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Nano-electronics research center imec announcedat ITF US, a record 11.3 percent aperture and 11.9% active area efficiency for its thin-film perovskite photovoltaic (PV) module. The efficiency was measured over an aperture area of 16cm2. This achievement is the best conversion efficiency for perovskite modules in literature.
Organometal halide perovskites are considered an excellent material for thin-film solar cells as they have shown high conversion efficiencies at cell level. While the power conversion efficiency of this new class of thin film solar cells has increased rapidly in the last few years, further improvements are still needed to make thin-film photovoltaics an attractive technology for industrial production. Larger area processing and narrow interconnections are prerequisites for processing efficient thin-film modules.
Imec’s perovskite module achieves a geometrical fill factor of more than 95 percent and an aperture conversion efficiency of 11.3 percent. The active area efficiency was demonstrated with 11.9 percent. These record devices have been fabricated by the conventional lab scale spin coating process. Imec also used a linear coating technique (blade coating) for all the solution based layers, to prove industrially viable fabrication methods. By using this method, the modules achieved a 9 percent aperture area efficiency. These achievements are important breakthroughs in bringing thin-film solar technology to industrial scalability for applications such as building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV).
“Imec is steadily improving the conversion efficiencies of its perovskite solar cells and at the same time adjusting the fabrication processes to enable industrial adoption of this promising technology,” said Tom Aernouts, R&D manager for thin-film photovoltaics at imec. “Leveraging our expertise in organic photovoltaics enables us to make rapid progress in enhancing the conversion efficiencies, ultimately aiming at conversion efficiencies of more than 20 percent for this type of thin-film solar cells.”
Imec develops a platform for glass-based perovskite modules and collaborates with Solliance, a cross-border Dutch-German-Flemish thin-film PV research initiative. Thanks to its high power conversion efficiency and stand-alone integration in building elements, both glass-based and thin-film perovskite PV technology are widely considered as important technologies for the BIPV market. Moreover, imec is exploring stacking a perovskite cell on top of a silicon solar cell to increase the conversion efficiency of silicon solar cells. The perovskite cell will capture the light which is not absorbed by silicon, as such enabling conversion efficiencies of more than 30 percent.
Imec performs world-leading research in nanoelectronics. Imec leverages its scientific knowledge with the innovative power of its global partnerships in ICT, healthcare and energy. Imec delivers industry-relevant technology solutions. In a unique high-tech environment, its international top talent is committed to providing the building blocks for a better life in a sustainable society. Imec is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium, and has offices in Belgium, the Netherlands, Taiwan, USA, China, India and Japan. Its staff of about 2,200 people includes almost 700 industrial residents and guest researchers. In 2014, imec's revenue (P&L) totaled 363 million euro. Further information on imec can be found at www.imec.be. Stay up to date about what’s happening at imec with the monthly imec magazine, available for tablets and smartphones (as an app for iOS and Android), or via the website www.imec.be/imecmagazine
Imec is a registered trademark for the activities of IMEC International (a legal entity set up under Belgian law as a "stichting van openbaar nut”), imec Belgium (IMEC vzw supported by the Flemish Government), imec the Netherlands (Stichting IMEC Nederland, part of Holst Centre which is supported by the Dutch Government), imec Taiwan (IMEC Taiwan Co.)and imec China (IMEC Microelectronics (Shanghai) Co. Ltd.) and imec India (Imec India Private Limited).
Solliance is a partnership of R&D organizations from the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany working in thin film photovoltaic solar energy (TFPV). In order to strengthen the region’s position as a world player in PV, Solliance is creating the required synergy by consolidating and coordinating the activities of 250 researchers in industry, at research institutes and universities.
Various state-of-the-art laboratories and pilot production lines are jointly used for dedicated research programs which are executed in close cooperation with the solar business community.
Solliance partners are: ECN, imec, TNO, Holst Centre, TU/e, Forschungszentrum Jülich, University Hasselt and Delft University of Technology.
Solliance offers participation in its research programs and opens up its lab facilities to new entrants, either from industry or in research. On the basis of clear Intellectual Property (IP) agreements, each industrial partner can participate in this research effort, or alternatively, hire equipment and experts to further develop its own technology.