Photovoltaics play a key role in making it possible to generate electricity in an ecologically sustainable way. The Photovoltaics platform brings together a range of skills in the field of applications-oriented photovoltaics so that it can offer an optimal range of services.
The costs of producing electricity from photovoltaic installations have fallen dramatically in recent years. As a result, photovoltaic electricity is now significantly cheaper in some countries than electricity produced from fossil or nuclear fuel. The key challenges now facing photovoltaic electricity generation are to find intelligent ways of using it and integrating it into conventional power- distribution systems, to optimise the balance between generating and consumption profiles, to use photovoltaic electricity to heat and cool buildings, to use electrical storage devices as efficiently as possible and to develop seasonal electricity storage techniques.
Key topics and areas of research
- Photovoltaic systems and modules
- Photovoltaic production technology
- Cost-effective integration of photovoltaic electricity in buildings
- Photovoltaics and heat pumps, with and without electrical storage
- Photovoltaics and electromobility
- Revenue analysis and optimisation of various types of photovoltaic system
- Measurement techniques for quality assurance and performance analysis
- Photovoltaics in combination with power-to-gas concepts
- Assessing the sustainability of photovoltaic technologies
- Integrating photovoltaic electricity with the power grid
- Developing new business concepts and strategies for the use of photovoltaic electricity
The U-Light project is focused on developing innovative, low-mass PV modules which are inexpensive, long-lasting, simple to install, can be incorporated into buildings in novel ways and generate energy at the lowest possible cost. Read more
PV 2050 sustainability and impact
The opportunities for photovoltaic (PV) solar energy conversion to support the transitions which will be required to implement the Energy Strategy 2050 are widely recognized. However, if PV power is to make a significant contribution to satisfying global energy requirements, greater efforts need to be made to make it more sustainable. This project aims to assess the sustainability impacts of the devices and (potential) products being developed in the context of PV2050 projects. Read more
Innovative light-frame photovoltaic system
This project encompasses a number of research studies aimed at developing a light-frame solar-power generator which allows the dual use of urban surfaces to generate renewable energy. Besides minimising power-generation losses, the concept also makes it possible to generate electricity in an urban environment, i.e. at the point of use. Read more
Integrated measurement platform for OLEDs and PAIOS solar cells
Paios is an all-in-one characterization platform for solar cells and OLEDs. A large variety of state-of-the-art measurements and advanced experiments can be performed with one mouse click. In classical research many different experimental setups were required to perform opto-electrical measurements on research devices. With Paios, all these devices can be measured within minutes, and the results from different devices can be compared directly using the Paios software. Paios accelerates research by enabling scientists to concentrate on the physics and spend less time on measuring and data processing.
In this project a highly cost-efficient laminator had been developed and its market launch was supported. The laminator had been designed for a new and wider range of applications including the use of new materials and special modules.
The sum of the power output ratings of all the modules in a solar panel determines the amount of power it can produce in one year. If some of the those modules can no longer achieve the output power ratings specified by the manufacturer, this will impair the utility of the entire panel. The portable LED Flasher provides a cost-efficient on-site method for identifying modules whose output is impaired. The device will also provide an error-free assessment of the overall power output rating of a solar panel. Read more (in German)