A Global Research Center for Environment and Energy based on Nanomaterials Science of Japan (GREEN) research team has successfully developed perovskite solar cells with good reproducibility and stability as well as exhibiting ideal semiconducting properties.

Perovskite solar cells are a promising low-cost and highly-efficient next-generation technology for solar cells.  The study has been published in March 2015 in Applied Physics Letters, a journal issued by the American Institute of Physics.

Lead-halide-based perovskite (hereinafter simply referred to as perovskite) has been used as an experimental solar cell material for about six years. Perovskite solar cells are promising low-cost and highly-efficient next-generation solar cells because they can be produced through low-temperature processes such as spin coating, and generate a large amount of electricity due to their high optical absorption together with the high open-circuit voltage.

The research on perovskite solar cells is making rapid progress. In order to identify the semiconducting properties of perovskites and formulate guidelines for the development of highly efficient solar cell materials, Japan’s National Institute for Materials Science launched an ad hoc Team on Perovskite PV Cells last October led by the deputy director-general of GREEN.

While the conventional perovskite solar cells have demonstrated high conversion efficiency, they were not sufficiently stable due to their low reproducibility and the hysteresis in the current-voltage curves depending on the direction of the voltage sweeps. For this reason, the semiconducting properties of perovskites had not been identified. Researchers successfully created reproducible and stable perovskite solar cells through two steps.

First they created perovskite solar cells with a simplified structure while strictly eliminating moisture and oxygen by employing the fabrication technique they had developed for the organic solar cells in the past.

Then they found that the perovskite solar cells are stable and observed no hysteresis in the current-voltage curve. Furthermore, they found that the perovskite solar cell material serves as an excellent semiconductor with ideal diode properties.

The team proposed an equivalent circuit model that explains the semiconducting properties of perovskites based on analysis of the internal resistance of perovskite solar cells. This model indicated the existence of a charge transport process derived from an impurity level between the conduction and valence bands in the perovskite layer. Due to this transport process, the efficiency of perovskite solar cells may be suppressed to some extent.

For future studies the researchers will investigate the cause of the impurity level and its influence on solar cells. In addition, they intend to remove the impurity level and improve the efficiency of the solar cells, thereby contributing to energy and environmental conservation.

Perovskite technology is getting closer. One wonders how the organic and silicon competitors will respond.


Name (required)

Email (required)


Speak your mind