14 June 2012

PVMC selects solar executives to guide development of US CIGS Roadmap

The US Photovoltaic Manufacturing Consortium (PVMC) – an industry-led partnership between international semiconductor manufacturers’ research consortium SEMATECH of Albany, NY, USA and the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) of the University at Albany that is designed to accelerate next-generation solar photovoltaic (PV) technologies – has selected a trio of solar industry executives to guide development of the first US CIGS (copper indium gallium diselenide) PV Roadmap.

“Through the leadership and vision of Governor Andrew Cuomo, and the critical investment by the US Department of Energy, New York is leading the national effort to accelerate the deployment of efficient and cost-effective solar energy through the development of innovative CIGS technology,” says Dr Alain Kaloyeros, PVMC chair and senior VP & CEO of CNSE. “The engagement of three leading solar executives is an important step forward in enabling PVMC to deliver the nation’s first-ever CIGS PV Roadmap,” he adds.

“One important objective of PVMC is to build leadership around roadmapping to establish the disciplines of financial and cost modeling, strategic planning and other long-term activities for CIGS PV manufacturing and applications,” says PVMC CEO and SEMATECH president & CEO Dan Armbrust. “PVMC will take a lead role in bringing in the entire industry supply chain to collaborate in defining critical challenges and potential solutions for over the next decade,” he adds.

Spearheaded by CNSE and SEMATECH as part of the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) SunShot Initiative, PVMC is targeting a reduction in the total installed cost of solar energy systems by 75% over the next decade. The CIGS PV Roadmap aims to provide a congruent plan for the national CIGS industry, including module and systems manufacturers, suppliers and end-users, that will identify common challenges and define the areas of technical developments needed to sustain and advance a competitive US photovoltaic industry.

Dr Larry Kazmerski, Dr Joseph Laia, and Dr Richard Swanson will serve as co-chairs for the effort, which will include participation from all sectors of the PV industry and support the development and growth of advanced solar PV-related manufacturing processes throughout the USA.

“The National CIGS PV Roadmap effort is a vital initiative, bringing together all sectors of the photovoltaic industry to identify critical challenges and coalesce industry direction and market leadership,” says Laia. “I look forward to providing guidance on solutions-driven initiatives that tackle top industry concerns on the technical barriers, manufacturing processes, and business challenges associated with CIGS thin-film solar PV,” he adds.

“We’ll be building on earlier PV roadmap initiatives, and collaborating with partners from industry, universities, and government to help set the direction for this promising renewable energy technology,” says Swanson.

Serving as the champions for the US CIGS PV Roadmap, the co-chairs will direct the activities and decisions of the Roadmap Executive Steering Committee (RESC) and guide roadmap working groups addressing six focus areas relevant to the entire industry, including roll-to-roll; rigid glass; metrology; modules and packaging; substrates and materials; and reliability, certification, and test.

Kazmerski is director of the National Center for Photovoltaics at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), where he has led NREL efforts in measurements and characterization for more than 20 years. He has published more than 310 journal papers in the areas of solar cells, thin films, semiconductor materials and devices, surface and interface analysis, scanning probe microscopy, nanoscale technology, high-temperature superconductivity, and semiconductor defects. He is also a three-time recipient of R&D 100 awards for novel measurement and characterization devices.

Laia was most recently president & CEO of CIGS PV panel maker MiaSolé of Santa Clara, CA, USA. Previously, he was group VP of metrology at KLA-Tencor, responsible for all of its eight wafer metrology businesses, and served as CEO of its subsidiary Blue29 LLC. He has more than a decade of national laboratory experience and spent a number of years in semiconductor capital equipment companies. He holds 10 patents, has published 25 papers, and has edited one book on materials processing.

Swanson founded SunPower Corp in 1991 to develop and commercialize cost-effective photovoltaic power systems, and is currently its president emeritus. Along with his students and co-workers, he has published more than 200 articles in journals and conference proceedings, as well as several book chapters. In 2002, Swanson received the William R. Cherry award from the IEEE for outstanding contributions to the photovoltaic field, and was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2009. Most recently, he received the Economist’s Innovation Award for Energy and Environment, the 2010 IEEE Jun-ichi Nishizawa Medal, and the Karl Boer Solar Energy Medal of Merit.

As the primary sponsor of the effort, PVMC is providing resources for managing and coordinating the roadmap activities. Members of the CIGS PV Roadmap represent all areas of the PV industry, including module producers and integrators, equipment suppliers, materials and metrology tools, end-users, and the research community.

The US CIGS PV Roadmap is currently accepting new members and sponsors. For information on its projects or to find out how to participate, e-mail linda.wilson@sematech.org.

Tags: CIGS

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