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Improved Multi Junction Solar Cell Technology for Satellites

Award Information

Department of Defense
Missile Defense Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2012 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
701 McMillian Way, NW Ste D HUNTSVILLE, AL 35806-2922
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Woman-Owned: Yes
Minority-Owned: Yes
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2012
Title: Improved Multi Junction Solar Cell Technology for Satellites
Agency / Branch: DOD / MDA
Contract: HQ0147-12-C-7164
Award Amount: $999,856.00


Higher efficiency solar cells are needed to reduce mass, volume, and cost of DoD space missions. However, to achieve higher efficiency and radiation hardness of the best to date multi-junction photovoltaic (MJ PV) devices, several challenges must be addressed. This project aims to develop: 1) Quantum Well (QW)-based multi-junction cell technology that exhibits enhanced efficiency, and 2) Radiation-hardened PV cell design demonstrating the radiation tolerance of the QW multi-junction cell. Customized modeling tools will enable QW optimization, including: (a) geometrical ordering and variable QW size, (b) increased transport and separation of photogenerated carriers; and (c) improved electrical conductivity and enhanced collection efficiency. In Phase I, CFDRC, together with Rochester Institute of Technology, designed, fabricated and demonstrated the high-efficiency MQW concept for the middle cell in a multi-junction (InGaP/GaAs/Ge) configuration. We fabricated three MQW cell prototypes and performed characterization and testing, delivering a proof of feasibility. The design and implementation of QWs in this middle cell is directly applicable to a state-of-the-art lattice-matched cell and a metamorphic cell. Phase II will complete the development by implementing the high-efficiency MQW and radiation resistant middle cell within a multi-junction cell, resulting in significantly improved MJ QW solar cell performance under AM0 spectrum at the end of life. Device prototypes will be fabricated, demonstrated, and pre- and post-radiation characterization will be conducted. The developed technology will be suitable for insertion into the industrial manufacturing process for space solar cells. A solar panel prototype will also be assembled and demonstrated by testing.

Principal Investigator:

Alex Fedoseyev
Senior Principal Engineer
(256) 726-4800

Business Contact:

Deb Phipps
Contracts Manager
(256) 726-4884
Small Business Information at Submission:

CFD Research Corporation
215 Wynn Dr., 5th Floor Huntsville, AL -

EIN/Tax ID: 630944385
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: Yes
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Research Institution Information:
Rochester Institute of Technology
141 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY 14623-5603
Contact: Katherine A. Clark
Contact Phone: (585) 475-7984