How Solar Cell Efficiencies are Improving with New Semiconductors?

Soon, the efficiency of solar cells might increase and give way to high-performing solar panels.

FREMONT, CA: Solar energy is gaining a lot of momentum. Until very recently, solar energy was considered a non-conventional option with minimum adoption. As the prices of solar cells started falling, the rates of adoption grew gradually. Today, solar power is considered to be an essential alternative to pollution and non-renewable sources of energy. However, the work towards achieving better operational efficiencies continues. Teams of experts and researchers are always in pursuit of enhancing semiconductors to get better results out of solar infrastructure. 

Recently, an article published in c&en talked about developments in semiconductor material discovered by researchers at MIT that could enhance energy conversion by solar cells. Currently, the standard amount of efficiency displayed by the solar panels is at 29 percent. According to the results of the new research, a single layer of silicon can have a conversion efficiency of 35 percent. This is a significant increase and has the potential to give electricity generation from solar cells a big boost. 

Solar cells contain semiconductors like silicon that can convert a particular range of wavelengths of sunlight into electric energy. The range of wavelength which is available is a property of the material present in the solar cell. The response and efficiency of conversion of solar to electric energy can be enhanced by expanding the range of wavelengths. According to the article in c&en, researchers have found a material that allows a combination of tetracene and silicon to work in solar cells. Going forward, one can expect these results to be used for the development of commercial products.

Once the experts are able to develop the properties for the markets, the technology will be available for the energy industry. The jump in efficiency will empower solar plants to generate much more power than their current capacities. Besides, innovations like these pave the way for more advancement in the future.

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