NREL and CSEM show future promise of dual-junction stacked cell with new efficiency record

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email
NREL and CSEM show future promise of dual-junction stacked  III-V/Si cell with new efficiency record of 29.8%.

Collaboration by the U.S. Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and at the Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM) has set a certified record conversion efficiency of 29.8% for a III-V/Si solar cell.

The mechanically stacked and separately made solar cell was comprised of a silicon heterojunction base cell with a gallium indium phosphide cell on top, giving it a dual-junction formation that “exceeded the theoretical limit of 29.4 percent for crystalline silicon solar cells,” according to senior researcher at NREL, David Young. 

“We believe that the silicon heterojunction technology is today the most efficient silicon technology for application in tandem solar cells” said, Christophe Ballif, head of PV activities at CSEM.

“CSEM partnered with the NREL scientists with the objective to demonstrate that 30 percent efficient tandem cells can be realized using silicon heterojunction bottom cells, thanks to the combination with high performance top cells such as those developed by NREL,” said Matthieu Despeisse, the manager of crystalline silicon activities at CSEM.

A new design for the dual-junction solar cell and contributions from CSEM were said to be key to setting the new record, yet greater efficiencies are possible with closer collaboration, according to the research centres. 

Multi-junction cells hold the promise of significantly higher efficiencies than that of conventional silicon cells but have remained extremely expensive to fabricate and confined to niche space markets. 

Ultimately, at some future point in time, sequential high-volume thin-film deposition techniques could produce lower-cost cells. 

Read Next

PV Tech Premium
July 15, 2021
Earlier this week the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) published its 2021 Annual Technology Baseline (ATB) document, detailing the continued reduction in the levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) of the country’s core generators. Liam Stoker takes a look at the data and discusses just how cheap solar, and solar-storage, could become.
July 13, 2021
Utility-scale solar PV in the US could be as a cheap as US$16.89/MWh by the end of the decade, new analysis published by the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) has shown.
June 2, 2021
Solar cell manufacturer Maxwell Technologies has celebrated a record mass production efficiency for its heterojunction (HJ) solar cell.
June 1, 2021
Renewables investor Magnora AG has said it will increase its investment in perovskite solar specialist Evolar, taking a 40.7% stake in the company.
May 31, 2021
Researchers at the University of Sheffield have found a new way to extend the life of perovskite materials by more than three months, paving the way for new solar cell technologies.
May 10, 2021
LONGi Solar has set a record conversion efficiency of 25.09% for its N-type monocrystalline bifacial TOPCon cell that has been independently verified by the Institute for Solar Energy Research in Hamelin.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
August 19, 2021
At 9am (PT) | 6pm (CEST)
Solar Media Events
August 25, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 6, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 19, 2021