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Solar photovoltaic

Bhaskar Dudem, Yeong Hwan Ko, Jung Woo Leem, Joo Ho Lim, Jae Su Yu
We report the hierarchical nano/micro architectured (HNMA)-polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) film-based hybrid energy cells with multi-functionality to simultaneously harvest mechanical, solar, and wind energies. These films consist of nano/micro dual-scale architectures (i.e., nanonipples on inverted micro pyramidal arrays) on the PDMS surface. The HNMA-PDMS is replicable by a facile and cost-effective soft imprint lithography (SIL) using a nanoporous anodic alumina oxide (AAO) film formed on the micro-pyramidal (MP) structured silicon substrate...
October 19, 2016: ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
Atanu Jana, Masatoshi Ishida, Jung Su Park, Steffen Bähring, Jan O Jeppesen, Jonathan L Sessler
After the epochal discovery of the "organic metal", namely, tetrathiafulvalene (TTF)-7,7,8,8-tetracyano-p-quinodimethane (TCNQ) dyad in 1973, scientists have made efforts to derivatize TTF for constructing various supramolecular architectures to control the charge-transfer processes by adjusting the donor-acceptor strength of the dyads for numerous applications. The interesting inherent electronic donor properties of TTFs control the overall electrochemical properties of the supramolecular structures, leading to the construction of highly efficient optoelectronic materials, photovoltaic solar cells, organic field-effect transistors, and optical sensors...
October 18, 2016: Chemical Reviews
Yasemin Saygili, Magnus Söderberg, Norman Pellet, Fabrizio Giordano, Yiming Cao, Ana B Munoz-Garcia, Shaik Mohammed Zakeeruddin, Nick Vlachopoulos, Michele Pavone, Gerrit Boschloo, Ladislav Kavan, Jacques-E Moser, Michael Grätzel, Anders Hagfeldt, Marina Freitag
Redox mediators play a major role determining the photocurrent and the photovoltage in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs). To maintain the photocurrent, the reduction of oxidized dye by the redox mediator should be significantly faster than the back electron transfer between TiO2 and the oxidized dye. The driving force for dye regeneration with the redox mediator should be sufficiently low to provide high photovoltages. With our introduction of new copper complexes as promising redox mediators in DSCs both criteria are satisfied to enhance power conversion efficiencies...
October 17, 2016: Journal of the American Chemical Society
Balakrishna Ananthoju, Jeotikanta Mohapatra, Manoj K Jangid, D Bahadur, N V Medhekar, M Aslam
Cations and anions are replaced with Fe, Mn, and Se in CZTS in order to control the formations of the secondary phase, the band gap, and the micro structure of Cu2ZnSnS4. We demonstrate a simplified synthesis strategy for a range of quaternary chalcogenide nanoparticles such as Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS), Cu2FeSnS4 (CFTS), Cu2MnSnS4 (CMTS), Cu2ZnSnSe4 (CZTSe), and Cu2ZnSn(S0.5Se0.5)4 (CZTSSe) by thermolysis of metal chloride precursors using long chain amine molecules. It is observed that the crystal structure, band gap and micro structure of the CZTS thin films are affected by the substitution of anion/cations...
October 17, 2016: Scientific Reports
Maciej Zalas, Agata Wawrzyńczak, Paulina Półrolniczak, Jan Sobuś, Grzegorz Schroeder, Stefan Jurga, Elena Selli
A series of 14 mesoporous titania materials has been synthesized using the simple alcothermal template-free method and various alcohols, such as methanol, propanols and butanols, as solvents. All materials were characterized by both wide and small angle XRD, which exhibited the anatase phase with short-range ordered mesoporous structure that is still forming during post synthetic temperature treatment in most of the investigated materials. Nitrogen adsorption-desorption isotherms confirmed the mesoporous structure with surface area ranging from 241 to 383 m2g- 1 and pore volumes from 0...
2016: PloS One
Laura Calió, Samrana Kazim, Michael Grätzel, Shahzada Ahmad
The pressure to move towards renewable energy has inspired researchers to look for ideas in photovoltaics that may lead to a major breakthrough. Recently the use of perovskites as a light harvester has lead to stunning progress. The power conversion efficiency of perovskite solar cells is now approaching parity (>22 %) with that of the established technology which took decades to reach this level of performance. The use of a hole transport material (HTM) remains indispensable in perovskite solar cells...
October 14, 2016: Angewandte Chemie
Chang Yu, Zhiqiang Liu, Xiangtong Meng, Bing Lu, Dan Cui, Jieshan Qiu
Alternative high-performance electrocatalysts for triiodide (I3(-)) reduction of low-cost dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) are urgently sought after. To address the concerned issues, we report a facile strategy for engineering the nitrogen and phosphorus dual-doped graphene (NPG) via an efficient ball-milling process, followed by a simple thermal annealing approach utilizing melamine (C3H6N6) and triphenylphosphine ((C6H5)3P) as the N and P source, respectively. When employed as the counter electrode (CE) in DSSCs, such a metal-free material exhibits excellent electrocatalytic activity towards the I3(-)/I(-) redox reaction...
