Technical Program

Technical Area Overview


AREA 1:
Fundamentals and New Concepts for Future Technologies
AREA 2:
Chalcogenide Thin Film Solar Cells
AREA 3:
Multi-junction Solar Cells, III-V and Concentrator Technologies
AREA 4:
Silicon Photovoltaic Materials and Devices
AREA 5:
Characterization Methods

AREA 6:
Perovskite and Organic Materials and Solar Cells
AREA 7:
Space and Specialty Technologies
AREA 8:
PV Modules Manufacturing and Applications
AREA 9:
PV Module and System Reliability
AREA 10:
Power Electronics and Grid Integration
AREA 11:
Solar Resource for PV and Forecasting
AREA 12:
PV Deployment, Policy and Sustainability


Click below to view an area overview.

Area 1: Fundamentals and New Concepts for Future Technologies 

Area-Chair: Karin Hinzer, University of Ottawa, Canada
Co-Chairs: Peter Bermel, Purdue University, USA, Peichen Yu, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan

Sub-Area 1.1: Fundamental Conversion Mechanisms
Sub-Area 1.2: Quantum-well, Wire, and Dot-Architectured Devices
Sub-Area 1.3: Advanced Light Management and Spectral Shaping
Sub-Area 1.4/6.9: Novel Electronic and Photonic Material Systems (Joint Session)

Area Description
Paradigm shifts in solar cell technology are invariably preceded by breakthroughs arising from basic scientific research. In recent years, there have been a number of exciting fundamental advances, including the demonstration of two-photon absorption processes in nanostructured solar cell devices, and sophisticated optical designs resulting in world record single-junction and multi-junction cell efficiencies. Area 1 comprises fundamental research and novel device concepts that will provide a platform for the development of future photovoltaic technologies. Papers are sought describing research in basic physical, chemical and optical phenomena, in addition to studies of new materials and innovative device designs, as well as the fundamentals of solar energy storage. Subjects of particular interest include, but are not limited to, nanostructures, hybrid tandem devices, advanced optical management approaches, new materials and synthesis processes, including solar fuels, and unconventional conversion mechanisms.

Sub-Area 1.1: Fundamental Conversion Mechanisms
Sub-Area Chair: Jacob Krich, University of Ottawa, Canada

Sub-Area 1.1 captures both experimental and theoretical work exploring new paradigms for solar energy conversion. Papers submitted to this Sub-area would explore the fundamental physics or present initial experimental demonstrations related to novel energy conversion mechanisms. Papers on modeling and simulation of new device architectures to enable these conversion mechanisms are also encouraged. Areas of interest include, but are not limited to, non-conventional PV conversion processes based on quantum confined or nanostructured systems, engineered band alignments, intermediate band concepts, multiple exciton generation (MEG), thermophotonics, thermophotovoltaics, or hot-carrier effects. Also of interest are concepts and demonstrations of new materials and material science related to energy conversion. Finally, crosscutting scientific approaches involving novel physics, photovoltaics for solar fuel generation, alternative solar energy storage mechanisms, innovative device structures, and modeling and simulation are solicited.

Sub-Area 1.2: Quantum-well, Wire, and Dot-Architectured Devices
Sub-Area Chair: Masakazu Sugiyama, University of Tokyo, Japan

In recent years significant advancements in optoelectronics have been achieved via the
implementation of low-dimensional systems. Sub-area 1.2 focuses on using quantum engineered structures to improve and facilitate the performance of photovoltaic devices. The use of quantum-dots, wells, and wires have the potential to increase the efficiency of solar cells in excess of 50% when used in novel third generation technologies and multi-junction solar cells. To continue recent momentum in these fields, papers are sought on both the theoretical and experimental progress in the development of quantum-engineered materials and devices. Submissions including novel designs, new material compositions, implementation of new uses of quantum confinement, and the exploitation of varying dimensionality of confinement are encouraged. Ideal submissions will range from studies of fundamental physics to examples of working devices.

Sub-Area 1.3: Advanced Light Management and Spectral Shaping
Sub-Area Chair: Rebecca Saive, University of Twente, Netherlands

In order to achieve high power conversion efficiency, a solar cell must effectively utilize most of the incoming photons. This process involves the efficient coupling of the incident light into the solar cell with minimum loss, and effective use of the energy imparted by each photon. This Sub-area will focus on novel concepts, including advanced anti-reflection coatings, spectrum splitting, textured light trapping surfaces (front and/or rear surface), luminescent (fluorescence), micro- and nano-scale concentrator systems, and advanced photonic and plasmonic structures. With respect to plasmonics, both light trapping and hot carrier effects will be considered. It will also include photon recycling and angular restriction techniques for achieving improved open circuit voltages. In addition, ways to modify the spectrum of the incident sunlight using techniques such as up or down conversion either in planar layers or in waveguide structures will be considered. Papers submitted to this Sub-area should address one or more of these themes and may be theoretical or experimental in nature.

Sub-Area 1.4/6.9: Novel Electronic and Photonic Material Systems (Joint Session)
Sub-Area Chair: Susanna Thon, Johns Hopkins University, USA 
Zhou Yang, Shaanxi Normal University, China

Sub-Area 1.4 covers progress on the development of novel materials and processing techniques for improving the performance, functionality, reliability, and scalability of PV devices. Such materials, combinations, and processes may find application in single crystalline, thin film, multijunction, and nanostructured PV devices or may enable an entirely new device class on their own. Papers are sought that describe theoretical and/or experimental development of materials displaying novel properties, including but not limited to semiconductors, substrates, coatings, barriers, electrode and carrier transport materials, transparent conductive oxides (TCOs), pseudomorphic and metamorphic photovoltaic materials. Developments in the field of 2D materials as well as graphene and carbon nanotubes are of interest in this Sub-area. Advances in growth, synthesis, deposition, doping and passivation schemes as well as new architectures that have the potential to lower material quality constraints are also solicited. As part of a potential joint session with Area 6, novel types of perovskite materials and devices with unique properties and performance are of particular interest for this call.

Area 2: Chalcogenide Thin Film Solar Cells

Area-Chair:Charles Hages, University of Florida, USA
Co-chairs: Thomas Unold, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin, Germany, Takashi Minemoto, Ritsumeikan University,Japan

Sub-Area 2.1: Absorber Preparation and Material Properties
Sub-Area 2.2: Contacts, Windows, Buffers, Substrates and Superstrates, Monolithic   Integration, and Interfaces
Sub-Area 2.3: Cell and Module Characterization, Analysis, Theory, and Modeling
Sub-Area 2.4: Progress in Manufacturing and Deployment

Area description
In recent years, thin film chalcogenide solar cells based on CIGSe and CdTe have achieved remarkable progress in terms of record conversion efficiencies >22% and manufacturing at the multi gigawatts-per-year scale. Over 20 GW of thin film modules are currently installed and operating reliably in the field, helping to bring the cost of PV electricity below most other sources. These exciting developments have been enabled by the decades of work by the worldwide community of dedicated research, development, and manufacturing professionals working on their science and technology.

Area 2 brings this community together yearly to present and discuss contributions on solar cells based on Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2 (CIGSSe), CdTe, Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 (CZTSSe), and other related materials. The aims of Area 2 are to provide a platform for presenting recent and on-going research leading to improved understanding of materials and devices, exploring new directions for more efficient production, and narrowing the gap between champion cell and module efficiencies. Topics range from insights into basic materials science, to analysis of device properties and new device structures, to discussions of the progress in deposition methods and growth control, and to long term performance and reliability.  We look forward to an exciting, cutting-edge conference that helps advance the science and technology of these fascinating and technologically-important solar cells.

Sub-Area 2.1: Absorber Preparation and Material Properties
Sub-Area Chairs: Chris Ferekides, USF, USA, Shogo Ishizuka, AIST, Japan

Sub-area 2.1 addresses progress in understanding thin film formation and the influence of processing on basic material properties and device performance. Examples of relevant topics include both experimental and theoretical aspects of: morphology, phase coexistence, microstructure, optoelectronic and transport properties, influence of substrates, compositional gradients and homogeneity, effects of material purity and contaminants, interrelation of properties and cell and module fabrication processes, in-situ, ex-situ and in-line methods of characterization, and impacts on short- and long-term performance.

