College of Toronto Engineering researchers have mixed two rising applied sciences for subsequent-era solar energy—and found that every one helps stabilize the opposite. The ensuing hybrid materials is a significant step towards decreasing the price of solar energy whereas multiplying the methods it may be used.
Right now just about all photo voltaic cells are manufactured from excessive-purity silicon. It is a nicely-established expertise, and in recent times the manufacturing value has dropped considerably attributable to economies of scale. However, silicon has an higher restrict to its effectivity. A workforce led by Professor Ted Sargent is pursuing complementary supplies that may improve the photo voltaic-harvesting potential of silicon by absorbing wavelengths of light that silicon doesn’t.
One of many key challenges dealing with each perovskites and quantum dots is stability. At room temperature, some varieties of perovskites expertise an adjustment of their three-D crystal structure that renders them clear—they not absolutely soak up photo voltaic radiation.
For his or her half, quantum dots should be coated in a thin layer often called a passivation layer. This layer—solely a single molecule thick—prevents the quantum dots from sticking to one another. However temperatures above 100 C can destroy the passivation layer, inflicting the quantum dots to combination or clump collectively, wrecking their skill to reap mild.
In a paper revealed right now in Nature, a staff of researchers from Sargent’s lab report a method to mix perovskites and quantum dots that stabilizes each.