SBIR Phase I: Nanonickel based printable inks for front side metallization of silicon solar cells

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1047332
Agency Tracking Number: 1047332
Amount: $149,989.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2011
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: NM
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
UT Dots, Inc.
115 Paddock Dr., Savoy, IL, 61874-9634
DUNS: 142198188
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Y
Principal Investigator
 Yuri Didenko
 (217) 390-3286
 info@utdots.com
Business Contact
 Yuri Didenko
Title: PhD
Phone: (217) 390-3286
Email: info@utdots.com
Research Institution
 Stub
Abstract
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project aims to develop nickel-based nanoinks for the front-side metallization of silicon solar cells. Current front-side metallization processes rely on screen printing contact methods that use silver paste, which contains glass frits that require high curing temperatures from 800 to 900 degree Celsius. The high temperatures introduce stress on the silicon wafer and the contact method risks cracking the wafer. In this project, nanonickel inks will be synthesized and deposited on solar panels by a non-contact Aerosol-Jet method at low temperatures from 300 to 400 degree Celsius. The nanonickel inks will be used as a seed layer for front-side metallization of solar panels. An additional layer of copper nanoinks will be deposited on top of the nickel layer creating thicker conductive lines. The broader/commercial impact of this project will be the potential to offer a cost-effective replacement to silver paste for the front-side metallization of crystalline-silicon solar cells using a non-contact method. It is expected to provide manufacturing processes and materials that enhance quality of front-side metallization while reducing cost.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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