The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) in Ohio, USA, recently used perovskites to explore 3D printed solar cells. Using Optomec’s aerosol jet technology, the team aims to develop a more efficient and low-cost production process for harnessing solar power.

AFRL 3D prints perovskites solar cells image

The Air Force Research Laboratory is attempting to develop a manufacturing method which automates production of the solar cells to provide a viable industrial output. To do so, the team atomized perovskite materials which can be 3D printed with the Aerosol Jet technology machine. Having coated a flat surface with the droplets, the team created a solar cell with 15.4% efficiency.

The researchers proceeded to print the materials onto 3D surfaces. While the resulting solar cells were less efficient at 5.4%, the AFRL team believes there is potential for solar cells to be incorporated as wearable technology.