PARIS – Nanoelectronics research center IMEC (Leuven, Belgium) and chemicals company Solvay SA (Brussels, Belgium) have announced they have developed an organic photovoltaic module with a certified efficiency of 5.5 percent, which they claim is a world record for a module.
Imec said it has developed a dedicated inverted bulk heterojunction architecture for polymer-based solar cells. The architecture is claimed to simultaneously optimize cell light management and increase device quality.
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With this architecture, and a proprietary Polyera semiconductor in the photoactive layer, a team of Imec and Solvay researchers said they developed a process to integrate inverted bulk heterojunction solar cells in an efficient module that uses 95 percent of the aperture area to generate electricity. This resulted in a module-efficiency of 5.5 percent on a 16 cm² aperture area, Imec and Solvay claimed.
Commenting on the results at the module level, Tom Aernouts, R&D group leader of organic photovoltaics at Imec, declared: "They are an important step towards upscaling organic solar cell technology to high-volume production. With further device and module structure optimizations and optimization of the photo-active material of the cell, we will continue increasing efficiency and lifetime, which are essential advancements for developing an industry-relevant technology for organic solar cells."
In Dec. 2011, Imec, Polyera and Solvay claimed they had achieved an efficiency of 8.3 percent for polymer-based single junction organic solar cells in an inverted device stack. See related links:Increasing energy yield of PV panelsCZTSe thin-film solar cells resultsAnti-aging elixir for solar cellsPhotovoltaics market outlook until 2016------------------------
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