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Tuned Emission of Lead Halide Perovskite Nanocrystals Through Cationic Transformation and Acetate Incorporation 

Stage: Development

Perovskite photovoltaics are a new class of light absorbers with exceptional and unparalleled progress in solar power performance. A perovskite is any material with a specific ABX3 crystal structure. In photovoltaic applications, the A cation can be either organic, inorganic, or hybrid in composition. The B component is typically a metal cation such as lead, and X is a halide such as iodine or bromine. Work on solar cells using perovskite materials has advanced rapidly as a result of the material’s excellent light absorption, charge-carrier mobilities, and lifetimes – resulting in high device efficiencies with low-cost, industry-scalable technology. While the potential for perovskite photovoltaic devices is high, commercialization will require overcoming other challenges relating to material stability, efficiency, and environmental compatibility.

Researchers at NREL, the University of Florida and the University of Southern Illinois have invented a process to perform cation substitution to create new perovskite materials with novel properties. By extracting CsBr salt and exposing the remaining material to new salts researchers created nanocrystals with new emission properties and quasi-two-dimensional networked layers resulting in sheets with light emission properties that are narrow, tunable and bright. Additionally, the tunability of these new materials make them well suited for use in tandem architecture photovoltaic applications.

This technology is within the Film Chemistry group of NREL’s perovskite portfolio. The Perovskite Film Chemistry category consists of alternative film chemistries to the common methylammonium lead halide (CH3NH3PbI3) perovskite devices. These alternative film compositions have been shown to improve the performance of perovskite films, demonstrating both increased stability and efficiency, and to enable perovskite use in alternative mediums such as quantum dots. For further information regarding NREL's broader perovskite portfolio, please visit NREL's Perovskite Patent Portfolio website.

Or contact Bill Hadley, the licensing executive, at Bill.Hadley@nrel.gov.

ROI 18-43

Applications and Industries

  • Perovskites
  • Photovoltaics
  • Lighting/displays 


  • Tunable perovskite films
  • Bright, narrow emission spectra