Towards efficient, large-area, arbitrary shape organic solar cells

An ambitious collaboration


The European FP7 project ArtESun aims to develop highly efficient organic solar cells with an increased lifetime and a decreased production cost. The ultimate goal of the ArtESun project is to bring organic photovoltaic technologies (OPV) towards introduction into the competitive thin-film PV market.

For this purpose, the project objectives are set to make break-through advances in the state of the art in terms of development of innovative high efficient OPV materials which can be used to demonstrate the cost-effective non-vacuum production of large area arbitrary size and shape OPV modules.

Also, the aim is to understand the long term stable operation and the degradation mechanisms at the material and OPV device level, and develop roll-to-roll (R2R) additive non-vacuum coating and printing techniques emphasizing efficient materials usage and cost efficient R2R processing. High performance arbitrary size and shape OPV systems will be demonstrated in environments relevant to its expected future applications.

Within the framework of the ArtESun project, VTT collaborates with imec (Belgium), Fraunhofer ISE (Germany), Imperial College (U.K.), IKERLAN S.Coop. (Spain), Corning SAS (France), ONYX Solar Energy S.L (Spain), Confidex OY (Finland), and Wibicom Inc. (Canada).

Targeted applications


In ArtESun the cost/efficiency ratio of the R2R processed OPV modules developed will be continuously monitored and compared to the inorganic PV technologies that are already part of the activity portfolio of the end-users actively involved in this project. This will ensure the identification of future application areas in which the use of OPV modules is more favourable than inorganic PV technologies.

It is in these relevant environments where the performance (efficiency, stability) of the OPV modules developed in ArtESun will be demonstrated along the progressive development of the modules during the project and finally at the end of the project. The cost structure of the produced OPV modules will be validated by developing valid business cases for several demonstrative applications, like:


􀁸 High efficiency low cost OPV module as energy harvester for active RFID (small area)

􀁸 Photovoltaic antenna for wireless sensors (medium area)

􀁸 Building integration (large area)


In addition to cost/efficiency ratio through direct material, architecture and processing improvements, also OPVs light-weight and flexibility aspects will be taken into end-user advantage, which is a clear improvement to traditional PV technologies. Through design and integration tasks, OPV feasibility will be evaluated and exploited with the purpose of taking advance of new properties. A much easier integration is expected due to module customization by controlling shape, transparency, colour and electrical output from internal cell configuration.

Project ID card



Full title

Efficient, large-area, arbitrary shape solar energy

Funded under

Seventh framework program FP7-NMP


Innovative materials for efficient, stable and cheap organic photovoltaic cells (NMP2013.4.0-2)

Project reference


Total cost

5,244,029 Euro

EU contribution



From 01-11-2013 till 31-10-2016


36 months

Contract type

collaborative project

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