· Company: TOTAL Gas and Power New Energies
· Contract: Permanent contract
· Branch: Gas & Power
· Location: San Jose (California, USA)
· Location of recruitment process: Houston (TX, USA)
· Salary: Depending on experience and qualifications
· Starting date: As soon as possible
TOTAL is one of the largest energy companies in the world, with over 96,000 employees, activities in more than 130 countries, and a branch, TOTAL Gas and Power (TOTAL G&P), dedicated entirely to the commercial development of gas resources and alternative energies (Solar PV, concentrated solar power, advanced biofuels, carbon capture and storage).
TOTAL has been involved in photovoltaics since 1983, and is driven by the ambition to become the global leader in the solar industry. TOTAL G&P pursues differentiation through technology as the first step towards building competitive integrated industrial operations in photovoltaic energy, and leverages an original networked innovation model in order to develop technologies that will make a real difference in the near or mid-term future. The network already includes several partnerships with leading companies and start-ups. In each partnership, researchers at the partner institution and TOTAL G&P scientists jointly design and carry out the research efforts.
SunPower Corp – a strategic industrial asset
The most important TOTAL G&P industrial asset in the solar industry is the California based SunPower Corp, one of the top three global solar companies by revenue. SunPower produces the world’s most efficient and reliable solar panels, guaranteeing high levels of energy production. The strategic decision of TOTAL G&P’s all-cash tender on SunPower made in 2011, has provided the group with a position as one of the leaders of the solar industry and reinforces the need for the company to accelerate innovation in solar energy.
TOTAL is seeking a Polymer Scientist to be based at the SunPower R&D center in San Jose (California), where he/she will be working with SunPower scientists, engineers, and technicians, as a TOTAL secondee.
The candidate will be part of the module research and development team, which conceives and develops new advanced module designs and platforms and transfers them into manufacturing. One of the major recent achievements of this team of outstanding scientists is the development of the world’s most efficient commercially available module, the E20 series.
The mission of the Polymer Scientist will be to conduct research leading to the understanding and solution of mechanical stress issues in SunPower modules. He/she will also contribute to the development of materials and processes for new encapsulants, and be in charge of transferring the processes to manufacturing. The candidate’s successful results will contribute directly to the development of next generation thin Silicon PV modules.
The candidate will benefit from a highly dynamic and inspiring international R&D environment, and be trusted with a large extent of autonomy. Furthermore, he/she will benefit from the advantages of being part of TOTAL, a major international company which provides employees with exciting career opportunities and a large number of benefits and advantages.
Roles and responsibilities
The main roles and responsibilities of the Polymer Scientist will be to:
· Design critical experiments and validate simulation results for mechanical stress in c-Si modules.
· Develop new encapsulation processes for next generation thin crystalline silicon PV modules in accordance
with the SunPower cost roadmap.
· Validate those processes with all required specifications for these new generation modules.
· Manage relations with encapsulant suppliers to ensure they meet design criteria.
· Contribute to managing third party academic collaborations.
· Report to TOTAL R&D Headquarters in Paris, France, on project progress and results.
For this position, TOTAL is seeking a scientist with significant experience in Polymer science for encapsulation materials and processes.
· PhD in Polymer Chemical Engineering, Polymer Physics, Mechanical Engineering or a similar field.
Knowledge and experience:
· At least 5 years of professional experience.
· Strong knowledge and know-how in mechanical simulation/modeling (stress).
· Demonstrated experience in lamination processes for PV or extrusion/molding processes of polymeric materials.
· Experience in polymer/metal and polymer/silicon solar cell interactions.
· Hands-on experience with electrical and mechanical characterization, as well as building test benches.
· Experience with designing, conducting and managing the execution of test plans.
· Experience in organic chemistry would be a plus.
· Fluency in English.
· Strong analytical skills.
· Scientific rigor.
· Capacity to think out-of-the box to develop innovative ideas.
· Ability to plan, multi-task and set priorities based on technical and business input.
· Strong team player skills.
· Excellent communication skills: capacity to explain complex ideas in a clear and understandable manner.