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Proceedings Paper

Luminescence and chemical potential of solar cells
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Paper Abstract

The transduction and conversion of radiant energy into work in a quantum process are dependant on the luminescent properties of the materials involved. Materials with photoluminescent efficiencies greater than 0.1% are likely candidates for solar cells and solar converters. The luminescent optical properties of a material are directly related to the output device parameters. The chemical potential of the incoming light is a function of the photon energy and incident radiance. The amount of work per particle, or voltage, that can be extracted by a solar converter is related to chemical potential of the excitation, which can be inferred from the photoluminescence efficiency at ambient temperature. A discussion is made as to the use and optical properties of materials such as Si and GaAs, FeS2, and biological and organic dyes as efficient solar quantum converter materials. Proper choice of absorber thickness as to maximize the luminescent output observed is shown to optimize solar converter performance.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 December 1991
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 1536, Optical Materials Technology for Energy Efficiency and Solar Energy Conversion X, (1 December 1991); doi: 10.1117/12.49227
Show Author Affiliations
Greg P. Smestad, Hahn Meitner Institute (Germany)
Harald Ries, Paul Scherrer Institute (Switzerland)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1536:
Optical Materials Technology for Energy Efficiency and Solar Energy Conversion X
Carl M. Lampert; Claes G. Granqvist, Editor(s)

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