More Efficient Polymer Solar Cells with Textured Substrate

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New breakthroughs have been successfully carried out by scientists at Iowa university and U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory to make a polymer solar cells become more efficient 20 percent with a textured substrate which can increase the absorption of light.

This is an old idea that has never been successfully performed on polymer solar cells because the additional processing steps necessary or technically challenging coating technology. This is different to the use of a textured substrate in traditional silicon-based solar cells to boost solar cell performance which is commonly done.

The polymer solar cells become more efficient with a thin and uniform light-absorbing layer on textured substrates which can increase the light absorption. Scientists believe that one key to make more efficient solar cells made from flexible, lightweight and easy-to-manufacture polymers was to find a textured substrate pattern that allowed deposition of a uniformly thin light-absorbing layer even in the ridges and valleys.

This technology has been filed by the Iowa State University Research Foundation Inc. to patented and to license the technology to solar cell manufacturers.

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