Tandem Photovoltaic Module with Diffractive Spectral Separation

Case ID:
UA15-142
Invention:

Researchers at the University of Arizona have developed a design for a solar concentrating device that has a solar tracker and a diffractive grating as a part of the entrance window or glass for the sunlight to enter through. The technology is designed for use in conjunction with a solar cell for solar panels. The grating delivers specific diffracted orders of light to matched semiconductor material with different band gaps (high and low). The novel grating design can deliver four times the amount of concentrated sunlight than competing designs.
 

Background:

Solar technology has proven to be a source for renewable energy but poses a problem of converting an efficient amount of sunlight (based on how much sunlight is received) into electronic power. Concentrating sunlight for greater efficiency has become a main focus in renewable energy from the sun as a source. Research has proven that dividing the solar spectrum to focus specific wavelengths to focus onto and be absorbed by different band gap material for the best solar to electronic conversion. Since the aforementioned discovery many diffractive and optical interferometric techniques have been employed to increase conversion efficiency.
 

Advantages:

  • 4 times the concentration of sunlight than leading technology
  • Inexpensive


Applications:

  • Water heating
  • Renewable solar energy
  • Electricity
  • Illumination purposes

Status: issued U.S. patent #10,686,400

Patent Information:
Contact For More Information:
Kennedy Nyairo
Sr. Licensing Manager, Optical Sciences
The University of Arizona
knyairo@email.arizona.edu
Lead Inventor(s):
James Angel
Brian Wheelwright
Zachary Holman
Raymond Kostuk
Keywords: