Lab plant for depositing the CIGS layer in a coevaporation process.
Via EUREC Member, ZSW
Research team pinpoints potential for improving CIGS solar cells
The efficiency of today’s thin-film solar cells with the compound semiconductor made of copper, indium, gallium and selenium (CIGS) has already topped the 23 percent mark, but now a further increase looks to be within reach. A team staffed with researchers from the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) recently identified a key point where the performance of thin-film solar cells can be improved for the cell to convert more sunlight into electricity. Published in the renowned science journal Nature Communications in August 2020, the results of this investigation reveal how manufacturers of CIGS thin-film solar cells can achieve even higher efficiencies.
Great strides have been made in recent years towards CIGS thin-film solar cells’ maximum theoretical efficiency of about 33 percent, but around ten percentage points of potential remains untapped. This shortfall is attributable to loss mechanisms in the CIGS solar cell in the functional layers and at diverse interfaces. Where exactly and why these losses occur has been a point of conjecture and the subject of much debate among experts.
For the complete press release, please read here .
The paper in Nature Communications can be accessed here.