// Boosting the Performance of Highly Efficient Thin-Film Solar Cells

Lab plant for depositing the CIGS layer in a coevaporation process. (photo: ZSW / Alexander Fischer)

Top image depicts measured grain structure of ZSW's highly efficient CIGS solar cell, with colors indicating the grains’ different crystallographic orientations. Bottom image shows two-dimensional simulation based on these measurements. Artwork: ZSW, based on illustr. in cited Nature Comm. paper

Research team pinpoints potential for improving CIGS solar cells

The efficiency of today’s thin-film solar cells with the compound semiconductor made of copper, indium, gallium and selenium (CIGS) has already topped the 23 percent mark, but now a further increase looks to be within reach. A team staffed with researchers from the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) recently identified a key point where the performance of thin-film solar cells can be improved for the cell to convert more sunlight into electricity. Published in the renowned science journal Nature Communications in August 2020, the results of this investigation reveal how manufacturers of CIGS thin-film solar cells can achieve even higher efficiencies.

For the complete press release, please refer to the PDF file under "Downloads".