EPFL scientists have fabricated a low-cost and ultra-stable perovskite solar cell that they say has been running at 11.2% efficiency for over a year, without performance loss. While perovskite solar cells promise, more economical solar energy and have achieved a conversion efficiency of above 22 percent, they have proven unstable. However, EPFL scientists have created a design that they say resolves the stability problem.
They published the work in Nature Communications. The lab of Mohammad Khaja Nazeeruddin at EPFL collaborated with Michael Grätzel and Solaronix to create a 2D/3D hybrid perovskite solar cell. The cell combines the improved stability of 2D perovskites with 3D forms, which can transport electrical charges and efficiently absorb light across the entire visible spectrum. The 2D/3D perovskite yields efficiencies of 12.9% (carbon-based architecture), and 14.6% (standard mesoporous solar cells).
The scientists employed a fully printable industrial-scale process to build the 10×10 cm2 solar panels. The resulting solar cells have now sustained 11.2% efficiency operation for over 10,000 hours while showing zero performance loss (as measured under standard conditions). The researchers claim that the breakthrough resolves the problem of perovskite solar cell stability, and can viably commercialize the technology.
Funding for the work came from Solaronix, the Horizon 2020 program, the Marie Curie Institute, and the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013).
G. Grancini, C. Roldán-Carmona, I. Zimmermann, et al. One-Year stable perovskite solar cells by 2D/3D interface engineering. Nature Communications 01 June 2017. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms15684