CUED Publications database

Nanowire-based multifunctional antireflection coatings for solar cells

Hiralal, P and Chien, C and Lal, NN and Abeygunasekara, W and Kumar, A and Butt, H and Zhou, H and Unalan, HE and Baumberg, JJ and Amaratunga, GAJ (2014) Nanowire-based multifunctional antireflection coatings for solar cells. Nanoscale, 6. pp. 14555-14562. ISSN 2040-3364

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Organic (P3HT/PCBM) solar cells are coated with ZnO nanowires as antireflection coatings and show up to 36% enhancement in efficiency. The improvement is ascribed to an effective refractive index which results in Fabry-Perot absorption bands which match the polymer band-gap. The effect is particularly pronounced at high light incidence angles. Simultaneously, the coating is used as a UV-barrier, demonstrating a 50% reduction in the rate of degradation of the polymers under accelerated lifetime testing. The coating also allows the surface of the solar cell to self-clean via two distinct routes. On one hand, photocatalytic degradation of organic material on ZnO is enhanced by the high surface area of the nanowires and quantified by dye degradation measurements. On the other, the surface of the nanowires can be functionalized to tune the water contact angle from superhydrophilic (16°) to superhydrophobic (152°), resulting in self-cleaning via the Lotus effect. The multifunctional ZnO nanowires are grown by a low cost, low temperature hydrothermal method, compatible with process limitations of organic solar cells.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Div B > Electronics, Power & Energy Conversion
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2017 19:10
Last Modified: 15 Apr 2021 06:35
DOI: 10.1039/c4nr01914h