Improved Multi Junction Solar Cell Technology for Satellites

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Missile Defense Agency
Contract: HQ0147-12-C-7164
Agency Tracking Number: B2-1828
Amount: $999,856.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2009
Solicitation Topic Code: MDA09-T005
Solicitation Number: 2009.B
Small Business Information
215 Wynn Dr., 5th Floor, Huntsville, AL, -
DUNS: 185169620
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: Y
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Alex Fedoseyev
 Senior Principal Engineer
 (256) 726-4800
Business Contact
 Deb Phipps
Title: Contracts Manager
Phone: (256) 726-4884
Research Institution
 Rochester Institute of Technology
 Katherine A Clark
 141 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY, 14623-5603
 (585) 475-7984
 Nonprofit college or university
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.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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