Nano-electronics research center imec announced today at Intersolar Europe, a thin-film perovskite photovoltaic (PV) module of a power conversion efficiency of eight percent measured over an aperture area of 16cm2. The remarkable geometrical fill factor of more than 95 percent for this size of module, demonstrates the potential of scaling up this novel thin-film PV technology from cell to module level. The achievement is an important breakthrough in realizing a marketable thin-film solution for applications such as building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV).
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 results demonstrate the achievement of both factors of perovskite-based solar cells.
“Not only is imec improving the perovskite material, but it is also adjusting the cell and module structure to enhance the conversion efficiency of perovskite solar cells and modules by more than 20 percent,” said Tom Aernouts, R&D manager for thin-film photovoltaics at imec. “The rapid progress that we are making is based on our strong background and track record in traditional organic photovoltaics.”
Imec develops a platform for glass-based perovskite modules and collaborates with the Dutch joint thin-film PV research initiative Solliance to develop foil-based processes. 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. Imec is working to further increase the conversion efficiency of silicon solar cells by creating a stack with a perovskite cell on top of a silicon solar cell. The perovskite cell will capture the light which is not absorbed by silicon, as such enabling conversion efficiencies of more than 30 percent.
Imec (imec.be) 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 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.
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.