Scaled perovskite solar modules pass three critical stability tests

In what is said to be a "major milestone toward commercialization", Solliance partners TNO, imec and the Eindhoven University of Technology demonstrated encapsulated perovskite solar modules fabricated using industrial processes that withstand three established lifetime tests, i.e. the light soak test, the damp-heat test and the thermal cycling test. It is for the first time this milestone is passed with scaled perovskite solar modules prepared by research organizations.

Solliance partners advance towards commercialization of PSCs image

The efficiency and versatility of perovskite solar modules has generated a lot of interest in this novel solar energy technology. However, concerns have been raised about the stability of perovskite solar modules since the early devices, reported a decade ago, were only stable for minutes. By passing three rigorous aging tests, Solliance and its industrial partners take a major step towards commercialization of this novel solar technology.

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.

Tuning 2D perovskites may enable capturing solar energy more efficiently

By tuning the structure of a 2D perovskite solar material, researchers from KAUST and the Georgia Institute of Technology have shown they can prolong the lifetime of highly energetic hot carriers generated by light striking the material. The approach could offer a way to capture solar energy more efficiently.

"As an alternative to 3D hybrid perovskites, 2D hybrid perovskites have improved stability and moisture resistance," says Jun Yin, a member of Omar Mohammed's and Osman Bakr's research groups. However, hot carrier cooling in these materials has not been extensively studied, adds Partha Maity, a postdoctoral fellow on the KAUST team.

Chalcogenide perovksites found promising for PV and waste heat recovery

Researchers from Lehigh University in Pennsylvania have found that metal chalcogenide perovskites can be used as a thermoelectric material that can convert thermal energy from the sun to usable electric power.

Metal chalcogenide perovskites, with their nontoxic elemental composition, are known to offer greater thermal and aqueous stability than organic-inorganic halide perovskites. This means that they may be more suitable than other materials in the perovskite family to address the two biggest issues in commercial solar cell production: low thermal stability and toxicity.

Georgia Tech team improves perovskites' durability using plastic and silica double-layer protection system

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have demonstrated a novel approach aimed at addressing perovskite’s durability problem: encasing the perovskite inside a double-layer protection system made from plastic and silica.

The research team developed a multi-step process to produce encased perovskite nanocrystals that exhibit strong resistance to degradation in moist environments.