Researchers in South Korea have developed inexpensive and highly stable perovskite solar cells by coating perovskite in a water-resistant material.
AsianScientist (Nov. 7, 2017) – In a study published in Nano Latters, scientists in Korea have created inexpensive and highly stable perovskite solar cells by coating perovskite with fluorine functionalized graphene, protecting the perovskite from moisture damage. Perovskite solar cells are widely regarded as the next-generation of solar cells, with the potential to surpass the efficiency of silicon-based solar cells. However, perovskite materials decompose in moist conditions and are unable to survive even for one day without proper encapsulation. Gold functionalized graphene is commonly used in encapsulating perovskite, but this makes the manufacturing process more expensive. In this study, a team of scientists lead by Professor Kim Jin Young from the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST) fabricated a perovskite solar cell device using solution processes, which involve the coating of perovskite materials on a flexible film. The researchers then used edged-selectively fluorine functionalized graphene nano-platelets to fully cover the perovskite active layer and protect against the ingress of water, resulting in highly stable perovskite solar cells. Their method paves the way for adding solar cells to wearable devices. Because fluorine was used to functionalize graphene instead of gold, this method makes it cheaper to manufacture perovskite solar cells, thereby making commercialization more likely. “This study overcame the weakness of perovskite solar cells that have high efficiency but low stability,” said Kim. “This breakthrough holds substantial promise as the base technology for next-generation solar cells, as well as various IoT devices and displays.”