Press Release #20

Dr. Stefan Glunz Receives Becquerel Prize – EU Commission Honors Pioneering Work on High Efficiency Solar Cells

22.9.2014

Since 1989 the European Commission has awarded the Becquerel Prize to distinguish outstanding merits in photovoltaics. This year the prize was awarded to Dr. Stefan Glunz, division director of “Solar Cells – Development and Characterization” at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE. The prize committee honors Stefan Glunz for his excellent pioneering work in the area of high efficiency silicon solar cells and his contribution to the worldwide success of photovoltaic electricity generation. The prize was presented on September 22, 2014 at the European PV Solar Energy Conference (EU PV-SEC) in Amsterdam.

from left to right: Prof. Wim Sinke, Program Development Manager, ECN Solar Energy, Prof. Joachim Luther, Chairman of the Becquerel Prize committee Vladimir Sucha, Director-General JRC, European Commission, Dr. Stefan Glunz, Recipient of the Becquerel Prize 2014.
© Photo Photo: By courtesy of EUPVSEC

from left to right: Prof. Wim Sinke, Program Development Manager, ECN Solar Energy, Prof. Joachim Luther, Chairman of the Becquerel Prize committee Vladimir Sucha, Director-General JRC, European Commission, Dr. Stefan Glunz, Recipient of the Becquerel Prize 2014.

Dr. Stefan Glunz, Fraunhofer ISE, winner of the Becquerel Prize 2014.
© Photo Fraunhofer ISE

Dr. Stefan Glunz, Fraunhofer ISE, winner of the Becquerel Prize 2014.

In his laudation, Prof Wim Sinke, ECN Solar Energy, honored Stefan Glunz as »a motivated researcher, an excellent scientist, a great teacher and an inspiring leader«. Considered one of the leading experts worldwide, Stefan Glunz performs fundamental and applied research on the development of wafer-based crystalline silicon solar cells. Standing out in particular is the large variety of approaches that he and his team have developed to increase solar cell efficiency and reduce costs in solar electricity production. These range from investigations on electrically active defects in solar cells through reducing material use to numerous innovations in production technology. Among the many highlights from his team at Fraunhofer ISE is the long-standing world record efficiency for multicrystalline silicon solar cells.

Beyond his activities as researcher at Fraunhofer ISE, Glunz is on the Steering Committee of the European PV Technology Platform as well as other strategic committees. He is also well known as the initiator of “SiliconFOREST,” an extremely successful workshop series for doctoral students. As the name implies, the workshop is held annually in the Black Forest.

Stefan Glunz was born in Dortmund in 1966. He studied physics at the University of Freiburg and began his carrier at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE as a scientific assistant in 1988. In the years following he completed his diploma thesis under the direction of Prof. Adolf Goetzberger, founder of the Institute, and later his doctoral thesis under Prof. Wolfram Wettling. Both theses focused on the topic of solar cell characterization. Afterwards, he began his work on solar cell technology and has held leadership positions at the Institute since 1999. Presently Glunz heads the division “Solar Cells – Development and Characterization” at Fraunhofer ISE. His commitments also include teaching, and since 2005 he has served as lecturer for different course studies at the Faculty of Engineering and of Physics at the University of Freiburg. To date he has supervised more than 30 doctoral students. His scientific excellence is demonstrated in over 100 publications in scientific magazines, two book chapters and 275 conference papers.

Institute Director Prof. Eicke R. Weber is pleased about this distinction for Stefan Glunz and thus for Fraunhofer ISE. “With this year’s Becquerel Prize, the Committee honors one of the best researchers worldwide of next-generation high efficiency photovoltaics, which is now beginning to go into production.”

In addition to many awards for conference papers and posters, Glunz together with his colleagues won the prestigious Italian “Eni Award” in Science & Technology in 2008. Honored were developments in technologies for thin silicon wafers leading to increases in efficiency and decreases in costs.
Established in 1989, the Becquerel Prize distinguishes the achievements of superior researchers in the field of photovoltaics. The prize remembers the discovery of the photovoltaic effect by the French researcher Alexandre Edmond Becquerel in 1839. Stefan Glunz is the twenty-second recipient of this award.