Enoil Bioenergies SA owns 40% of VPS – Valais Perovskite Solar SA.
VPS – Valais Perovskite Solar is a company based in Switzerland with the focus on Molecular Engineering of Functional Materials for Photovoltaic and Light-emitting applications. Prof. Md. K. Nazeeruddin owns 50% of VPS – Valais Perovskite Solar SA and is Head of Research and Development.
The target of the company is to bring an abundant and renewable source of energy using low-cost solar cells to all over the world.
The goal of the group is to engineer at molecular level novel panchromatic sensitizers and functionalized hole-transporting materials to achieve power conversion efficiency (PCE) surpassing 23%. Because many chemical combinations result in a perovskite crystal structure, and each of them has different optical properties, choosing the chemistry of a cell also means choosing what part of the spectrum it absorbs, this could push efficiency levels in the future up to around 36%. It may be possible to manufacture also a panel that is 30% efficient using standard solar cells in combination with perovskites.
One of the most exciting parts of perovskites is their high efficiencies. Based on lab calculations, perovskite solar cells are capable of beating the capabilities of traditional mono- or poly-crystalline silicon cells. Another advantage of perovskite solar cells is that they are based on a human-made material that can be produced at a low cost.Perovskite solar cells are a new type of solar cell made from a class of man-made materials called perovskites. Perovskites are a different material than the silicon wafers that make up traditional solar panels. They have a crystallographic structure that makes them highly effective at converting photons of light from the sun into usable electricity. Perovskite solar cells represent a high-efficiency, low-cost solar technology, and shall be the future replacement for traditional silicon solar panels.
+ Molecular Engineering of Sensitizers for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells and Organic Light-Emitting Diodes
+ Perovskite solar cells
+ Design and development of charge transporting materials
+ Photophysics and Photochemistry of Molecular Assemblies
One of the most exciting parts of perovskites is their high efficiencies. Based on lab calculations, perovskite solar cells are capable of beating the capabilities of traditional mono- or poly-crystalline silicon cells. Another advantage of perovskite solar cells is that they are based on a human-made material that can be produced at a low cost.
Presently, over 85% of the World’s energy requirements are satisfied by fossil fuels with devastating consequences on the environment and society.1 The energy demand is predicted to increase by almost 30% during the next 20 years due largely to population growth and, consequently, solar energy is considered as the ultimate source of clean, secure and renewable electricity. The world global installed photovoltaic (PV) capacity will likely reach well over 1000 GW by 2030 and could reach up to 5000 GW by 2050. At this moment, solar energy will be one of the major electricity sources worldwide, with the lowest costs and environmental impact, while contributing to mitigating CO2 gas emissions. Solar energy is indeed recognized as the fastest growing technology by the World economic forum (press, October 2017), and appointed as the future solution for a carbon-free economy given the limited finite sources of planetary energy reserves (see Figure 1). The use of silicon-based solar systems is widespread accounting for over 90% of the installed PV. However, their manufacturing costs remain high due to in part technologically intensive fabrication of silicon wafer. New PV technologies with higher potential performances at a lower manufacturing and materials cost will lead to a paradigm shift in energy generation. In this context, the new technology based on Perovskite solar cells (PSCs) has emerged in the last few years and nowadays considered one of the most excited PV technology of our time. PSCs are leading a real revolution in power generation, standing over the main technologies on the market, reaching power conversion efficiency (PCE) surpassing 23%.2 In addition to high efficiency, their low-temperature solution deposition methods compatible with printing are the great advantage over existing technologies making the PSCs cost effective with the levelled cost of electricity below the mainstream silicon photovoltaics.
Valais Perovskite Solar Energy and Enoil Bioeneriges SA won in 2018 the gold medal in the International Exhibition of Inventions in Geneva, Switzerland.
What is the Perovskite market?
Perovskite structures will revolutionize solar cell devices and will transform the business of solar power. The business of solar power in a 25-year period has grown exponentially, transforming the technology from rarefied oddity to the world’s fastest-growing energy source. 100MW of capacity in 1992 rocket to more than 300GW in 2016. The solar-power industry invested $160bn in 2017.
A fifth of the world’s energy consumption is supplied by renewables.
The world’s renewable power capacity could supply an estimated 26% of global electricity.
55% of new renewable power installations were solar photovoltaics (PV) and these accounted for more than the combined additions of fossil fuel and nuclear in 2017.
Global trends in solar energy indicate a critical need to provide renewable and reliable energy to the world. According to an article of The Economist, 1.5 billion people, or more than a fifth of the world’s population, currently have no access to electricity, and a billion more have only an unreliable supply. Of the people without electricity, 85% live in rural areas or on the fringes of cities. The United Nations estimates that an average of $35 billion-40 billion a year needs to be invested until 2030 so everyone on the planet can cook, heat and light their homes and have the energy for productive uses such as schooling. At the current rate of investment, however, the number of “energy poor” people will barely budge, and 16% of the world’s population will still have no electricity by 2030, according to the International Energy Agency.
What is the difference with standard solar cells ?
This material has several key features. First, it is completely inorganic. This is an important shift because organic components are usually not thermostable and degrade under heat. Since solar cells can get very hot in the sun, heat stability is crucial. By replacing the organic parts with inorganic materials, the researchers made the perovskite solar cells much more stable. “The solar cells are almost unchanged after exposure to light for 300 hours”.
What is a Perovskite structure ?
Perovskite structures work well as the light-harvesting active layer of a solar cell because they absorb light efficiently but are much cheaper than silicon. Perovskite, is a mineral found in the earth, is composed of calcium, titanium and oxygen in a specific molecular arrangement. Materials with that same crystal structure are called perovskite structures.
Prof. Md. K. Nazeeruddin received M.Sc. and Ph. D. in inorganic chemistry from Osmania University, Hyderabad, India. He joined as a Lecturer in Deccan College of Engineering and Technology, Osmania University in 1986, and subsequently, moved to Central Salt and Marine Chemicals Research Institute, Bhavnagar, as a Research Associate. After one year postdoctoral stay with Prof. Graetzel at Swiss federal institute of technology Lausanne (EPFL), he joined the same institute as a Senior Scientist.
In 2014, EPFL awarded him the title of Professor. His current research at EPFL focuses on Dye Sensitized Solar Cells, Perovskite Solar Cells, CO2 reduction, Hydrogen production, and Light-emitting diodes. He has published more than 509 peer-reviewed papers, ten book chapters, and he is inventor/co-inventor of over 50 patents. The high impact of his work has been recognized by invitations to speak at over 130 international conferences.
FROM THE PRESS
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Enoil Bioenergies SA
Enoil Bioenergies SA is an Advanced Biotechnology and Renewable Energy company registered in Switzerland.
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