The 12.0% record cell on a standard size of 1.1 cm² combines two patented absorber materials, which convert light of different wavelengths.
- The 12.0% record cell on a standard size of 1.1 cm² combines two patented absorber materials, which convert light of different wavelengths.
- This world record, established in cooperation with the University of Ulm and TU Dresden, was measured by the accredited testing facility SGS.
Using two different absorber materials creates a stronger absorption of photons and improves energetic utilization through a higher photovoltage. Thanks to OPV’s unique behavior at high temperatures and low light conditions, this 12% efficiency is comparable to about 14% to 15% efficiency for traditional solar technologies like crystalline silicon and thin film PV. Whereas those technologies significantly lose cell efficiency with rising temperatures and decreasing solar irradiation, organic cells increase their efficiency in these conditions leading to a much higher energy harvesting in real life environments.
The new world record efficiency for OPV improves the prior record of 10.7%, which was also set by Heliatek just nine months ago. To achieve this latest leap in cell efficiency, Heliatek capitalized on its in-house R&D know-how and its strong ties to leading universities in the field of OPV. One of the two absorbers was developed and synthesized by Ulm University’s Institute of Organic Chemistry II and Advanced Materials, headed by Prof. Peter Bäuerle, co-founder of Heliatek. The cooperation also encompassed Prof. Karl Leo (co-founder of Heliatek) and Dr. Moritz Riede of the ‘Institut für Angewandte Photophysik’ (IAPP) of ‘TU Dresden’. The world record was enabled by significant R&D support from the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF-Project LOTsE #03EK3505E), the EU FP7 Program (Project X10D #287818), and the German Research Foundation (DFG Priority Program #1355).
Heliatek’s OPV technology based on small molecules (oligomers) is currently being transferred to commercial production. The first production line was launched in spring 2012 and Heliatek Solar Films are already being delivered to industry partners for product development.