Energy transfer in nanowire solar cells with photon-harvesting shells

Handle URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10754/598173
Title:
Energy transfer in nanowire solar cells with photon-harvesting shells
Authors:
Peters, C. H.; Guichard, A. R.; Hryciw, A. C.; Brongersma, M. L.; McGehee, M. D.
Abstract:
The concept of a nanowire solar cell with photon-harvesting shells is presented. In this architecture, organic molecules which absorb strongly in the near infrared where silicon absorbs weakly are coupled to silicon nanowires (SiNWs). This enables an array of 7-μm -long nanowires with a diameter of 50 nm to absorb over 85% of the photons above the bandgap of silicon. The organic molecules are bonded to the surface of the SiNWs forming a thin shell. They absorb the low-energy photons and subsequently transfer the energy to the SiNWs via Förster resonant energy transfer, creating free electrons and holes within the SiNWs. The carriers are then separated at a radial p-n junction in a nanowire and extracted at the respective electrodes. The shortness of the nanowires is expected to lower the dark current due to the decrease in p-n junction surface area, which scales linearly with wire length. The theoretical power conversion efficiency is 15%. To demonstrate this concept, we measure a 60% increase in photocurrent from a planar silicon-on-insulator diode when a 5 nm layer of poly[2-methoxy-5-(2′ -ethyl-hexyloxy)-1,4-phenylene vinylene is applied to the surface of the silicon. This increase is in excellent agreement with theoretical predictions. © 2009 American Institute of Physics.
Citation:
Peters CH, Guichard AR, Hryciw AC, Brongersma ML, McGehee MD (2009) Energy transfer in nanowire solar cells with photon-harvesting shells. Journal of Applied Physics 105: 124509. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.3153281.
Publisher:
AIP Publishing
Journal:
Journal of Applied Physics
Issue Date:
2009
DOI:
10.1063/1.3153281
Type:
Article
ISSN:
0021-8979
Sponsors:
The authors acknowledge the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) Center for Advanced Molecular Photovoltaics and the Global Climate and Energy Project at Stanford University for funding this project.
Appears in Collections:
Publications Acknowledging KAUST Support

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorPeters, C. H.en
dc.contributor.authorGuichard, A. R.en
dc.contributor.authorHryciw, A. C.en
dc.contributor.authorBrongersma, M. L.en
dc.contributor.authorMcGehee, M. D.en
dc.date.accessioned2016-02-25T13:14:04Zen
dc.date.available2016-02-25T13:14:04Zen
dc.date.issued2009en
dc.identifier.citationPeters CH, Guichard AR, Hryciw AC, Brongersma ML, McGehee MD (2009) Energy transfer in nanowire solar cells with photon-harvesting shells. Journal of Applied Physics 105: 124509. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.3153281.en
dc.identifier.issn0021-8979en
dc.identifier.doi10.1063/1.3153281en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10754/598173en
dc.description.abstractThe concept of a nanowire solar cell with photon-harvesting shells is presented. In this architecture, organic molecules which absorb strongly in the near infrared where silicon absorbs weakly are coupled to silicon nanowires (SiNWs). This enables an array of 7-μm -long nanowires with a diameter of 50 nm to absorb over 85% of the photons above the bandgap of silicon. The organic molecules are bonded to the surface of the SiNWs forming a thin shell. They absorb the low-energy photons and subsequently transfer the energy to the SiNWs via Förster resonant energy transfer, creating free electrons and holes within the SiNWs. The carriers are then separated at a radial p-n junction in a nanowire and extracted at the respective electrodes. The shortness of the nanowires is expected to lower the dark current due to the decrease in p-n junction surface area, which scales linearly with wire length. The theoretical power conversion efficiency is 15%. To demonstrate this concept, we measure a 60% increase in photocurrent from a planar silicon-on-insulator diode when a 5 nm layer of poly[2-methoxy-5-(2′ -ethyl-hexyloxy)-1,4-phenylene vinylene is applied to the surface of the silicon. This increase is in excellent agreement with theoretical predictions. © 2009 American Institute of Physics.en
dc.description.sponsorshipThe authors acknowledge the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) Center for Advanced Molecular Photovoltaics and the Global Climate and Energy Project at Stanford University for funding this project.en
dc.publisherAIP Publishingen
dc.titleEnergy transfer in nanowire solar cells with photon-harvesting shellsen
dc.typeArticleen
dc.identifier.journalJournal of Applied Physicsen
dc.contributor.institutionStanford University, Palo Alto, United Statesen
kaust.grant.fundedcenterCenter for Advanced Molecular Photovoltaics (CAMP)en
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