Scientists Make Bifacial Solar Cell with Record Power Output at 29%

Highlights :

  • A team of scientists at the Australian National University have created a bifacial solar cell with a front conversion efficiency of 24.3% and a rear conversion efficiency of 23.4%, representing a bifacial factor of 96.3%.
  • This performance represents an effective power output of approximately 29%, well exceeding the performance of the best single-sided silicon solar cell.
  • The results have been independently verified by the CSIRO.

A team of scientists at the Australian National University (ANU) have used laser processing to produce a record-breaking bifacial solar cell with a front conversion efficiency of 24.3% and a rear conversion efficiency of 23.4%, representing a bifacial factor of 96.3%.

This performance represents an effective power output of approximately 29%, well exceeding the performance of the best single-sided silicon solar cell.

“This is a world record for selectively laser-doped solar cells and among the highest efficiency bifacial solar cells,” Chief Investigator Dr Marco Ernst Ernst said.

The solar cells are dual sided, meaning both the front and back of the cell generate power. Principal Investigator Dr Kean Chern Fong said the so called bifacial solar cells easily beat the performance of single sided silicon solar cells.

“We have developed what I would call a true bifacial solar cell, as it has nearly symmetrical power generation capacity on both surfaces of the device,” said Dr Fong, adding, “When deployed on a conventional solar farm, a bifacial cell absorbs direct incoming light, while also taking advantage of ground reflection, which can contribute up to additional 30 per cent power generation. ”

“Bifacial solar cells are becoming increasingly important in the roll out of solar farms and are expected to have a market share of over 50 per cent in the next five years. Our work demonstrates the incredible capabilities of this technology,” said Fong.

The team used specific laser doping technology to fabricate the cells. “Laser-doping uses lasers to locally increase electrical conductivity,” said Dr. Ernst, adding, “It is a low-cost, industry-compatible process for boosting solar cell efficiency.” This allowed the research team to develop record-breaking efficiency in the cell.

This work has been supported by the Australian Government through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and Australian Centre for Advanced Photovoltaics (ACAP). The results have been independently verified by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), an Australian Government agency responsible for scientific research.

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Soumya Duggal

Soumya is a master's degree holder in English, with a passion for writing. It's an interest she has directed towards environmental writing recently, with a special emphasis on the progress being made in renewable energy.

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