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Enhanced Open-Circuit Voltage Of PbS Nanocrystal Quantum Dot Solar Cells

W. Yoon, J. Boercker, M. Lumb, D. Placencia, E. Foos, J. Tischler
Published 2013 · Materials Science, Medicine

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Nanocrystal quantum dots (QD) show great promise toward improving solar cell efficiencies through the use of quantum confinement to tune absorbance across the solar spectrum and enable multi-exciton generation. Despite this remarkable potential for high photocurrent generation, the achievable open-circuit voltage (Voc) is fundamentally limited due to non-radiative recombination processes in QD solar cells. Here we report the highest open-circuit voltages to date for colloidal QD based solar cells under one sun illumination. This Voc of 692 ± 7 mV for 1.4 eV PbS QDs is a result of improved passivation of the defective QD surface, demonstrating as a function of the QD bandgap (Eg). Comparing experimental Voc variation with the theoretical upper-limit obtained from one diode modeling of the cells with different Eg, these results clearly demonstrate that there is a tremendous opportunity for improvement of Voc to values greater than 1 V by using smaller QDs in QD solar cells.
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