3 years ago

Nanoscale Back Contact Perovskite Solar Cell Design for Improved Tandem Efficiency

Nanoscale Back Contact Perovskite Solar Cell Design for Improved Tandem Efficiency
Eric Johlin, Gede W. P. Adhyaksa, Erik C. Garnett
Tandem photovoltaics, combining absorber layers with two distinct band gap energies into a single device, provide a practical solution to reduce thermalization losses in solar energy conversion. Traditionally, tandem devices have been assembled using two-terminal (2-T) or four-terminal (4-T) configurations; the 2-T limits the tandem performance due to the series connection requiring current matching, while the standard 4-T configuration requires at least three transparent electrical contacts, which reduce the total collected power due to unavoidable parasitic absorption. Here, we introduce a novel architecture based on a nanoscale back-contact for a thin-film top cell in a three terminal (3-T) configuration. Using coupled optical–electrical modeling, we optimize this architecture for a planar perovskite-silicon tandem, highlighting the roles of nanoscale contacts to reduce the required perovskite electronic quality. For example, with an 18% planar silicon base cell, the 3-T back contact design can reach a 32.9% tandem efficiency with a 10 μm diffusion length perovskite material. Using the same perovskite quality, the 4-T and 2-T configurations only reach 30.2% and 24.8%, respectively. We also confirm that the same 3-T efficiency advantage applies when using 25% efficient textured silicon base cells, where the tandems reach 35.2% and 32.8% efficiency for the 3-T, and 4-T configurations, respectively. Furthermore, because our design is based on the individual subcells being back-contacted, further improvements can be readily made by optimizing the front surface, which is left free for additional antireflective coating, light trapping, surface passivation, and photoluminescence outcoupling enhancements.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.7b01092

DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.7b01092

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