Massachusetts Center for Renewable Energy Science & Technology
MassCREST Charge Transport Laboratory is equipped with a suite of new instruments and equipment for studying proton/ion conductivity, charge mobility and solar cell performance. This facility, which will support all researchers working in the area of Charge Transport has the capabilities in the following areas:
- Variable Temperature Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy.
This system consists of a frequency response analyzer, potentiostat, multiplexer and a vacuum oven, interconnected and programmed to automatically measure proton conductivity of solid polymer samples at temperatures ranging from 40-200 °C. The resulting data are used to analyze conductivity patterns and to prescreen polymers for further studies. Lithium or other ionic conductivity can also be studied using this system.
- Field Effect Transistor.
A micromanipulator and a parameter analyzer form this system. The manipulator is placed inside a glove box with controlled atmosphere and the analyzer is kept outside for convenient operation. This setup affords measurement of electron mobility of polymer films coated on a silicon substrate with gold electrodes, with the resulting data applied in analyzing the structural design-conductivity relationship of the polymers. We have developed a unique, fully automated mobility calculation program which cuts down the data processing time by 99% and the overall mobility experiment time by about 50%.
- Solar cell performance.
Class-A solar simulator, sourcemeter, digital multimeter, and a custom-made solar cell device template are part of this system. These are used to study photo-current conversion efficiency of the designed solar cells, enabling us to verify the correlation of FET studies and to analyze the effect of device and structural design on photovoltaic cell performance. We have developed a fully automated measurement and calculation program that is capable of performing extended stability studies unattended.
- Quantum Efficiency (Incident Photon Conversion Efficiency).
A complete IPCE measurement kit, containing a light source, optics and a calibrated light intensity measurement unit, is being used. This is used to study the incident photon conversion efficiency at various wavelengths of the designed solar cells. This data is used to analyze the effect of device and structural design on photovoltaic cell performance.
- Glove Box with Metal Evaporator and Spin-Coater.
A custom-designed glove box with a metal evaporator is used for the specific purpose of making solar cell devices under controlled atmosphere conditions. It is equipped with spin coater for casting polymer films to make solar cell devices. The metal evaporator deposits metal electrodes onto the polymer films. Doctor-blading equipment provides another choice for film casting.
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Created by Dr. A. Chandrasekaran
Department of Chemistry, University of Massachusetts, AMHERST, MA 01003, USA.