Efficient and Flexible solar cells from Nanopillars
Nanopillars… these are an optically active arrangement of semiconductors designed in arrays of nanoscale pillars from low-cost and flexible material, each a single crystal with dimensions measured in billionths of a meter.
Tell me about solar cells too…
A solar cell’s basic job is to convert light energy into charge-carrying electrons and ‘holes’ (the absence of an electron), which flow to electrodes to produce a current.
To take advantage of abundant solar energy in nature we need to be able to mass-produce efficient solar cells…Unlike a typical two-dimensional solar cell, a nanopillar array offers much more surface for collecting light. Therefore a nanopillar arrangement is,
- More sensitive to light
- Has a greatly enhanced ability to separate electrons from holes
- And is a more efficient collector of these charge carriers
Who is involved?
Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California at Berkeley.
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