Sub-Area 2.2: Contacts, Windows, Buffers, Substrates and Superstrates, Monolithic Integration, and Interfaces
Sub-Area Chairs: Sascha Sadewasser, INL, Portugal
                             Wolfram Witte, ZSW,Germany

The processing and properties of all of the layers in the thin film device stack as well as their integration into monolithically-integrated modules ultimately determine the cell and module performance. Sub-area 2.2 focuses on the functions, effects and properties of substrates/superstrates, contacts, buffer and window layers, and interfaces. Submissions describing advances in understanding these aspects and their effects on short-and long-term performance are welcome. Papers on progress in the cross-cutting areas of transparent conductors, moisture barriers, new or improved substrates, established and novel methods of cell scribing and interconnection in modules, and novel topics not listed are also encouraged.

Sub-Area 2.3: Cell and Module Characterization, Analysis, Theory, and Modeling
Sub-Area Chairs: Darius Kaciaskas, NREL, USA
Takeaki Sakurai, University of Tsukuba, Japan

Continued progress in chalcogenide photovoltaics relies on continuing to gain insight into the origins of efficiency loss and concepts for overcoming them. Whereas Sub-areas 2.1 and 2.2 focus on the physical properties and processing of the layers making up cells and modules, Sub-area 2.3 addresses their net effects at the device and module level through measurement, analysis, theory, and modeling. These aspects enable feedback to continue improving cells and modules. Contributions are solicited in the areas of novel and established characterization methods, device analysis that yields insight into internal operation, one-, two- and three-dimensional modeling to understand current devices and guide progress, characterization of defects and recombination, and novel related topics not listed.

Sub-Area 2.4: Progress in Manufacturing and Deployment
Sub-Area Chair: Maarten van Vleuten, Solliance, Netherlands

The field of chalcogenide thin film photovoltaics is rapidly transitioning from a focus solely on R&D into large-scale manufacturing and deployment. Sub-area 2.4 solicits contributions addressing module and device design, manufacturing and field deployment. Contributors from industry are encourage to share their experience in areas focused on novel manufacturing and improvements to devices from design to long-term performance.

Area 3: Multi-junction Solar Cells, III-V and Concentrator Technologies

Area-Chair: Frank Dimroth, Fraunhofer ISE, Germany
Co-Chairs: Nikhil Jain, ALTA Devices, USA, Kenji Araki, Toyota Technical Institute, Japan
 
Sub-Area 3.1: III-V Single and Multi-junction Solar Cells
Sub-Area 3.2: Low Cost, High Performance III-V Solar Cells
Sub-Area 3.3/4.3/6.10: Hybrid Tandem/Multijunction Solar Cells (Joint Session)
Sub-Area 3.4: Applications for High Efficiency Solar Cells including CPV

Area Description
III-V multi-junction solar cells, at least within the last few decades, have been the basis for high-performance terrestrial concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) technologies. However, the multi-junction architecture is also the only proven approach for providing efficiencies beyond the single-junction Shockley-Queisser limit. Area 3 addresses conventional III-V solar cells and CPV technologies as well as other high-efficiency devices such as tandems with Silicon. The area specifically encourages papers which are dealing with the challenge of reducing the production cost and manufacturability of such high performance solar cells to enable competitiveness with the state-of-the-art.

Sub-Area 3.1 focuses specifically on the research and development of “traditional” III-V based single and multi-junction devices. Given the relatively high costs of III-V materials and devices at present, Sub-Area 3.2 covers developments of low-cost approaches for III-V photovoltaics related to epitaxy, novel fabrication processes or alternate substrate growth. Sub-Area 3.3 encompasses a broader scope regarding the development of “hybrid” tandem solar cells, wherein devices are made up of multiple classes of photovoltaic materials, often including Silicon as the bottom junction. Finally, Sub-Area 3.4 integrates the range of topics related to terrestrial high performance solar cell applications in markets such as low, medium and high concentration PV (CPV), thermophotovoltaics (TPV) as well as area constrained applications e.g. in electric vehicles or consumer products.

Sub-Area 3.1: III-V Single and Multi-junction Solar Cells
Sub-Area Chairs: Ryan France, NREL,USA
Esther Lopez Estrada, UPM, Spain

This Sub-Area seeks to address all relevant aspects of the research and development of III‑V single and multi-junction solar cells for terrestrial applications. Topics of interest include (but are not necessarily limited to): epitaxial growth, materials design and development, solar cell architectures, single- and multi-junction devices, cell-level theoretical modeling, cell-level photon management, ultra-thin devices, wafer bonding, device processing, new manufacturing technologies, material and cell characterization, and III-V cell reliability.

Sub-Area 3.2: Low Cost, High Performance III-V Solar Cells
Sub-Area Chairs: Rebecca Saive, University of Twente, Netherlands, Takeyoshi Sugaya, AIST, Japan

Topics of interest here are broadly defined as technologies and approaches related to the
achievement of lower cost III-V materials and solar cells. Papers are solicited on the growth of crystalline and polycrystalline III-V materials on alternative substrates where the substrate is not an active photovoltaic component (i.e. excluding typical single-crystal materials like Ge or III-Vs). Papers are also sought on low-cost III-V growth and deposition techniques, such as HVPE or ultra-high-rate MOVPE, including technologies to reduce precursor cost and/or consumption as well as hazardous waste treatment. Papers on epilayer lift-off and substrate re-use as well as low cost and high throughput cell processing methods are also sought. This includes e.g. development of low cost metal deposition, low cost back-mirror formation, printing of metal contacts, low cost etching and ARC deposition.

Sub-Area 3.3/4.3/6.10: Hybrid Tandem/Multijunction Solar Cells (Joint Session)
Sub-Area Chairs: Emily Warren, NREL, USA
Ed Crossland, Oxford PV, UK

This wide-reaching Sub-Area solicits papers regarding materials, structures, and devices
based on combinations of multiple different materials (III-Vs, Si, chalcogenides/thin-films, organics, perovskites, etc.) toward the production and characterization of “hybrid” multi-junction solar cells with two or more terminals. The full range of integration methodologies are of interest, including but not limited to monolithic epitaxy and deposition, wafer bonding, and mechanical stacking, characterization of these materials, structures, and devices, from the atomic scale to the device level (and beyond), as related to their hybrid nature. Papers on the theory and modeling of such devices are welcome, as is work related to new module and system architectures optimized for such hybrid cells. This Sub-Area will host the “Battle Royal Session” of previous years which is planned jointly with areas 4 and 6.

Sub-Area 3.4: Applications for High Efficiency Solar Cells including CPV
Sub-Area Chairs: Kensuke Nishioka, University of Miyazaki, Japan
Mathieu Baudrit, Sono Motors, Germany

This Sub-Area seeks to address all relevant aspects of the research and development of PV systems which benefit from the unique performance of III-V and tandem solar cells. This includes the development PV modules for cars and consumer products, the development of thermophotovoltaic systems (TPV) and of all levels of concentrating photovoltaics (CPV). We invite papers which are dealing with module related topics like the development of primary and secondary optics, performance modeling, module/receiver design, module-level environmental mitigation (heat, humidity, etc.), module reliability, or manufacturing advances and concerns. System-related topics of interest include (but are not necessarily limited to): low, medium and high concentration system design, concentrator assemblies, trackers, system-level characterization, soiling, system reliability, environmental influences, maintenance, energy yield and performance modeling/prediction, system-level integrated storage, life-cycle analysis, and economics/financing/markets. We specifically encourage papers on micro CPV, hybrid CPV capturing also diffuse radiation, CPV in urban environments, thermophotovoltaics, laser power conversion and all levels of high efficiency PV integration in cars and other consumer products. Topics related to employing III-V solar cells in hybrid CSP systems or for similar thermal energy storage are also welcomed.

Area 4: Silicon Photovoltaic Materials and Devices

Area-Chair: Zachary Holman, Arizona State University, USA
Area Co-Chairs: Kaining Ding, Forschungs Zentrum Jülich, Germany, Brett Hallam, UNSW, Australia, Nazir Kherani, University of Toronto, Canada

Sub-Area 4.1: Silicon Material, Feedstock, and Wafers
Sub-Area 4.2: Passivated, Carrier-Selective, and Heterojunction Contacts
Sub-Area 3.3/4.3/6.10: Hybrid Tandem/Multijunction Solar Cells (Joint Session)
Sub-Area 4.4: Metallization, Interconnection, and Module Integration
Sub-Area 4.5: Device Physics, Simulation, and New Characterization Techniques
Sub-Area 4.6: Thin Silicon and Light Management

Area Description
Silicon has been the dominate photovoltaic technology for decades, with approximately 95% market share, and yet technological developments are accelerating rather than slowing. Commercial cell efficiencies exceeding  22% are becoming routine as manufacturers transition to PERC structures and high-quality monocrystalline wafers, module costs have fallen below $0.3/W and are now commonly a small fraction of an installed system’s cost, and the emergence of, e.g., bifacial and shingled cells has broadened the module flavors now available.

