A team of researchers, that includes researchers from the AMOLF Institute in the Netherlands and Argonne National Laboratory and is led by the University of California San Diego, has observed nanoscale changes in hybrid perovskite crystals that could offer new insights into developing low-cost, high-efficiency solar cells.
Using X-ray beams and lasers, the researchers studied how hybrid perovskites behave at the nanoscale level during operation. Their experiments revealed that when voltage is applied, ions migrate within the material, creating regions that are no longer as efficient at converting light to electricity. "Ion migration hurts the performance of the light absorbing material. Limiting it could be a key to improving the quality of these solar cells," said a member of the Sustainable Power and Energy Center at UC San Diego.