Photovoltaic materials : Present efficiencies and future challenges

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Publication date
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.aad4424
Reference A. Polman, M.W. Knight, E.C. Garnett, B. Ehrler and W.C. Sinke, Photovoltaic materials : Present efficiencies and future challenges, Science 352, 6283, Article number: 307 + aad4424: 1-10 (2016)
Groups Hybrid Solar Cells, Nanoscale Solar Cells, Photonic Materials

Recent developments in photovoltaic materials have led to continual improvements in their efficiency. We review the electrical characteristics of 16 widely studied geometries of photovoltaic materials with efficiencies of 10 to 29%. Comparison of these characteristics to the fundamental limits based on the Shockley-Queisser detailed-balance model provides a basis for identifying the key limiting factors, related to efficient light management and charge carrier collection, for these materials. Prospects for practical application and large-area fabrication are discussed for each material.