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Effective harvesting of photons for improvement of solar energy conversion by graded bandgap multilayer solar cells

Authors:

IM Dharmadasa ,

GB
About IM
Materials and Engineering Research Institute, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield S1 1WB, UK
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NDPSR Kalyanaratne,

LK
About NDPSR
Department of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Moratuwa, Moratuwa
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R Dharmadasa

GB
About R
Department of Chemistry, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK
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Abstract

Various ways to harvest photons in the solar spectrum and heat energy from the surroundings have been considered by utilizing solid state physics principles. A graded bandgap multi-layer solar cell has been designed to absorb UV, visible and infrared radiation, and to combine impact-ionization and impurity photovoltaic (PV) effect to enhance photo-generation of charge carriers and the collection. The above theoretical concepts were experimentally tested using the well researched material system, GaAs/AlxGa(1-x)As. The highest reported Voc ~ 1175 mV together with the highest possible fill factors (FFs) in the mid 80 %’s, have been achieved for the initial devices. The overall efficiency achieved using only two growths is ~ 20 %. As expected from the initial design, the impurity PV effect is experimentally observed producing Voc values in the range of 650-900 mV under complete darkness for the GaAs/AlxGa(1-x)As based devices. Both the theoretical concepts and experimental results are presented in this paper.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4038/jnsfsr.v41i2.5702

J.Natn.Sci.Foundation Sri Lanka 2013 41(2):73-80

How to Cite: Dharmadasa, I., Kalyanaratne, N. and Dharmadasa, R., 2013. Effective harvesting of photons for improvement of solar energy conversion by graded bandgap multilayer solar cells. Journal of the National Science Foundation of Sri Lanka, 41(2), pp.73–80. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jnsfsr.v41i2.5702
Published on 26 Jun 2013.
Peer Reviewed

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