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Eco green flexible hybrid photovoltaic-thermoelectric solar cells with nanoimprint technology and roll-to-roll manufacturing
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Paper Abstract

This paper explores the technical and commercial feasibility of nanotechnology based, high-efficiency, photovoltaic-thermoelectric hybrid solar cells as an environmentally-friendly, renewable energy source for residential and commercial buildings. To convert as much as possible of the usable photovoltaic (58% of the Energy Density) and thermoelectric (42% of the Energy Density) solar spectrum into electricity, a hybrid multilayer system is presented which comprises of 1) carbon nanotube (CNT) embedded in conducting polymers such as P3HT (poly(3-hexylthiophene) or P3OT (poly3-octylthiophene), 2) 3D gold nanostructures exhibiting plasmonic resonances for energy conversion, 3) nanoantenna architecture to capture IR energy, 4) a composite of Bi2Te3, SiGe nanocrystals and Au nanoshells as thermoelectric energy conversion layer, 5) configuration of the above items engineered in the form of meta-material designs that by virtue of their 3D structures ensure that incident light is neither reflected nor transmitted, but is rather all absorbed, 6) a multilayer arrangement of the above layers in a fractal architecture to capture all the wavelengths from 200 to 3000 nm8 and the matching electronic interface for each layer. The roll-to-roll manufacturing method presented will enable economical large-scale production of solar panels. This potentially transformational technology has the ability to replace the Si solar cell technology by reducing costs from $0.18/KWh to $0.003/KWh while introducing a more environmentally-friendly manufacturing process.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 March 2010
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 7646, Nanosensors, Biosensors, and Info-Tech Sensors and Systems 2010, 764605 (30 March 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.849597
Show Author Affiliations
Vijay K. Varadan, Univ. of Arkansas (United States)
Sang H. Choi, NASA Langley Research Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7646:
Nanosensors, Biosensors, and Info-Tech Sensors and Systems 2010
Vijay K. Varadan, Editor(s)

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