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Materials and applications
The photovoltaic industry (PV) generates a large volume of wastes. In addition to production waste (ingot chunk, kerf-loss powder, silicon scrap, etc.), increasing quantities of end-of-life PV panels will have to be treated by 2030. Considered since 2012 as WEEE waste, it is crucial to develop recycling processes. The processes currently used are essentially mechanical processes that primarily promote the recycling of glass and aluminum frame. The recovery of more critical materials such as silicon, silver, copper … would give an attractive added values for stakeholder in the recycling field. One of the major barriers in the recovery of these materials is the elimination or the delamination of the encapsulation polymer layer (EVA) to allow full separation of the different layers constituting a PV panels (Glass/EVA/Si-Cells/EVA/Backsheet).To that end, some chemical and thermal processes exist in order to remove the EVA layer. However, these methods remain solutions that are not very respectful of the environment. They produce more or less significant levels of hazardous gaseous or liquid effluents. The challenge is to provide solutions with low environmental impact and economically viable.In this context, two CEA laboratories, the LPSD (DEN) and the LMPS (DRT) have carried out feasibility studies of a treatment process involving one or more non-polluting fluids under subcritical (SubC) or supercritical (SC) like CO2 and water for recycling of PV modules.This method involves little known diffusional and interaction mechanisms with the multilayer structure. The understanding of these mechanisms will eventually define the parameters applicable to the recycling process of PV panels to allow recovery of valuables materials (glass, Si, Ag, for example….).The aim of the PhD is to explore the potential of processes using supercritical fluids under unconventional conditions for the realization of the different key steps in the treatment of PV panels: delamination and extraction of metals of interest.To understand these mechanisms, the candidate will have the opportunity: to design and make specifics samples, to implement treatments in supercritical and/or subcritical fluids as well as complex systems, to rely on advanced physico-chemical characterizations of surfaces and interfaces.
Département des Technologies Solaires (LITEN)
Laboratoire Matériaux et Procédés Silicium
50 Avenue du lac Leman, 73375 Le Bourget du Lac
Phone number: 04 79 79 20 32
Sciences Chimiques Balard
Start date on 01-10-2019
Bat 56Centre de MarcouleBP1717130207 Bagnols sur Cèze
Phone number: 04 66 79 66 22
« The age limit is 26 years for PhD offers and 30 years old for post-doc offers. »