A team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS), the University of Hong Kong and Southern University of Science and Technology has reportedly "set a new record in the power conversion efficiency of solar cells made using perovskite and organic materials".

“The main motivation of this study is to improve the power conversion efficiency of perovskite/organic tandem solar cells. In our latest work, we have demonstrated a power conversion efficiency of 23.6% - this is the best performance for this type of solar cells to date,” said Dr. Chen Wei, Research Fellow at the NUS Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and the first author of this work.

In their latest project, NUS Assistant Professor Hou Yi and his team have gained new insight in the field of perovskite/organic tandem solar cells. Their discovery opens the door to thin-film tandem solar cells that are light and bendable, which could have wide-ranging applications such as for solar-powered blinds, vehicles, boats and other mobile devices.

A tandem solar cell comprises two or more subcells electrically connected using interconnecting layers (ICLs). The ICL plays a critical role in determining the performance and reproducibility of a device. An effective ICL should be chemically inert, electrically conductive and optically transparent.

The team developed a novel and effective ICL that reduces voltage, optical and electrical losses within the tandem solar cell. This innovation significantly improves the efficiency of the perovskite/organic tandem solar cells, achieving a power conversion rate of 23.6%.

“Our study shows the great potential of perovskite-based tandem solar cells for future commercial application of photovoltaic technology. Building on our new discovery, we hope to further improve the performance of our tandem solar cells and scale up this technology,” said Asst Prof Hou.