MIT team creates transparent, conductive coating that could protect perovskite solar cells

Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have improved a transparent and conductive coating material by increasing its electrical conductivity by 10 times. When this coating material was integrated into a perovskite solar cell, it boosted the stability and efficiency of the solar cell.

“The goal is to find a material that is electrically conductive as well as transparent,” explained the team, which would be ‘“useful in a range of applications, including touch screens and solar cells.”

International research team reaches 21.6% efficiency perovskite cell using concentrator PV

An international research team that included scientists from the University of Exeter, in the U.K., Switzerland’s Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) and Saudi Arabia’s Center of Excellence for Advanced Materials Research has reported hitting 21.6% perovskite solar cell efficiency by using concentrator photovoltaic technology.

PSC with concentrator imagePSC with a concentrator

A triple-cation based, n-i-p structured perovskite cell has reportedly been developed at low levels of solar concentration. According to the researchers, standard single-junction perovskite cells usually reach efficiencies of 21% but only in devices smaller than 1mm². “The use of concentrator photovoltaics with a 0.81mm²-sized perovskite solar cell (PSC) further increased the efficiency levels up to 23.1% opening up a new line of research combining PSCs with low concentrating photovoltaic technologies,” the authors of the study wrote.

Researchers develop a way to analyze which materials in perovskite solar cells harvest the most energy

Scientists from Nanyang Technological University and Singapore's NTU, in collaboration with the University of Groningen (UG) in the Netherlands, have developed a method to analyze which pairs of materials in perovskite solar cells will harvest the most energy.

In their recent study, physicists Professor Sum Tze Chien from NTU and Professor Maxim Pshenichnikov from UG used extremely fast lasers to observe how an energy barrier forms when perovskite is joined with a material that extracts the electrical charges to make a solar cell.

China-based team develops high efficiency perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells

A research group led by Prof. Liu Shengzhong from the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics (DICP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and Prof. Yang Dong at Shaanxi Normal University have developed high efficiency semi-transparent perovskite solar cells by using MoO3 sandwiched gold nanomesh (MoO3/Au/MoO3) multilayer as the transparent electrode. Combined with a superior heterojunction silicon solar cell, a high efficiency four-terminal perovskite/silicon tandem solar cell was obtained.

Tandem/multijunction structure has been proven to be an effective way to break the Shockley-Queisser limit. To obtain a high efficiency tandem solar cell, the key is to fabricate transparent electrode with high conductivity as well as high transparency through a mild method.

HZB team deepens understanding of hybrid halide perovskites

Researchers from Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB), headed by Prof. Susan Schorr and Dr. Joachim Breternitz, have achieved a breakthrough in understanding the crystalline structure of hybrid halide perovskites. The team investigated crystalline samples of methylammonium lead iodide (MAPbI3), the most prominent representative of this class of materials, at the Diamond Light Source synchrotron (DLS) in the United Kingdom using high-resolution single-crystal diffraction. This approach provided data for a more in-depth analysis of the crystalline structure of this material.

They were also able to clarify, whether ferroelectric effects are possible at all in this hybrid halide perovskite. Ferroelectric domains can have favorable effects in solar cells and increase their efficiency. However, measuring this effect in samples is difficult - a null result can mean that there is either no ferroelectric effect or that the ferroelectric domains cancel one another's effects out.