CUSTOM-ART – Disruptive kesterite-based thin film technologies

ProjectSolar Energy

CUSTOM-ART will demonstrate that the new generation of kesterite-based solutions developed and tested during the project, will become the most robust and cost-effective thin-film technology in the EU for challenging and demanding architectural and urban furniture applications.

The project

CUSTOM-ART aims at developing next generation BIPV and PIPV modules based on earth-abundant and fully sustainable thin film technologies.

The project focuses on the following principles:

  • BIPV, PIPV identified as key enabling technologies to make “near Zero Energy Buildings” and “net Zero Energy Districts” more realistic through the integration of a new generation of photovoltaic modules capable of entirely replacing architectural/mobility/urban furniture passive elements.
  • However, mass realisation of BIPV and PIPV solutions can only be achieved by developing cost-efficient and sustainable thin film technologies with unbeatable aesthetic functionalities, including mechanical flexibility and optical tuneability.

CUSTOM-ART will join for the first time a leading group of companies and academic partners all around Europe, to develop advanced BIPV and PIPV products (flexible and semi-transparent solar modules), based on earth abundant kesterite materials. By combining advanced strategies for materials properties management, with customised modules design in a circular economy approach, two types of products will be developed including flexible PV modules (polymer and steel supports) and semi-transparent (polymer).

The role of EnergyVille

Imo-imomec’s chalcogenide thin film solar cells team (which is part of EnergyVille) is focusing on the development of materials for application in high efficiency and low-cost tandem PV devices and advanced solar cell designs. World record solar cell efficiencies have been obtained in the case of high band gap kesterites (i.e. Cu2ZnGe(S,Se)4) and also other materials are developed to state-of-the-art level. In addition, the team is strong in novel characterization techniques for thin film PV, e.g. bias dependent admittance spectroscopy or CVf mapping.

Contributions: Fabrication of Kesterite materials, integration into solar cells and advanced characterization.

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