Plextronics, a world leader in developing and delivering active layer technology for electronic devices, announced it has been awarded a $340,500 grant from the Pennsylvania NanoMaterials Commercialization Center (the Center). This initiative will focus on the continued development of Plexcore(TM) PV active layer technology for organic solar cells. Plexcore PV is a new generation of polymer-based semi-conductive inks that increase solar conversion efficiency, while extending the lifetime of the device.
Plexcore PV has already achieved improved efficiency over standard organic photovoltaic technology. Plextronics co-founder and chief scientist Dr. Richard McCullough, dean of the Mellon College of Science at Carnegie Mellon University, invented the core polymer technology that has become the standard for organic-based solar cells. Plextronics continues to build upon this important foundation with the development of Plexcore PV.
"The primary commercialization challenge for organic solar cell technology is achieving the required combination of operating efficiency and device lifetime. Nanotechnology is the key to success," stated Dr. Alan Brown, executive director of the Center. "The ability to control polymer design at the nano-scale enables Plexcore inks to be formulated with application- specific properties. In this initiative, the application is organic solar cells. But, the results will have impact on multiple industries and applications," he added.
New thin film technologies, including organic solar cells, hold the promise of being low cost and will enable new market opportunities that have not previously utilized alternative energy sources, such as mobile devices. In the future, these technologies will contribute to the rapid expansion of zero emission solar energy, thereby reducing our reliance on fossil fuels.
"We are excited to have the support of the Pennsylvania NanoMaterials Commercialization Center in developing Plexcore PV technology. The development of active layer technology is crucial to the broad market commercialization of organic solar cells," explains Andrew Hannah, president and CEO of Plextronics.