Solar Research: On the Hunt for the Super-cell

European Sharc25 project aims to achieve 25 percent efficiency with thin-film solar cells

A new European research project that goes by the name Sharc25 is setting out to make an extremely efficient thin-film solar cell for the next generation of more cost-effective solar modules. Its objective is to achieve up to 25 percent efficiency in thin-film solar cells made by the coevaporation of copper indium gallium (di)selenide, or CIGS for short. That kind of performance would top the previous best mark by just over three percentage points. The Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW) is coordinating the project. Eleven research partners from eight countries are on board. Launched in May, the project will run for 3.5 years and get €4.6 million in EU funding sourced from the research framework program Horizon 2020. The Swiss government is providing another €1.6 million. The results of this project could well give the European solar industry a boost.

Recent News & Events

2nd public Sharc25 project workshop was held on October 29, 2018 at Empa in Dübendorf, Switzerland

Empa, with the support of all project partners, organized and conducted a workshop with more than 70 international attendees from the thin-film community on October 29, 2018 at Empa in Dübendorf, Switzerland (see agenda below). Guests came from 13 countries and 32 research institutes, universities, and companies for this full-day event. New results from Sharc25 project and progress in CIGS technology were provided during oral and visual presentations to the interested experts. Participants had the chance to present their research activities during a poster session. In addition, an external guest speakers (not partner of the Sharc25 consortium), a tutorial on advanced characterization tools suitable for industry, and fruitful discussion between Sharc25 partners and scientists from the thin-film community brought the event to the next level. Finally, both industrial partners Flisom AG and NICE Solar Energy GmbH assessed the results of the Sharc25 project from industrial point of view. The Sharc25 website with its list of publications including links to the open access papers was promoted.


  1. Announcement: 2nd Sharc25 workshop in Dübendorf (Switzerland) on October 29, 2018
  2. 1st public Sharc25 project workshop was held on December 14, 2017 at ZSW in Stuttgart, Germany
  3. 12-13 December 2017, project meeting at ZSW in Stuttgart, Germany
  4. Announcement: 1st Sharc25 workshop in Stuttgart (Germany) on December 14, 2017
  5. 19-21 June 2017, project meeting at Department of Applied Physics, Aalto University in Espoo, Finland
  6. 24-25 November 2016, project meeting at GPM laboratory (University of Rouen) in Saint Etienne du Rouvray, France
  7. 11-12 May 2016, project meeting at the International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory (INL) in Braga, Portugal
  8. 5-6 November 2015, project meeting at the University of Luxembourg in Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg
  9. 26-27 May 2015, Kick-off meeting at ZSW in Stuttgart, Germany