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The research profiling method applied to nano-enhanced, thin-film solar cells

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Nanotechnology-enhanced thin-film solar cells constitute promising solar energy solutions and an important emerging application of nanotechnology. This paper profiles the research patterns via ‘tech mining’ to capture key technological attributes, leading actors and networks. We compare the leading countries, and key organizations, in terms of R&D quantity, impact and diversity. We find that India is a leader in this field, which is a little surprising. India and China show strong trends of relative increase in both research activity and impact. One German organization appears as especially productive and the central node in Germany's research network, which contrasts with the diffused network of the United States. International collaboration patterns also vary, with China particularly showing much less international cooperation than others. Some countries appear to share interests, but they do not show much cooperation – e.g., China with Japan. Research profiling, as illustrated here, can help an R&D manager or policy-maker locate one's intended research activity among existing endeavors, to determine how attractive the opportunities are. Such depictions can also help identify collaboration opportunities and potentially attractive partners.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: School of Management and Economics, Beijing Institute of Technology, 5 Zhongguancun South Street, Haidian District, Beijing, China 100081. ;, Email: 2: Technology Policy and Assessment Center, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 30332–0345, USA., Email:

Publication date: 2010-03-01

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