The Swiss Center for Sustainable Energy

CSEM’s SE-center (former CSEM PV-center) is an industry-driven, application-oriented program that fosters innovation and accelerates the pace of technology transfer in the fields of photovoltaics and sustainable energy storage/management. Its mission is to bring new high-tech solar and energy solutions to technological maturity that serve the Swiss and global renewable energy industry.

Engineers working on a solar panel

The SE-center is an initiative of CSEM and the Federal Polytechnic School of Lausanne (EPFL), headed by Professor Christophe Ballif. It capitalizes on an international team of 80 world-class researchers and professionals with industry and academic backgrounds. It was created to develop next generation photovoltaic cells and modules, innovative renewable energy system solutions, and energy management services, to support the transition to an energy system in which solar will play an essential role.

The SE-center provides a full range of services to its partners, spanning from technology development to product prototyping, including the realization of full-size demonstration systems.

The center’s infrastructure includes specialty systems for coating, patterning, printing, and fabrication processes, as well as pilot manufacturing lines – from glass cleaning and wafer etching up to the assembly of functional modules. CSEM’s SE-center is part of the digital revolution and develops advanced technologies and data science solutions that optimize renewable energies and their integration, storage, monitoring, control, and maintenance.

CSEM’s SE-center offers services and supports industrialization efforts within the following areas:

  • High-performance crystalline silicon cells, perovskite and tandem perovskite/silicon, sustainable manufacturing solutions, and more
  • Solar modules, specialty polymers and coatings for PV, Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV), lightweight products for various mobility application
  • Coatings for energy devices – custom energy harvesting, power conversion devices, advanced interfaces in batteries, heat/light management filters, and more
  • Energy systems – batteries systems and advanced hardware, storage technologies, energy optimization, algorithms for optimal control/management at building and district level, and more
  • Digital Energy Solutions – data science and AI for productive solutions, e.g. for advanced forecasting or assets maintenance.