Michael Grätzel wins RUSNANOPRIZE 2017

Professor Michael Grätzel holding a dye-sensitized solar cell (credit: Alain Herzog)

Professor Michael Grätzel holding a dye-sensitized solar cell (credit: Alain Herzog)

The Rusnano Group has awarded Professor Michael Grätzel their annual Prize.

The mission of the Rusnano Group is to “state policy for the development of the nanoindustry in Russia, acting as a co-investor in nanotechnology projects, which have substantial economic or social potential.”

The RUSNANOPRIZE has been awarded annually since 2009 in one of the fields of Optics and Nanoelectronics; Nanomaterials and Surface Modification; Medicine, Pharmacology and Biotechnologies; or Energy Efficiency and Green Technologies.

The award honors discoveries that “may lead to dramatic breakthroughs affecting more than one industry or sphere, such as microelectronics, metallurgy, polymers, biomedical materials, nanoscale diagnostics and many others.”

The nominees for the Prize include researchers, scientists, and developers who have made scientific or technological discoveries in nanotechnology, as well as companies that are first in translating these discoveries into mass production, with the annual production output of at least $10 million (link to previous laureates).

This year, Rusnano has given the Prize to Professor Michael Grätzel, who directs EPFL’s Laboratory of Photonics and Interfaces and is known for the invention of dye-sensitized solar cells (“Grätzel cells”), which became the launch pad for the development of perovskite photovoltaics. Dye-sensitized solar cells are already manufactured on a multi-megawatt scale and perovskite photovoltaics are set to reach the market in the near future.

The RUSNANOPRIZE includes 3 million rubles (CHF 50,609; USD 51,814), prize symbols, and an honorary diploma. Winning companies, which have achieved “significant commercial success due to the implementation of these technologies” are given an honorary diploma and a glass ball, which is the RUSNANOPRIZE symbol.

The awarding ceremony took place on October 17, 2017.