Unconventional methods to exploit monocrystalline silicon and other established materials in photovoltaic (PV) systems can create new engineering opportunities, device capabilities and cost structures. Here we show a type of composite luminescent concentrator PV system that embeds large scale, interconnected arrays of microscale silicon solar cells in thin matrix layers doped with luminophores. Photons that strike cells directly generate power in the usual manner; those incident on the matrix launch wavelength-downconverted photons that reflect and waveguide into the sides and bottom surfaces of the cells to increase further their power output, by more than 300% in examples reported here. Unlike conventional luminescent photovoltaics, this unusual design can be implemented in ultrathin, mechanically bendable formats. Detailed studies of design considerations and fabrication aspects for such devices, using both experimental and computational approaches, provide quantitative descriptions of the underlying materials science and optics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)