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Journal of Photonics for Energy

Nano- and microlenses as concepts for enhanced performance of solar cells
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Paper Abstract

Both metallic nanoparticles exhibiting plasmonic effects and dielectric nanoparticles coupling the light into resonant modes have shown successful applications to photovoltaics. On a larger scale, microconcentrator optics promise to enhance solar cell efficiency and to reduce material consumption. Here, we want to create a link between the concentrators on the nano- and on the microscale. From metallic nanospheres, we turn to dielectric ones and then look at increasing radii to approach the microscale. The lenses are investigated with respect to their interaction with light using three-dimensional simulations with the finite-element method. Resulting maps of local electric field distributions reveal the focusing behavior of the dielectric spheres. For larger lens sizes, ray tracing calculations, which give ray distributions in agreement with electric field intensities, can be applied. Calculations of back focal lengths in geometrical optics coincide with ray tracing results and allow insight into how the focal length can be tuned as a function of particle size, substrate refractive index, and the shape of the microlens. Despite the similarities we find for the nano- and the microlenses, integration into solar cells needs to be carefully adjusted, depending on the goals of material saving, concentration level, focal distance, and lens size.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 November 2014
PDF: 11 pages
J. Photon. Energy 5(1) 057003 doi: 10.1117/1.JPE.5.057003
Published in: Journal of Photonics for Energy Volume 5, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Martina Schmid, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (Germany)
Freie Univ. Berlin (Germany)
Phillip Manley, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (Germany)

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