Researchers from Australia's Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and Swinburne University of Technology have reported the creation of resilient, high-efficiency triple-cation perovskite solar cells (PSCs) by incorporating carbon dots (CDs) derived from human hair into the perovskite film.
QUT's Professor Hongxia Wang’s team had previously found that nanostructured carbon materials could be used to improve a cell’s performance. In their recent work, they tried using the carbon nanodots on perovskite solar cells. After adding a solution of carbon dots into the process perovskites synthesis, Professor Wang’s team found the carbon dots forming a wave-like layer where the perovskite crystals are surrounded by the carbon dots.
“It creates a kind of protective layer, a kind of armor,” Professor Wang said. “It protects the perovskite material from moisture or other environmental factors, which can cause damage to the materials.”
The study found that perovskite solar cells covered with the carbon dots had a higher power conversion efficiency and a greater stability than perovskite cells without the carbon dots.
“Our final target is to make solar electricity cheaper, easier to access, longer lasting and to make PV devices lightweight because current solar cells are very heavy,” Professor Wang said.