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Analysis of the performance of innovative nanowire arrays with offset nanoholes Si solar cells for enhanced performance

Project description

Nanowires for increased solar cell efficiency

Textured solar cells used to reduce the reflection from the air–solar cell interface have been widely studied. There are several texturing patterns available as nanowires and pyramids. However, these regular patterns are at a certain level of frequency dependence and consequently of limited performance. A previous study suggested that absorption efficiency can be improved by at least 20 % by only optimising the shape and the periodicity of nanowires. The EU-funded SolArray project will introduce an innovative combination of the patterns (circular and non-circular nanowires), including air holes which increase solar cell efficiency. The project will deliver solar cells with higher efficiency and without increased fabrication cost, contributing also to the European Research Area agenda.


This proposed project directly address one of the priority areas outlines in EC's Green Deal programme.
The usage of textured solar cells to reduce the reflection from the air-solar cell interface, which ultimately enhances absorption, has been widely reported. There is a large number of texturing patterns available such as: pyramids, micropillars, nanowires, nanoholes, plasmonic, etc. The most commonly used patterns have been widely studied and have reached very high levels of optimisations. Nevertheless, these regular patterns have some degree of frequency dependence and hence only a narrow wavelength range optimisation, and thus limits the overall performance. Our preliminary study suggest that absorption efficiency can be further increased by at least 20%, by simply optimising the shape and periodicity of the nanowires. This proposal introduces an innovative combination of the patterns, both circular and noncircular nanowires, additionally including air-holes which increases the solar cell efficiency. Preliminary result also shows that by introducing an offset in the air-hole position, and thus breaking the symmetry, achieves an even higher conversion efficiency, but without increasing the fabrication cost, as simple single-stage mask can be used. By doing this, the improvement on the performance is expected to affect over the whole solar wavelength spectrum. Solar cells with a higher efficiency, but without increased fabrication cost can be a game changer, in supporting UN SDG7, affordable and clean energy.
Through hands-on research, the Researcher of this project will enhance his knowledge and skills so can contribute to the European Research Area agenda.


Net EU contribution
€ 224 933,76
Northampton square
EC1V 0HB London

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London Inner London — East Haringey and Islington
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00