World Record Solar Cell with 44.7% Efficiency

5 Oct

Surpassing competition after only over
three years of research, and
entering the roadmap at world class
level, a new record efficiency of
44.7% was measured at a concentration
of 297 suns. This indicates that
44.7% of the solar spectrum’s energy,
from ultraviolet through to the
infrared, is converted into electrical
energy. This is a major step
towards reducing further the costs of
solar electricity and continues
to pave the way to the 50% efficiency
roadmap.
Back in May 2013, the German-French
team of Fraunhofer ISE, Soitec,
CEA-Leti and the Helmholtz Center Berlin
had already announced a solar
cell with 43.6% efficiency. Building on this
result, further intensive
research work and optimization steps led
to the present efficiency of
44.7%.
These solar cells are used in
concentrator photovoltaics (CPV), a
technology which achieves

twice the efficiency of
conventional PV power plants in sun-rich locations. The terrestrial
use of so-called III-V multi-junction
solar cells, which originally

space technology, has

from

came

prevailed to realize highest
efficiencies for the conversion of
sunlight to electricity. In this
multi-junction solar cell, several cells
made out of different III-V
semiconductor materials are stacked on
top of each other. The single
subcells absorb different wavelength
ranges of the solar spectrum.

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