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Solar energy is rapidly becoming a game-changing technology, with great impact on the global energy sector and economy
Photovoltaic solar energy (PV) is a key technology for the transformation of our energy system, enabling zero or even negative carbon emissions and security of supply and contributing to a new, green economy. In combination with other renewables and energy storage, it will enable a fully sustainable, affordable and reliable energy supply. Over the past decades, PV has made impressive progress in terms of conversion efficiency, cost, and scale of deployment. This has been enabled by a powerful combination of research and technology development on the one hand and market incentives on the other hand. Improvements and breakthroughs could therefore be brought “from lab to fab to field (and roof)”. In spite of this success, PV still makes a very modest contribution to global energy supply and therefore a big challenge ánd a big opportunity still lies ahead of us.
This presentation provides an overview of the state-of-the-art in PV technology, economy, and applications and describes the challenges to be addressed to allow for competitive multi-terawatt deployment.
Wim Sinke - Professor, Photovoltaic Energy Conversion, University of Amsterdam and Manager Program Development Solar Energy, ECN, Petten
"Wim Sinke (1955) is Manager Program Development at ECN Solar Energy in Petten, The Netherlands, part-time professor Photovoltaic Energy Conversion at the University of Amsterdam and board member of the TKI Urban Energy (the Netherlands public-private partnership for energy innovation in the urban environment, including solar energy). He is also scientific advisor at the FOM Institute AMOLF in Amsterdam and co-chairman of the European Photovoltaic Technology Platform.
Wim Sinke studied experimental physics at Utrecht University, where he graduated in 1981. He did PhD research at AMOLF and received a doctor’s degree from Utrecht University in 1985 for a thesis entitled “New physical processes for silicon solar cells”. From 1986 to 1987 he was a visiting scientist at the Hitachi Central Research Laboratory in Tokyo, where he worked on thin-film silicon. In 1987, he re-joined AMOLF to work on crystalline silicon solar cells, material properties of amorphous silicon, and ion and laser processing of semiconductors. In 1990, he moved to the Energy research Centre of the Netherlands ECN to set up a new group on photovoltaics (PV). This group has grown to a size of 80 staff and covers a range of topics, including wafer-based silicon and thin-film solar cells and modules, and environmental and economic analyses of PV.
Wim Sinke has received several prestigious awards, including the Royal Dutch/Shell Prize for Sustainability and Energy in 1999 and the European Becquerel Prize for outstanding merits in photovoltaics in 2011. In 2015, he was appointed a Knight in the Order of the Netherlands Lion for his contributions to the development and promotion of solar energy.