A.L.I.C.E. Project (“Actuators based on Light-sensitive CompositE”)

# Record card
Thematic areas
ICT & Electronics
ICT & Electronics / Laser technologies
ICT & Electronics / Sensor/multi-sensor technology, instrumentation
ICT & Electronics / Optics & Acoustic
ICT & Electronics / Robotics and control systems
ICT & Electronics / Optoacustic sensors, Optoelectronic devices
ICT & Electronics / Nanotechnologies related to electronics and microelectronics
Additive and advanced industrial manufacturing
Materials / Composite and hybrid materials
Materials / Optical materials
Materials / Plastics, polymers
Materials / Processes of production & treatment of materials
Materials / Photo-active & graphene-based materials
Energy and environmental sustainability
Health & Biotech

The Proof-of-Concept A.L.I.C.E. or "Actuators based on Light sensitive CompositE" aims at the development of innovative materials through 3D/4D printing processes and uses them as actuators in the fields of photovoltaics, concentrated solar power, thermodynamic solar, and other applications such as optical deflectors, optical microvalves, and optical switches. The proposing teams, led by researcher Lucia Petti from the Institute of Applied Sciences and Intelligent Systems "Eduardo Caianiello" at the CNR in Pozzuoli and researcher Giuseppe Nenna from ENEA in Portici, downstream of the European FET OPEN PULSE-COM project, employ these materials and methods to develop a new generation of actuators that can be stimulated by UV-VIS and solar radiation. These specific actuators, when attached to solar cell, ensure that the sun is tracked in its movement throughout the day, continuously correcting its position and orientation, allowing for the accumulation of as much solar energy as possible to be converted into electrical energy. Indeed, the rays must always be perpendicular to the surface of the photovoltaic module to achieve maximum efficiency.

Type of innovation
Product innovation
Description of innovative features / Competitive advantages

The proposed multifunctional technology has the advantage of being high -performance, precise and at the same time eco-sustainable. Through necessary and adequate patent protection of the technology, the project aims to propose a new class of systems to revolutionize markets and change current paradigms in the field of intelligent devices, robotics, sensors and actuators. Photo-mobile polymers represent radical innovation compared to competitors, both in terms of application to optical microvalves and for solar trackers. No company produces solar trackers whose movement does not depend on an electrical but solar stimulus (COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE FOR A.L.I.C.E.). A.L.I.C.E., by developing a highly innovative material not currently present on the market, through its varied and skill-rich team, therefore holds the FIRST MOVER advantage for the application of photopolymers to small-sized Solar Trackers.

Reference market
Total innovation
Development stage
New product/process/service/technology
Patentable technology
Patented technology


Publication of technology
Technology validation/demonstration
Internal validation
Market positioning
Partner required
Private research center
Seed capital
Cooperation in national /european / international project

For more information and/or to be put in contact with the Research Team, please contact the Project Manager:

Barbara Angelini - Project Manager
CNR - Unità Valorizzazione della Ricerca
Phone number 06.49932415
E-mail barbara.angelini@cnr.it