In this environment of rapid innovation, Area 4 invites contributions that define, understand, and shape the future of silicon photovoltaic science and technology. Topics of interest span the breadth of the silicon solar field, ranging from silicon purity to thin-film deposition, from electronic transport through new contact structures to high-efficiency devices, from light management to loss analysis, and from interconnection to module field degradation caused by cell deterioration. Area 4 is also accepting abstracts for a joint sub-area on silicon-based tandem and multijunction devices in collaboration with Areas 3 and 6.

Sub-Area 4.1: Silicon Material, Feedstock, and Wafers
This sub-area covers the first part of the value chain, from silicon feedstock purification and production through crystallization and wafering, including high-performance multicrystalline silicon wafers, improved Czochralski growth, kerf-less slicing technologies, and alternative methods to produce silicon wafers such as direct wafering or epitaxy. Additionally, abstracts are welcome on the mechanical and electrical characteristics of the resulting wafers and their impact on device performance, including material changes during subsequent processing and defect engineering steps.

Sub-Area 4.2: Passivated, Carrier-Selective, and Heterojunction Contacts
This sub-area focuses on contacts formed on silicon absorbers, and specifically those layers that passivate the absorber surface (maintain high quasi-Fermi-level splitting and thus high implied open-circuit voltage) or selectively extract electrons or holes (minimize the quasi-Fermi-level drop across the contact). Abstracts are welcome on the device physics and characterization of contacts, the properties of new contact materials, and the performance of cells with contact layers such as amorphous silicon, tunnel oxides and polysilicon, and metal oxides. Abstracts concerning the deposition methods used to form these contacts are also welcome.

Sub-Area 3.3/4.3/6.10: Hybrid Tandem/Multijunction Solar Cells (Joint Session)
This wide-reaching sub-area solicits papers regarding materials, structures, and devices
based on combinations of different materials (III-Vs, silicon, chalcogenides/thin-films, organics, perovskites, etc.) toward the production and characterization of “hybrid” multi-junction solar cells. The full range of integration methodologies are of interest, including but not limited to monolithic epitaxy and deposition, wafer bonding, and mechanical stacking, as well as the characterization of these materials, structures, and devices, from the atomic scale to the device level (and beyond), as related to their hybrid nature. Abstracts on the theory and modeling of such devices are welcome, as is work related to new module and system architectures optimized for such hybrid cells. This is a joint sub-area between Areas 3, 4, and 6, and it will host the “Battle Royal Session” of previous years.

Sub-Area 4.4: Metallization, Interconnection, and Module Integration
This sub-area covers techniques for electrode formation, including printed metallization, plating, evaporation, dispensing or other transfer techniques, conductive adhesives, soldering, laser and thermal alloying of metals, transparent electrodes, selective doping, and contact opening for metallization  The electrodes are also the interface to the subsequent module integration, and thus the sub-area also welcomes abstracts on mechanical adhesion, multi-wire technologies, and the interconnection of advanced cell structures like back-contact cells and silicon-based tandems.

Sub-Area 4.5: Device Physics, Simulation, and New Characterization Techniques
This sub-area focuses on understanding, quantifying, and modelling phenomena in silicon solar cells, including new interpretations of device physics, multi-dimensional models, numerical analysis of novel cell concepts, power loss measurement and mitigation strategies, computational simulations, and associated means of validation. Abstracts are also welcome on the development of new device characterization techniques, which may be based on, e.g., photoluminescence or capacitance measurements.

Sub-Area 4.6: Thin Silicon and Light Management
This sub-area covers thin silicon absorbers—including those of amorphous silicon, microcrystalline silicon, and related alloys—and light management within silicon solar cells (which is particularly crucial in thin absorbers). Abstract are welcome on thin silicon materials properties, deposition methods, cell design and performance, and degradation. Abstracts are also encouraged on surface engineering of silicon cells to increase photon absorption by classical, diffractive, Mie scattering and plasmonic mechanisms (regardless of whether the silicon absorber is thin), as well as approaches to reduce front-surface reflectance, reduce parasitic absorption, and reject sub-bandgap infrared light.

Area 5: Characterization Methods

Sub-Area 5.1: New Instruments, Methods and data analysis
Sub-Area 5.2: Advances on optoelectronic characterization techniques
Sub-Area 5.3: Advances in in-situ and in-line characterization.
Sub-Area 5.4: Advanced characterization of photovoltaic materials
Sub-Area 5.5: Advanced characterization of photovoltaic devices
Sub-Area 5.6/8.6: Advanced characterization of photovoltaic modules and systems (Joint Session)
Sub-Area 5.7: Performance Testing and Standards
Sub-Area 5.8/9.4: PV module and system reliability characterizations: lab and field inspection techniques (Joint Session)

Area Description
It is impossible to understand innovation in science without the support of measurements and characterization. Measurements are needed at any level of R&D and production – from the investigation of the operating principles of solar cells over to the development of standards for the performance of installed PV systems. Understanding the relations between structure, physical properties, and the resulting PV performance is an exemplary problem in materials science and engineering. Reliable and precise determination of the efficiency and thus power of solar cells and PV modules is crucial for the successful widespread deployment of photovoltaics.

Area 5 is intended for papers with focus on the latest developments in the characterization of photovoltaics. However, joint sessions with other topic areas are foreseen for papers with focus on characterization but applications to one specific technology. For classical characterization of particular absorbers please submit to their respective areas.

Sub-Area 5.1: New Instruments, Methods and data analysis
This subarea targets on novel characterization technique, characterization equipment and the development of data analysis method. It is intended to showcase the application of innovative and (pre-)commercialized techniques for characterization of photovoltaics as well as the recent developments of data analysis. Papers submitted to this sub-area should be science or technology focused with strong technical content, rather than advertisement. Papers are sought which either present new characterization tools or data analysis which provide an overview and update on the state-of-the-art application of a particular technique or type of instrumentation. Papers should demonstrate the capabilities of the developed method, describe its operating principles, and/or relate how it extends existing limitations.

Sub-Area 5.2: Advances on optoelectronic characterization techniques
Papers describing any aspect of the optoelectronic response of PV materials and full devices are welcome in this Sub-Area. Examples might include papers on ellipsometry focused on the optoelectronic properties rather than on the materials properties. Luminescence or absorption based methods may fit best in this sub-area. Papers focusing on the technique rather than the material aspects are strongly encouraged.

Sub-Area 5.3: Advances in in-situ and in-line characterization.
This involves both laboratory in-situ based characterization as well as in-line high throughput characterization. This sub-area is intended for papers describing how to monitor PV materials during the deposition or growth steps. Papers are sought that describe measurement techniques and/or data analysis methods that are particularly suited for determining material properties and for identifying manufacturing process excursions or that provide other manufacturing-related benefits.

Sub-Area 5.4: Advanced characterization of photovoltaic materials
This sub area is on novel methods to study photovoltaic materials, their structure, properties, and how these relate to processing and performance, with a focus on the materials. Examples of topics that would fit into this area include novel scanning probe techniques, such as variants of atomic force microscopy, scanning microwave microscopy, Kelvin probes, and advanced x-ray or photoemission methods, among others. Methods such as spectroscopic ellipsometry that characterize materials using optical methods could fit into this area but could also fit with sub-areas 5.2, 5.3, or others. Likewise topics such as electrical methods could be here or in sub-area 5.5.

Sub-Area 5.5: Advanced characterization of photovoltaic devices
This subarea focuses on methods to study photovoltaics as electronic devices rather than the materials that make them up or their optical properties. Submit papers here, which address the challenge of characterizing devices broadly. Examples include but are not limited to: capacitance methods, study of device transients, methods to understand instability in device performance, degradation of device performance, ageing etc. Development of operando measurements are also welcome in this sub-area.

Sub-Area 5.6/8.6: Advanced characterization of photovoltaic modules and systems (Joint Session)
Sub-Area Chair: Johnson WONG, Aurora solar Technologies Canada
Heinz Ossenbrink, BandGap Consult, Germany

Papers focusing on characterization of complete modules and systems where the nature of the device is dominated by the ensemble of microscopic behaviors distributed throughout a large area rather than the understanding of individual microscopic behaviors should be submitted in this Sub-Area. For example, papers in this Sub-area could focus on methods such as LBIC or electroluminescence specifically as applied to understanding module performance rather than the same methods applied to small areas of device. Other examples of papers relevant to this area include adaptation of existing methods to characterize modules from emerging technologies such as perovskites or addressing the characterization of degradation mechanisms of modules or systems of those materials.

