News

Winning Team Announced for NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Fourth Annual Challenge

The fourth NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Annual Challenge was launched during this year’s Summer School in July 2021 when six teams of four or five undergraduate and graduate students as well as postdoctoral fellows from the University of Ottawa, Université de Sherbrooke and McMaster University were formed. Over the course of the next few weeks, each team analyzed future prospects for new devices or systems, drawing together science, engineering, and economic analysis.  Teams reported back via an online meeting on September 2 in front of their colleagues, TOP-SET researchers and a panel of three judges composed of Ahmad Atieh from Optiwave Systems Inc., Ayse Turak from the Department of Engineering Physics at McMaster University, and David Wright from the Telfer School of Management at the University of Ottawa.

Congratulations to Farah Ayari, a master’s student in electrical engineering at Université de Sherbrooke, Nick Anderson, Gavin Forcade and Mathieu Giroux, respectively a master’s student in electrical engineering, a doctoral student in physics and a doctoral student in mechanical engineering at the University of Ottawa, and Milena Thibault, an undergraduate student in electrical engineering at McMaster University. They are this year’s winners of the NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Annual Challenge, for their work on “Near-Field Thermophotovoltaics for Waste Heat Recycling”.

NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Holds Summer School Online for a Second Time

The NSERC CREATE TOP-SET program held its summer school program online for a second time, from July 6 to 9, 2021.  A total of 67 participants hailing from three universities took part in the program which was organized by our team at the University of Ottawa.  Guest speakers from Canada, the United States and the Netherlands provided insights on the energy transition as well as technical and professional training. Activities covered a wide range of subjects relevant to TOP-SET trainees, including the NREL System Advisor Model, writing for scientific communications, intellectual property as well as student presentations.

Awards were given to the best student poster and oral presentations.  Ms. Daisy Xia won first place in the oral presentation competition for her talk on “Modeling hot-carrier solar cells with inter-valley scattering using an intermediate-band approach”.  Ms. Xia is a PhD student in physics under the supervision of Dr. Jacob Krich at the University of Ottawa.  Ms. Erin Tonita and Ms. Paige Wilson won best poster presentation awards. Ms. Tonita is a PhD student in physics under the supervision of Dr. Karin Hinzer at the University of Ottawa. She presented a poster entitled “Wavelength-resolved encapsulated bifacial silicon heterojunction solar cell carrier loss”.  Ms. Wilson is a PhD student in engineering physics under the supervision of Dr. Ray LaPierre at McMaster University. She presented a poster entitled “Simulation of optical absorption in conical nanowires”. Congratulations to all!

Dates and location of the 2022 NSERC CREATE TOP-SET summer school will be announced in winter 2022. Watch this page for details.

From left to write, best oral presentation winner Daisy Xia and best poster presentation winners Erin Tonita and Paige Wilson.

Winning Team Announced for NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Third Annual Challenge

The third NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Annual Challenge was launched during this year’s Summer School in July 2020 when five teams of three to five undergraduate and graduate students as well as postdoctoral fellows from the University of Ottawa, Université de Sherbrooke and McMaster University were formed. Over the course of the next few weeks, each team analyzed future prospects for new devices or systems, drawing together science, engineering, and economic analysis.  Teams reported back via an online meeting on September 8 in front of their colleagues, TOP-SET researchers and a panel of three judges composed of Maike Wiesenfarth from the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Germany, Christian Dubuc from Stace Solar Solutions in St-Augustin, Québec, and Jean-Michel Ménard, from the Department of Physics at the University of Ottawa.

Congratulations to Hassan Allami and Ras-Jeevan Obhi, respectively a postdoctoral fellow in physics and an MASc student in electrical engineering at the University of Ottawa, as well as David McShannon, an MASc student in engineering physics at McMaster University. They are this year’s winners of the NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Annual Challenge, for their work on “Bifacial perovskite solar cells: A cost analysis”.

NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Holds Summer School Online

The NSERC CREATE TOP-SET program held its summer school program online from July 7 to 10, 2020.  A total of 61 participants hailing from three universities took part in the program which was organized by TOP-SET trainees and professors at Université de Sherbrooke.  Guest speakers included Ms. Jill Tymchak from J.L. Richards, Dr. Denis Machon from Université Lyon 1, as well as NSERC CREATE TOP-SET co-investigators and collaborators. Activities covered a wide range of subjects relevant to TOP-SET trainees, from a full day devoted to the PVsyst modeling tool and a Mitacs professional workshop on productive teams, to a seminar on critical thinking and even a virtual poster session.

