Nanotech Breakthrough Sets World Record For Solar Cell Efficiency

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PhD Bram Hoex (29) and his TU/e colleagues have managed to increment the efficiency of an important type of solar cell from 21.9 to 23.ii percent. They volition present this world record on Wednesday 14 May, at a big briefing on solar energy in San Diego (USA).

Efficiency record for solar cell broken


Netherlands | Posted on May 14th, 2008

Hoex applied an ultra-thin motion picture of aluminum oxide (circa 30 nanometers) on the forepart of a crystalline silicon solar cell. This film has an unprecedented loftier number of congenital-in negative charges, which ensure that the loss of energy on the surface – which is commonly considerable – disappears. Of all the solar light falling onto the solar prison cell, 23.two per centum is now converted into electric energy. That used to exist 21.9 percent.

The efficiency improvement brings u.s. i step closer to the breakthrough of solar energy. An improvement of more than than one per centum may seem modest, yet it can yield millions for solar jail cell producers. According to Hoex’ calculations the improvement tin increment the yield of a production line for solar cells by five millions per twelvemonth. Expectations are that the application of the ultra-sparse movie will toll far less.

Hoex gained his PhD on 8 May inside the TU/e Department of Applied Physics. In the Plasma & Materials Processing (PMP) research group he was supervised past professor Richard van de Sanden and Erwin Kessels. The specialty of this group is the application of extremely thin layers by means of plasmas. The flimsy aluminum oxide flick, adult inside the PMP grouping, may pb to a technological innovation in the field of solar cells. A number of major manufacturers of solar cells have already showed an interest.

The inquiry was conducted in collaboration with the German Fraunhofer Institute. Part of Hoex’ piece of work was paid for by the government, every bit the industrial awarding of this type of high-efficiency solar cell is coming considerably closer as a result.

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