Sub-Area 5.7: Performance Testing and Standards
Sub-Area Chair: Stefan Roest, Eternalsun Spire, Netherlands

A key component of characterization, especially of cells, modules and systems, is testing of the performance and efficiency. Papers related to such characterization methods are welcome in this sub-area. In addition, this Sub-Area is intended for submissions related to standardization approaches to characterization. For example, standards for light flux measurement, calibration methods for simulators, testing temperatures, and other fundamental parameters of characterizations that also might potentially be incorporated into future standards could be submitted here.

Sub-Area 5.8/9.4: PV module and system reliability characterizations: lab and field inspection techniques (Joint Session)
Sub-Area Chairs: Nick Bosco, NREL, USA
Ioannis Tsanakas, IMEC, Belgium

Early detection and diagnosis of PV failure modes and degradation mechanisms largely rely on advances both field and laboratory (destructive and non-destructive) characterization techniques. This sub-area explicitly calls for papers presenting novel techniques, progress on deploying, as well as improved analysis and best practices, acquisition and interpretation of inspection data/measurements from existing (or emerging) field characterisation techniques (IV tracing, infrared imaging, electroluminescence imaging, UV fluorescence, etc.) and combination of those. Further to these, laboratory test/inspection methods tailored for fault detection in-situ characterisation methods, sensors in correlation with accelerated reliability studies are relevant. Papers studying innovations in the fields of inspection data analytics and diagnostic algorithms, remote failure detection and wide-area inspections for PV systems are also of interest for contributions in this Sub-Area.

Area 6: Perovskite and Organic Materials and Solar Cells

Area-Chair: Frank Liu, Shaanxi Normal University, China
Co-Chairs: Wolfgang Tress, LMU, Munich, Seigo Ito, University of Hyogo, Japan
 
Sub-Area 6.1: Perovskite tandem solar cells
Sub-Area 6.2: Stability of perovskite materials and solar cells
Sub-Area 6.3: Scale-up and large area fabrication of perovskite solar cells
Sub-Area 6.4: All-inorganic perovskite materials and solar cell developments
Sub-Area 6.5: Organic and polymer materials and solar cell developments
Sub-Area 6.6: Organic-inorganic Hybrid Perovskite solar cell developments
Sub-Area 6.7: Lead free perovskite materials and solar cells
Sub-Area 6.8: Lower-dimensional perovskite materials and solar cells
Sub-Area 6.8: Lower-dimensional perovskite materials and solar cells
Sub-Area 1.4/6.9: Novel Electronic and Photonic Material Systems (Joint Session)
Sub-Area 3.3/4.3/6.10: Hybrid Tandem/Multijunction Solar Cells (Joint Session)

The organic and organic-inorganic hybrid perovskite materials are rising stars for solar cell and optoelectronic applications. In just a few years, the certified perovskite solar cell efficiency has been increased to as high as over 25%, the pure organic solar cell efficiency also approaching 20%. There have been tremendous developments on their stability as well. In particular, stability regarding composition, dimensionality, phase transition and crystal structure has been the hottest topics in the field with considerable amount of research attention. Although the current state-of-the-art is still far from the eventual goal to compete with commercialized solar cells, research on degradation mechanisms and improved cell stability reported in recent publications do suggest that long-term stability could be achievable. In addition, new types of perovskite materials are constantly being explored and developed with the aim of replacing lead (e.g. in double perovskite materials) or to increase film stability (by using mixed dimensional perovskites). Another important research trend is the development of fabrication technologies for high throughput fabrication (e.g. slot die coating, spray coating, soft cover technique, vacuum evaporation and chemical vapor deposition, etc.), which would pave the way towards high thruput large area perovskite solar cells and modules with minimal device-to-device variations and therefore is essential for this technology to be commercialized. In addition, there have been ever increasing efforts in green processing, continuous roll-to-roll printing, etc.

Area 6 will be an ideal forum for researchers in the field to present their progress in the area of photovoltaic application and to exchange their views, discuss current challenges, and identify future research topics. The rapid development of organic and perovskite materials and devices in the past few years will be the strong foundation for this Area. To facilitate a comprehensive discussion on the topics, Area 6 is organized to span over various principal topic areas as listed below.

In addition, a Joint Session is organized with Area 1 on Novel Electronic and Photonic Material Systems and a Cross-listing is proposed with Area 3, 4 and 7 on hybrid tandems.

Sub-Area 6.1: Perovskite tandem solar cells (cross-listing w/ Area 3, 4 and 7)
Sub-Area Chair: Alexander Colsmann,  Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany

Sub-Area 6.1 covers progress on the development of perovskite-based tandem and multijunction solar cells with efficiency potential beyond the S-Q limit.

Sub-Area 6.2: Stability of perovskite materials and solar cells
Sub-Area Chair: Ivgenny (Eugene) Katz, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel 

Sub-Area 6.2 covers progress on the development of lead-free perovskite solar cells, including intrinsic and extrinsic degradation mechanisms, efficiency loss issues in perovskite photovoltaics, strategies for improved stability, etc.

Sub-Area 6.3: Scale-up and large area fabrication of perovskite solar cells
Sub-Area Chair: Monica Lira-Cantu, ICN2, Spain

Sub-Area 6.3 covers progress on the development of scaleup, large area fabrication and processing, environment and green manufacturing, high-throughput technologies for large-area perovskite solar cells, perovskite module design, etc.

Sub-Area 6.4: All-inorganic perovskite materials and solar cell developments
Sub-Area Chair: Seigo Ito, University of Hyogo, Japan
Yixin Zhao, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China

Sub-Area 6.4 covers progress on the development of all-inorganic perovskite solar cells, including composition and material optimization, phase transition and stability, solar cell device design, charge transport materials, fundamental studies, etc.

Sub-Area 6.5: Organic and polymer materials and solar cell developments
Sub-Area Chair: Gang Li, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong
Hin-Lap Yip, South China University of Technology, China

Sub-Area 6.5 covers progress on the development of pure organic solar cells, including material optimization, fullerene and non-fullerene based material design, solar cell device design, charge transport materials, fundamental studies, etc.

Sub-Area 6.6: Organic-inorganic Hybrid Perovskite solar cell developments
Sub-Area Chair: Hyun Suk Jung, Sungkyunkwan University, Korea

Sub-Area 6.6 covers progress on the development of perovskite solar cells, including material optimization, solar cell device design, charge transport materials, fundamental studies, etc.

Sub-Area 6.7: Lead free perovskite materials and solar cells
Sub-Area Chair: Lijun Zhang, Jilin University, China
Jiang Tang, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China

Sub-Area 6.7 covers progress on the development of lead-free perovskite solar cells, including theory on the material design, solar cell optimization, stability, etc.

Sub-Area 6.8: Lower-dimensional perovskite materials and solar cells
Sub-Area Chair: Hongzheng Chen, Zhejiang University, China

Sub-Area 6.8 covers progress on the development of Lower-dimensional perovskite materials and solar cells. There have been lot of studies in using lower dimensional perovskite materials to improve stability of the perovskite solar cells. In particular, RP, DJ and ACI types of 2D perovskite materials have been very popular in the last two years. This sub-area is intended to discuss lower dimensional and mixed 2D perovskite materials and their solar cells, stability, etc.

Sub-Area 1.4/6.9: Novel Electronic and Photonic Material Systems (Joint session)
Sub-Area Chair: Susanna Thon, Johns Hopkins University, USA  
Zhou Yang, Shaanxi Normal University, China

Sub-Area 1.4 covers progress on the development of novel materials and processing techniques for improving the performance, functionality, reliability, and scalability of PV devices. Such materials, combinations, and processes may find application in single crystalline, thin film, multijunction, and nanostructured PV devices or may enable an entirely new device class on their own. Papers are sought that describe theoretical and/or experimental development of materials displaying novel properties, including but not limited to semiconductors, substrates, coatings, barriers, electrode and carrier transport materials, transparent conductive oxides (TCOs), pseudomorphic and metamorphic photovoltaic materials. Developments in the field of 2D materials as well as graphene and carbon nanotubes are of interest in this Sub-area. Advances in growth, synthesis, deposition, doping and passivation schemes as well as new architectures that have the potential to lower material quality constraints are also solicited. As part of a potential joint session with Area 6, novel types of perovskite materials and devices with unique properties and performance are of particular interest for this call.

