Internship - Quantifying the thermal behavior of vehicle-integrated photovoltaic modules

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Internship - Quantifying the thermal behavior of vehicle-integrated photovoltaic modules

Explore. Dream. Discover. Get curious.
Want to play your part in the future of clean mobility?

Full-time · Helmond / Remote

Where: The Automotive Campus in Helmond, part of Brainport: the heart of Europe's innovation and from the comfort of your own home
When: Start date in September 2022 with a duration of six months
Domain: Solar 

Who is Lightyear?
Lightyear is an innovative and progressive scale-up with one mission: clean mobility for everyone, everywhere.

Lightyear originates from the legacy as a multiple world championship of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenger® Cruiser Class. Officially established in 2016 by 5 visionaries with the dream to make this groundbreaking technology accessible to everyone, everywhere. In order to accelerate the transition towards a truly sustainable solution for mobility, we believe that it is necessary to completely rethink automotive design by starting from scratch, not limited by industry conventions.

At Lightyear, we all strive for the same goal. We have a team with diverse skill sets and backgrounds; all working tirelessly towards clean mobility for everyone, everywhere. We’re proud of our culture and live up to our core values: think independently, be bold, deliver the change, put people first and take responsibility. Our shared vision is what unites and drives us.

Which team will you become part of?
During this internship, you will support the broad solar team at Lightyear. Most activities will be done within the solar Research and Development (R&D) group, but may also interact with other members of the solar team working on areas such as testing or engineering. 

Your personal mission
Overall, the operating temperature is a crucial parameter affecting the performance of photovoltaic (PV) devices. Vehicle-integrated PV modules can easily reach temperatures of around 70°C and higher, which are well above the standard 25°C at which PV devices are tested. This rise in temperature affects both the output current and voltage, but has a particularly detrimental effect on the energy generation. In the case of silicon-based solar cells (which remains the dominant cell technology in the market), rising operating temperatures lead to a decrease of the output voltage on the order of -0.30% per degree Celsius. 
Not even mentioning the impact on the thermal management within the cabine. Therefore, it is highly important to accurately predict and validate the cell temperature within PV modules; both to make accurate energy yield predictions but also as a way to compare different cell and module configurations. 

Requirements in order to achieve your personal mission

  • Educational background in a technical discipline, such as engineering or physics
  • Preferred start date: September 2022
  • Duration: six months
  • Knowledgeable in photovoltaic technology, heat exchange mechanisms, basic optics
  • Familiar with Finite Element Method (FEM) technique
  • Knowledge of thermal analysis software (e.g. Comsol, Ansys, Taitherm) is a plus
  • Familiar with Matlab, Python or similar programming languages

What you bring along as a talented intern
Be aware, being an intern at Lightyear isn’t just an internship. You’ll be approached as an actual engineer and that requires some skills and being able to take responsibility. Especially given the fact that you’ll join a scale-up where little is set in stone. Therefore, it’s key that you can relate to the following things:

  • You’ve proven that you’re strong both theoretically and pragmatic. For instance, you’ve been part of a student team (such as Hyperloop, Solar team, Robocup), did other extracurricular activities, worked in a start-up, you did an outstanding internship or you do sports at a semi-professional level. At Lightyear, we highly value this;
  • Proactivity: when planning activities, collaborating with team members, sharing impressions, etc.;
  • Curious and creative approach to work;
  • Willingness to perform hands-on tasks, such as conducting experiments;
  • You strongly identify yourself with our bigger mission: clean mobility for everyone.

What do we offer
In addition to a challenging internship you also have the opportunity to work for a company with a real, honest and ambitious mission. In this way you have the opportunity to make a huge impact on the future of mobility! Next to this, we also offer:

  • A high degree of freedom and independence during your internship.
  • A multidisciplinary team of highly motivated and talented people you can learn from.
  • A certain internship allowance depending on your educational level and type of internship.
  • Monthly meet ups with other interns to have snacks and drinks while meeting other like minded individuals.
  • Monthly engineering peer learning sessions where you learn from other interns on what they do and how they solved it.
  • In addition to a dynamic work environment, there is time for relaxation during our Friday afternoon drinks!

Are you up for the challenge? Then hit apply now! (please make sure to have your CV and preliminary list of grades ready in PDF)