Imec and chemicals company Solvay are once again presenting the development of a new organic PV module. The companies have announced that the world-record certified 5.5% efficiency was achieved using an inverted bulk heterojunction architecture developed by imec, in close collaboration with Solvay and a proprietary ActivInk semiconductor from Polyera.
Organic solar cells hold the potential for integration into building façades and windows, due to their optical translucency and ability to be manufactured on large areas at high-throughput. The efficiency of organic solar cells is less dependent on the intensity and the angle of the incoming light; however, to become a relevant industrial solution, upscaling towards an industrial process is necessary, as is a further increase in performance and longer lifetime.
Tom Aernouts, R&D group leader of organic photovoltaics at imec, noted: “We are excited to have achieved these excellent results at module level. They are an important step towards upscaling organic solar cell technology to high-volume production. With further device and module structure optimizations and optimization of the photo-active material of the cell, we will continue increasing efficiency and lifetime, which are essential advancements for developing an industry-relevant technology for organic solar cells.”
Imec’s organic photovoltaics activities are currently part of Solliance, a cross-border R&D cluster that leverages the know-how of key players in thin film solar energy technology in the Eindhoven-Leuven-Aachen triangle (ELAT region) to strengthen the position of the region as a world player in thin film photovoltaics.