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 have developed a method to manufacture perovskite solar cells that allows the top and bottom portion of the cell to be fabricated independently. This method enables both heterojunction devices and devices with a n-type electron transportation layer (ETL) from the n-i-p architecture and a p-type hole transportation layer (HTL) from the p-i-n architecture. It also allows improved device stability by building a gradient into the active layer and by using alternate contacts. The approach can be used at low pressures (250-300 psi) suitable for roll to roll manufacturing. Most significantly, the method allows active and transportation layers to be manipulated independently, self-encapsulates the devices, and improves uniformity, crystallinity, and orientation of the active layer.
This technology is within the Perovskites at Scale and Device Architecture group of NREL’s perovskite portfolio. 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.
Applications and Industries
- Enables new devices architecture
- Independent manipulation of active and transportation layers
- Allows the manufacture of self-encapsulated devices
- Improved stability and performance