Researchers develop perovskite solar cell with over 20% efficiency that generates electricity for more than 1,000 continuous hours

Researchers from Japan-based National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) recently developed a durable 1cm2 perovskite solar cell capable of generating electricity for more than 1,000 continuous hours at a photoelectric conversion efficiency (i.e., power generation efficiency) of more than 20% in exposure to sunlight.

As this solar cell can be fabricated on the surface of a plastic material at approximately 100°C, this technique could have great potential for developing light, versatile solar cells.

Most perovskite solar cells have similar power generation mechanisms. When the perovskite layer absorbs sunlight, it generates electrons and holes. These electrons and holes then migrate separately into the adjacent electron transport layer and hole transport layer, respectively, where they flow to produce an electric current. To simultaneously improve the efficiency and durability of perovskite solar cells, these layers and the interfaces between them need to enable electrons and holes to move through them more freely while rendering the interfaces impermeable to water molecules.

The NIMS researchers added a hydrazine derivative containing water repellent fluorine atoms (5F-PHZ) to the interface between the electron transport layer and the perovskite layer (composed of a crystalline structure, FA0.84Cs0.12Rb0.04PbI3, which can be expressed simply by ABX3, where A = a combination of formamidinium ions (FA+), Cs+ and Rb+; B = Pb2+; and X = I).

This interface was said to successfully prevent water molecules that penetrated the electron transport layer from coming into contact with the perovskite layer, thereby improving the durability of the solar cell. The use of this interface also reduced the number of crystalline defects that formed on the surface of the perovskite layer—a cause of decreased power generation efficiency. In addition, the team added a phosphonic acid derivative (MeO-2PACz) to the interface between the hole transport layer and the perovskite layer, which minimized defect formation in the hole transport layer and thereby improved the power generation efficiency of the solar cell.

In future research, the team plans to develop even more efficient and durable perovskite solar cells by creating a database of molecules that can be integrated into the interface, conducting data-driven research and designing molecules that can be used to improve interfacial properties.

Posted: Oct 10,2022 by Roni Peleg