Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

perovskite solar cell

Clean Power

International Research Team Claims New Perovskite Solar Record — 18.1%

A team of international researchers claim to have created a perovskite solar cell with the highest efficiency ever recorded — 18.1%.

Perovskite solar cells are a mixture of organic molecules and inorganic elements within a single crystalline structure. Together they capture light and convert it into electricity. They can be manufactured more easily and cheaply than silicon-based solar cells. Perovskite solar cells can also be bonded to a flexible backing, which means they can be used for many applications where traditional solar panels are not feasible, such as on the roof and fenders of electric automobiles.

perovskite solar cell

Dancing atoms in perovskite materials provide an insight into how solar cells work. Credit: SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

What they can’t do — yet — is match the efficiency or durability of conventional silicon solar cells. But researchers keep working to overcome those deficiencies in their quest to drive down the cost of solar panels and fit them to places where conventional panels would never work, such as the facade or windows of buildings.

An international team from China’s Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Switzerland’s Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, and the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University in Japan claims to have developed perovskite solar cells with an efficiency of 18.1% by using a new configuration of cesium lead iodide (CsPbI3) perovskite cells. Researchers worked with crystals in their more stable beta phase. Previous research focused on the crystals in their alpha, or dark phase.

Although the alpha phase can ensure higher power conversion efficiency, according to PV Magazine it is unstable as the crystal structures rapidly degrade into a yellowish form increasingly unable to harvest light. The beta phase offers longer stability.

The researchers have found a way to repair the cracks that often emerge on the surface of perovskite cells by applying a choline iodide solution which heals them. The solution is said to help minimize the loss of electrons from CsPbI3 into adjacent layers and optimize the interface between layers in the cell. “This synergy between layers results in fewer electrons being lost and more electricity being generated,” says research paper co-author Luis K Ono.

Ultraviolet photoemission spectroscopy enabled the researchers to verify a smaller loss of electrons to adjacent layers after treatment with choline iodide, due to better alignment. “By repairing the cracks that naturally emerge this treatment led to an increase in conversion efficiency from 15% to 18%,” the researchers claim.

The scientists said their results show encouraging signs for the further development of CsPbI3 for solar applications but admitted the perovskite technology is still lagging. “For CsPbI3 to truly compete with silicon, the team will next work on the trinity of factors allowing silicon’s reign to continue: stability, cost and efficiency,” they say.

Manufacturers of conventional solar panels have nothing to fear from competition with perovskite cells just yet but with more research, the day could come when perovskites give those conventional solar panels a run for their money. Typical run of the mill solar panels today have an efficiency of around 19 to 20%. Perovskites are catching up quickly.

Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

Former Tesla Battery Expert Leading Lyten Into New Lithium-Sulfur Battery Era — Podcast:

I don't like paywalls. You don't like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it! We just don't like paywalls, and so we've decided to ditch ours. Unfortunately, the media business is still a tough, cut-throat business with tiny margins. It's a never-ending Olympic challenge to stay above water or even perhaps — gasp — grow. So ...
If you like what we do and want to support us, please chip in a bit monthly via PayPal or Patreon to help our team do what we do! Thank you!
Written By

Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Florida or anywhere else The Force may lead him. He is proud to be "woke" and doesn't really give a damn why the glass broke. He believes passionately in what Socrates said 3000 years ago: "The secret to change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new."


You May Also Like

Clean Power

The Canadian startup XlynX aims to improve perovskite solar cells with a new advanced adhesive.

Clean Power

The long wait for low-cost, high-performance perovskite solar cells is coming to a close. Now the fun begins.

Clean Power

Dr. Lyndsey McMillon-Brown was hoping to see anything but mustard yellow. When the NASA research electrical engineer clicked open the photo of a small...


Tata Steel aims to capture the huge solar roofing market with perovskite solar cells on metal cladding.

Copyright © 2023 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.