Sub-Area 3.3/4.3/6.10: Hybrid Tandem/Multijunction Solar Cells (Joint Session)
Sub-Area Chairs: Emily Warren, NREL, USA
Ed Crossland, Oxford PV, UK

This wide-reaching sub-area solicits papers regarding materials, structures, and devices
based on combinations of different materials (III-Vs, silicon, chalcogenides/thin-films, organics, perovskites, etc.) toward the production and characterization of “hybrid” multi-junction solar cells. The full range of integration methodologies are of interest, including but not limited to monolithic epitaxy and deposition, wafer bonding, and mechanical stacking, as well as the characterization of these materials, structures, and devices, from the atomic scale to the device level (and beyond), as related to their hybrid nature. Abstracts on the theory and modeling of such devices are welcome, as is work related to new module and system architectures optimized for such hybrid cells. This is a joint sub-area between Areas 3, 4, and 6, and it will host the “Battle Royal Session” of previous years.

Area 7: Space and Specialty Technologies

Area-Chair: Claus Zimmerman, Airbus, Germany
Co-Chairs: Jeffrey Warner, Johns Hopkins University - APL, USA, Rob Walters,  Air Force Research Laboratory, USA, Mitsuru Imaizumi, JAXA, Japan

Sub-Area 7.1:  Space Solar Cells: Including Radiation Effects and Calibration
Sub-Area 7.2: Space PV Systems: Including Panels, Arrays, Structures, and Space Environment Impacts
Sub-Area 7.3: Flight Experience and Reliability of Space Photovoltaic Power Systems
Sub-Area 7.4: Specialty PV: Flexible, Lightweight and Cost-effective Mobile Solar Power for Terrestrial, UAV and High-altitude Applications

Area Description
Area 7 is concerned with all aspects of photovoltaic power generation subjected to extreme environments. The space and near space environment combines UV light, particle radiation, extreme temperatures and vacuum, to name a few of the environmental factors. Papers are thus welcome that deal with the entire breadth of PV under these conditions, from cell and material technologies up to complete systems. The associated sub-areas are Space Solar Cells and Space PV Systems, which includes solar panel and blanket technology as well as solar arrays and structures. With typical long lifetimes, e.g. up to 15 years in GEO, combined with the inability to service the space PV systems, reliability and the correct prediction of the on-orbit performance is of key importance and will be covered in the Flight Experience and Reliability sub-area. Of particular interest are ground based degradation experiments, cell and material degradation studies, flight experiments, and on-orbit measurements.

Area 7 also welcomes a wide range of specialty technologies such as mobile solar power (MSP), flexible and lightweight PV, and PV that operates in non-traditional environments such as on UAVs and automobiles. These topics are of interest for the Specialty Technologies sub-area.

We highly encourage contributions, particularly from students who are working in relevant research areas. We invite your papers on any subjects related to space PV described above, and look forward to your contribution!

Sub-Area 7.1: Space Solar Cells: Including Radiation Effects and Calibration
Sub-Area Chairs: Wolfgang Guter, AZUR, Germany

This sub-area focuses on novel photovoltaic device approaches, modelling, and recent developments in high performance photovoltaic materials and devices for space applications. Although III-V multijunction architectures dominate space PV, this sub-area is not limited to this material system nor is it limited to multijunction cells. Radiation hardening technologies that enable longer on-orbit capability are sought in this sub-area. Contributions dealing with the AM0 measurement and calibration of solar cells also belong to this area. Low-cost cell concepts that apply to the space environment are welcome.

Sub-Area 7.2: Space PV Systems: Including Panels, Arrays, Structures, and Space Environment Impacts
Sub-Area Chairs: Bao Hoang, Maxar Technologies, USA
Timothy Peshek, NASA, USA

This sub-area focuses on technology developments associated with space PV systems at all component levels required for providing power on a spacecraft. It aims to bring together the individuals who are developing advanced solar panel, blanket and array concepts with the traditional photovoltaic technologists, in the hope that a fuller understanding of the mutual design restrictions will aid in developing higher reliability, higher performance space solar arrays.  This sub-area covers integration of space solar cells onto rigid panels and flexible blankets all the way through advanced solar array concepts.

Technologies required for electrostatic discharge control, stabilization against ionizing radiation (e.g., UV, particles), interactions with electric propulsion subsystems and development of space solar concentrator technologies, incorporating both the optical concentrating element as well as the solar cell thermal control element are included as well. Of particular interest in this area are papers dealing with the behavior of module technology under the space environment. This includes studies on individual materials relevant for space solar modules. Also of interest are papers that describe 'New Space' approaches to lower cost, standardized solar panels both fixed and deployable, for smallsat (including Cubesat) constellations.

Contributions are sought for all power classes, from the microsatellite power range up to the several 100 kW range, with design consideration from low to high voltage arrays, which are required for large spacecraft for new telecommunication services or solar electric propelled deep space missions. To this end, papers with a mechanical focus are explicitly encouraged in this area. Also welcome are contributions that deal with platform aspects and their interaction with the solar array.

Sub-Area 7.3: Flight Experience and Reliability of Space Photovoltaic Power Systems
Sub-Area Chairs:  Hiro Toyota JAXA, Japan,
Don Walker, Aerospace Corporation, USA

This sub-area deals with the on-orbit performance and reliability of space photovoltaic power systems and components.  An essential aspect are the results from on-orbit experimentation and operation of PV power systems and their analyses.  Reliability assessments via experimentally determined degradation behavior, e.g. due to particle irradiation or contamination, are encouraged. In this context, papers addressing the end-of-life performance with the help of degradation modelling are also of high interest. Papers dealing with reliability improvements due to particular qualification approaches and test standards are welcome. Papers covering cell and power system testing using CubeSats are also encouraged.

Sub-Area 7.4: Specialty PV: Flexible, Lightweight and Cost-effective Mobile Solar Power for Terrestrial, UAV and High-altitude Applications
Sub-Area Chairs: Nikhil Jain, Alta Devices, USA
Dave Scheiman, NRL, USA

This sub-area covers progress on the development of Mobile Solar Power (MSP) systems and applications and other specialty PV. The MSP system development includes flexible and lightweight solar cells, sheets and related integration systems for terrestrial, UAV and high-altitude applications.  Papers are sought that describe the development of thin cell technologies including material growth, cell fabrication and testing.  Papers covering developments of flexible solar sheet fabrication methods, studies on improvement of sheet durability; ruggedness and overall energy generation are invited.  Papers discussing cost reduction technologies for both cell production and cell integration for use in non-traditional environments are encouraged. Development of photovoltaic sheets for systems applications such as battery charging, portable power, powering flexible electronics, and emerging technologies such as PV for automobiles covering both the military and civilian energy power application are of interest in this sub-area.

Area 8: PV Modules Manufacturing and Applications

Area-Chair: Yan Wang, SERIS, Singapore
Co-chair: Bonna Newman, ECN-TNO, Netherlands

Sub-Area 8.1: Module Materials, Design, and Manufacturing
Sub-Area 8.2: System Design, Optimization and Performance
Sub-Area 8.3: Models for Energy Prediction
Sub-Area 8.4: System Performance Rating and Monitoring Strategies
Sub-Area 8.5: Building Integrated PV, and Novel PV Applications
Sub-Area 5.6/8.6: Characterization Techniques for PV Modules and Systems (Joint Session)

Area Description
The remarkable recent decrease in the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) in photovoltaic generated electricity is largely attributed to the significant improvements in module performance, engineering, and manufacturing over recent years. New materials and assembly technologies are being developed for PV modules and will further reduce costs and increase performance. For example, bifacial modules are becoming an increasingly attractive way to reduce cost via increased energy yield. Additionally, customers and operators are seeking and utilizing energy yield prediction methods to reduce investment risk. Improved energy yield estimates will reduce some of the soft costs in financing and thus further reducing the LCOE. Area 8 is seeking papers describing significant advances in module technology, PV module design and manufacturing, methods for forecasting and modelling energy yield and performance, innovative PV deployment and new applications, as well as testing and system monitoring. The details description is mentioned in each sub-area. For each sub-area, the greatest interest is for the papers reporting completed work that is accompanied by validation from the field, laboratory testing, or comprehensive modelling.

