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Comparison and optimisation of efficiencies of thin-film solar cells

Objective

This project deals with the problems of thin-film solar cells aimed at finding the most promising combinations of semiconductor materials for efficient, reliable and cost effective photovoltaic power production (the availability of raw materials and processing costs).
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The film and the base of the solar cells to be studied are in general different semiconductor materials and their forbidden energy gaps are therefore different. We intend to continue the task, begun by various workers about twenty years ago, of modelling by theoretical means these so-called heterojunctions. Some may have additional intermediate layers, some may have band gaps which vary with position in space, and other complicating factors will have to be taken into account. Notably there is the loss of current carriers which have been generated by solar radiation due to various forms of recombination; these carriers are therefore not available for the production of an electric current.
Various combinations of materials have been considered in the past and one of our aims is to focus on these and on related materials in order to find the combinations of greatest promise from the efficiency point of view, provided of course other common-sense requirements are also satisfied, eg the raw materials should be reasonably cheap and the device should be reasonable stable.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON
Address
Highfield
Southampton
United Kingdom

Participants (3)

UNIVERSITY OF WALES CARDIFF
United Kingdom
Address

CF1 3TH Carduff
UNIVERSITÉ DE PARIS VII DENIS DIDEROT
France
Address
Place Jussieu 2
75251 Paris
Universiteit Gent
Belgium
Address
41,Sint-pietersnieuwstraat
9000 Gent