SBIR Phase I:Rare-Earth-Doped Wavelength Conversion Material and Optical Element

Award Information
Agency:
National Science Foundation
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$164,867.00
Award Year:
2010
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
1013378
Agency Tracking Number:
1013378
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
NM
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
PGC
661 Pleasant Street, Norwood, MA, 02062
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
826239506
Principal Investigator:
Mark Spitzer
DPhil
(781) 492-9200
mbspitzer@photonicglass.com
Business Contact:
Mark Spitzer
DPhil
(781) 492-9200
mbspitzer@photonicglass.com
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project aims to integrate up and down conversion materials into a single photonic device to solve the problem of mismatch between the solar spectrum and solar cells formed from single absorbers such as silicon. Cooperative nonradiative energy transfer between rare-earth dopants will be employed as the physical mechanism to support wavelength conversion. By integrating up and down converting materials, this approach will not only enhance quantum efficiency above and below the absorber band gap, but also recover losses associated with down conversion in the up converter. In this project, fluorine-based materials developed for solid state lasers will be doped specifically for solar applications, and will be tested to determine the feasibility of efficient synergistic up and down conversion between 1 and 1000 suns. The broader/commercial impact of this project will be the potential to significantly improve energy conversion efficiency of solar cells. The spectrum mismatch addressed in this work is responsible for the loss of 50% of the energy reaching solar cells. In addition, this technology does not require changes to the solar cells or electrical connections. Therefore, the integration of this optical product into solar energy systems is straightforward.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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