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Scalable full back-contacted roll-to-roll perovskite photovoltaic modules utilising a commercial 3D embossed substrate

Key Information


Academic: Prof Trystan Watson (1st), Dr Eifion Jewell (2nd)

Industrial: Dr Trevor McArdle


Power Roll Ltd is a technology development company based in the North East of England. It is developing an innovative thin film photovoltaic (PV) technology that is based on 3D patterned substrate suitable for high throughput roll-to-roll (R2R) manufacturing. As part of its scale up development, it is looking to develop R2R deposition of Perovskite into its patented architecture. PRL technology has been demonstrated at +10% using spin coated perovskite into its flexible mini-module platform, but is now in the process of scaling all process parameters to R2R.

The project will be located within SPECIFIC as part of Professor Trystan Watson’s research group. SPECIFIC is a National Innovation and Knowledge Centre led by Swansea University, working collaboratively with Universities across the UK. SPECIFIC has significant capability and expertise across its team and facilities. Capabilities at SPECIFIC relate to the printing, coating and lifetime testing of functional materials and the development of enabling technologies that support the transition from laboratory bench to factory floor.

The SPECIFIC PV scale-up and stability research activity is currently carried out at Swansea University’s new Bay Campus facility and is housed in purpose-built facilities which include a new stability testing and cleanroom printing facility.

Project Aims:

•    Characterisation of Power Roll architecture structure including electrode and transport materials positions, thickness and properties
•    Optimise perovskite formulation to match material architecture of PRLs substrates utilising standard spin coating deposition techniques
•    Assist PRL team to develop optimised material architecture based on analysis form IV data
•    Develop process for scale up printing of perovskite to adequately fill PRL microgrooves architecture
•    Develop optimised post processing of perovskite to accommodate variations in perovskite thickness
•    Demonstrate scalability of printing process on large R2R format
•    Transfer knowledge to PRL and assist in purchase of equipment suitable for PRL scale up

Predicted Outcomes:

•    Structural overview of PRL substrate and vacuum coated materials
•    Small scale samples achieving similar performance results to PRL
•    Printing process parameters that give uniform fill of PRL substrate
•    Demonstrate full R2R capabilities of printing process and +10% PCE performance
•    Transfer knowledge to PRL and assist acquisition of new R2R printing line

Before submitting an application for the project, please see our Hints & Tips document which can be found here.

Sponsoring Company Power Roll Ltd
Company Website Eligibility
We welcome applications from candidates with an Engineering or Physical Sciences degree (minimum level 2:1), or a combination of degree and equivalent experience to the same level.
Normally, we would expect candidates to have met the University’s English Language requirements (e.g. IELTS 6.5 overall with 5.5+ in each component) by point of application. 
Full eligibility criteria can be found at https://www.materials-academy.co.uk/eligibility
Fees at UK/EU rate and stipend of £20000 per annum for each of four years.
For full details on funding eligibility, please refer to the Materials and Manufacturing Academy (M2A) Website.
Due to funding restrictions, this scholarship is not open to ‘International’ candidates.
Closing Date 14 June 2020

Start Date October 2020

Apply Now

Informal enquiries about this studentship are welcome and may be directed by email to: M2A@swansea.ac.uk