Interim coater ? Doctor Blade ? High-vacuum

Interim
Project Report #1: Project Basis

 

Objective: Model any
manufacturing process for a discrete part. Product: Polymer-Fullerene Bulk
Heterojunction Solar Cell Product Specifications:

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?         
25×25
cm2 solar cell

?         
5%
minimum energy efficiency

?         
5-year minimum
product lifespan for continuous use

Key Foundational
Technologies:

?         
Photoelectric effect

?         
UV lithography for substrate etching

?         
Organic layer
deposition through spin coating technique

?         
Active layer deposition through
doctor blading technique

?         
Aluminum thin film construction through
high vacuum chemical
vapor deposition (CVD)

Plant
Equipment Toolset Type

?         
Contact
lithography instrument

?         
Spin coater

?         
Doctor Blade

?         
High-vacuum glove
box with installed electroplating machine

Physical Scale

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Annual production capacity of 20,000
20×20 cm2 solar cells

Input Components

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Chemical Reagents: Indium Tin Oxide
(ITO), PEDOT: PSS,
P3HT, PCBM, Nitrobenzene (solvent), HCL,
HNO3, H2O
1:1 mixture (for
ITO etching), epoxy
resin + hardener

?         
Physical
Components: Glass

?          
Photoactive blend
layer/cathode interlayer (i.e.
Ca, LiF/Al)

o
100-200 nm thick

?          
Aluminum Electrodes

Sub-assemblies

?          
P3HT: PCBM:nitrobenzene solution production used
for doctor blading

Principal Process
Materials

?          
Blend of polymers with other small molecule, inorganic
semiconductor nanoparticle, or metal oxide acceptors; i.e. with fullerene
combinations.

Site

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Nueces
County, Texas

?          
Along
a channel

Site-specific
Information

?          
Access to water and shipping vessels

?          
Flat lands; easier to begin developing

?          
Among
other factories/plants

?          
Corpus
Christi nearby; employees

Configuration

?          
Glass film
base covered with
ITO on one side as the electrode

?          
PEDOT: PSS laid on top to enhance contact
between the active
layer and electrode

?          
P3HT : PCBM is added on top as the active
layer

?          
Aluminum electrode is then added

Special Requirements

?          
OPV cell should be glass sealed
due to degradation when exposed to oxygen and water
in atmosphere

?          
Engineering team should stick with the spin coating
due to its simplicity and precision. Vacuum
evaporation process should be avoided since
there is a chance of impurity formations during the process.

Reliability
of Equipment

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Contact lithography instrument is reliable
apart as long as no defects or oxidation of metal surface

?          
Spin coater
has high accuracy and precision with
an ergonomic design

?          
Doctor blade’s
reliability depends on installation with correct position,
orientation, angle,
and pressure. Blades
wear off and are replaced periodically.

?                     
High-vacuum glove
box’s reliability allows
moisture levels to be below
0.5 ppm and pressures as low as 1 Hg

?          
All processes are batch processes so there is down time
for cleaning, input
of materials, etc.

Economic
Objective

?          
Reduce
costs to:

o   Increase sales

o   Increase Profit

o   Decrease budget

?         
Minimize
resources; be efficient

?         
Maximize
use of equipment

Cost
Basis

?         
$40
-$125/ m2 (current prices)1

?         
$8-$25/
m2 (competitive prices)2

EHS
Risks and Other Constraints

?         
HCL, HNO3, and nitrobenzene are all hazardous chemicals and should
be handled with extreme care; exercising use of PPE when handling or exposed to these chemicals during process

?         
CVD process
must be operated exclusively within glove
box operated at high vacuum

By-Product
Waste

?          
HCL: HNO3 solution containing dissolved ITO

References

1           
Organic Solar Cells. GREENMATCH 2018.

2           
Leclerc, M.; Gauvin, R. 6.3.1 Organic
Solar Cells. Functional Materials – For Energy, Sustainable Development and Biomedical Sciences
2014, 126.

3           
Polymer:fullerene bulk heterojunction
solar cells https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/
article/pii/S1369702111702103 (accessed Jan 21, 2018).

4           
Deibel, C.; Dyakonov, V.
Polymer-fullerene bulk heterojunction solar cells http://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/0034-4885/73/9/096401
(accessed Jan 21, 2018).

5           
cantcount0. How to make an
Organic Solar cell (With Subtitles) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=akqu6g9mXZM
(accessed Jan 21, 2018).

6           
Senobari, F. Fabrication of Organic bulk
Heterojunction Solar Cell https://www.slideshare.net/FarzaneSenobari/fabrication-of-organic

-bulk-heterojunction-solar-cell
(accessed Jan 21, 2018).

7           
Nguyen
Research Group – UC Santa Barbara http://www.chem

.ucsb.edu/nguyengroup/research
(accessed Jan 21, 2018).

8           
Tang, Z. Studies of Inverted Inorganic
Solar Cells Fabricated by Doctor Blading Technique
https://www.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:300159/

FULLTEXT01.pdf (accessed Jan 21,
2018).