Highly efficient luminescent solar concentrators based on earth-Abundant indirect-bandgap silicon quantum dots

Francesco Meinardi, Samantha Ehrenberg, Lorena Dhamo, Francesco Carulli, Michele Mauri, Francesco Bruni, Roberto Simonutti, Uwe Kortshagen, Sergio Brovelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

146 Scopus citations

Abstract

Building-integrated photovoltaics is gaining consensus as a renewable energy technology for producing electricity at the point of use. Luminescent solar concentrators (LSCs) could extend architectural integration to the urban environment by realizing electrode-less photovoltaic windows. Crucial for large-Area LSCs is the suppression of reabsorption losses, which requires emitters with negligible overlap between their absorption and emission spectra. Here, we demonstrate the use of indirect-bandgap semiconductor nanostructures such as highly emissive silicon quantum dots. Silicon is non-Toxic, low-cost and ultra-earth-Abundant, which avoids the limitations to the industrial scaling of quantum dots composed of low-Abundance elements. Suppressed reabsorption and scattering losses lead to nearly ideal LSCs with an optical efficiency of i • = 2.85%, matching state-of-The-Art semi-Transparent LSCs. Monte Carlo simulations indicate that optimized silicon quantum dot LSCs have a clear path to i • > 5% for 1â €..m 2 devices. We are finally able to realize flexible LSCs with performances comparable to those of flat concentrators, which opens the way to a new design freedom for building-integrated photovoltaics elements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-185
Number of pages9
JournalNature Photonics
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

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    Meinardi, F., Ehrenberg, S., Dhamo, L., Carulli, F., Mauri, M., Bruni, F., Simonutti, R., Kortshagen, U., & Brovelli, S. (2017). Highly efficient luminescent solar concentrators based on earth-Abundant indirect-bandgap silicon quantum dots. Nature Photonics, 11(3), 177-185. https://doi.org/10.1038/nphoton.2017.5