Sona Ulicna

20212024

Research Activity per Year

Overview

Personal Profile

Soňa Uličná is a postdoctoral researcher at NREL working on reliability of photovoltaic (PV) module packaging materials. Her work focuses on material characterization using thermal analysis, spectroscopy, microscopy, and X-ray based techniques to identify degradation mechanisms in module materials after accelerated indoor and outdoor aging. Studied materials include polymeric encapsulants and backsheets from silicon glass/glass and glass/backsheet modules, balance of systems (BoS) components, and most recently perovskite mini-modules.

Prior to joining NREL, Soňa worked on fabrication and characterization of thin-film cadmium telluride (CdTe) and copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) solar cells during her master’s and doctoral studies at Loughborough University, United Kingdom. She did an internship at NREL in 2017 working on scalable deposition of perovskite solar cells. After graduating, she briefly worked on testing and characterization of hydrophobic anti-soiling coatings in Professor Mike Walls’s group at Loughborough University before starting a postdoctoral position at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. At SLAC she used the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource to gain understanding of how changes in material crystal structure affect PV performance. 

For additional information, see Soňa Uličná LinkedIn profile.

Disclaimer: Any opinions expressed on LinkedIn are the author’s own, made in the author's individual capacity, and do not necessarily reflect the views of NREL.

Research Interests

PV reliability and system performance 

Characterization of PV materials and devices 

Thin-film material science and processing 

Professional Experience

Postdoctoral Researcher, NREL (2022–present) 

Research Scholar, Stanford University, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (2020–2022) 

Research Associate, Loughborough University, Centre for Renewable Energy Systems Technology (2019–2020) 

Distance Learning Tutor, Renewable Energy Systems Technology, Loughborough University (2017–2019) 

Research Secondment, NREL (2017) 

Internship, STM Microelectronics (2013) 

Education/Academic Qualification

Master, Mechanical Engineering, Ecole Nationale Superieure des Arts et Metiers ParisTech

Bachelor, Mechanical Engineering, Ecole Nationale Superieure des Arts et Metiers ParisTech

PhD, Electrical Engineering, Centre for Renewable Energy Systems Technology, Loughborough University

Master, Renewable Energy Systems Technology, Loughborough University

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