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Perovskite Solar Cells and Materials

Perovskite Solar Cell_EPFL_061818
(This scanning electron microscopy image shows Silicon's pyramids covered with perovskite, EPFL)

 

In the field of photovoltaic technologies, silicon-based solar cells make up 90 percent of the market. In terms of cost, stability and efficiency (20-22 percent for a typical solar cell on the market), they are well ahead of the competition. However, after decades of research and investment, silicon-based solar cells are now close to their maximum theoretical efficiency. As a result, new concepts are required to achieve a long-term reduction in solar electricity prices and allow photovoltaic technology to become a more widely adopted way of generating power. 

One solution is to place two different types of solar cells on top of each other to maximize the conversion of light rays into electrical power. These "double-junction" cells are being widely researched in the scientific community, but are expensive to make. Perovskite's unique properties have prompted a great deal of research into its use in solar cells over the last few years. Perovskite allows high conversion efficiency to be achieved at a potentially limited production cost.

 

Perovskite Solar Cell

 

[Wikipedia]: "A perovskite solar cell is a type of solar cell which includes a perovskite structured compound, most commonly a hybrid organic-inorganic lead or tin halide-based material, as the light-harvesting active layer. Perovskite materials such as methylammonium lead halides are cheap to produce and simple to manufacture.

Solar cell efficiencies of devices using these materials have increased from 3.8% in 2009 to 22.7% in late 2017 in single-junction architectures, and, in silicon-based tandem cells, up to 26.7% and 25.2% in 4-terminal and 2-terminal configuration respectively. Perovskite solar cells are therefore the fastest-advancing solar technology to date. With the potential of achieving even higher efficiencies and the very low production costs, perovskite solar cells have become commercially attractive, with start-up companies already promising modules on the market by 2017."

 

[More to come ...]



 

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