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ERA CHAIR OF EMERGING NEXT-GENERATION PHOTOVOLTAICS

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - 5GSOLAR (ERA CHAIR OF EMERGING NEXT-GENERATION PHOTOVOLTAICS)

Reporting period: 2020-09-01 to 2022-02-28

This summary covers the activities conducted under the ERA-Chair “Emerging next generation photovoltaics” (5GSOLAR ERA-Chair) for the period 1 September 2019 to 28 February 2022.
The 5GSOLAR ERA-Chair project is led by and implemented at Department of Material and Environmental Technology (MET) at School of Engineering, Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia.
The project is funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 952509.
One of the key objectives for MET in establishing an ERA Chair is to increase cooperation and enhance visibility, both domestically and in the European context.
The ERA Chair will enhance close cooperation with outstanding EU research partner organizations in the same S&T domain or in complementary fields, and when appropriate with industry and SMEs from the local, national or European landscape.
The aim of the ERA Chair is improve the research quality by combining the principles of sustainability and fundamentals of emerging photovoltaics technologies, and concentrate this entire topic at MET under one strategic lead.
**Overall project management
The first Steering Committee (SC) meeting took place on 4. November 2021.
We have started building up our research network with SC members and other international partners.

We are taking part in the solar car building and academia activities Solaride (https://solaride.ee/en); Ministries of Education and Research and also Economic Affair and Communication Research, Development, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (TAIE) Development Plan 2021-2035 the priority area smart and sustainable energy solutions workgroup activities (https://www.hm.ee/et/TAIE-2035).
We participated TalTech DeepEST Spin-off program introductory event on October 14 from 17:30 organized by Mektory.
We are also liaising with Mektory, an Estonian knowledge transfer organization located on TalTech campus.

**ERA Chair recruitment and Chair establishment
The 5GSOLAR ERA-Chair holder position has been advertised internationally and the competition-based recruitment took place during spring 2021.
As a result, Dr. Matteo Chiesa has been elected for the 5GSOLAR ERA-Chair holder position and joined TalTech on 1. September 2021.
The team is nearly formed.
Additionally, two Postdoctoral Researcher positions were advertised internationally during spring 2021; one position on in thin film photovoltaics established. On postdoctoral researcher was recruited in September 2021.

**ERA Chair specialization strategy
The ERA-chair team has carried out a SWOT analysis to record how Estonia performs in terms of innovation and eco-innovation.
The preparation of the 5GSOLAR ERA-Chair specialization strategy plan is ongoing. It consists of three strategies:
• Research and Innovation Strategy- EMPOWER
• Visibility and Communication strategy- STAND OUT
• Sustainability strategy- STABLE

The scientific focus will be placed on development and optimization of inorganic chalcogenide (e.g. antimony and bismuth based chalcogenides Sb2(S,Se)3, (Sb,Bi)2Se3) materials research to promote the use of more novel and advantageous types of solar technology capable of producing sufficient power at reduced and diffuse light conditions (related to indoor IoT applications), excellent long term stability, and reduced production and deployment costs. The development will target sustainable and industrial compatible low temperature processes with a very low environmental impact, and significant reduction in CO2 emissions. We will correlate this research with simulations and modelling for the real PV building integration. In parallel with the case study integration, we will continue R&D on targeted materials to reach TRL target and go towards deployment of advanced tandem concept beyond the project period. The main advances of the technology development beyond the state of the art (in brackets the expected TRL evolution) include improvement of solar cell efficiency with a targeted value ~ 10% for semi-transparent thin film solar cells (PV absorber ≤ 150 nm), and ≥ 15% for the devices with absorber thickness ≤ 1 μm A) Smart and Compressive Signal Processing (e.g. algorithms and their hardware/software implementations), B) Cognitive communication (e.g. Internet of Things, device-to-device communication, wearable wireless networks), and C) Sensing technologies and lab-on-chip (e.g. microfluidic, point-of-care, sensor technologies).

**Building up research capability and training
Examples include:
Collaboration with researchers at HZB für Materialien und Energie PVcomB, Germany and visited HZB during the period of August 1- October 31, 2020.
PhD students and ERA Chair holder participated at Estonian Graduate School Summer School “Materials and Technologies for Sustainable Development II”, September 7-8, 2021, Pärnu, Estonia.

**Dissemination
• The 5GSOLAR website https://5gsolar.taltech.ee/ is updated on a regular basis;
• Announcements related to the project are made via LinkedIN (https://www.linkedin.com/company/5gsolar/)
• Updates and articles related to the project are shared on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/LabThinFilmChemTech)
• Updates and articles related to the project are shared on Twitter (https://twitter.com/5GSolar)
• Updates related to the project are shared on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/5gsolar/)
• YouTube – Teaser video (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCS1aH5viPvfTVD6daMNUrPA)
• Introduction of the ERA-Chair holder Matteo Chiesa in Tallinn University of Technology’s journal Mente et Manu.
The activities carried out in the context of the 5GSOLAR project will result in improved capacity and competitiveness of MET.
In turn, this will contribute to increasing the capacity, productivity, and innovation in Estonia by means of an excellent research, highly qualified workforce and better synergy between academia and industry.

The first effects of the project start to be visible, including among things:
• Increasing internationalization in the department, both in terms of more senior (e.g. ERA-Chair holder, postdoctoral researchers) and junior researchers (e.g. PhD students);
• Better financial conditions for the PhD students;
• More rigorous selection process and monitoring of the PhD students;
• Increasing preparation of and participation in national and international projects;
• Wider industrial and academic network;
• Increased visibility of research group.

The expected impact of 5GSOLAR, until and beyond the end of the project, includes:
• Strengthened academic and industrial networks across Europe to support high quality research, exchange of know-how and experience to ensure technology and knowledge transfer;
• Increased participation in, and ultimately leading of, projects in the EU Research and Innovation Framework Programmes;
• Increased attractiveness in terms of internationally recognized researchers and qualified MSc and PhD student;
• Increased visibility of the excellence of the concerned beneficiary and setting-up of long-lasting strategic partnerships in the European Research Area;
• Effective responsiveness to society and regional/European development concerns by involving relevant regional or national authorities;
• Contribution to the innovation potential and contributes to economic growth;
• Increased engagement with academic, industrial, public stakeholders, and the public at large.
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