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Published on August 6th, 2012 | by James Ayre


New Record Efficiency for Next-Gen Solar Cells

August 6th, 2012 by  

A major breakthrough has been made in the development of colloidal quantum dot (CQD) films, leading to the most efficient CQD solar cell ever.

A prototype of the U of T-made colloidal quantum dot solar cell.

The new solar cell was created out of very inexpensive materials, and has been certified at a world-record 7.0% efficiency. That’s a 37% increase in efficiency over the previous record holder.

“Previously, quantum dot solar cells have been limited by the large internal surface areas of the nanoparticles in the film, which made extracting electricity difficult,” said Dr. Susanna Thon, a lead co-author of the paper. “Our breakthrough was to use a combination of organic and inorganic chemistry to completely cover all of the exposed surfaces.”

Quantum dots are semiconductors that are a few nanometres in size and can be used to generate electricity from the entire solar spectrum, visible and invisible wavelengths. And CQD films can be created very quickly and cheaply, in a way similar to paint or ink.

–> You can read more about this news on Page 2.



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About the Author

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

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