AMON-Ra EC FP7 project
The AMON-RA project (the acronym stands for "Architectures, Materials, and One-dimensional Nanowires for Photovoltaics - Research and Applications") focuses on a new architecture for improved solar cells, combining advanced nano- and hetero-structures with silicon photovoltaic technology. It uses state-of-the-art photovoltaics design for semiconductor nanowires, assisted with tailor-made theoretical modeling and advanced processing, to achieve high-efficiency dual-junction photovoltaic cells made from previously inaccessible materials combinations. The main goal is to develop multi-junction solar cells to exploit a larger portion of the solar spectrum than can be used in conventional solar cells. The project has started in 2008 and incorporates partners from Lund University in Sweden (project coordinator, fabrication of nanowires), Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems in Freiburg, Germany (cell simulation and efficiency measurements), University of Kassel, Germany (calculation of wave fields and interaction with the nanowire solar cell), Sol Voltaics AB Lund, Sweden (fabrication of solar cell devices), Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria (structural analysis of nanowires for solar cells), and Technical University of Denmark in Kopenhagen, Denmark (electron microscopy investigations of nanowires for solar cells).
The main advantage of using nanowires for solar cells is the freedom of materials selections, combining multiple compound semiconductor materials with different lattice constants without strain relaxation, which shall make it possible to produce such cells relatively cheaply and on in-expensive silicon substrates.
More information on the project can be found at www.amonra.eu