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The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has awarded $887,000 to Intrinsiq Materials Inc. of Rochester, N.Y., to help the company develop and commercialize a method of using copper in solar power cells.

Intrinsiq, which has been using a form of printable copper ink in circuit board and other applications, is investigating the use of copper for photovoltaic PV cells. NYSERDA says copper ink is about 60% less expensive than silver, a material now commonly used to join connections in PV cells.

"Clearly, there is a growing demand for solar power in this state," said NYSERDA President and CEO  Francis J. Murray Jr. "Intrinsiq’s technology has the potential to build on that success by significantly reducing the cost of PV for consumers while increasing jobs in the clean energy sector."

Reportedly, Intrinsiq's technique uses a form of printable copper that is air-stable, highly conductive and does not need to be baked in a traditional oven. The technology was developed by the firm's parent company, U.K.-based Intrinsiq Materials Ltd.

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