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H2020 project PeroCUBE for perovskite-based lighting, wearables and fabric devices started

11 May 2020

The EU H2020-funded project PeroCUBE aims at developing flexible, lightweight perovskite-based electronics, creating new commercial opportunities for the lighting, energy and telecom industries. The consortium brings together 14 industrial and academic partners from 10 European countries.

For more information about PeroCUBE and the participation of TNO

Get in touch with Wouter Fransman

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This innovative collaboration, which engages the industry, academia and research organizations, represents the whole value chain and breeding ground needed to develop a new generation of sustainable perovskite-based devices. Already seen as a promising game-changer for the energy sector, this European consortium will allow the demonstration of the technology’s viability as a commercial product. The project will last 42 months for a total requested EU contribution of EUR 5.6M.

The organic-inorganic metal halide 3D and lower dimensional semiconductors (usually referred to these days as perovskite), already used in PV technologies, have a strong potential to dominate the OLAE (Organic and Large Area Electronics) market by providing advanced lighting solutions (PE-LED).

PeroCUBE has two main objectives: producing efficient, simple and low cost light sources closer to natural light sources and supporting the development of more stable and sustainable, efficient and low-cost solar panels. By combining these promising technologies, the consortium seeks to develop a new generation of Visual Light Communication (VLC) and LiFi (light fidelity) standard, widening the scope for human centric lighting (HCL), data transmission, wearables and IOT applications that do not cause harm to humans nor the environment.

Balancing risks and benefits of perovskite-based opto-electronic devices

“The perovskite-based opto-electronic devices that are being developed in this project, will need to be produced, used and recycled in a sustainable manner” says Dr. Wouter Fransman (senior scientist at TNO). “The benefits of these devices are numerous, but we should not ignore the potential risks that can be posed to human health or to the environment across the value chain of the devices. These shall not stop the innovation of these important lighting advancements, but will be balanced against the benefits and compared with already existing devices. One of the challenges of perovskite-technology is the lead content in most reported devices. This lead content may hinder the successful exploitation of these devices in relation to current legislation and shall therefore be transparently investigated in this PeroCUBE project prior to the launch of these products to the market.”

About PeroCUBE

The PeroCUBE – High-Performance Large Area Organic Perovskite devices for lighting, energy and Pervasive Communication – consortium consists of 14 partners. Namely:
1) CSEM SA (CH) as coordinator and leader for the development of perovskite-based PV devices;
2) VTT (FIN) manufacturing approaches for Large Area flexible PeroCUBE devices and their integration into wearables;
3) University of Oxford (UK) for developing LED and PV device technologies;
4) University of Patras (GR) for tuning the perovskite upscaled industrial synthesis as well as providing improved perovskite structures;
5) Fraunhofer Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung (DE) for electro-optical characterization of PeLED devices and their encapsulation;
6) Aura Light Italia (IT) as integrator of lighting applications, innovation, dissemination and IPR management;
7) TNO (NL) for Life Cycle Assessment and hazard and nanotoxicity assessment which will take into account the benefits as well as the potential risks of PeroCUBE devices across various life cycle stages of the product;
8) CNRS (F) for the optimization of the perovskite material;
9) Vodafone Innovus (EL) for light fidelity connectivity applications;
10) Technische Universität Wien (AT) developing micron- and nanoscale characterization of packaged PE-LED devices and PE-LED materials;
11) Alpes Laser SA (CH) for the laser source for perovskite characterization;
12) Eulambia Advanced Technologies Ltd. (EL) for the Perocube transceiver integration;
13) Optiva Media (ES) for the implementation and validation of the PeLiFi demonstration prototype;
14) Noesis Technologies (EL) for project, data and IPR management and exploitation support.

About TNO

TNO will lead the work package on hazard and nanotoxicity assessment and on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). One of the challenges of perovskite-technology is the lead (Pb) content in most reported devices (alternative Sn-based perovskites suffer from fast degradation due to interaction with even traces of moisture). It is stated that the approximate amount of lead is limited since a 1 m2 device incorporates about 0.66 g of lead, if this amount of lead was found in a square meter of soil it would well be beyond the threshold of 60 mg/kg that requires further action. Moreover, energy saving from PeLEDs/PePVs will lead to larger reduction of lead release to the atmosphere from coal use for electricity production. An extensive assessment of the hazard and nanotoxicity as well as an LCA by TNO will address these concerns. The LCA will enable the weighing of the benefits versus the potential risks across the life cycle of the product (from production to use to end-of-life). Tailor-designed tests will be conducted to assess the effectiveness of the encapsulation scheme for the lead containment and recycling approaches to end-of-life of the PeroCUBE devices will be suggested.

The PeroCUBE project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and
innovation program under Grant Agreement No. 861985 with an overall budget of EUR 5.6M.
The project website is under preparation and will be launched in Q4 2020.

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