Stability of perovskite based tandem solar cells under thermal cycling for space applications
Perovskite semiconductors have been reported to demonstrate high resilience to high energy radiation which has lead to a studies on their suitability in multijunction solar cells for space applications. This is in particular motivated by additional benefits such as a potentially lower cost for deposition of the perovskites and higher specific power. However, photovoltaics in space also undergoes thermal cycling where the temperatures vary between 373 K and 173 K. Therefore, any significant mismatch in thermal expansion in the layers within the device can result in catastrophic mechanical failure of the photovoltaic modules. Through this application, access to the EPFL/CSEM - PV LAB/PV CENTER (LARGE AREA) PSK/SI TANDEM PROCESSING infrastructure is requested for fabrication of perovskite/silicon tandem cells and reference single junction perovskite solar cells. These will be evaluated for their optoelectronic and mechanical characteristics under thermal cycling at Surrey.
Status: Ongoing
Date of proposal: 02/12/2021
Start date: 16/01/2023
End Date: 20/01/2023
Used Instruments: Proton irradiation facilities (low and high energy) at the University of Surreys Ion Beam Center. AM0 test facility for space PV testing.
Experimental Technique: Proton irradiation testing (50 keV and 1 MeV). Efficiency measurements under AM1.5G and AM0 spectra. Vacuum stability testing.
Experiment Description: The experiment aimed to study the mechanical and radiation durability of perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells under conditions relevant to space applications, focusing on thermal cycling and proton irradiation effects.
Type Samples: Perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells.
Sample Description: Five silicon cells and five perovskite/silicon tandem cells provided by EPFL/CSEM. Unencapsulated cells to minimize proton beam-induced color center formation.
Experiment Data Type: Radiation hardness data under proton irradiation. Efficiency measurements pre- and post-irradiation. Vacuum stability data.
Characterization Technics: Proton beam damage assessment. Efficiency testing under various light spectra. Vacuum stability assessment.
Characterization Data Type: Changes in solar cell efficiency and performance due to proton irradiation. Vacuum stability impact on cell performance.
Analyzed Data: Comparative analysis of degradation in silicon and perovskite sub-cells under different proton irradiation conditions. Assessment of the mechanical durability of tandem cells under space-like conditions.
Main Targets Project: Understanding the mechanical stability of perovskite/silicon tandems under thermal cycling relevant to space applications. Assessing the radiation hardness and vacuum stability of the cells.
Main Achievements Findings: The sample exposed to 50 keV protons showed little change in performance, indicating good radiation hardness of the perovskite sub-cell. The sample exposed to 1 MeV protons showed significant degradation in the silicon subcell. The cell kept under vacuum showed very little degradation, indicating good vacuum stability. Plans for further studies to understand the origins of degradation in the silicon sub-cell and the unusual radiation hardness of the perovskite.
Review 4
How would you describe your experience with the VIPERLAB opportunity? How did the experience/visit at EPFL/CSEM meet your expectations?
Although the visit was conducted in a “remote” fashion due to challenges in arranging for Visa, the experience was useful to carry out preliminary studies and completely met the expectations for the activity
Did you face any difficulties during your visit or application process?
The key challenge faced was arranging for visa. At the time of applying several months of delays were anticipated which delayed the process.
Does this VIPERLAB experience at EPFL/CSEM bring you closer to your research objectives? How?
Yes. It helped us identify the promise of perovskites for space applications while indicating the weakness of silicon.
What other VIPERLAB activities have you participated in, or would you like to participate in?
We would like to follow up with the following 2 activities:Integration of a device optimisation process we have carried out at Surrey on hydrophobic self assembled monolayers to perovskite/silicon tandem architectures to see if our work can improve the performance.Carry out stability testing for a manuscript currently taking place
Do you intend or already did publish/present your collected results in a paper or conference?
The results are at a very early stage, so further work is expected to be carried out to bring this to the level required for a publication.