Seminar on Solar Energy



  • First Meeting in Room 01.18 (HI ERN, 1st floor), Immerwahrstraße 2 at 17.10.2018, 2:00pm-3:00pm
  • 31.10.2018: Short meeting for final assignment of topis and meeting schedule
    21.11.2018: first meeting with three talks
    Further dates: 28.11./05.12./12.12./09.01./16.01.
  • Presentation meetings scheduled afterwards


The seminar targets audiences interested in sustainable and renewable energies. It is well suited for students majoring in masters of Advanced Optical Technologies (MAOT), Energy Technologies & Electrical Engineering, Material Science & Engineering, and Computational Engineering (CE).


The talks should be 20-25min long and give a good general overview over the topic and outline recent trends and research projects. Additionally a handout of 2 pages has to be prepared and submitted before the talk, summarizing the content of the presentation.

See studon for exact scheduling and team assignments:

Possible Topics

The seminar covers a wide range of topics including fundamental principles, manufacturing technologies, methods of system simulation, large scale power plants and possible solar energy use scenarios. Moreover, different types of photovoltaic systems as well as technologies for solar thermal energy harvesting can be discussed.

Suggested topics:

  • Basics / Physics of Solar Cells
    • internal & external photoelectric effect, Equivalent Circuit of a SC, Shockley-Queisser limit
  • Solar Cell Technologies
    • Silicon Solar Cells
      • Wafer-based, Thin-Film, Mono/Polycrystalline, amorphous/micro-crystalline Silicon, tandem cells
    • GaAs Solar Cells
      • Single Crystal, Concentrator, Thin-Film
    • CI(G)S Solar Cells
    • CdTe Solar Cells
    • Organic Solar Cells
      • physical principles, materials, junction types, manufacturing
    • Novel materials
      • Perovskite Solar Cells
      • Dye-sensitized solar cells
      • nano crystal/quantum dot solar cells
    • Multi-Junction Solar Cells
      • Tandem / Triple junction solar cells, materials, performance improvements, fabrication
  • Thin film solar cell production process
    • Roll-to-roll & printing techniques
    • CVD/PVD, galvanic & sol-gel
  • Improvement of Solar Cell efficiency
    • Up and down conversion techniques
    • nano particles & wires (plasmonic effects)
    • Improved light trapping/management techniques
  • (Semi-)Transparent solar cells
  • Stability of solar cells
  • Typical Failure Modes of PV Modules
  • Accelarated Aging of PV Modules – Advantages and Limitations
  • Toxicity issues in PV materials
  • Future perspectves for PV markets and technology (International Technology Roadmap for PV)
  • Solar Roads
  • Passive houses and PV
  • Building-integrated photovoltaics
  • Overview of optical wave simulation methods
    • Maxwells’s equations:
      • Finite Element Methods
      • Finite Difference Time Domain Method
    • Ray Tracing
    • Transfer-Matrix-Method
    • Simulation of the drift diffusion equation
  • Solar panel technology
    • low temperature technology and systems
  • Solar cooling
  • Solar power plants
    • Concentrated Photovoltaics
    • Solar thermal power plants
    • Photovoltaic power plants
  • Overview of energy storage techniques
    • for high/low temperature systems
    • storage techniques for photovoltaics
    • short-/longterm storage techniques
  • Artificial photosynthesis
  • Energy distribution

Note: We strongly recommend references like International Journal of Energy Research, Solar Energy Journal ( and Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications, which cover above mentioned fields and report most recent developments. Your talk has to address the most up-to-date research and technologies.


Photovoltaic Technology

  • Richard J. Komp, Practical Photovoltaics: Electricity from Solar Cells, Aatec Pubns.
  • Thomas Markvart, Solar Electricity, Wiley; 2 edition.
  • Ryan O’Hayre, Fuel Cell Fundamentals, Wiley; 2 edition.
  • Joseph R. Provey, Convert Your Home to Solar Energy, Taunton Press.
  • Jef Poortmans, Thin Film Solar Cells: Fabrication, Characterization and Applications (Wiley Series in Materials for Electronic and Optoelectronic Applications), Wiley; 1 edition.
  • Jenny Nelson, The Physics of Solar Cells (Properties of Semiconductor Materials), Imperial College Press; 1 edition.
  • Peter Würfel, Physics of Solar Cells: From Basic Principles to Advanced Concepts, Wiley-VCH; 1 edition.
  • A. Goetzberger, Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells: Technology and Systems Applications, Wiley; 1 edition.
  • Rolf Brendel, Thin-Film Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells, Wiley-VCH; 1 edition.
  • Peter Gevorkian, Large-Scale Solar Power System Design: An Engineering Guide for Grid-Connected Solar Power Generation, McGraw-Hill Professional; 1 edition.
  • H. Willis, Distributed Power Generation: Planning and Evaluation, CRC Press; 1 edition.
  • Math Bollen, Integration of Distributed Generation in the Power System, Wiley-IEEE Press; 1 edition.
  • S. Rao, EHV-AC, HVDC Transmission and Distribution Engineering, .
  • K. Padiyar, HVDC Power Transmission Systems, New Academic Science; 2 edition.
  • Chan-Ki Kim, HVDC Transmission: Power Conversion Applications in Power Systems, Wiley-IEEE Press; 1 edition.
  • Remus Teodorescu, Grid Converters for Photovoltaic and Wind Power Systems, Wiley-IEEE Press; 1 edition.
  • Fang Luo, Advanced DC/AC Inverters: Applications in Renewable Energy, CRC Press.
  • Wolf D. Franke: “Erneuerbare Energien: Jobmotor für Erfolg und Karriere. Firmen, Kontakte, Adressen” (Frankfurter Allgemeine Buch, 2009)
  • Hans-Günther Wagemann, Heinz Eschrich: “Photovoltaik – Solarstrahlung und Halbleitereigenschaften, Solarzellenkonzepte und Aufgaben” (Teubner-Verlag, 2007)
  • Rolf Brendel: “Thin-film Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells – Physics and Technology” (Wiley-VCH Verlag, 2003)
  • Yoshihiro Hamakawa: “Thin-film Solar Cells – Next Generation Photovoltaics and Its Applications” (Springer-Verlag, 2004)
  • Markus Mohr, Hermann Unger, Petr Svoboda: “Praxis solarthermischer Kraftwerke” (Springer-Verlag, 1999)
  • Volker Quaschning: “Regenerative Energiesysteme – Technologie, Berechnung, Simulation” (Hanser-Verlag, 2011)
  • Erich Rummrich: “Energiespeicher” (Expert Verlag, 2009)
  • Karl Thome-Kozmiensky, Michael Beckmann: “Erneuerbare Energien”, Band 3 (TK Verlag, 2010)
  • Roland Scheer, Hans-Werner Schock: “Chalcogenide Photovoltaics: Physics, Technologies, and Thin Film Devices” (ISBN: 978-3-527-31459-1)