Solar Energy

Perovskite Solar Cell: Converts more sunlight to electricity than silicon does.

The new technology has the answer to high-efficiency, low-Cost Solar Energy

Flexible substrate thin film solar perovskite cell- Photo: Angstrom Engineering

The use of perovskites in solar cell is capturing the interest of researchers around the world. It absorb sunlight similar to silicon cells but uses less material to absorb the same amount of light and can react to various different wavelengths of light, and convert more of the sunlight into electricity.  Using perovskites as a base material is bringing the potential for cheaper and greener energy. Moreover, they can be processed into thin, lightweight, semi-transparent modules for integration into any construction elements.

At least 20 research centers and universities around the world are working to make perovskite solar cells more efficient to be used commercially. The European research group, Solliance announced last November, that they have achieved an  efficiencies of 13.5% (cell) and 12.2% (module) for its perovskite based PV technology. Scientists at Stanford University and an Australian laboratory recently announced several discoveries with incredible results aiming 26.4 percent efficiency. Some experts forecast that the market for perovskite PV will reach $214m in 2025.


Stanford University researchers testing new perovskite cells


What are perovskite?

Perovskite is a metallic-looking rock discovered in the Ural Mountains of Russia by Gustav Rose in 1839 and is named after Russian mineralogist Lev Perovski (1792–1856).

Perovskite-image-img_assist-300x317Researchers found that the rock mineral deposits containing perovskite structures were cheap and abundant throughout the world. In 2009, a Japanese researcher found that it could absorb sunlight and turn it into electricity. Perovskite materials exhibit fascinating and unusual physical properties. Its electrical resistance changes when they are put in a magnetic field. Some can conduct electricity with no resistance at all. And many other useful properties hold exciting opportunities for physicists, chemists and material scientists.

What is a perovskite solar cell?

A perovskite solar cell is a type of solar cell which includes a perovskite compound. Perovskite materials are cheap to produce and relatively simple to manufacture. Perovskites possess intrinsic properties that make them very promising material.

Perovskite solar cells are aiming for high efficiencies, and low material & reduced processing costs. One of the major advantage perovskite solar cells is the flexibility, semi-transparency, light-weight and more.

Although perovskite solar cells are not entirely commercialized, it should be more durable, stable and safe to the environment to achieve more commercially success in the solar energy market.

Sources: Perovskite-Info, Sanford News, Links above.

Qusi Alqarqaz.


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