Awards were given to the best student poster and oral presentations.  Ms. Erin Tonita won first place in the oral presentation competition for her talk on “Temperature-dependent carrier generation and recombination rates in bifacial silicon heterojunction solar cells”.  Ms. Tonita is a PhD student in physics under the supervision of Dr. Karin Hinzer at the University of Ottawa.  Ms. Ras-Jeevan Obhi, Mr. Philippe St-Pierre and Ms. Daixi Xia won best poster presentation awards. Ms. Obhi is an MASc student in electrical engineering under the supervision of Dr. Karin Hinzer at the University Ottawa. She presented a poster entitled “Performance of bifacial silicon solar cells under varied angle of incidence”. Mr. St-Pierre is an MASc student in electrical engineering under the supervision of Dr. Simon Fafard at the Université de Sherbrooke. He presented a poster entitled “Passivating antireflection coating (ARC) for concentrated photovoltaics (CPV)”. Ms. Xia is a PhD student in physics under the supervision of Dr. Jacob Krich at the University of Ottawa. She presented a poster entitled “Detailed balance modeling of multijunction monochromatic power conversion”. Congratulations to all!

Planning for the 2021 NSERC CREATE TOP-SET summer school is already under way.  Dates and location will be announced in winter 2021. Watch this page for details.

From top left, best poster presentation award winners Daixi Xia, Ras-Jeevan Obhi and Philippe St-Pierre, and best oral presentation award winner Erin Tonita.

Call for abstracts – NSERC CREATE TOP-SET 2020 Summer School

We are delighted to confirm that the 2020 NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Summer School will be offered entirely online this July 7 to 10. The organizing committee is working hard on programming this year’s events.  Activities will include professional and technical workshops, student presentations and the 2020 Annual Challenge kick off.  More details will be added to this page in the next few weeks.

The program will include student oral and poster presentations.  To submit an abstract, follow the instructions found in the templateAbstracts must be submitted no later than May 31, 2020 using this form.  Results from the reviewing process will be communicated during the week of June 15.

Abstracts will be evaluated using the following criterias :

  • Topic related to TOP-SET;
  • Quality of research;
  • Impact of the results;
  • Quality of abstract presentation (writing, clear and logical presentation)

For further information, contact Christine Couture at sunlabadmin@uottawa.ca.

TOP-SET Seminars Postponed Due to COVID-19

Due to the current situation related to COVID-19, all upcoming seminars are postponed to 2020-2021 :

  • Federica Cappelluti, Politechnico di Torino, March 26, 2020 – Postponed
  • Oleg Popovsky, Braggawatt Energy, April 7, 2020 – Postponed
  • Giuseppe Marco Tina, Universita degli studi di Catania, April 28, 2020 – Postponed

Watch this page for an announcement of our 2020-2021 seminars later this year.

NSERC CREATE TOP-SET student wins Best Business Opportunity Award at Startup Garage Rally

Congratulations to University of Ottawa MASc candidate Robert (Kibby) Pollak, CEO of MyPitboard!, on being awarded the Best Business Opportunity Award at the Startup Garage Rally which took place on August 29, 2019. MyPitboard! is a new startup developed and created by current University of Ottawa Faculty of Engineering students. It is a newly developed racing performance and training application designed and built to enhance training of motorcycle athletes. A full article and video can be found here.

Winning Teams Announced for NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Second Annual Challenge

The second NSERC CREATE TOP-SET Annual Challenge was launched at this year’s Summer School in July 2019.  Five teams of four and five undergraduate and graduate students as well as postdoctoral fellows from the University of Ottawa, Université de Sherbrooke and McMaster University were formed and over the course of the next few weeks, each team  analyzed future prospects for new devices or systems, drawing together science, engineering, and economic analysis.  Teams reported back via videoconference on September 3 in front of a panel of three judges composed of Richard Beal, co-founder and CEO at Spectrafy, Adina Luican-Mayer, assistant professor in the department of physics at the University of Ottawa, and Geoff Wright, vice president market research at Brookfield Renewable.

The high level of this year’s presentations resulted in two teams winning this year’s Annual Challenge:

  • From the University of Ottawa, undergraduate summer students Adam Johnston (McMaster University) and Avya Stolow (McGill University), and MSc physics candidate Erin Tonita as well as McMaster University MASc engineering physics candidate Ruslan Khabibrakhmanov for their presentation titled “The Economic Case for Bifacial Solar Installations in the Canadian Arctic”;
  • University of Ottawa electrical engineering MASc candidate Kevin Shimotakahara and PhD candidates Neda Nouri and Mikhak Samadi, Université de Sherbrooke PhD electrical engineering candidate Alexandre Heintz and McMaster University MASc engineering physics candidate Taz Colangelo for their presentation titled “Residential Energy Cost Analysis: A Demand Management Case in Ontario”.

Congratulations to all!