You are here

An LED-Based Solar Simulator for Research, Development, and Testing of Photovoltaic Space Power Systems

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX13CC72P
Agency Tracking Number: 120181
Amount: $122,605.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: T2.01
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2012
Award Year: 2013
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2013-05-23
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2014-05-22
Small Business Information
5551 Ekwill St.
Santa Barbara, CA 93111-2073
United States
DUNS: 796519630
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Casey Hare
 Senior Systems Engineer
 (805) 448-4138
Business Contact
 Tim Halsey
Title: Business Official
Phone: (805) 284-4535
Research Institution
 University of California at Santa Barbara
 Casey Hare
3227 Cheadle Hall
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-93106
United States

 () -
 Domestic nonprofit research organization

Solar cells are the critical power source for the majority of space missions. The advancement from single junction silicon cells to current, state-of-the-art, triple junction, germanium cells enabled greater mission power per weight, stowed volume and deployed area. Near-term, advanced solar cell technologies will range from 4 to 6 junctions, and include a variety of band gaps.Solar cell testing is critical to space missions. Every solar cell is tested at the cell level under continuous light and at the panel, wing and sometimes spacecraft level multiple times under LAPSS. Current test methods calibrate the light source by measuring the current output of each junction and adjusting the source accordingly. Today's sources are a combination of lamps and filters. As cells with more the 3 junctions come into test, more flexible sources of narrower bands will be needed and current methods will have extreme difficulty, complexity and expense trying to keep up with the variety of near-term advanced solar cell designs.We propose a solid state illumination source with enough discrete source wavelengths to be flexible enough to be calibrated to any number of junctions, up to 6, for continuous cell testing. In addition, this source would be cost effective enough to allow many sources connected together to perform large area testing, pulsed or continuous, for panel and wing level testing. Calibration would follow similar methods to the current practice, but would be simplified through a software interface.

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

US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government