Polymer Science Consultant: Polyvinyl Butyral Technology and Applications, Photovoltaic Module Encapsulation and Testing and Electrical/Optical Properties of Polymers and Coatings

Technical Consultant #1688


Expertise

  • Polyvinyl butyral interlayer technology for laminated glass including interlayers with engineered optical, electrical, flow, and moisture barrier properties.
  • Polyvinyl butyral nanoparticle composites.
  • Photovoltaic device encapsulation with polymers; characterization of electrical properties of encapsulant sheet in the photovoltaic array.
  • Polymer formulation, blending and compounding.
  • Electrically conductive polymers.
  • Electrical, optical and rheological properties of polymers and coatings.
  • High performance nylon textile products and processes.
  • Bicomponent fiber spinning.
  • Surface science and surface functionalization of polymers and particulate additives.
  • Electrostatics, static dissipative fibers and fabrics.
  • Electron beam and plasma radiation effects on surface and bulk polymer properties.
  • Experimental design and data analysis.
  • Scientific and patent literature searches.
  • Mathematical modeling of thermal, optical and moisture diffusion properties of polymer and laminated glazing systems.

Experience

Undisclosed Company, President, 2009 - Present

  • Consulting for clients in the fields of photovoltaic encapsulation, leakage current measurements, degradation mechanisms of various thin film photovoltaic technologies, photovoltaic testing protocols, and moisture diffusion models for photovoltaic module laminates.

Solutia Inc., Saflex Photovoltaic Development Team, Springfield, MA, 1987 - 2009

Science Fellow, 2007 - 2009

  • Researched new polyvinyl butyral based encapsulant formulations tailored to photovoltaic industry.
  • Devised methods to characterize electrical properties of encapsulant sheet and photovoltaic module system as function of environmental conditions.
  • Established program with outside laboratory to carry out lamination trials for new formulations; set up trials and implemented agreements.
  • Provided valuable contributions to experimental design, definition of process conditions, and hands-on assistance during lamination trials.
  • Lamination work led to the commercialization of a new polyvinyl butyral encapsulant product.
  • Initiated module scale durability testing lab within time and budget constraints. Testing equipment enables testing to IEC 61646 standards for damp heat, thermal cycling and humidity freeze tests.
  • Innovated new formulations that met customer expectations for increased electrical resistance, improved durability, adhesion, reduced moisture uptake, and enhanced optical properties; work led to invention disclosures.
  • Conceived and established new test methods for measuring electrical properties of polymers and thin film photovoltaic modules revealing significance of various current leakage paths.

Project Leader, 2000 - 2007

  • Explored and introduced new technologies and innovated new products in key areas identified by the Saflex Business Team.
  • Provided technology assessment and was a core member of marketing and new business teams supporting product commercialization.
  • Introduced new nanoparticle-polyvinyl butyral solar absorbing blends and solar reflecting polyvinyl butyral-film encapsulants and composites of the two to meet need for high-performance solar heat attenuating interlayer for laminated glass.
  • Technical Project Leader of the team that successfully commercialized solar absorbing technology for automotive and architectural markets.
  • Introduced a unique technology based on dielectrophoretic induced motion of dispersed nanoparticles for electronically-controlled variable transmission window films that have superior performance and lower cost than existing technology.
  • Technical Project Leader of the international team that developed variable transmission technology for automotive and architectural applications; full-sized prototypes were successfully marketed to major automotive OEMs.
  • Increased efficiency of technology and Customer Service Departments as well as reduced customer response time by writing spreadsheet programs that could calculate optical and thermal properties of window systems.
  • Provided support critical to new product development and commercialization including definition of new opportunities for Saflex in automotive and architectural markets through market studies, scientific literature searches, networking with the international scientific and technical community, patent searches, establishment of joint development programs and leadership of project planning teams.

Technical Project Leader, 1987 - 2000

  • Developed innovated new products for Carpet Business Group and was Technical Leader and core member of the team that built Solutia's No-Shock┬« electrically conductive bicomponent fiber spinning technology into a highly profitable business.
  • Prepared reports, technology assessments, marketing studies, product sheets, and patents for new technology developments.
  • Directed teams in development, commercialization, and market of innovative new electrically-conductive co-extruded filament yarns and electrostatic dissipative staple fiber blends resulting in valuable commercial products for the electronics and industrial safety markets.
  • Established lab to measure electrostatic charging and dissipation properties of fibers and fabrics and invented new methods to characterize static dissipation properties of fibers.
  • Supported manufacturing projects to improve process and properties of nylon continuous filament yarn.
  • Developed improved texturing jet design that was adopted on commercial high speed nylon filament yarn spinning machines.
  • Played key role as member of team that created patented low surface energy co-extruded filament yarn.
  • Headed initiative that improved nylon textile fiber spinning processes and equipment through use of designed experiments and multivariable statistical data analysis.
  • Led a technical project that successfully developed low surface energy nylon fibers using electron beam or plasma induced surface grafting reactions for anti-stain and anti-soil carpet fibers.
  • Developed hydrophilic porous polyolefin parts using electron beam induced surface grafting for durable moisture and ink transport media.
  • Developed and patented cross-linked polymer based environmental sensors for use in fiber optic sensor systems.

Honors & Publications

Academic and Professional Affiliations

  • Member American Solar Energy Society.
  • Member of the Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineers (IEEE).
  • Member, past secretary and chapter president, of the American Chemical Society (ACS).
  • Member of the American Physical Society (APS).
  • Member and past section chairman of the Technical Community of Monsanto/Solutia.

Honors

  • Promoted to Science Fellow, the highest level on Solutia's technical career ladder, for sustained innovation and leadership in commercializing new products.
  • Solutia achievement award for developing and commercializing polyvinyl butyral nanoparticle blend interlayers for solar heat attenuating laminated glass for automotive and architectural markets.
  • Teaching commendation from Pensacola Junior College for the quality of Physics classroom and lab instruction.

Credentials

  • Doctoral dissertation Thesis; "Effects of Ionizing Radiation on the Chemical Structure, Crystalline Content and Molecular Weight Distribution of Various Teflon┬« Resins."
  • Invited instructor at a workshop on Energy Control in Laminated Glazing at Glass Processing Days, Tampere, Finland.
  • Teaching commendation from Pensacola Junior College for the quality of Physics classroom and lab instruction.

Publications

  • Publications in peer reviewed scientific journals and presentations at professional meetings.
  • Numerous technical presentations within Solutia and at customer's sites in support of product marketing and commercialization efforts.
  • Over 100 invention disclosures filed.
  • 14 patents granted and pending.

Education

  • Ph.D. Nuclear Science and Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
  • M.S. Nuclear Science and Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
  • B.A. Physics (With honors) Gettysburg College.
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