October 14, 2016: Nanoscale
Xin-Xing Zhan, Xin Zhang, Si-Min Dai, Shu-Hui Li, Xu-Zhai Lu, Lin-Long Deng, Su-Yuan Xie, Rong-Bin Huang, Lan-Sun Zheng
Despite being widely used as electron acceptor in polymer solar cells, commercially available PC71BM (phenyl-C71-butyric acid methyl ester) usually has a "random" composition of mixed regioisomers or stereoisomers. Here the PC71BM has been isolated into three typical isomers, α-, β1- and β2-PC71BM, for establishing the isomer-dependent photovoltaic performance on change of ternary composition of α-, β1- and β2-PC71BM. Mixing the isomers in a ratio of α:β1:β2=8:1:1 resulted in the best power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 7...
October 13, 2016: Chemistry: a European Journal
Greg A Barron-Gafford, Rebecca L Minor, Nathan A Allen, Alex D Cronin, Adria E Brooks, Mitchell A Pavao-Zuckerman
While photovoltaic (PV) renewable energy production has surged, concerns remain about whether or not PV power plants induce a "heat island" (PVHI) effect, much like the increase in ambient temperatures relative to wildlands generates an Urban Heat Island effect in cities. Transitions to PV plants alter the way that incoming energy is reflected back to the atmosphere or absorbed, stored, and reradiated because PV plants change the albedo, vegetation, and structure of the terrain. Prior work on the PVHI has been mostly theoretical or based upon simulated models...
October 13, 2016: Scientific Reports
Liangang Xiao, Song Chen, Ke Gao, Xiaobin Peng, Feng Liu, Yong Cao, Wai-Yeung Wong, Wai-Kwok Wong, Xunjin Zhu
To mimic the natural photosynthetic systems utilizing chlorophylls to absorb light and store light energy, two new porphyrin-based small molecules of PTTR and PTTCNR have been developed for photovoltaic applications. The highest power conversion efficiency of 8.21% is achieved, corresponding to a short-circuit current of 14.30 mA cm-2, open-circuit voltage of 0.82 V, and fill factor of 70.01%. The excellent device performances can be ascribed to the engineering of molecule structure and film morphology. The horizontal conjugation of 3,3''-dihexyl-terthiophene to porphyrin-core with the vertical aliphatic 2-octylundecyl peripheral substitutions, can not only effectively increase the solar flux coverage between the conventional Soret and Q bands of porphyrin unit, but also optimize molecular packing through polymorphism associated with side-chains and the linear π-conjugated backbones...
October 12, 2016: ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
Alessandro Cavalli, Yingchao Cui, Sebastian Kölling, Marcel A Verheijen, Sebastien R Plissard, Jia Wang, Paul M Koenraad, Jos E M Haverkort, Erik P A M Bakkers
Nanowire based solar cells have attracted great attention due to their potential for high efficiency and low device cost. Photovoltaic devices based on InP nanowires now have characteristics comparable to InP bulk solar cells. A detailed and direct correlation of the influence of growth conditions on performance is necessary to improve efficiency further. We explored the effects of the growth temperature, and of the addition of HCl during growth, on the efficiency of nanowire array based solar cell devices...
November 11, 2016: Nanotechnology
Xisheng Zhang, Dong Yang, Zhou Yang, Xiaojia Guo, Bin Liu, Xiaodong Ren, Shengzhong Frank Liu
The PEDOT:PSS is often used as the window layer in the normal structured PEDOT:PSS/c-Si hybrid solar cell (HSC), leading to significantly reduced response, especially in red and near-infrared region. By depositing the PEDOT:PSS on the rear side of the c-Si wafer, we developed an inverted structured HSC with much higher solar cell response in the red and near-infrared spectrum. Passivating the other side with hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) before electrode deposition, the minority carrier lifetime has been significantly increased and the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the inverted HSC is improved to as high as 16...
October 11, 2016: Scientific Reports
Zheng Chen, Zhi-Gang Gu, Wen-Qiang Fu, Fei Wang, Jian Zhang
Organic-inorganic hybrid lead organohalide perovskites are inexpensive materials for high-efficiency photovoltaic solar cells, optical properties and superior electrical conductivity. However, the fabrication of their quantum dots (QDs) with uniform ultra-small particles is still a challenge. Here we use oriented microporous metal-organic framework (MOF) thin film prepared by liquid phase epitaxy approach as a template for CH3NH3PbI2X (X = Cl, Br and I) perovskite QDs fabrication. By introducing the PbI2 and CH3NH3X (MAX) precursors into MOF HKUST-1 (Cu3(BTC)2, BTC = 1,3,5-benzene tricarboxylate) thin film in a stepwise approach, the resulted perovskite MAPbI2X (X = Cl, Br and I) QDs with uniform diameters of 1...
