trainees. The Institute has a leading position in France, and at international level. EDF-IRDEP is a member of the new photovoltaic research institute in France (Institut Photovoltaique Ile de France).

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Advanced Coatings & Construction Solutions scrl

Main Role: Assessment of the industrial scalability of the developed encapsulation solutions, through the evaluation of the solutions at pilot scale on the two pilot lines located in clean room, and prototyping activities of lightweight mini-modules with mild s

Advanced Coatings & Construction Solutions scrl (AC&CS) is a private research and development centre that is member of the CRM group. AC&CS has decades experience in metal sheet coating using wet and dry (vacuum) technologies. In particular, several research topics related to energy applications, such as light reflectors, solar thermal absorbers, fuel cells, heat shields or (organic) light emitting diodes, have been led over the past 15 years by the Surface Functionalization department. AC&CS owns an impressive facility centre and several lab and pre-industrial roll-to-roll pilot lines as well as an unparalleled expertise in product / process industrial development in the field of metallurgy and metal science in general. The core business of the research centre is to scale-up technologies and turn innovation into value creation. Since 2011, AC&CS is leading a R&D program in the field of BIPV aiming to develop new industrial roofings solutions for non residential market.

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Eliosys SA

Main Role: Development of high accuracy methodologies and systems dedicated to the performance & lifetime characterisation of flexible CIGS mini-modules.

ELIOSYS is a privately owned company created in August 2009 based in Liège, Belgium. The company is active both in solar converters testing and certification as well as in the characterization of any material under specific environmental conditions. Thanks to its cutting edge equipment and its experienced personnel, ELIOSYS has proven to be a valued partner in the development of PV solutions.

RELEVANT EXPERIENCE: Accredited laboratory for PV testing (accelerated ageing, electrical & performances characterization).

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Zentrum für Sonnenenergie- und Wasserstoff-Forschung Baden-Württemberg

Main Role: Fabrication of novel monolithically integrated submodules on different types of insulated steel substrates, as well as on glass as reference; to test and evaluate the protected (barriers, encapsulants) devices by DH treatments and to analyse the mech

The ZSW is an institute of the local state of Baden-Württemberg and was established in 1988 as a non-profit foundation under the civil code. The goal is to conduct and promote research and development in the field of renewable energies, energy efficiency, energy conversion and storage (batteries, fuel cells), with a focus on solar energy (thin-film photovoltaic) and hydrogen technology (regenerative fuels), in co-operation with universitary and non-universitary research and by transferring the results into industrial application. As an industry-oriented research institute, ZSW paves the way for new technologies to enter the market. We cover the entire value chain, from materials research, prototype development and production processes to application systems, quality tests and market analyses.

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Sunplugged GmbH

Main Role: Assessment of the industrial scalability of the developed encapsulation solutions, through the evaluation of the solutions at pilot scale on the manufacturing pilot line available at the company, and prototyping activities of lightweight mini-module

SUNPLUGGED develops and manufactures photovoltaic modules for the integration into building skins and devices. Since 2010 the company is developing its own proprietary CIGS thin-film solar cell and a novel solar cell interconnection scheme that allows the production of customized Photovoltaic foils for the seamless integration into a multitude of applications. Due to its adaptability in respect to size, shape and voltage, lightweight and homogenous appearance SUNPLUGGED's flexible CIGS foil is an ideal building block for solar powered products.

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Main Role: Development of a cost competitive transparent protective layer and specifically modified polyolefin embedding films to complement the encapsulation concepts developed by EDF and ECOPOL.

ISOVOLTAIC SOLINEX GmbH is headquartered in Lebring/Austria and offers innovative solutions based on its proven core competencies and technologies.

More than 30 years of experience in developing and producing backsheets for solar modules as well as appropriate state-of-the-art technologies and equipment for the production of high quality technical composites will now be made available also for other applications and industries.

ISOVOLTAIC SOLINEX GmbH has further know-how in the field of adhesives and hotmelt materials as well as the experience in roll-to-roll encapsulation of flexible PV applications. Core competencies of ISOVOLTAIC SOLINEX GmbH are film extrusion, lamination, coating and impregnation in continuous R2R processes, the finishing (cutting/stamping, packing) of films and laminates and process development.

For the development of the new backsheets with improved / customized properties lab scale compounding and film extrusion lines are available. If necessary also the full-scale extrusion lines can be included into R&D projects. For the lamination of small lab scale samples as well as for real scale samples a full-scale lamination line can be used. Accelerated aging tests can be performed in full scale DH and TCT chambers. Testing devices for thermo analytical analysis, WVTR, OTR, mechanical properties and insulation properties are also available.

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Universität innsbruck

Universität Innsbruck

Main Role: Advanced characterisation of polyimide based cells and mini-modules.

The University of Innsbruck is a public university. The University was founded in 1669 and is the biggest and most important research and education institution in western Austria, today comprised more than 28.000 students and more than 4.500 staff and faculty members. Located in the heart of the Alps, the University of Innsbruck offers the best conditions for successful research and teaching, and international rankings confirm the University's leading role in basic research.

In such a productive environment 16 faculties provide a broad spectrum of programs in all fields of study. In order to promote international exchange in research and teaching, the University collaborates with numerous international research and education institutions.

The involved subdivision of the University of Innsbruck in DURACIS is the Material Center Tyrol (MCT). MCT is dealing with process engineering, process analytics and material analytics of thin-layers-systems. The group mainly do applied research with company-partners and responsible for technology transfer from basic research to industrial application. MCT and Sunplugged GmbH has 4 years of cooperation history and they are working together in several research projects.

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