This report details that as PERC solar photovoltaic (PV) cells reach their theoretical efficiency limits, new technologies and innovations are required to increase PV efficiency.
This project targets reduced solar cell cost, achieved by improving the efficiency with which they convert sunlight into electricity. Improved efficiency reduces cost by reducing the area required for a given power output, reducing the cost of encapsulation, transport and installation for a given power. This is why the whole industry is presently employing an earlier generation of UNSW cell technology known as the PERC cell, which allows high efficiency up to 25%. To further boost the efficiency of Silicon (Si) solar cells, the most viable approach is to stack thin-film cells made from another a higher bandgap material onto the top surface of a silicon cell. One overlying cell will eventually allow 25% efficiency to be increased to 35% and two overlying cells to 40%.