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The Opto-Electronic Physics Which Just Broke the Efficiency Record in Solar Cells

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There are new physical ideas emerging in solar cells. Improvements in Open Circuit Voltage, have now led to new records. At these high performance levels, the electron-hole transport is adequate. The critical issue becomes—management of the photons inside the solar cell. Counter-intuitively, efficient external fluorescence is a necessity for approaching the ultimate performance limits. This has led to the mantra: “A great Solar Cell also needs to be a great Light Emitting Diode”. Alta Devices Inc., has reached 28.8% in a thin-film flat plate cell. The single-crystal thin film technology that achieved these high efficiencies, is created by epitaxial liftoff, and can be produced at cost well below the other thin film solar technologies.

This talk is part of the Scott Lectures series.

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