Sub-Area 8.1: Module Materials, Design, and Manufacturing
Sub-Area Chair: Bonna Newman, ECN-TNO Netherlands

In Sub-Area 8.1, abstracts are invited that describe new materials and methods for module production with particular interest on: new materials for backsheets, encapsulants, glass, or interconnects; new techniques for module assembly to reduce cost, increase efficiency or enhance reliability; new designs for bifacial applications or extreme environments; and novel module electrical configurations. In coordination with Sub-Area 9.4, we particularly welcome submissions describing state-of-art or new methods for module manufacturing quality control, including quality assurance of module materials and subcomponents; statistical process control; and automation of module assembly.

Sub-Area 8.2: System Design, Optimization and Performance
Sub-Area Chair: Dr. Joris Libal, ISC Konstanz, Germany

In Sub-Area 8.2, abstracts are invited that describe new concepts for photovoltaic systems, method of system optimization, field results and system performance analysis. System optimization could be for energy yield, LCOE, self-consumption, or other aspects important for a specific application or environment. In particular, we welcome submissions describing system design and performance results for bifacial modules, trackers in PV systems, floating PV, grid-connected or off-grid systems, and performance comparison with the system modelling data. Note that the papers related to forecasting and solar resource should be submitted under Area 9 and power electronics methods for optimization in sub-area 9.4 or Area 11.

Sub-Area 8.3: Models for Energy Prediction
Sub-Area Chair: Dr. Zhe Liu, MIT, USA

Sub-area 8.3 focuses on PV module modelling and prediction of produced energy. Abstracts relating to mechanical, thermal and electrical modelling of PV modules and systems including methods for determining parameters for these models will be considered. Abstracts of particular interest are those describing: methods for determining model parameters from laboratory and/or outdoor characterization for different modules and installation types; models for the effect of solar spectrum on module output; and methods for estimating system losses, e.g. shading losses, or temperature variations, BOS related losses, etc.

Sub-Area 8.4: System Performance Rating and Monitoring Strategies
Sub-Area Chair: Silvana Ayala Pelaez, NREL, USA

Sub-Area 8.4 welcomes abstracts reporting novel methods and technologies for system monitoring during operation, improved techniques for system performance testing, and research describing novel analysis strategies to extract the information on system health and performance from available monitored data. We welcome abstracts describing: advances in or evaluations of methods for determination of plant performance metrics; procedures for conducting commissioning and acceptance tests. We particularly invite abstracts reporting efforts to compare and/or harmonize among the various standards for system testing and rating.

Sub-Area 8.5: Building Integrated PV, and Novel Applications
Sub-Area Chair: Dr. Laure-Emmanuelle Perret-Aebi, EPFL, Switzerland
Sub-Area 8.6 welcomes abstracts describing advances related to materials, design, and manufacturing for building-integrated or building-applied PV (BIPV/BAPV) systems. The rapid market growth in net-zero buildings encourages incentives to architects and building owners alike to find new and innovative building power solutions. We welcome abstracts reporting new innovations, visions for future development, and advanced analyses of the cost reduction potential for building related PV applications, advances in building design tools with integrated PV modelling functionality, as well as reports of building power system performance. In this sub-area we also welcome abstracts describing recent advances in off-grid PV systems, hybrid systems, mini/micro-grids, DC end-use systems, mobile systems, infrastructure integrated PV, and other not-traditional PV applications. We are particularly interested in topics covering design and engineering advances, results from system simulations and field demonstration.

Sub-Area 5.6/8.6: Characterization Techniques for PV Modules and Systems (Joint Session)
Sub-Area Chair: Johnson WONG, Aurora solar Technologies Canada
Heinz Ossenbrink, BandGap Consult, Germany

This sub-area is being jointly sponsored between Areas 5 and 8.* Papers focusing on characterization of complete modules and systems where the nature of the device is dominated by the ensemble of microscopic behaviors distributed throughout a large area rather than the understanding of individual microscopic behaviors. For example, papers in this sub-area could focus on methods such as LBIC or electroluminescence (EL) specifically as applied to understanding module performance rather than the same methods applied to small areas of device. Other examples of papers relevant to this area include adaptation of existing methods to characterize modules from emerging technologies such as perovskites or addressing the characterization of degradation mechanisms of modules or systems of those materials. Papers focusing primarily on the characterization technique or standard method for applying it should be submitted to sub-areas 5.5 or 5.7, respectively.

Area 9: Module and System Reliability

Area-Chair: Eszter Voroshazi, IMEC, Belgium
Co-chairs:  ony Sample, JRC Ispra, Italy, Tanya Deer, Relsol, Canada

Sub-Area 9.1: PV materials and module durability and accelerated testing methods
Sub-Area 9.2: Reliability and Safety of Power Electronics and Balance of System Components
Sub-Area 9.3: Field experiences in PV systems
Sub-Area 5.8/9.4: PV module and system reliability characterizations: lab and field inspection techniques (Joint Session)
Sub-Area 9.5: Effects and mitigation of soiling on PV systems

Area Description
Long-term durability, reliability of PV systems is critical for reliable and efficient energy production as the share of renewables increases in our energy mix. Moreover, the systems delivering the expected return on investment for all players along the value chain provide the industrial driver for continued growth. As PV systems are deployed often in harsh weather conditions for 20-30 years, the industry is understandably risk adverse requiring all new technologies (from PV, cell through module materials, components and systems elements) to prove their robustness in extensive testing before field deployment. Finally, long-lasting and reliable PV systems are also the foundation for an ecologically sustainable PV system.

Within this context, Area 9 considers the Reliability of all types of PV systems and their components and technologies as well as impact of materials, processing, installation and operations throughout the value chain. Topics especially critical to the success of the PV industry include comprehensive reporting of failures and degradation rates on the field, and in-depth understanding of physics/chemistry of degradation/failure modes for current and next generation PV materials and technologies. This serves as a foundation for development of adapted accelerated tests, and the validation of those tests’ ability to correlate with outcomes in the field. Discussion of best practices in Design-for-Reliability, Failure Mode and Effect Analysis, manufacturing Quality Assurance and Safety measures are within the interest of the Area; as well as the latest development of science-based standards and test protocols.

This area may host joint sessions with other Areas related to characterization and balance of system components.
Submission of papers on detailed scientific research studies as well as visionary papers addressing the full range of these topics are invited. Area 9 has been divided into five subareas, as presented below.

Sub-Area 9.1: PV materials and module durability and accelerated testing methods
Sub-Area Chairs: Ralph Gottschalg, Fraunhofer CSP, Germany
Frederic Dross, DSM Advanced Solar, USA
Keisuke Ohdaira, JAIST, Japan

Module and module components are subject to high temperatures, thermal cycling, humidity, ultraviolet light, electrical, and mechanical stresses. These can result in a variety of failure mechanisms such as glass corrosion, encapsulant browning, EVA yellowing, backsheet cracking, bubbling and delamination interconnect fatigue and corrosion, frame corrosion and fatigue, bypass diode failure, junction box failure, and cable and connector failure and etc. Submissions are encouraged on experimental elucidations of the chemistry and physics of these or other module failure mechanisms, accelerated stress tests and method to extract acceleration factors, modelling of degradation and failure rates, interfacial and multi-scale module simulations. Reports linking failure modes to material, module manufacturing, process parameters and insights in critical controls are invited. Studies of degradation rates in recently developed high performance modules using high efficiency mono, bifacial and/or tandem cells (p-PERC, n-type, passivated contacts, HIT, IBC etc.) and next generation module materials (AR-coatings, backsheets, encapsulants  etc.) are of interest, as are studies demonstrating field-relevant accelerated testing. Papers presenting detailed Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA) to assess the potential failure modes and development of adapted tests are strongly encouraged for submission. Studies presenting reliability of modules and materials for novel applications and conditions (lightweight, floating, tracked), and integrated PV solutions (BIPV, ViPV, IIPV) are of interest.

