Addressing Safety Issues in Development of Quantum Dot Incorporated EVA Lamination of Photovoltaic Devices
Bahareh Sadeghimakki, Yaxin Zheng, Roohollah S. Tarighat, Jacob A.L. Brunning, Hrilina Ghosh, Siva Sivoththaman
University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada

Aerosolized quantum dots (QDs) and other nanoparticles (NPs) represent a significant safety hazard in the development of large-scale manufacturing processes that utilize nanomaterials. The safety concerns posed by nanoparticle exposure limit work even at the research and prototyping stage. QDs, which can be composed of a variety of semiconductor materials, are typically in the 1-10 nm size range. Material selection is an important aspect of safety risks, as many common QDs have highly toxic Cd- or Pb- based structures that magnify safety risks. In this work, the integration of QDs into photovoltaic (PV) devices is demonstrated during module lamination, in which QD film is deposited onto the solar glass and laminated in contact with ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA). We present safe handling methods and considerations for QD EVA lamination in a research and prototyping environment. Before implementation in large-scale, large-area manufacturing environments, it is significant to establish safety procedures in handling of nanomaterials at the research phase. This work presents development and integration of nanomaterials in the R&D phase of PV, and provides some guidelines on implementation of safety measures.