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Mesoscopic Junctions for Light Energy Harvesting and Conversion

Objective

Research will focus on the generation of electric power by mesoscopic solar cells, a domain where the PI has an outstanding track record and leadership on the global scale. The target is to increase the photovoltaic conversion efficiency from currently 11 to over 15 percent rendering these new solar cells very attractive for applications in large areas of photovoltaic electricity production. The approach to reach this challenging target is highly creative and has a strongly interdisciplinary character. Successful implementation of the project goals is assured by the vast experience and know how of the PI and his team in the key areas of the project. The project is divided in four work packages. The first three introduce creative new concepts to enhance substantially the performance of single-junction dye sensitized nanocrystalline devices, while the fourth addresses multi-junction cells and photon up-conversion systems. The tasks to be accomplished comprise 1) The theoretically assisted conception and synthesis of new molecular sensitizers to extend the spectral response of dye sensitized photovoltaic cells into the near IR up to 900 nm, increasing substantially the short circuit photocurrent of the solar cell. 2) The implementation of highly innovative mesoscopic oxides structures to support the molecular dye or quantum dot and collect the photo-generated charge carriers. 3) The introduction of smart amphiphilic molecular insulators and ultra-thin ceramic barriers at the mesoscopic junction in order to retard the interfacial electron-hole recombination and 4) The exploration of radically new cell embodiments based on multi-junction tandem cells and photon up-conversion schemes, whose solar to electric power conversion efficiency can be raised beyond the Shockley-Queiser limit of 32 percent.

Field of science

  • /engineering and technology/environmental engineering/energy and fuels/electric energy
  • /engineering and technology/environmental engineering/energy and fuels/renewable energy/solar energy

Call for proposal

ERC-2009-AdG
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

ERC-AG - ERC Advanced Grant

Host institution

ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE FEDERALE DE LAUSANNE
Address
Batiment Ce 3316 Station 1
1015 Lausanne
Switzerland
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 2 046 000
Principal investigator
Michael Grätzel (Prof.)
Administrative Contact
Caroline Vandevyver (Ms.)

Beneficiaries (1)

ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE FEDERALE DE LAUSANNE
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 2 046 000
Address
Batiment Ce 3316 Station 1
1015 Lausanne
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Principal investigator
Michael Grätzel (Prof.)
Administrative Contact
Caroline Vandevyver (Ms.)