Two years of hard work has culminated in the development of a prototype for a next generation solar PV device. It will be submitted to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in early 2012 for certification. The NGD technology uses a novel approach combining a barrier oxide layer with a patent-pending absorber layer, replacing the traditional semiconductor layer used in crystalline silicon and thin-film PV.
Dr. Andras Pattantyus-Abraham and his team of 13 scientists at Quantum's laboratory in Burnaby, British Columbia, US, claim to have eliminated rare elements used in thin-film PV at a cost that is projected to be significantly less expensive than current PV technology. Dr. Pattantyus-Abraham, chief technology officer of Quantum, said, “We think we have discovered an approach to solar PV design that is years ahead of the nearest research. We are optimistic that, once commercialized, we'll be able to make a significant impact with our device on the role of solar energy as a true replacement to fossil fuel generated electricity.”
The NREL in Golden, Colorado, US, is a premier independent laboratory that engages in testing the performance of commercial, developmental, and research photovoltaic devices. NREL is one of only two laboratories in the world that has International Organization for Standardization 17025 accredited cell calibration.