Energy Center

Purdue Solar Energy Utilization Lab (PSEUL)

For more information about current activities at PSEUL please contact Dr. Rakesh Agrawal from School of Chemical Engineering. To send an e-mail to Prof. Agrawal, please click here.


The main objective of the Purdue Solar Energy Utilization Lab (PSEUL) will be to facilitate access to a suite of state-of-the-art instruments to enhance the development of new solar energy utilization materials and devices including: a solar simulator capable of reaching high sunlight concentrations; spectroscopic instruments for quantitative photoluminescence and transient absorption; the ability to conduct all characterizations under controlled environmental conditions; and equipment for vapor phase deposition (via molecular beam epitaxy). PSEUL will have truly unique capabilities that will enable Purdue and the broader state-wide solar research community to be on the cutting edge of developing new solar energy conversion devices.

Purpose of Project

Solar energy is well-recognized by the National Academy of Engineering and the Department of Energy as the most promising renewable energy resource. The key problem in utilizing this resource widely is the capital and labor costs of manufacturing. The cost typically scales with the area of the device, and there are two promising approaches being pursued by Purdue faculty to solve this critical problem. One involves developing ultra low-cost conversion devices (photovoltaic, photoelectro-chemical, and solar thermochemical) that utilize normal intensity sunlight. The second involves using concentrated sunlight on smaller area ultra high-efficiency conversion devices. In both of these approaches, Purdue team members are pioneering solutions to key problems that differentiate their efforts from the global research community. The goal of this project is to facilitate the development of these and other disruptive solar energy utilization technologies and spur the creation of solar energy industry in Indiana. However, these efforts are hindered by the lack of key solar simulation, device characterization, and materials synthesis facilities.

About the Energy Center

The Center’s mission is to grow the Purdue energy research and education enterprise. We engage researchers and students in a community that delivers new discoveries and develops disruptive technologies with national and global impact.


Maureen McCann

Director, Energy Center,
Global Sustainability Institute

Pankaj Sharma

Managing Director, Energy Center,
Global Sustainability Institute

Mann Hall, Rm 105
203 South Martin Jischke Dr.
Purdue University
West Lafayette, IN 47907-1971