Sub-Area 9.2: Reliability and Safety of Power Electronics and Balance of System Components
Sub-Area Chair: Dana Olson, DNV GL, USA
Andrian Haering, Solar Edge, Germany

The field durability of PV power electronics is an important factor in overall system lifetime and strongly impact its cost.. PV system power electronic components (including trackers, inverters, converters, cables, combiner boxes, bypass diodes, optimizers etc.) are subject to thermal cycling, heat and humidity, freezing and moisture, electrical bias, ultraviolet light, and mechanical stresses that result in a variety of failure mechanisms such as corrosion, metallization fatigue, electronic component failure, aging of materials, and breakage. The exact nature of the degradation will vary with the type of component and the environmental conditions during operation. Inverters may experience problems with software or transistor failures. This Sub-area welcomes papers on identification and elucidation of the failure mechanisms, accelerated stress tests and acceleration factors, modelling of degradation and failure rates, climate specific effects, understanding the effects of system design (voltage, mechanical, string/central inverter) on reliability, extreme and routine weather events, and critical quality controls in manufacturing. Interlinked module to system component level mechanisms such as potential induced degradation, the impact of higher power and bifacial modules on power electronics reliability, localized environmental effects such as saltwater on electronics, and integration of module electronics into PV modules are one of the focus topics.
Improved functionality and documentation of field reliability studies for power electronics will be another focus of this sub-area, as well as novel methods for improved safety (fire prevention, arc detection/mitigation, shock hazards, ground and series arc faults, mechanical integrity).

Sub-Area 9.3: Field experiences in PV systems
Sub-Area Chair: Dirk Jordan, NREL, USA,
Ulrike Jahn, TüV Rheinland, Germany

This sub-area focuses on statistics of types of failures, data analysis techniques for field data for large-scale and small-scale systems, analysis of mechanisms of observed degradation and failures, electrical and mechanical impacts of failures, degradation rates models, and long-term operation models of PV plants. Submissions may include (but are not limited to) analysis of field observations from deployments of all PV technologies, methods of analysis of such data, experimental approach and energy yield predictions, best practices and technical/economic insights into operations and maintenance, and models or reviews that paint the big picture of what is happening in the real world.  Papers studying PV system-level availability, in diverse climatic and site conditions, reliability related to extreme environmental events, mounting methods, and interactive effects are encouraged. Innovations in the field of system data analytics and remote failure detection are also of interest.

Sub-Area 5.8/9.4: PV module and system reliability characterizations: lab and field inspection techniques (Joint Session)
Sub-Area Chairs: Nick Bosco, NREL, USA
Ioannis Tsanakas, IMEC, Belgium

Early detection and diagnosis of PV failure modes and degradation mechanisms largely rely on advances both field and laboratory (destructive and non-destructive) characterization techniques. This sub-area explicitly calls for papers presenting novel techniques, progress on deploying, as well as improved analysis and best practices, acquisition and interpretation of inspection data/measurements from existing (or emerging) field characterisation techniques (IV tracing, infrared imaging, electroluminescence imaging, UV fluorescence, etc.) and combination of those. Further to these, laboratory test/inspection methods tailored for fault detection in-situ characterisation methods, sensors in correlation with accelerated reliability studies are relevant. Papers studying innovations in the fields of inspection data analytics and diagnostic algorithms, remote failure detection and wide-area inspections for PV systems are also of interest for contributions in this Sub-Area.

Sub-Area 9.5: Effects and mitigation of soiling on PV systems
Sub-Area Chairs: Ben Figgis, Qerri, Qatar
Aesha Alnuaimi, Dubai Water& Electricity Authority, Dubai
Yuepeng Deng, First Solar, USA

Soiling can be a major factor in PV power plant performance. This Sub-Area focuses on studies of soiling effects on PV systems, ground- and satellite-based forecasting of soiling rates, methods for evaluating such rates, cleaning solutions, materials for anti-soiling coatings, tests for anti-soiling coatings (both artificial soiling to test functionality and abrasion testing to test for durability). The Sub-Area also welcomes technical and/or economic studies with respect to soiling mitigation measures (cleaning, anti-soiling retrofit solutions, etc) and their implementation within PV plant designs  and O&M plans, modelling and predictability of soiling losses for different climate conditions and soiling composition, as well as studies on the fundamental physics of soiling dust growth and its modelling in PV installations.

Area 10: Power Electronics and Grid Integration

Area-Chair: Christine Chen, University of British Colombia, Canada

Sub-Area 10.1: Power Converter Topologies and Design
Sub-Area 10.2: Power Converter Modelling and Control
Sub-Area 10.3: Ancillary Services and Grid Support Functionalities
Sub Area 10.4: Optimization and Data-driven Methods
Sub-Area 10.5: Real-time Simulation and Hardware-in-the-loop Testing
Sub-Area 10.6: Distribution System Operation and Control
Sub-Area 10.7/11.3/12.5: Advanced resource management – towards 100% renewable electricity (Joint Session)

Area Description
As PV installations become more widespread, the demands on the power electronics designed to interface solar panels to the grid will continue to increase.  Advanced inverter functionality and energy storage will enhance grid stability and enable greater penetration of renewables.  Advanced topologies and controls will continue to improve power converter performance and reduce system cost.  Also, novel wide bandgap materials can enable higher-voltage interconnections and improved conversion efficiencies.  The power electronics and power systems community is encouraged to submit contributions addressing the full range of scientific and technical contributions to the field of PV integration into the grid.  In particular, special sessions on Wide Bandgap semiconductors and a joint session with area 9 represent new opportunities for publication at the PVSC.

Sub-Area 10.1: Power Converter Topologies and Design
Sub-Area Chair: Aleksandr Prodic, Toronoto University, Canada
Martin Ordonez, University of British Columbia, Canada

This sub-area solicits papers describing new converter designs for dc-dc and inverter applications for PV energy conversion.  Emphasis is placed on novel circuit designs, magnetics, wide-bangap semiconductor materials, and other innovations in component-level converter design.  Such designs promise higher efficiency, improved power density, increased switching frequencies, and higher voltage operation.  Results with circuit analysis, experimental validation, and field testing will be featured. 

Sub-Area 10.2: Power Converter Modelling and Control
Sub-Area Chair: Brian Johnson, University of Washington, USA
Peter Lehn, University of Toronto, Canada

PV systems and their power electronics require closed-loop controls in order to operate. Advanced power electronics controls are needed at the individual converter level, multi-converter microgrids, and large PV power plants.  Modern applications must accommodate fast dynamics, nonlinearities, and complex system interactions.  This sub-area invites contributions on any facet of modelling and control of power electronics for PV converters, microgrids, and systems.

Sub-Area 10.3: Real-time Simulation and Hardware-in-the-loop Testing
Sub-Area Chair: Juri Jatskevich, University of Britisch Columbia, Canada
Shaahin Filizadeh, University of Manitoba, Canada

Crucial to the design and operation of PV integrated systems are sophisticated computer models and programs to simulate normal and contingency scenarios.  Significant computational hurdles are presented by power-electronic interfaces, the mix of AC and DC components, and complex subsystem interactions.  This sub-area seeks original contributions in design and implementation of real-time simulators along with testing of hardware devices within the real-time simulation environment.

Sub-Area 10.4: Ancillary Services and Grid Support Functionalities
Sub-Area Chair: Sairaj Dhople, University of Minnesota, USA
Xiaonan Lu, Temple University, USA

High penetration of both distributed and utility-scale PV systems on the electrical power grid and the variability and unpredictability of PV output introduce a host of challenges for utilities and independent system operators to manage.  This sub-area solicits papers addressing aspects of grid integration related to advanced inverter functionality (voltage and frequency regulation, grid-forming control) and operation of battery storage technologies.

Sub-Area 10.5: Optimization and Data-driven Methods
Sub-Area Chair: Josh Taylor, University of Toronto, Canada
Xiaozhe Wang, McGill University, Canada

Reliable and economic operation of integrated power systems is challenged by fast PV dynamics.  This calls for advanced monitoring and optimization strategies that adapt to rapid variations in operating point by, e.g., leveraging real-time measurements collected from advanced sensors across the power system.  This sub-area solicits contributions in design, implementation, and verification of tools that enable power availability, economic operation, real-time monitoring, and other system-level objectives.

Sub-Area 10.6: Distribution System Operation and Control
Sub-Area Chair: Hao Zhu, The university of Texas at Austin, USA
Anamika Dubey, Washington State University, USA
Wide integration of distributed PV generation and fast-acting power converters introduce unprecedented variability and unpredictability on existing distribution system operation.  This sub-area seeks papers that address problems arising from integration of PV into distribution systems, including inverter control, voltage regulation, volt-var optimization, power quality, protection, PV sizing and placement, and other pertinent issues.

Sub-Area 10.7/11.3/12.5: Advanced resource management – towards 100% renewable electricity (Joint Session)
Sub-area Chair: Matthew Stocks, ANU, Australia
Arnulf Jaeger-Waldau, EC JRC, Italy

A focus of the 2020 PVSC will be on research on managing the integration of very high PV adoption levels.  Continued price reductions are leading to increased installation rates.  Regions across the world are experiencing the impact of significant PV penetration in their electrical networks and markets. In this sub-area, we will cover questions on how the solar resource and system management can contribute to overcoming the integration challenges. We especially welcome inter-disciplinary studies here that address synergies between solar and wind resources, energy storage, advanced transmission concepts, demand management systems and solar to fuel and other high embodied energy products.

