Greentech Lead America: Magnolia Solar has developed high
quality 3-inch nanostructured antireflection (AR) coatings on glass for solar
cell applications. Previously, Magnolia Solar has been able to grow the AR
coatings up to 1 inch in diameter. Company believes that this new development
will be a major step toward commercial viability in the existing solar power
Currently, most silicon solar cells and many high
efficiency thin film solar cells measure 4 inches. The ability to produce
coatings at this size and larger is expected to be a major step toward market
acceptance of this technology that can be used to increase the efficiency of
presently available solar technologies.
The company’s nanostructured AR coating allows for
maximum solar energy absorption for the complete solar spectrum covering UV,
Visible and Infrared part of the solar energy. This technology increases
absorption of the sun energy more than 95 percent and minimizes the reflection
losses to less than approximately 5 percent.
At normal sunlight incidence during peak sunlight hours,
the reflection losses at the glass-air interface have been reduced from
approximately 4 percent to less than 1 percent. At large angles of incidence
during morning and late afternoon hours, the reflection losses have been
reduced from over 25 percent to less than 5 percent.
The nanostructured coating developed by Magnolia for
photovoltaic applications can significantly improve the performance of solar
cells at all relevant wavelengths and incident angles by reducing reflection
“Nanostructured optical coatings can increase the
power output of fixed, flat-plate modules by minimizing reflection losses
throughout the day. This patent-pending technology has the potential to benefit
a wide variety of specialized military and commercial optical window applications.
Magnolia Solar is currently focused on developing a larger scale process for
the deposition of nanostructured optical coatings,” said Ashok K. Sood,
president and CEO of Magnolia Solar.
Magnolia is working with the College of Nanoscale Science
and Engineering through its research and development center to further improve
the process and demonstrate this AR coating technology on 6-inch wafers. The
company is also collaborating with NYSERDA for this effort.