High Efficient Solar Cells
A. Kathalingam and Mi-Ra Kim
Millimeter-wave INnovation Technology Research CenterDongguk University, Seoul, Korea
The world’s energy demand is projected more, expected to double by 2050 and to morethan triple by the end of the century. Considering the devastating and environmentalpolluting nature of conventional fossil fuels, sunlight becomes a “compelling solution” tothe need of clean and cheap energy. It poses no threat to our environment throughpollution or to our climate through greenhouse gas emissions. Sunlight is plenty on earth,unimaginable amount of energy from sun strikes the Earth. The sun light falls on theearth in one hour is more than the energy we consume in a year through out the globe.The vast majority of solar panels today are made of silicon. These devices are called firstgeneration, and make for highly stable and efficient solar cells, but, because of thematerial processing necessary, it is expensive to make first generation solar cells andlevels of efficiency in electricity production range from around 10 to 20 percent. A morerecent alternative involves constructing solar cells using thin films with the potential toproduce solar energy at a reduced cost. These thin film cells are called second generation,and are cheaper, but they have more difficulty absorbing radiation and are not veryefficient. Scientists have been seeking a third generation - a low cost semiconductormaterial that would have a tunable bandgap, allowing the manufacturer to control theabsorptive properties of the solar cell.Present semiconductor PV devices based on a single-bandgap absorber, which have atheoretical thermodynamic conversion efficiency of 32% in unconcentrated sunlight.However, multiple-bandgap absorbers in a cascaded junction configuration can result inhigh photoconversion efficiencies, particularly when cells are designed to sustain theoperating conditions (e.g., elevated temperatures) associated with highly concentratedsunlight.A major challenge in the conversion of solar energy is tapping the full spectrum of solarradiation. The absorbing materials used in today’s solar cells capture only a fraction of the wavelengths in sunlight. So, it is must to designing composite materials that absorbfull spectrum of solar light spectrum and convert efficiently to useful form of fuel and togenerate electricity, it would be a crosscutting breakthrough in this area.Advancements in science have made a revolutionary change in the concept of the solarcell materials and design. Increasing the efficiency of solar cells more than 50% is not ascience fiction. It is very easy to increase the solar cell efficiency more the 50%, is not afiction, one day in near future we can use such a solar cell. Today's fast progress on thescientific frontiers of nanotechnology and biotechnology will provide a strong foundationfor future breakthroughs in solar energy conversion.