Oxford Photovoltaics Limited (Oxford PV) was founded in 2010 as a spin-out from the University of Oxford to commercialize a new technology for thin-film solar cells. It was amongst the first in the world to recognize the potential of perovskites to act as a low-cost, highly efficient solar cell absorber material to convert sunlight into electricity.
Oxford PV is developing and commercializing thin-film perovskite solar cells, which can be printed directly onto silicon solar cells, CIGS solar cells or glass. Pioneering work developing perovskite thin-film solar cells has delivered a route to boosting the efficiency of current commercial cells; using a high efficiency coating in a multi-junction or “tandem” cell architecture. In addition, printing perovskites directly onto glass has led to a semi-transparent coating ideal for BIPV applications and, once integrated into the glazing units of a building, the technology is capable of providing a significant percentage of the building’s electrical energy requirements directly from sunlight.
By employing well known and well understood printing processes, focused on inexpensive and abundant raw materials, Oxford PV has developed a highly cost effective technology.
The company has exclusively licensed the rapidly growing portfolio of fundamental intellectual property developed by its academic team.
Oxford PV has acquired the former thin-film production site of Bosch Solar in Germany, to establish a fab with pilot-scale capacity for perovskite wafers. To that end, the Company also received funding of €15 million form the European Investment Bank (EIB), to support the commercialization of its perovskite-on-silicon tandem solar cell technology. In June 2018, Oxford PV reported a new perovskite tandem solar cell record, certified by Fraunhofer ISE at a conversion efficiency of 27.3%. Oxford PV’s latest record for a 1 cm2 perovskite-silicon tandem solar, reportedly exceeds the former 26.7% efficiency world record for a single-junction silicon solar cell.
The latest Oxford PV news:
Oxford Photovoltaics has reported a new perovskite tandem solar cell record, certified by Fraunhofer ISE at a conversion efficiency of 27.3%. Oxford PV’s latest record for a 1 cm2 perovskite-silicon tandem solar, reportedly exceeds the 26.7% efficiency world record for a single-junction silicon solar cell.
Oxford PV recently produced a 1 cm2 perovskite-silicon two-terminal tandem solar cell with a verified conversion efficiency of 25.2%, through an ongoing collaboration with Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) and the Photovoltaics and Optoelectronics Device Group at the University of Oxford, led by Professor Snaith.
Oxford Photovoltaics, in collaboration with Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) and the Photovoltaics and Optoelectronics Device Group at the University of Oxford, produced a 1 cm2 perovskite-silicon two-terminal tandem solar cell with a verified conversion efficiency of 25.2%. The two-terminal tandem solar cell efficiency was certified by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE.
Dr Chris Case, Chief Technology Officer at Oxford PV commented, “The unique, optically enhanced architecture developed as part of this collaboration, minimizes losses, and has helped us achieve this record setting efficiency”.
The European Commission has established a new research training network, led by the University of Bath, to make perovskites "truly exploitable" and make perovskite-based devices commercially viable. The new program, called MAESTRO, has been given €4 million in funding and has begun hiring researchers to gain new knowledge and provide innovation in the exploitation of perovskite materials.
A trans-European project, MAESTRO is an inter-sectoral and multidisciplinary network of 10 academic and seven industrial partners from nine EU and EU-Associated countries: the UK, Italy, Spain, Greece, Germany, Poland, Lithuania, Israel and Switzerland.
Oxford PV has announced it has moved its UK-based headquarters and R&D facilities to a new location in Oxford, UK. The new site consolidates and strengthens Oxford PV’s UK-based perovskite photovoltaic research and development activities, by providing a larger, controlled laboratory environment, with ample space for expansion of its equipment and expertise in the future.
Oxford PV’s experienced research and development team at the site will continue to focus on advancing its perovskite photovoltaic technology. Additionally, Oxford PV’s UK team will continue to support the transfer of its advanced lab based perovskite on silicon tandem solar cell technology to industrial scale processes and equipment, an activity that takes place at the company’s pilot line, in Brandenburg an der Havel, Germany, in close collaboration with its joint development partner – a major manufacturer of silicon solar cells and modules.
A recent report by Cintelliq on the perovskite solar cell patent landscape shows massive growth in perovskite photovoltaic patent publications over the past two years. In 2016 and 2017 more than 1500 patents have been published representing 75% of all perovskite photovoltaic patents published since 2008.
The total number of patents published to the end of December 2017 is 2030 and filed by 396 distinct assignees. These published patents arise from innovations that occurred in previous years, as can be seen in the chart of yearly patent filed and published. As can also be seen there are fewer patent filings in 2016 and even less in 2017. However, this is not a rapid fall in filings, but a probable side effect of the length of time it takes to go from initial filing through to initial publications.