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Energy Express

Energy Express

  • Editor: Christian Seassal
  • Vol. 22, Iss. S2 — Mar. 10, 2014
  • pp: A542–A551

How to assess light trapping structures versus a Lambertian Scatterer for solar cells?

Christian S Schuster, Angelo Bozzola, Lucio C Andreani, and Thomas F Krauss  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 22, Issue S2, pp. A542-A551 (2014)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.22.00A542


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Abstract

We propose a new figure of merit to assess the performance of light trapping nanostructures for solar cells, which we call the light trapping efficiency (LTE). The LTE has a target value of unity to represent the performance of an ideal Lambertian scatterer, although this is not an absolute limit but rather a benchmark value. Since the LTE aims to assess the nanostructure itself, it is, in principle, independent of the material, fabrication method or technology used. We use the LTE to compare numerous proposals in the literature and to identify the most promising light trapping strategies. We find that different types of photonic structures allow approaching the Lambertian limit, which shows that the light trapping problem can be approached from multiple directions. The LTE of theoretical structures significantly exceeds that of experimental structures, which highlights the need for theoretical descriptions to be more comprehensive and to take all relevant electro-optic effects into account.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(040.5350) Detectors : Photovoltaic
(050.1950) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction gratings
(350.6050) Other areas of optics : Solar energy
(350.4238) Other areas of optics : Nanophotonics and photonic crystals
(050.5298) Diffraction and gratings : Photonic crystals
(310.6628) Thin films : Subwavelength structures, nanostructures

ToC Category:
Energy Nanotechnology

History
Original Manuscript: December 4, 2013
Revised Manuscript: January 25, 2014
Manuscript Accepted: January 27, 2014
Published: March 7, 2014

Virtual Issues
Renewable Energy and the Environment (2014) Optics Express

Citation
Christian S Schuster, Angelo Bozzola, Lucio C Andreani, and Thomas F Krauss, "How to assess light trapping structures versus a Lambertian Scatterer for solar cells?," Opt. Express 22, A542-A551 (2014)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-22-S2-A542


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