A research team led by Vietnamese national Nguyen Trong Hieu from the Australian National University (ANU) have successfully developed a new tool to help manufacturers spot defects or unwanted features of mobile phones and solar cells in the production process.
Lead author Dr Hieu said the invention works by capturing high-resolution images of semiconductor materials, including many potential defects, within seconds.
The researchers called it “the miracle of speed and space”, noting that it's tens of thousands of times faster than techniques currently being used.
|Nguyen Trong Hieu is currently a research fellow and lecturer at the Australian National University (Photo: Australian National University)
Hieu said this opens the door to a new generation of ultra-high resolution, precise characterisation and defect-detection tools for both research and industry sectors.
The team tested this invention extensively on various state-of-the-art perovskite solar cells made at ANU and independently confirmed the results with many other low-speed or low-resolution techniques. They matched perfectly, he noted.
He added that they are refining the invention so that it can be commercialised.
Born in 1988, Hieu received his PhD in engineering (photovoltaics) from the ANU in 2016. In 2017, he was a visiting scientist at the US’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Currently, he is a research fellow and lecturer at the ANU.