Korean University team develops 21.2% efficient perovskite solar cell

A study published in the March issue of academic journal Science demonstrates a process which has produced hybrid organic/inorganic perovskite solar cells of 21.2% efficiency, with good stability – retaining 93% of the initial performance after 1,000 hours of light exposure.

The University claim this represents a new world record for perovskite solar cells, in terms of both efficiency and stability.

The study, a collaboration between UNIST and the Korea Institute of Chemical Technology (KRICT), proposes a new manufacturing method for perovskites, which it calls the ‘hot-pressing method’. The University says that this method allows the production of stable, low cost-high efficiency perovskite solar cells.

Perovskites have been an area of high interest for the PV industry for several years now, as the material has the potential to be used in cheap and highly efficient solar cells. Research teams and companies all over the world are working to achieve commercialization of the technology.

UNIST’s announcement is encouraging, as stability has been one of the key issues researchers have struggled with, although sensitivity to heat and moisture, as well as light still provide barriers to commercialization.

Studies have shown that perovskite cells could produce efficiencies as high as 30%. The majority which have achieved efficiencies comparable to that of commercial crystalline silicon, however, have been much smaller. A research team at the University of New South Wales in Australia recently achieved 12.1% efficiency on a cell measuring 16cm².