Posted in | News | Solar Energy | Green Energy

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory Produce Solar Cells with Increased Efficiency

A recent research endorsed by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and guided by Jun Xu has created a three-dimensional nanocone-based solar cell platform that can improve the light-to-power conversion efficiency of solar photovoltaic cells by around 80%.

The technology largely overcomes the drawback of inadequate transport of charges produced by solar photons. These charges, comprising positive holes and negative electrons, often get trapped due to the flaws in bulk materials and their interfaces, thereby reducing the performance level of solar cells.

In order to get rid of the entrapment challenges and the subsequent reduction in the solar cell efficiency, Xu and his team members have produced nanocone-based solar cells and devised ways to synthesize the cells to augment the efficiency of collection charges. The three dimensional solar structures comprise n-type nanocones encircled by a p-type semiconductor.

The n-type nanocones manufactured using zinc oxide performs the role of an electron conductor and also functions as the junction framework. The p-type nanoncones, manufactured using polycrystalline cadmium telluride, functions as the main element for photon absorption and acts as a hole conductor. Researchers have achieved a high light-to-power conversion efficiency of 3.2% in comparison to the 1.8% efficiency achieved by the traditional planar structure of the same materials.

Some of the important features of the solar material include its exclusive electric field distribution, which enables efficient charge transport and efficient conversion of solar energy into electricity. The blending of nanocones by utilizing cost-effective in-house methods, and lastly the reduction of voids and defects in semiconductors, which increases the electrical and optical attributes required during conversion of solar photons to electric power. Owing to improved efficiency in charge transport, the new solar cell endures defective materials and brings down the cost involved in the manufacture of next-generation solar cells.

According to Xu, the three-dimensional structural design enables a built-in electric field distribution to convert more solar energy into electricity. Xu said that the nanocone produces an electric field of high intensity in the surrounding area of the tip junction by efficiently segregating, injecting and accumulating minority carriers, which in turn encourages a higher level of conversion efficiency than the traditional solar cells manufactured utilizing the same materials.

Source: http://www.ornl.gov/

Citations

Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Chai, Cameron. (2019, March 01). Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory Produce Solar Cells with Increased Efficiency. AZoCleantech. Retrieved on April 17, 2024 from https://www.azocleantech.com/news.aspx?newsID=14937.

  • MLA

    Chai, Cameron. "Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory Produce Solar Cells with Increased Efficiency". AZoCleantech. 17 April 2024. <https://www.azocleantech.com/news.aspx?newsID=14937>.

  • Chicago

    Chai, Cameron. "Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory Produce Solar Cells with Increased Efficiency". AZoCleantech. https://www.azocleantech.com/news.aspx?newsID=14937. (accessed April 17, 2024).

  • Harvard

    Chai, Cameron. 2019. Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory Produce Solar Cells with Increased Efficiency. AZoCleantech, viewed 17 April 2024, https://www.azocleantech.com/news.aspx?newsID=14937.

Tell Us What You Think

Do you have a review, update or anything you would like to add to this news story?

Leave your feedback
Your comment type
Submit

While we only use edited and approved content for Azthena answers, it may on occasions provide incorrect responses. Please confirm any data provided with the related suppliers or authors. We do not provide medical advice, if you search for medical information you must always consult a medical professional before acting on any information provided.

Your questions, but not your email details will be shared with OpenAI and retained for 30 days in accordance with their privacy principles.

Please do not ask questions that use sensitive or confidential information.

Read the full Terms & Conditions.