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In 2009 and 2010 three major research projects with special focus on polymeric materials for solar energy technologies were initiated and established. The research project proposals SolPol-1 and SolPol-2 as well as SolPol-3 were submitted and approved in the 3rd and 4th call of the 'New Energies 2020' funding program of the Austrian Climate and Energy Fund (KLIEN). While SolPol-1 and SolPol-2 are aiming at the development of polymeric materials and components for solar thermal systems, the focus of SolPol-3 is the development of advanced polymeric materials for the encapsulation of photovoltaic cells (PV).

SolPol-1:    This project addresses some basic scientific and methodological aspects and requirements for the development of novel plastics based thermal collector systems, including an assessment of ecological and economical impacts of such collector systems upon market penetration.
SolPol-2:    This project covers industrial research topics. In close relation to the associated fundamental research project SolPol-1, SolPol-2 aims at the design, modelling, production and testing of novel plastics based model-collectors and the development of new polymer compounds for specific solar-thermal applications.
SolPol-3:    This project aims at the development of novel polymeric encapsulation materials that improve PV module service performance, while simultaneously reducing material and processing costs. The material innovations primarily include cell embedding and backsheet materials for rigid and flexible PV modules.