Development of a customised setup to determine the long-term stability of organic and perovskite solar cells
Erlangen, 6 November 2023 - In the PrintedPVCheck project, five partners from science and industry are developing a tailor-made setup to determine the long-term stability of emerging photovoltaics. In this context, HI ERN is optimising the architecture and processes for reliable reference cells on a globally unique system. The project is funded by Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection (BMWK).
New types of organic and perovskite solar cells, known as "emerging photovoltaics", can be produced using a material-saving, cost-effective and flexible printing process. They can therefore be seamlessly integrated into a wide variety of applications such as the exterior surfaces of buildings or curved surfaces and achieve similar efficiency values to the silicon solar cells currently established on the market. However, the main problem at present is long-term stability. It is therefore important to be able to use suitable measurement setups to determine the degradation behaviour.
The aim of the collaboration between the five project partners from science and industry is to develop such a customised setup. Age tests are carried out in which both established and self-optimising MPP algorithms are developed. Self-optimising MPP algorithms continuously adjust the maximum power point (MPP) of a solar cell in order to achieve the maximum power yield. They analyse the performance of the solar cell and optimise the operating point accordingly, which is particularly relevant for new technologies such as organic and perovskite solar cells. The setup is supplemented by evaluation software that can access cell-specific degradation models and optional data from other measurement methods. Reference solar cells specially developed at HI ERN for this purpose are used to test the system.
Automated production of solar cells: HI ERN optimises architecture and processes for reliable reference cells
As part of the collaboration, HI ERN is concentrating on optimising solar cell architecture and producing reliable reference cells with reproducible properties. The solar cells are produced fully automatically by robots under controlled conditions. A globally unique system developed at HI ERN is available for this purpose.
By connecting to a database system, all process parameters, ambient conditions and precise time stamps can be recorded for each step. This makes it possible to analyse which manufacturing parameters influence the stability of the solar cells. Particular attention is paid to the role of interface materials. With the help of automated production, precise process windows can be determined in order to find the optimum architecture and process for ageing tests. The process developed for specific material systems will then be made available to the project partners.
The Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg for Renewable Energy (HI ERN), Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Automatic Research GmbH, IELAB Nürnberg GmbH and Quadraton GmbH have joined forces in the PrintedPVCheck project. Since 1 April 2023, these five partners from industry and science have been working together to develop a suitable measurement setup for determining the degradation behaviour of solar cells.
The project is funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection (BMWK) as part of the ZIM co-operation network "Hybrid Systems with Printed Electronics" (Hidronik).