Multifunctional UV CurableSol-Gel Organkic Hybrid Nanocomposite Encapsulation System
Small Business Information
20600 Gramercy Place, Suite 203, Torrance, CA, 90501
AbstractInnovative approaches are being sought to develop cost-effective and improved encapsulation materials to protect photovoltaic cells/modules from water and oxygen, without the cost, weight, and complexity of current solutions. This project will develop a new multifunctional, UV-curable, SOl-gel-orgaNIC (SONIC) hybrid nanocomposite encapsulation system, which will have an excellent water/oxygen barrier and provide improved antireflection, superhydrophobic, ultra-violet (UV), and atomic oxygen (AO) resistant properties. In this approach, an encapsulant will be applied by direct deposition. The encapsulating process will be automated as a continuously-operating process for both rigid and flexible photovoltaic cells/modules, reducing overall cost by 50 percent. In Phase I, experimental demonstrations proved the feasibility of the SONIC concept by reacting the sol-gel glass with a polymer hybrid matrix. In Phase II, the SONIC process will be optimized, and the formulation will be scaled up for roll-to-roll mass production Commercial Applications and other Benefits as described by the awardee: The proposed technology should enable low-cost, easily manufactured, and mass-producible water/oxygen protective barriers for both rigid and flexible photovoltaic cells/modules. The overall cost of manufacturing photovoltaic cells/modules would be reduced by 50 percent, compared to the double-glass vacuum laminating system currently used. Potentially, this development could increase the uses of solar cells, particularly for flexible thin-film solar cells that can be adapted to non-planar surfaces
* information listed above is at the time of submission.