NB-Photonics Seminar with Jef Poortmans

What: NB-Photonics seminar with Jef Poortmans (IMEC and K.U.Leuven) on “Linking Nanoscale to GigaWatts to decrease costs and increase the system value of PV-cells, – modules and -systems”.

When: Friday 3rd March 2017, 12.15 to 13.50

Where: Auditorium 1 (1st floor), iGent, Campus Ardoyen – Zwijnaarde

** Registration is free but mandatory via this link **

12.15 – 12.45: Sandwich Lunch
12.45 – 12.50: Introduction by prof. Roel Baets
12.50 – 13.35: Seminar by prof. Jef Poortmans
13.35 – 13.50: Discussion


Linking Nanoscale to GigaWatts to decrease costs and increase the system value of PV-cells, – modules and -systems

Nanotechnology and nanomaterials are enablers of innovative devices and systems in the domain of ICT, wireless communication, medical devices, … However it is largely ignored that also in the domain of Energy these developments will have major impacts. It is clear that in the domain of Smart Grids and Smart Cities, sensors and the wireless communication amongst these sensors will play a crucial role. Distributed Energy Generation by renewables is a cornerstone of the Third Industrial Revolution as predicated by Jeremy Rifkin. imec develops the enabling devices to realize the vision of the Internet of Power.

Amongst the renewable energy sources wind and solar energy have by far the largest technical potential in combination with cost-effectiveness to ensure economical viability. imec is active in the development of high-performance, low-cost photovoltaic devices. Thanks to its state-of-the art cell technology platforms for Si-PV and thin-film PV imec has been presenting world-leading results for both cell technologies as well as their combination in stacked photovoltaic devices. The presentation will focus on the approaches to insert novel materials and –technologies in advanced (e.g. bifacial crystalline Si cells and modules) and novel photovoltaic devices (e.g. perovskite-based thin-film solar cells) in order to increase their performance and achieve a further cost reduction. Recently we also started an activity on PV-modules where we are developing a highly innovative method of interconnecting and lamination. Last, but not least we are also making efforts toinject “more intelligence” in the PV-module and PV-system as to cope with aspects of inhomogeneous irradiation and differential ageing.

However intermittent sources like wind and sun have to be deployed hand-in-hand with new and cost-effective energy storage solutions as to ensure continuous equilibrium between electricity generation and consumption. Besides decreasing costs it will also be crucial to increase the system value e.g. by storage. Electrochemical storage in batteries near to the location where the energy is generated and consumed are certainly part of the solution. In this domain the developments on nanomaterials will improve the energy and power density of batteries by enabling nanosized particles with mixed ionic and electronic conductivity for the electrodes whereas the amount of passive material is reduced by the use of thin solid-state electrolyte layers.


Biosketch of speaker

Jef Poortmans received his degree in electronic engineering from the Katholieke Universiteit of Leuven, Belgium, in 1985. He joined IMEC in Leuven where he worked on laser recrystallization of polysilicon and a-Si for SOI-applications and thin-film transistors. In 1988 he started his Ph. D study on strained SiGe-layers. He received his
Ph. D. degree in June 1993. He then joined the photovoltaics group, where he became responsible for Advanced Solar Cells. Within this frame he started up the activity about thin-film crystalline Si solar cells at IMEC and he has been coordinating several European Projects in this domain during the 4th and 5th European Framework Program.
In 2003, he became cluster coordinator of European Projects in the latter domain. In 1998 he initiated the activity on organic solar cells at IMEC. Today he is Program Director of the Strategic Programme SOLAR+ at IMEC and Director of the Department “Solar and Organic Technologies”. This Program comprises all the photovoltaic technology development activities within IMEC. Dr. Poortmans has authored or coauthored nearly 400 papers Since 2008 he is also part-time Professor at the K.U.Leuven”.