The North-West University (NWU) is pioneering the novel use of Europium-Tellurium-Oxide (ETO) in the production of clean energy. ETO is a light-chargeable catalyst material that exhibits sustained and enhanced activity after light excitation has ended. Its unique characteristics present an opportunity for utilisation as a new and efficient type of active material in photovoltaic (PV) cells to convert and store solar energy. ETO has further applications as a catalyst in the chemical reaction to produce hydrogen and fuel cells to generate electricity.

Global Solar Market Opportunity:

World use of photovoltaics for energy supply growing rapidly. The global PV market size is expected to reach USD 333.72 billion by 2026 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.1%. The PV installations in the world grew by 36.8% CAGR between 2010 and 2018. Si-wafer based PV technology accounted for about 95% of the total production in 2017. There is an opportunity for introducing Europium-Tellurium-Oxide based solar cells, driven by better value proposition. The global hydrogen fuel cell market is forecast to reach USD 49.12 Billion by 2026.

Technology Benefits: 

  • Environmentally friendly material for clean energy solutions
  • Unlike other materials of comparable use, Europium-Tellurium-Oxide retains activity after light excitation
  • Enhanced activity for more efficient solar energy conversion and storage
  • Potential applications in the electronics industry

Intellectual Property Protection

Opportunity type

Technology Readiness Level