Solar3D completes key element of its high efficiency solar cell
By Design Engineering StaffSustainability Energy photovoltaic
3D Micro-Cell design expected to significantly increase PV efficiency.
Solar3D, Inc. announced that it has completed the design of the Light Collector, a critical part of the company’s 3-dimensional solar cell.
Inspired by light management techniques used in fiber optic devices, the company’s solar cell technology utilizes a 3-dimensional design to trap sunlight inside micro-photovoltaic structures where photons bounce around until they are converted into electrons.
By contrast, traditional 2-D solar cells reflect up to 30 percent of incident sunlight. In addition, electrons can be reabsorbed as they flow across the solar cell material to the transmission wire. Solar3D cells, the company says, eliminate these inefficiencies by utilitizing numerous 3D micro-cells that reduce all primary losses. Solar3D’s management believes this breakthrough solar cell design will change the economics of solar energy.
“Our innovative solar cell design has two main sections: a Light Collector section coupled with a Micro-Photovoltaic section,” commented Jim Nelson, President and CEO of Solar3D. “The structure of every other element of the cell is dictated by the Light Collector and flows from its design. The completion of the Light Collector design is the key to expediting the entire project.”
With the completion of the Light Collector design, the company’s R&D team believes that they can soon calculate the increase in efficiency that the overall 3-demensional solar cell can achieve. A working prototype is expected by the end of 2012.