October 10, 2016: ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
Alex M Ganose, Christopher N Savory, David O Scanlon
The field of photovoltaics is undergoing a surge of interest following the recent discovery of the lead hybrid perovskites as a remarkably efficient class of solar absorber. Of these, methylammonium lead iodide (MAPI) has garnered significant attention due to its record breaking efficiencies, however, there are growing concerns surrounding its long-term stability. Many of the excellent properties seen in hybrid perovskites are thought to derive from the 6s(2) electronic configuration of lead, a configuration seen in a range of post-transition metal compounds...
October 6, 2016: Chemical Communications: Chem Comm
Jongwoo Song, Younah Lee, Boa Jin, Jongdeok An, Hyunmin Park, Hoon Park, Myounghee Lee, Chan Im
To achieve intrinsically light-weight flexible photovoltaic devices, a bulk-heterojunction-type active layer with a narrow-bandgap polymer is still considered as one of the most important candidates. Therefore, detailed information about the charge transfer efficiency from a photo-excited species on an electron-donating polymer to an electron acceptor is an important factor, given that it is among the most fundamental quantitative measures to understand the solar power conversion efficiency, in particular at the initial stage followed by primary exciton formation...
September 29, 2016: Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics: PCCP
Felix Vüllers, Guillaume Gomard, Jan B Preinfalk, Efthymios Klampaftis, Matthias Worgull, Bryce Richards, Hendrik Hölscher, Maryna N Kavalenka
Inspired by the transparent hair layer on water plants Salvinia and Pistia, superhydrophobic flexible thin films, applicable as transparent coatings for optoelectronic devices, are introduced. Thin polymeric nanofur films are fabricated using a highly scalable hot pulling technique, in which heated sandblasted steel plates are used to create a dense layer of nano- and microhairs surrounding microcavities on a polymer surface. The superhydrophobic nanofur surface exhibits water contact angles of 166 ± 6°, sliding angles below 6°, and is self-cleaning against various contaminants...
September 26, 2016: Small
Longbin Ren, Haijun Fan, Dazhen Huang, Dafei Yuan, Chong-An Di, Xiaozhang Zhu
Compared with the dominant aromatic conjugated materials, photovoltaic applications of their quinoidal counterparts featuring rigid and planar molecular structures have long been unexplored despite their narrow optical bandgaps, large absorption coefficients, and excellent charge transport properties. We report herein the design and synthesis of dithienoindophenine derivatives by stabilizing the quinoidal resonance of the parent indophenine framework. Compared with the ambipolar indophenine derivatives, DTIPs with the fixed molecular configuration are found to be p-type semiconductors exhibiting excellent unipolar hole mobilities up to 0...
September 26, 2016: Chemistry: a European Journal
Tobias Meier, Santiago D Solares
We demonstrate a simple and robust procedure for the fabrication of rhodamine-doped nanoporous poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) films, whose optical properties, such as anti-reflection, fluorescence and absorption can be tailored to specific applications. By exploiting phase separation of a binary polymer blend (PMMA and polystyrene), we fabricated foam-like nanoporous films that could be easily and cost-effectively integrated into the fabrication process of optical components. We link film morphology, studied by multifrequency atomic force microscopy (AFM), to the effective refractive index of the films for use as anti-reflection coatings...
October 14, 2016: Nanoscale
Mariachiara Pastore, Thibaut Duchanois, Li Liu, Antonio Monari, Xavier Assfeld, Stefan Haacke, Philippe C Gros
The first combined theoretical and photovoltaic characterization of both homoleptic and heteroleptic Fe(ii)-carbene sensitized photoanodes in working dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) has been performed. Three new heteroleptic Fe(ii)-NHC dye sensitizers have been synthesized, characterized and tested. Despite an improved interfacial charge separation in comparison to the homoleptic compounds, the heteroleptic complexes did not show boosted photovoltaic performances. The ab initio quantitative analysis of the interfacial electron and hole transfers and the measured photovoltaic data clearly evidenced fast recombination reactions for heteroleptics, even associated with un unfavorable directional electron flow, and hence slower injection rates, in the case of homoleptics...
October 12, 2016: Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics: PCCP
Avishek Banik, Mohammad Shaad Ansari, Tushar Kanta Sahu, Mohammad Qureshi
The present study discusses the design and development of a dye sensitized solar cell (DSSC) using a hybrid composite of ZnO nanoparticles (ZnO NP) and silica nanospheres (SiO2 NS). A ≈22% enhancement in the overall power conversion efficiency (PCE, η) was observed for the device fabricated with a binary hybrid composite of 1 wt% SiO2 NS and ZnO NP compared to the pristine ZnO NP device. A systematic investigation revealed the dual function of the silica nanospheres in enhancing the device efficacy compared to the bare ZnO NP based device...
October 12, 2016: Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics: PCCP
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