A graphene-based solar panel with improved efficiency has been created using titanium oxide as a light absorber

Titanium oxide improves efficiency of graphene solar cells

A new record in graphene-based solar cells has been achieved by combining the wonder material, serving as a charge collector, with titanium oxide, instead of silicon, as a sunlight absorber.

Achieving the efficiency of 15.6 per cent, the innovative solar cell is a product of a joint effort of researchers from the James I University in Spain and an Oxford University team.

The device, taking advantage of recently described photovoltaic properties of the so-called petrovskite structures (structures similar to the calcium titanium oxide known as mineral petrovskite), was described in the recent issue of the Nano Letters.

The high-efficiency solar cell, consisting of several layers, can be manufactured at rather low temperatures of about 150°C. The low temperature requirements combined with its high efficiency, the researchers believe, make the device a suitable candidate for large-scale manufacturing. Lower energy demands mean lower cost of production compared with conventional solar cells. The low temperatures during production would also enable the graphene-petrovskite-based solar cells to be combined with devices based on flexible plastics

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