NASA SBIR 2014 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 14-1 Z1.01-9707
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Advanced Photovoltaic Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE: High-Efficiency Rad-Hard Ultra-Thin Si Photovoltaic Cell Technology for Space

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
CFD Research Corporation
701 McMillian Way Notrhwest, S
Huntsville, AL 35806 - 2923
(256) 726-4800

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Alex Fedoseyev
701 McMillian Way NW, Suite D
Huntsville, AL 35806 - 2923
(256) 726-4800

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Silvia Harvey
701 McMillian Way NW, Suite D
Huntsville, AL 35806 - 2923
(256) 726-4858

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 4

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Advanced Photovoltaic Systems is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Improvements to solar cell efficiency that is consistent with low cost, high volume fabrication techniques are critical for future NASA space missions.

In this project, we propose a novel, ultra-thin (UT), Si photovoltaic cell technology that combines enhanced light trapping (LT) and absorption due to nanostructured surfaces, separation of photogenerated carriers by carrier selective contacts (CSC), and increased carrier density due to multiple exciton generation (MEG). Such solar cells have a potential to achieve the efficiencies of 40+%, while being rad-hard, lightweight, flexible, and low–cost, due to use of Si high volume techniques.

CFDRC will partner with the QESST ERC center at Arizona State University (ASU) to develop and demonstrate a novel, ultra-thin, nanostructured Si photovoltaic cell technology.
Phase I project will include modeling and experimental design, for a UT flexible Si based solar cell, that can achieve >25% AM0 conversion efficiency. Additionally, several approaches will be investigated to improve Si solar cell radiation hardness/tolerance.

In Phase II, the physical mechanisms currently limiting light trapping, open-circuit voltage (Voc), and MEG will be identified, and addressed. The UT rad-hard cell design will be optimized (for > 36% efficiency) and a solar cell will be fabricated and presented for testing.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Advanced photovoltaic (PV) power generation and enabling power system technologies are needed for improvements in capability and reliability of PV power generation for space exploration missions. PV technologies must enable or enhance the ability to provide low-cost, low mass and higher efficiency for power systems with particular emphasis on high power arrays to support solar electric propulsion missions. The potential low costs and high manufacturability of nanostructured UT Si solar cells will further remove the solar array as a cost driver, while radiation tolerant photovoltaics will lead to more robust space systems. The new modeling and simulation tools for UT Si PV cell technologies, employing new physical effects will help NASA to: a) assess technologies, devices, and materials for new efficient photovoltaic solar cells; b) better evaluate the performance and radiation response at early design stage; c) set requirements for hardening and testing; reduce the amount of testing cost and time.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Higher efficiency solar cells are needed to reduce solar array mass, volume, and cost for NASA space missions. In addition, low costs of manufacturing could allow these new solar cells to compete for terrestrial applications such as distributed power or grid power replacement/backup. Potential commercial applications will occur through the development of high performance (high W/kg, high W/m2, and low $/W) cells that could be used for terrestrial and space applications for both the military and commercial sectors. All satellites, military and commercial, suffer from solar cell degradation due to the effects of radiation. The higher efficiency of the novel rad-hard UT Si solar cells will reduce the weight of the solar array, maintaining the power generation requirements of the spacecraft or satellite system

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.)
Models & Simulations (see also Testing & Evaluation)
Simulation & Modeling
Software Tools (Analysis, Design)
Spacecraft Instrumentation & Astrionics (see also Communications; Control & Monitoring; Information Systems)
Verification/Validation Tools

Form Generated on 04-23-14 17:37