A F Harvey (promotional image)

Trends in Photovoltaic Technology and Applications

21 May 2014 | The Royal College of Surgeons, London, UK

About the lecture


Trends in Photovoltaic Technology and Applications


Photovoltaic technology is increasingly being recognised as a likely major contributor to the world's future energy needs. Lasers are playing an increasingly important role in the design and fabrication of high efficiency solar cells.

Pioneering work with lasers at The University of New South Wales (UNSW) has led to the development of several new successful photovoltaic technologies and numerous accompanying performance records, as lasers have been successfully used to incorporate high efficiency attributes into commercial cell designs.

In particular, lasers are being used for selective emitter formation, creation of localised heavy doping beneath metal contacts, dielectric patterning to replace photolithographic techniques, groove formation for burying metal contacts, surface texturing for reflection control, edge junction isolation and hydrogen charge state control to greatly enhance hydrogen passivation techniques for improving wafer bulk and surface qualities.

The latter advanced hydrogenation technology has attracted funding from many industry partners including several of the world's largest solar cell manufacturers as well as from the Australian Government through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

The funding from the AF Harvey Engineering Prize will allow an expansion of this work to cover more academically interesting aspects of the work associated with the reactivity and mobility of the hydrogen.



18:00 - Registration and refreshments
18:30 - Lecture commences
20:00 - Drinks reception
21:00 - Close


About the speaker

Stuart Wenham is Scientia Professor of Electrical Engineering and Director of the ARC Photovoltaics Centre of Excellence at the University of New South Wales, and CTO of Suntech-Power Co, one of the world’s largest PV manufacturers.

Formerly, Professor Wenham was Head of the School of Photovoltaic Engineering, Director of the Key Centre for Photovoltaic Engineering and Associate Director of the Photovoltaics Special Research Centre (1990-1998), with responsibility for the device research strand. 

Also, Co-Director of Research at Pacific Solar Pty. Ltd., a company established to commercialize thin film silicon cell technology jointly invented with Professor M.A. Green.

Professor Wenham is one of Australia’s most successful inventors of solar cell technology and has been involved in the successful commercialisation of solar technologies worldwide.

Professor Wenham obtained a Bachelor of Science (Physics Major)1976-1978, University of NSW, a Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical) 1976-1980, University of NSW and a Doctor of Philosophy (Electrical Engineering and Computer Science),1981-1986, University of NSW.


Professor Wenham’s many awards and distinctions include:

  • 1999 Australia Prize for Energy Science and Technology (jointly with Prof. M.A.Green), awarded by the Prime Minister of Australia
  • 2011 Honoured as: Australia’s Top 100 Engineers in 2011 by the Institute of Engineers Australia
  • 2011 IEEE International Electron Devices Society’s J. J. Ebers Award, the Society’s most prestigious award for outstanding technical contributions to electron devices
  • 2011 New South Wales Science and Engineering Award for Climate Change and the Environment
  • 2012 Listed as: Australia’s Top 100 Most Influential Engineers in 2012 by the
  • Institute of Engineers Australia
  • 2012 Australian Collaborative Innovation Award, jointly with M. A. Green for the successful collaboration with Suntech Power
  • 2012 Inducted into the Australian Solar Hall of Fame


Professor Wenham is the third recipient of the IET A F Harvey Engineering Research Prize, in recognition of his outstanding contributions to research in the field of Lasers and Optoelectronics, specifically for his pioneering laser use in advanced silicon solar cell contact formation.