CHOSE - The Centre for Hybrid and Organic Solar Energy
Topic of the practice
Financing of R&D in the Lazio region through regional programmes for applied research
Good Practice Information
The Centre for Hybrid and Organic Solar Energy (CHOSE) aimed for the creation of two poles of excellence on hydrogen and organic solar energy. CHOSE studied and developed complete manufacturing techniques at the cell and module level, of both glass and flexible substrates. CHOSE is aided in this by joint ventures set up with a variety of partners, especially regarding the development of materials for dye solar cells (DSCs). DSCs typically consist of two conductive glass plates in which the three main active components of the cell are sandwiched: a dye that strongly absorbs light from the sun, a titanium dioxide (TiO2) layer and an electrolyte which conducts the electrical charges across the cell. The dye molecules are anchored to the TiO2 layer, which is applied in such a way as to form a nanostructured porous film in order to greatly increase the area onto which the dye can attach itself. Dye molecules are photo-excited by the incoming light. TiO2 conduction levels are such that the electrical charges produced by the excitation of the dye are rapidly and efficiently transferred from the dye to the TiO2 and transported to the one of the electrodes. Dye molecules are photo-excited by the incoming light. The project is financed by regional funds.
Evidence of success
The DYE cells are approaching technological maturity. Since the start of laboratory research, the energy performance of solar panels improved from 3% to 7% in just less than three years. CHOSE has demonstrated the capacity to attract foreign capital for research - in the case of DYE SOL, an Australian company that created a joint partnership with Tor Vergata University to produce solar cells.
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