Hot carrier solar cells from group III-V quantum well structures

Tran Smyth, Paritosh Wadekar, Ching-Wen Chang, Li Wei Tu, Yu Feng, Hongze Xia, Binesh Puthen-Veetil, Craig Johnson, Steve Limpert, Neeti Gupta, Yuanxun Liao, Shujuan Huang, Santosh Shrestha, Gavin Conibeer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


To circumvent Shockley-Queisser Limit whilst utilizing thin film deposition, we intend construction of a hot carrier solar cell (HCSC). This device would challenge a fundamental assumption of Shockley-Queisser: that all energy of incoming photons in excess of the acceptance threshold of the cell material is lost as heat. If "excess" energy charge carriers are tapped before they thermalize with the matrix, theoretical cell efficiency (66%) under one sun is twice that of a single-junction silicon cell. In this pursuit, two principal tasks await: actual retardation of carrier thermalization by preventing the decay of accompanying optical phonons, and collection of the carriers via devices known as "Energy Selective Contacts" (ESCs), which withdraw only carriers possessing a narrow range of energies to prevent entropic losses. We propose construction of a Hot Carrier Solar Cell utilizing elemental group III Nitrides for ESC and absorber. Indium Nitride, with its large phononic band gap and small electronic band gap, can provide a suitable absorber, whereas alloys of In(x)Ga(1-x)N can form complementary and lattice-matched ESCs.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2013 IEEE 39th Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC)
Place of PublicationPiscataway, NJ
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781479932993, 9781479932986
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event39th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2013 - Tampa, FL, United States
Duration: 16 Jun 201321 Jun 2013

Publication series

ISSN (Print)0160-8371


Conference39th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2013
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityTampa, FL


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