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The Catalonia Institute for Energy Research, IREC (Institut de Recerca en Energia de Catalunya) was funded in 2008, and began its R+D activities in 2009. Since then IREC has been involved in several European and industrial projects. The main efforts of IREC have been centred on the improvement of the industrial competitiveness, not only by bringing new knowledge on materials science, physical chemistry of processes, heat and mass transfer phenomena, electrical and electronic engineering for energy devices and systems but also on transferring knowledge and technologies to disruptive innovations for relevant novel energy systems and smart energy management models increasing efficiency of the used energy.

The Group of Solar Energy Materials and Systems (SEMS), headed by Prof. Dr. Alejandro Pérez-Rodriguez (aperezr(ELIMINAR)@irec.cat) belongs to the Area of Advanced Materials for Energy of IREC. The SEMS Group has a strong know-how and experience in the synthesis of kesterite semiconductors and a deep expertise in the development, fabrication and characterization of kesterite based PV devices, being one of the three leading European groups reporting the highest kesterite efficiencies without the use of hazardous compounds.

The main role of the IREC-SEMS group in STARCELL will be centred in the development of materials solutions for high efficiency kesterite based solar cells including investigation of doping strategies and alloying routes, the optimisation of the absorber/back contact interface, the modification of thermal routes, etc.