French chemicals producer Arkema is extending its R&D collaboration with public research agency the Commissariat à l'énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA), from photovoltaics (PV) to organic and hybrid electronics.
To do this Arkema and the CEA are setting up two joint research laboratories for developing new high-performance materials, for integration within manufacturing in France's electronics industry.
As part of its collaboration with the CEA - Laboratoire d'Electronique et de Technologie de l'Information (Leti), Arkema will use polymer nanostructuring to produce materials that improve the performance of silicon components, and reduce manufacturing costs in integrated circuits.
With CEA - Laboratoire d'Innovation pour les Technologies des Energies Nouvelles et les nanomatériaux (Liten), Arkema will develop polymers required for commercial plastic electronic devices, and devices such as flexible displays and smart packaging.
Arkema supplies technical polymers, including fluorinated, piezoelectric and nano-structured thermoplastic polymers, the latter having excellent barrier properties.
In 2010 Arkema bought French start-up Piezotech, a producer of electro-active fluorinated polymers. These advanced polymers can change size or shape under an electric current, and can convert mechanical force into electrical energy. The technology offers potential in sensors, actuators and energy storage.
The CEA-Leti and CEA-Liten joint laboratories build on Arkema's existing activity in the field or plastic electronics, including funding R&D within the Laboratoire de Chimie des Polymères Organics (LCPO) in Pessac, France. The group within LCPO is working on new functional polymers for energy and information communication technology (ICT) applications.
In 2011 Arkema and CEA, within the National Institute for Solar Energy (INES), set up a joint research laboratory dedicated to polymers for various PV technologies. Some Arkema polymer products have promising applications in PV, including encapsulating silicon solar cells and insulating PV module back sheets.
Documents and links
French producer of chemicals and polymers
French government-funded technological research organisation, involved in setting up collaborative projects.
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