Solar start-up raises seed funds - Embedded.com

Solar start-up raises seed funds

LONDON — Sol Voltaics AB, a company spun out from QuNano AB (Lund, Sweden) to focus on development and commercialization of semiconductor nanowire-based, multi-junction concentrator photovoltaic solar cells, has closed a seed investment round.

The seed investors in Sol Voltaics include funds advised by venture capital firms Provider Venture Partners of Stockholm, Teknoinvest and Nano Future Invest of Oslo, joined by LU Innovation together with LUAB, the investment arm of Lund University (Sweden), as major owners, along with the founders and employees of QuNano.

A new investor will be Scatec Adventure AS of Oslo, Norway, a company developing renewable energy initiatives controlled by Dr. Alf Bjørseth. Dr. Bjørseth will join both the board of directors and the Contributing Scientific Council of Sol Voltaics.

Dr. Lars Samuelson, Professor of Solid State Physics at Lund University, will serve as chief scientific officer of Sol Voltaics in parallel to his duties at the Lund University and with nmC, will also chair Sol Voltaics' Contributing Scientific Council and will be joined on the Council by Dr. Bjørseth and by Dr. Jerry Olson of the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

“By employing vertically-oriented heterostructured nanowires to progressively 'harvest' the solar spectrum, we will develop multi-junction solar cells with conversion efficiencies equal to or higher than current planar cells, and simultaneously dramatically lower cost by using readily available, low-cost and large area silicon substrates with mass-production friendly technologies,” said Dr. Samuelson.

A team of five academic and research institutes in five countries, along with Sol Voltaics as the commercial partner, has been selected for award of a research grant under the EU's Framework 7 Programme (FP7) for its proposal “Architectures, Materials and One-dimensional Nanowires for Photovoltaics – Research and Applications” (AMON-RA). This work began earlier this month.

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