Chavali, Raghu Vamsi Krishna; Li, Jian V.; Battaglia, Corsin; De Wolf, Stefaan; Gray, Jeffery Lynn; Alam, Muhammad Ashraful(IEEE Journal of Photovoltaics, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), 2016-11-30)[Article]
Suns–Voc measurements exclude parasitic series resistance effects and are, therefore, frequently used to study the intrinsic potential of a given photovoltaic technology. However, when applied to a-Si/c-Si heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells, the Suns–Voc curves often feature a peculiar turnaround at high illumination intensities. Generally, this turn-around is attributed to extrinsic Schottky contacts that should disappear with process improvement. In this paper, we demonstrate that this voltage turnaround may be an intrinsic feature of SHJ solar cells, arising from the heterojunction (HJ), as well as its associated carrier-transport barriers, inherent to SHJ devices. We use numerical simulations to explore the full current–voltage (J–V) characteristics under different illumination and ambient temperature conditions. Using these characteristics, we establish the voltage and illumination-intensity bias, as well as temperature conditions necessary to observe the voltage turnaround in these cells. We validate our turnaround hypothesis using an extensive set of experiments on a high-efficiency SHJ solar cell and a molybdenum oxide (MoOx) based hole collector HJ solar cell. Our work consolidates Suns–Voc as a powerful characterization tool for extracting the cell parameters that limit efficiency in HJ devices.
As potential photovoltaic materials, transition-metal oxides such as BiFeO3 (BFO) are capable of absorbing a substantial portion of solar light and incorporating ferroic orders into solar cells with enhanced performance. But the photovoltaic application of BFO has been hindered by low energy-conversion efficiency due to poor carrier transport and collection. In this work, a new approach of utilizing BFO as a light-absorbing sensitizer is developed to interface with charge-transporting TiO2 nanoparticles. This mesoporous all-oxide architecture, similar to that of dye-sensitized solar cells, can effectively facilitate the extraction of photocarriers. Under the standard AM1.5 (100 mW cm−2) irradiation, the optimized cell shows an open-circuit voltage of 0.67 V, which can be enhanced to 1.0 V by tailoring the bias history. A fill factor of 55% is achieved, which is much higher than those in previous reports on BFO-based photovoltaic devices. The results provide here a new viable approach toward developing highly tunable and stable photovoltaic devices based on ferroelectric transition-metal oxides.
Peng, Wei; Miao, Xiaohe; Adinolfi, Valerio; Alarousu, Erkki; El Tall, Omar; Emwas, Abdul-Hamid M.; Zhao, Chao; Walters, Grant; Liu, Jiakai; Ouellette, Olivier; Pan, Jun; Banavoth, Murali; Sargent, Edward H.; Mohammed, Omar F.; Bakr, Osman(Angewandte Chemie International Edition, Wiley-Blackwell, 2016-07-28)[Article]
The number of studies on organic–inorganic hybrid perovskites has soared in recent years. However, the majority of hybrid perovskites under investigation are based on a limited number of organic cations of suitable sizes, such as methylammonium and formamidinium. These small cations easily fit into the perovskite's three-dimensional (3D) lead halide framework to produce semiconductors with excellent charge transport properties. Until now, larger cations, such as ethylammonium, have been found to form 2D crystals with lead halide. Here we show for the first time that ethylammonium can in fact be incorporated coordinately with methylammonium in the lattice of a 3D perovskite thanks to a balance of opposite lattice distortion strains. This inclusion results in higher crystal symmetry, improved material stability, and markedly enhanced charge carrier lifetime. This crystal engineering strategy of balancing opposite lattice distortion effects vastly increases the number of potential choices of organic cations for 3D perovskites, opening up new degrees of freedom to tailor their optoelectronic and environmental properties.
Labelle, André J.; Thon, Susanna; Masala, Silvia; Adachi, Michael M.; Dong, Haopeng; Farahani, Maryam; Ip, Alexander H.; Fratalocchi, Andrea; Sargent, E. H.(Nano Letters, American Chemical Society (ACS), 2015-02-11)[Article]
Extremely thin-absorber solar cells offer low materials utilization and simplified manufacture but require improved means to enhance photon absorption in the active layer. Here, we report enhanced-absorption colloidal quantum dot (CQD) solar cells that feature transfer-stamped solution-processed pyramid-shaped electrodes employed in a hierarchically structured device. The pyramids increase, by up to a factor of 2, the external quantum efficiency of the device at absorption-limited wavelengths near the absorber band edge. We show that absorption enhancement can be optimized with increased pyramid angle with an appreciable net improvement in power conversion efficiency, that is, with the gain in current associated with improved absorption and extraction overcoming the smaller fractional decrease in open-circuit voltage associated with increased junction area. We show that the hierarchical combination of micron-scale structured electrodes with nanoscale films provides for an optimized enhancement at absorption-limited wavelengths. We fabricate 54.7° pyramid-patterned electrodes, conformally apply the quantum dot films, and report pyramid CQD solar cells that exhibit a 24% improvement in overall short-circuit current density with champion devices providing a power conversion efficiency of 9.2%.
Bartelt, Jonathan A.; Douglas, Jessica D.; Mateker, William R.; El Labban, Abdulrahman; Tassone, Christopher J.; Toney, Michael F.; Fréchet, Jean Mj J; Beaujuge, Pierre; McGehee, Michael D.(Advanced Energy Materials, Wiley, 2014-03-20)[Article]
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