Daniel Erickson

September 2013
Fabrication and Cost Analysis of Screenprinted Electrodynamic Shields for Solar Applications
Committee Members: Advisor: Malay Mazumder, MSE/ECE; Nitin Joglekar, SMG; Srikanth Gopalan, MSE/ME

Abstract: Electrodynamic Shields (EDS) have been targeted as a technology to help mitigate power output degradation due to dust deposition of various solar collecting technologies. Though opaque printed circuit board EDS prototypes have shown promising dust removal efficiencies, an inexpensive method of transparent EDS fabrication must be realized before the EDS technology is adopted by industry. Development of an EDS screenprinting process is presented as a scalable, low-cost method of fabrication. The process is established first using a silver-based ink on borosilicate glass substrates and then adapted to incorporate transparent conductive PEDOT:PSS and ITO nanoparticle solutions. Successful EDS prints are characterized and integrated with photovoltaic cells or second surface mirrored substrates. Dust removal efficiencies of the screenprinted EDS are tested by measuring restoration in specular reflection and transmission in integrated EDS-mirror and EDS-PV modules after dust deposition. Finally, a cost analysis of the EDS screenprinting process is performed in order to predict the economic viability of the EDS technology when used in conjunction with solar collecting technologies.