San Francisco Bay Area, California
David joins Breakthrough Energy’s Innovator Fellows program from Aluminio in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. As Chief Technology Officer, he leads the development of laser processes for their solar technology, which replaces the silver used in solar cells with abundant aluminum in order to reduce solar costs and accelerate adoption.
Today, silver used on solar cells is both scarce and costly –accounting for 10% of the world’s annual silver supply and 10% of the cost of solar modules. To accelerate the global adoption of solar technologies, Aluminio is developing a new approach to replace over 90% of the silver in solar cells with aluminum, a less expensive and more abundant material. Through the Fellows program, Aluminio seeks to finalize their prototype and demonstrate their metallization technology’s manufacturing processes with customers.
David is an expert in optics, laser technologies, and materials science and has experience designing new laser-based processes for a variety of technological applications. He grew up in rural France where nature was a large part of his childhood, and now wants to use his expertise to help solve the climate crisis. David earned a Bachelor and Master’sDegree in Optics and Optical Engineering from the Institut d’Optique in France, before receiving a Doctor of Philosophy in Physical Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Who has had the greatest impact on your career path?
My partner, Nihan. She encourages me to get out of my comfort zone and taught me to not be afraid of taking risks. She pushes me farther than I would have gone by myself.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be an archaeologist or a detective. Being a scientist is not too far off –I’m an investigator in the end.
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