Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

TU Delft raises energy yield of ‘cheap’ solar panels

06.07.2010
Researchers from TU Delft have shown how the energy yield of relatively cheap solar panels, made of amorphous silicon, can be considerably raised: from around 7 percent to 9 percent. Gijs van Elzakker will obtain his PhD on this subject from TU Delft on Tuesday 6 July.

Amorphous

Researcher Gijs van Elzakker focused on solar panels that are made from so-called amorphous silicon, as opposed to the more commonly used crystalline silicon. Amorphous silicon has the great advantage that the solar panels can be produced relatively cheaply using a very thin layer of silicon (thin film solar cells).

Yield

The major disadvantage of solar panels made with amorphous silicon is that their yield is relatively low. While crystalline silicon achieves a yield of around 18 percent, amorphous silicon, until recently, remained at around 7 percent. This is partly because the amorphous silicon panels suffer from the so-called Staebler-Wronski effect. This phenomenon, which has still not been fully explained by science, manifests itself in the first hours that the panels are exposed to sunlight. Because of this the yield falls by around a third, from around 10 percent to around 7 percent.

Silane

In his doctoral research Gijs van Elzakker investigated adaptations in the production process that could raise the yield. The silicon layer in the solar panels he studied is made of silane gas (SiH4). The structure of the silicon layer can be changed by diluting this silane gas with hydrogen during the production process. The use of hydrogen appears to enable the reduction of the negative Staebler-Wronski effect.

Hydrogen

Van Elzakker concentrated, among other factors, on the proportion of hydrogen to silane gas. He determined the optimum ratio of hydrogen to silane in the production process. Van Elzakker: “We showed that the influence of the Staebler-Wronski effect can be considerably reduced in this way. If this knowledge is applied in the manufacture of this type of solar cells, a yield of 9 per cent can be expected.”

Gijs van Elzakker’s findings are already being applied on the production line of the German company Inventux Technologies, where he now works.

Ineke Boneschansker | alfa
Further information:
http://www.tudelft.nl
http://www.tudelft.nl/live/pagina.jsp?id=63a3cd64-183b-41cf-a198-947467e4146c&lang=nl

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Stretchable biofuel cells extract energy from sweat to power wearable devices
22.08.2017 | University of California - San Diego

nachricht Laser sensor LAH-G1 - optical distance sensors with measurement value display
15.08.2017 | WayCon Positionsmesstechnik GmbH

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Cholesterol-lowering drugs may fight infectious disease

22.08.2017 | Health and Medicine

Meter-sized single-crystal graphene growth becomes possible

22.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells

22.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>