IEEE PVSC 49
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SPLTRAK Abstract Submission
Translating Material-Level Characterization of Carbon-Nanotube-Reinforced Composite Gridlines To Module-Level Degradation  
Andre Chavez1,2, Brian Rummel1,2, April Jeffries2, Sang M Han1,2, Nick Bosco3, Brian Rounsaville4, Ajeet Rohatgi4
1University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, United States
/2Osazda Energy , Albuquerque, NM, United States
/3National Renewable Energy Laboratory , Albuquerque, NM, United States
/4Georgia Institute of Technology , Albuquerque, NM, United States

Cell cracks in PV modules caused by poor handling during shipping and installation as well as from extreme weather events can lead to gradual or immediate power degradation. To directly address cell-crack-induced degradation, we have formulated a carbon nanotube additive for commercial screen printed silver pastes. We have shown in previous work that these metal matrix composites have little to no effect on the cell’s efficiency while enhancing the metallization’s fracture toughness and electrical gap-bridging capability. In this work, we focus on translating materials level characterization techniques to module level degradation. We found that we get conflicting results from two different methods of measuring the metallization’s ability to electrically bridge gaps in cracked solar cells. Mini-module stress testing is currently underway to determine which materials characterization correlates well with the min-module degradation characteristics.