Area 11: Solar Resource for PV and Forecasting

Area-Chair: Ian Marius Peters, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
Co-Chairs: Gwen Bender, Groundwork, USA, Sue Ellen Haupt, National Center for Atmospheric Research, USA, Matthew Stocks, Australian National University, Australia

Sub-Area 11.1: Solar resource – characterization, assessment and variability modeling.
Sub-Area 11.2: Forecasting – solar resource or PV power output from minutes to days ahead.
Sub-Area 10.7/11.3/12.5: Advanced resource management – towards 100% renewable electricity (Joint Session)
Sub-Area 11.4: Solar resource and economic modelling

Area Description: Solar resource measurement and forecasting are essential for evaluating technical and financial performance in PV applications, and uncertainties related to the solar resource contribute directly to uncertainties in economic viability. This research area covers technologies and methods to quantify and model solar irradiance with a particular focus on applications in the PV sector.

Sub-Area 11.1: Solar resource – characterization, assessment and variability modeling.
Sub-area Chair:Gwen Bender, Groundwork, USA

Understanding the available solar resource is essential for technical and economic planning of a PV system. Technological advancements in characterizing and analyzing the available solar resource, as well as other relevant environmental factors, allows for improved PV modeling techniques and system optimization. In this sub-area innovations in methodology of solar resource assessment, characterization and variability modeling are covered. The chief objective should be reducing PV efficiency loss and modeling uncertainty. We explicitly include analyses of all relevant factors for PV modeling, here – for example analyses of the solar spectrum, correlations between solar resource and temperature, impacts of humidity and aerosols, soiling rates, albedo measurement practices, as well as their impacts on PV system performance.

Sub-Area 11.2: Forecasting – solar resource or PV power output from minutes to days ahead.
Sub-area Chairs:Sue Ellen Haupt, National Center for Atmospheric Research, USA

As PV panels generate increasing amounts of the world’s electricity, forecasting becomes ever more important. Highly accurate forecasting of the expected power output and its uncertainty is required for grid management and for economic assessment. In this sub-area all topics related to improvements in our ability to predict PV power output and solar resource are invited. We especially welcome contributions that highlight innovations in mathematical or artificial intelligence methodologies and studies that compare model uncertainties, uses of the probabilistic information, and skill scores.  

Sub-Area 10.7/11.3/12.5: Advanced resource management – towards 100% renewable electricity (Joint Session)
Sub-area Chair: Matthew Stocks, ANU, Australia
Arnulf Jaeger-Waldau, EC JRC, Italy

A focus of the 2020 PVSC will be on research on managing the integration of very high PV adoption levels.  Continued price reductions are leading to increased installation rates.  Regions across the world are experiencing the impact of significant PV penetration in their electrical networks and markets. In this sub-area, we will cover questions on how the solar resource and system management can contribute to overcoming the integration challenges. We especially welcome inter-disciplinary studies here that address synergies between solar and wind resources, energy storage, advanced transmission concepts, demand management systems and solar to fuel and other high embodied energy products.

Sub-Area 11.4: Solar resource and economic modelling
Sub-Area Chair:Ian Marius Peters, MIT, USA

Resource and variability assessments are especially relevant for the economic operation of PV installations. In this sub-area we cover all research that looks at innovating the value assessment of PV operation. For example, economic models of bifacial PV plants in snowy locations not typically considered for solar development or hybrid solar / wind facilities taking advantage of seasonal resource variation. We especially welcome contributions on the topic of LCOE under various operating conditions, and concepts that can capture value in system with high price variability.

Area 12: PV Deployment, Policy and Sustainability

Area-Chair: Izumi Kaizuka ,RTS Corporation, Japan      
Co-chairs: Arnulf Jaeger-Waldau, EC JRC, Italy, Brittany Smith, NREL, USA

Sub-Area 12.1: Government, Policy, and Financing
Sub Area 12.2: Sustainability and Social aspects of the PV deployment
Sub Area 12.3: Workforce Development, Diversity and Education
Sub Area 12.4: International Collaborative Efforts

Policy, deployment & sustainability area provides an opportunity to discuss aspects required to ensure the long-term success of the PV industry. It represents an extension of the traditional scope of the conference where current concerns and strategies to increase the adoption and social aspects of PV as a major electricity source will be discussed.

Sub-Area 12.1: Government, Policy, and Financing
Sub-Area Chair:  Wang Sicheng, Energy Research Institute, NDRC, China
Keiichiro Sakurai, AIST, Japan
Russ Jones, KACARE, Saudi Arabia

This topic focuses on strategies to sustain or accelerate high PV growth rates and rapid cost reductions through government, policy, and financing models that are critical to the success of PV deployment. The installed costs of a PV system declined more than 50% between 2010 and 2018 and the PV power became least cost energy in many regions, yet certain market barriers continue to inhibit wide scale PV deployment. This Sub-area solicits papers that will help conference participants better understand the government, policy, finance considerations that are paramount to overcoming these barriers. Nontechnical issues regarding PV power generation including grid integration is encouraged to submit to this subarea.

Sub Area 12.2: Sustainability and Social aspects of the PV deployment
Sub-Area Chair:  Annick Anctil, Michigan State University, USA
Keiichi Komoto, MHIR, Japan
Andreas Wade, First Solar GmbH, Germany

This area seeks submissions with a broad, systems-level perspective on the sustainability of PV, throughout the life-cycle. These can include perspectives on material supply (e.g. improving efficiency of raw material extraction, concerns related to critical or scarce materials), manufacturing (e.g. dematerialization, efficiency gains), usage (e.g. influencing user behaviour, encouraging adoption), end-of-life (e.g. recycling technologies, toxicity concerns, disposal pathways) and other aspects of the life-cycle. Novel approaches and results regarding assessing the environmental impacts of PV are particularly encouraged. This area also focuses on social aspects of PV power generation. It is acknowledged that PV power can create various social benefit and contributes not only to SDG 7 (Ensure access to affordable, reliable sustainable and modern energy for all but also other SDGs goals  The works on social aspects and impacts of PV power generation is also invited.

Sub Area 12. 3: Workforce Development, Diversity and Education
Sub-Area Chair: Yasuhiro Matsumoto, CINVESTAV, Mexico
John Benner, Stanford University, USA
Stephen Tay, NUS, Singapore

This topic focuses on original education methods to prepare the workforce for jobs associated with various aspects of photovoltaic research, manufacturing, systems design and deployment, and grid integration. The papers on efforts and activities to achieve diversity of PV sectors are also welcomed.  Innovative education methods can include but are not limited to interdisciplinary approaches in education, new teaching methods, online education, and hands-on learning.

Sub Area 12.4: International Collaborative efforts
Sub-Area Chair: Yves Poissant, CanmetENERGY, Canada
Ingrid Weiss, WIP Renewable Energies, Germany
Gaetan Masson, Becquerel Institute, Belgium

In 2018, 100 GW of PV systems were newly installed and global cumulative PV installations reached 500 GWdc and pohotovoltic generated electricity contributes with up to 2.6% to the world-wide electricity demand. While this percentage represents still a small contribution, PV’s growth is at such a pace that it could become a significant source of electricity and modify radically the way how the world is powered in the coming decade. To overcome current obstacles and achieve further deployment of PV power generation, various international collaborative efforts have been created, such as IEA PVPS, the Global Alliance of Solar Energy Research Institutions (GASERI), and the International Solar Alliance. This subarea encourages researchers to share their efforts to date and to discuss potential areas for expanded collaboration.

Sub-Area 10.7/11.3/12.5: Advanced resource management – towards 100% renewable electricity (Joint Session)
Sub-area Chair: Matthew Stocks, ANU, Australia
Arnulf Jaeger-Waldau, EC JRC, Italy

A focus of the 2020 PVSC will be on research on managing the integration of very high PV adoption levels.  Continued price reductions are leading to increased installation rates.  Regions across the world are experiencing the impact of significant PV penetration in their electrical networks and markets. In this sub-area, we will cover questions on how the solar resource and system management can contribute to overcoming the integration challenges. We especially welcome inter-disciplinary studies here that address synergies between solar and wind resources, energy storage, advanced transmission concepts, demand management systems and solar to fuel and other high embodied energy products.