HZB team brings the efficiency of perovskite silicon tandem solar cells to 29.15%

An HZB research and development team has reached a record efficiency of 29.15% of its tandem solar cell made of perovskite and silicon.

HZB team sets new efficiency record for perovskite-silicon cells imageThe illustration shows the structure of the tandem solar cell: between the thin perovskite layer (black) and the silicon layer (blue) are functional intermediate layers. © Eike Köhnen/HZB

The groups of Steve Albrecht and Bernd Stannowski have developed the tandem solar cell, which converts 29.15 percent of the incident light into electrical energy. This value is officially certified by the CalLab of the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE).

Berkeley team creates perovskite blue LED and illustrates both limitations and potential of perovskite semiconductors

University of California, Berkeley, scientists have created a blue light-emitting diode (LED) from halide perovskites, overcoming a major barrier to using these cheap, easy-to-make materials in electronic devices.

In the process, however, the researchers discovered a fundamental property of halide perovskites that may prove a barrier to their widespread use as solar cells and transistors. Alternatively, this unique property may open up a whole new world for perovskites far beyond that of today's standard semiconductors.

Panasonic announces 16.1% efficiency for lightweight perovskite solar module

Japanese electronics giant Panasonic has reported the production of a lightweight 30cmX30cm perovskite solar module with an efficiency of 16.01%. The result was achieved in a research project by Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization.

The device has an area of 802cm² and thickness of 2mm. The manufacturer claims it improved module performance through an inkjet coating method and a reduction in weight by using thin glass substrates.

HZB-led team finds that plants absorb more lead from perovskite solar cells than expected

Researchers led by Prof. Antonio Abate at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin have designed a study to investigate lead hazards relating to perovskite soar cells. They cooperated with plant scientists from the Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, China, where the experiments were carried out, and with a group from the university of Naples, Italy.

Comparison of mint plants grown on control and PSC soils imageMint plants grown on control soil (left) and perovskite-contaminated soil (right). Credit: Nature

The plant experts prepared contaminated soil samples with different concentrations of lead from either perovskite solar cells or other lead sources and cultivated different plants. After a growth period, they analyzed the lead content in leaves and other parts of the plant. They found that lead from perovskite solar cells is 10 times more bioavailable than lead from other industrial sources.

Strain may enable better perovskite solar cells

Researchers from the University of California San Diego, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology and the Air Force Research Laboratory have developed a technique that could enable the fabrication of longer-lasting and more efficient perovskite solar cells, photodetectors, and LEDs.

Strain-engineered, single crystal thin film of perovskite imageStrain-engineered, single crystal thin film of perovskite grown on a series of substrates with varying compositions and lattice sizes. Image Credit: David Baillot/UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.

A major obstacle is the tendency of one of the best-performing perovskite crystals, α-formamidinium lead iodide (HC(NH2)2PbI3, known as α-FAPbI3), to assume a hexagonal structure at room temperature, in which photovoltaic devices are required to operate. This hexagonal structure cannot respond to most of the frequencies of light in solar radiation, and is hence not useful for solar applications as it could be. The team therefore set out to stabilize the structure of α-FAPbI3, using a simple but useful approach known as strain engineering, which has been used to tune the electronic properties of semiconductors.