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Monday, September 03, 2007

22nd EU PVSEC Opens

Italian Minister Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio opens the event

Professor Dr. Martin Green from the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Sydney, Australia, led off the first Plenary session of Advanced Photovoltaics on Monday, September 3, 2007, at 8:30AM, but the official open of the 22nd EU PVSEC was left to Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio, Italian Minister for the Environment, Land, and Sea, at about 12:30PM.

The Opening Session was dominated by short, informative, and dynamic presentations from Conference leaders, politicians, and industry members (except for Alfonso González Finat, EU Commission who ran twice as long with an unemotional delivery). With Milano as the venue, Italy was well represented by Corrado Clini, Director General of the Italian Ministry for the Environment, Land, and Sea, Gianni Silvestrini, Advisor of the Italian Minister of Economic Development, and the afore mentioned Mr. Scanio. I have videos of Mr. Scanio making his opening session keynote in English and answering a press question about Italian Photovoltaic market development in Italian. Alas, Google Video has been uncooperative getting these large files uploaded, so far.

The 2007 Becquerel Prize was awarded to Professor Arvind Shah for over 20 years of work in Photovoltaics, establishing the Photovoltaics Laboratory at the Université de Neuchâtel, Switzerland, pioneering a VHF (Very High Frequency) deposition technique for high rate and low cost amorphous silicon deposition, and further innovations with microcrystalline silicon and the micromorph tandem solar cells. These innovations are at the core of Oerlikon’s technology for thin film silicon production equipment.

By coincidence or just plain hard work, the SolarWorld Einstein Award 2007 was presented to PV pioneer Professor Martin Green who led off the technical presentations today.

In the afternoon, Applied Materials and Oerlikon Solar engaged in the Battle of the Press Conferences. Both companies held their plans and strategies pat. Will there be a resolution to the key question does size (of the glass substrate) matter? See “Size isn’t everything” in the Solar Newsletter No. 2 (Deutsch) for Oerlikon’s view.

In another ironic twist, the first EU PVSEC was planned about this time in 1974 in the same city of Milano.

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