University of California, Berkeley

The focus of the 2011/2012 academic session in California was broadening my knowledge in current and future forms of energy production. I studied low-carbon energy generation encompassing ocean waves, solar photovoltaics and nuclear fission. The most thorough study was in ocean engineering covering theoretical analysis, numerical simulation and prototype manufacture of ocean energy harvesting devices.

Final GPA was 4.0/4.0 [Academic Transcript].

Solar Photovoltaics

Photovoltaic cells converting solar energy straight to electricity are undergoing a generation shift away from thick silicon to thinner films made of materials such as CIGS, GaAs and CdTe. While the most modern cells have higher conversion efficiency they are challenging to manufacture in large quantities outside laboratories. The reduction in film thickness suggests that newer panels will eventually be more eco-friendly over their service life. A team consisting of three colleagues and myself wrote a LCA (Life Cycle Assessment) comparing the environmental impact of four different kinds of thin-film cells.

Berkeley LCA thin film pv