Solar Cells with Plasmonic Nanoparticles

Solar power can substantially fulfill the global energy demand; however, present-day technologies have difficulties with sustainability from a life cycle viewpoint and are limited both by aesthetic requirements and cost factor.

The key to solving this is by building sustainable, affordable, designable, efficient, and stable solar cells. Peafowl Solar Power is a startup from Uppsala University, Sweden, that has developed a new kind of solar cell that displays the potential to match these demands. The photovoltaic effect of the Peafowl Solar Cell is based on different physics that does not have the same characteristic restrictions as previous technologies.

Technology

The Peafowl Solar technology’s distinctiveness is the incorporation of plasmonic nanoparticles (LSP) as light absorbers. These structures can absorb equal to tenfold more sunlight compared to other materials. Their sunlight spectrum absorption is easily optimized by adjusting particle morphology.

In conventional photovoltaics, one photon excites one electron. In the plasmonic cell, a photon can create a number of electrons because of the localized surface plasmon resonance, which is a mainly different mechanism. The theoretical boundaries for power generation that applies to conventional photovoltaics are hence not valid here. The cell itself is made up of three layers, and the plasmonic nanoparticles form the middle layer. There are more than a few options for manufacturing, however, printing the cells seems like a scalable and economical solution.

Business Opportunities

The principal market that has been identified is primarily low-power, off-grid applications, mostly powering sensors, transmitters, processors, or displays of IoT devices. There are also opportunities connected with off-grid building integration, automotive, smart windows, airspace, and radio-frequency antennas.

Business Model

Peafowl Solar plans to develop Peafowl Solar cells for specific applications along with partners and pilot customers who can contribute with expertise and resources in up-scale manufacturing. Peafowl Solar will soon license Peafowl Solar technology and sell components for the manufacture of Peafowl Solar cells.

Key Features

  • Lightweight
  • Highly transparent and flexible design
  • Sustainable
  • Economical
  • Extreme absorption capacity
  • Functional in low light
  • Outdoor stability

Specifications

1-10 Wh/m2
0.8-1 V
> 90% transparent

Patent

PCT/EP2018/057923

Other Equipment