Skip to main content

Workshop Targets Graduate Students to Advance Careers in PV

January 18, 2018

The 2018 Hands-On PV Experience (HOPE) workshop is an opportunity for a select group of U.S. graduate students to spend an immersive week at NREL in a hands-on, small-group research setting. NREL will select 12-14 students to participate in HOPE, held on the NREL campus in Golden, Colorado, July 8 - 13. 

Applications are due March 1, and require applications from both the student and their professor. If you are interested in participating in HOPE, or know someone who might be, please alert them to this opportunity.

During HOPE, students observe how solar cells are made, how a module is constructed, learn a variety of advanced characterization techniques, and meet NREL scientists and other researchers from across the country to learn a range of information about solar energy. Past participants have found this interactive, one-week experience to be packed with information that helped to facilitate completion of their degree. Others found valuable new collaborators and research connections. Among other things, students and their professors will have the opportunity to:

  • Interact with scientists and engineers at NREL and others from across the United States
  • Learn about PV technology in an interactive research setting
  • See solar cells fabricated
  • Perform hands-on measurements
  • Build a network of research connections with other researchers, professors, and students from across the United States. 

“Each year, HOPE creates an opportunity for a small group of graduate students to deepen their understanding of photovoltaics from fabrication to materials and devices to testing and measurement,” said Adele Tamboli, the NREL scientist who manages the HOPE Workshop. “They take this experience back to their universities to share with other students, and continue to utilize these interactions as they begin to develop their careers.” 

In 2017, HOPE participants learned the fabrication of Si, CdTe, III-V, and perovskite solar cells, as well as quantum efficiency and current-voltage characterization of these cells. They performed a deep dive into the topic of spectral mismatch corrections in solar cell testing. Students learned a variety of PV-related characterization techniques, including time of flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMs), time-resolved photoluminescence, X-ray and ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy, scanning probe techniques, and more. And students also conducted investigations into PV module fabrication and deconstruction as well as outdoor testing of photovoltaic modules.

Hear from HOPE program participants and learn more about applying.