Posted: December 18, 2009

New materials and architectures for organic solar cells - beyond the Shockley-Queisser limit

(Nanowerk News) University of Queensland (UQ) researchers have been awarded $945,000 funding from the Australian Solar Institute.
Professors Paul Meredith and Paul Burn of the UQ Centre for Organic Photonics and Electronics have received funding for the project entitled: New Materials and Architectures for Organic Solar Cells - Beyond the Shockley-Queisser Limit.
Organic photovoltaic solar cells (OPVs) also known as plastic solar cells offer potentially a low cost, flexible and adaptable solar cell which can generate electricity and be integrated into buildings and consumer items.
There are however a number of challenges with the current generation of OPVs which are holding back their commercial potential.
In particular OPVs achieve considerably lower rates of energy conversion to electricity compared to the silicon PV cells which dominate the market.
The University of Queensland project will take advantage of ideas which have been shown to dramatically increase the efficiency of traditional inorganic PV cells and apply these principles to plastic solar cells.
University of Queensland Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Max Lu welcomed the funding from the Australian Solar Institute which builds on the almost $2 million Queensland Government support this year for the research under the National and International Research Alliances Program.
Professor Lu said Professor Meredith and Professor Burn's project had the potential of expanding Queensland's high-tech industry base and giving rise to new jobs and new skills.
Source: University of Queensland