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Tokyo Chemical Industry Acquires Material Patent License from KTU Researchers

Photonics.com
Apr 2017
TOKYO, April 26, 2017 — Laboratory chemical manufacturer Tokyo Chemical Industry Co. Ltd. has acquired the license for the patent of synthesized materials developed by researchers at the Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) in Lithuania.

The team of researchers at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), headed by Professor Vytautas Getautis together with Swiss physicists had synthesized unique material for the new generation solar elements.
The team of researchers at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), headed by Professor Vytautas Getautis together with Swiss physicists had synthesized unique material for the new generation solar elements. Courtesy of KTU.

The materials are designed for the new generation of solar elements. Tokyo Chemical Industry approached researchers and began negotiations for acquisition after the new organic semiconductors were introduced at an international scientific conference in Lausanne.

"The material created by us is considerably cheaper and the process of its synthesis is less complicated than that of the currently used analogue material,” said professor Vytautas Getautis, head of the research group at KTU responsible for the discovery. “Also, both materials have very similar efficiency of converting solar energy into electricity. That means that our semiconductors have similar characteristics to the known alternatives, but are much cheaper.”

The material’s process began in October 2014 when KTU researchers ad their partners began to work together under the Eruopean Commission’s 7th Framework Program. Researchers from KTU Maryte Daškeviciene and Tadas Malinauskas, along with Ph.D. student Artiom Magomedov, worked on synthesizing the new material for four months with Getautis’ leadership.

KTU’s main partners were researchers from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne. The team is headed by professors Michael Grätzel and Mohammed Khaja Nazeerudin.

“We conceived, synthesized and characterized the new organic semiconductors, and our Swiss colleagues have tested them in solar elements,” Getautis said.

“License, in a way, is similar to a lease contract - a patent is being exploited not by its owner, but the other person interested in commercialization,” said Greta Zekiene, head of intellectual property management at KTU's National Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center. “Temporarily, the rights are being handed over to [another] party for a certain percentage-based fee from the patented technology. License agreements can be made both for application and for the patent itself, and the license can be acquired by anyone interested in patented solution for commercial purposes.”

BusinessTokyo Chemical IndustryKaunas University of TechnologysolarmaterialsacquisitionsAsia-PacificEuropeeducation

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