Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
  Solar Energy News  




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



SOLAR DAILY
Game changer for organic solar cells
by Staff Writers
Santa Barbara CA (SPX) Dec 06, 2016


Closeup of a polymer film on a glass substrate before immersion in a polyoxometalte solution to electrically dope the film over a limited depth. Image courtesy Christopher Moore, Georgia Tech. For a larger version of this image please go here.

With a new technique for manufacturing single-layer organic polymer solar cells, scientists at UC Santa Barbara and three other universities might very well move organic photovoltaics into a whole new generation of wearable devices and enable small-scale distributed power generation.

The simple doping solution-based process involves briefly immersing organic semiconductor films in a solution at room temperature. This technique, which could replace a more complex approach that requires vacuum processing, has the potential to affect many device platforms, including organic printed electronics, sensors, photodetectors and light-emitting diodes. The researchers' findings appear in the journal Nature Materials.

"Because the new process is simple to use, general in terms of applicability and should be configurable into mass productions, it has the potential to greatly accelerate the widespread implementation of plastic electronics, of which solar cells are one example," said co-author Guillermo Bazan, director of UCSB's Center for Polymers and Organic Solids.

"One can see impacts in technologies ranging from light-emitting devices to transistors to transparent solar cells that can be incorporated into building design or greenhouses."

Studied in many academic and industrial laboratories for two decades, organic solar cells have experienced a continuous and steady improvement in their power conversion efficiency with laboratory values reaching 13 percent compared to around 20 percent for commercial silicon-based cells. Though polymer-based cells are currently less efficient, they require less energy to produce than silicon cells and can be more easily recycled at the end of their lifetimes.

This new method, which provides a way of inducing p-type electrical doping in organic semiconductor films, offers a simpler alternative to the air-sensitive molybdenum oxide layers used in the most efficient polymer solar cells.

Thin films of organic semiconductors and their blends are immersed in polyoxometalate solutions in nitromethane for a brief time - on the order of minutes. The geometry of these new devices is unique as the functions of hole and electron collection are built into the light-absorbing active layer, resulting in the simplest single-layer geometry with few interfaces.

"High-performing organic solar cells require a multiple layer device structure," said co-author Thuc-Quyen Nguyen, a professor in UCSB's Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.

"The realization of single-layer photovoltaics with our approach will simplify the device fabrication process and therefore should reduce the cost. The initial lifetime testing of these single layer devices is promising. This exciting development will help transform organic photovoltaics into a commercial technology."

Organic solar cells are unique within the context of providing transparent, flexible and easy-to-fabricate energy-producing devices. These could result in a host of novel applications, such as energy-harvesting windows and films that enable zero-cost farming by creating greenhouses that support crops and produce energy at the same time.


Comment on this article using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

.


Related Links
University of California - Santa Barbara
All About Solar Energy at SolarDaily.com






Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Previous Report
SOLAR DAILY
Perovskite solar cells hit new world efficiency record
Sydney, Australia (SPX) Dec 02, 2016
They're flexible, cheap to produce and simple to make - which is why perovskites are the hottest new material in solar cell design. And now, engineers at Australia's University of New South Wales in Sydney have smashed the trendy new compound's world efficiency record. Speaking at the Asia-Pacific Solar Research Conference in Canberra on Friday 2 December, Anita Ho-Baillie, a Senior Resear ... read more


SOLAR DAILY
Investing in the 'bioeconomy' could create jobs and reduce carbon emissions

Argonne researchers study how reflectivity of biofuel crops impacts climate

UNIST researchers turn waste gas into road-ready diesel fuel

NextCoal to produce bio-coal for export to Japan, bio-oil for domestic use

SOLAR DAILY
Metallic Glass Gears Make for Graceful Robots

It takes less than a second to tell humans from androids

Designing Agile Human-Machine Teams

Micro-bubbles make big impact

SOLAR DAILY
Ireland gets a bit greener with funding from Europe

New York to bid in Federal Offshore Wind Auction

Owl-inspired wing design reduces wind turbine noise by 10 decibels

DONG Energy sets wind energy sights on Taiwan

SOLAR DAILY
MPs to grill Merkel over VW 'dieselgate' scandal

China slaps new 10% tax on super-luxury cars

Apple reveals autonomous vehicle ambitions

Car manufacturers to juice Europe with e-charging network

SOLAR DAILY
Quantum obstacle course changes material from superconductor to insulator

FSU professor designs new material to better store hydrogen fuel

Efficient catalysts key to turning water into fuel

Physicists spell 'AV' by manipulating Abrikosov vortices

SOLAR DAILY
Fukushima costs to double to nearly $180 bn: report

'Diamond-age' of power generation as nuclear batteries developed

Nuclear energy: who's advancing and who's retreating

Swiss reject speedy nuclear phaseout

SOLAR DAILY
China power plant collapse kills at least 22: Xinhua

Climate: Four nations map course to carbon-free economies

Study: LED lights draw fewer insects

Shifting focus leaves mixed bag for German utility RWE

SOLAR DAILY
Green groups pressure Spain over 'at risk' wetlands

Scientists say North should commit to pay for forest conservation in South

Tribal protesters with arrows try to enter Brazil's Congress

Remote Amazon tribe kills illegal gold miners: officials




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement