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Fraunhofer beats records for solar cells

The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE has announced on its website that it has set two records for the efficiency of silicon-based monolithic triple-junction solar cells.

27 Sep. 2019
Photo: Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE

More specifically, for monolithic triple solar cells made of silicon and III-V semiconductor materials. These ‘multi-junction photovoltaic cells’ combine multiple absorber materials to help achieve significantly better efficiency than with conventional silicon solar cells. The ISE’s first world record is for a solar cell manufactured by wafer bonding, whereby the efficiency value has been increased to 34.1%. According to the press release , the researchers in Dr. Andreas Bett’s team believe that they can achieve efficiency values of up to 36%.

The second record was set for a silicon solar cell with directly deposited III-V semiconductor layers (GaInP/GaAs). Here, the researchers achieved an efficiency value of 24.3%, surpassing their own record of 22.3% set in December 2018. This procedure involves considerably fewer process steps than wafer bonding, which means it is particularly advantageous in the industrial implementation of this technology.