Clean Technology 2009

High Efficiency and Flexible Nanowire Photovoltaics

J. Czaban, P.K. Mohseni, A. Chia, J. Boulanger, Z. Peng, R.R. LaPierre
McMaster University, CA

Keywords: nanowire, solar cell, GaAs, gallium arsenide, photovoltaic


Semiconductor nanowires grown on flexible substrates by physical vapour deposition for high efficiency photovoltaics is reported. Semiconductor nanowires are one-dimensional structures with diameters of 10 to 100 nm and lengths of several microns. A substrate surface covered in nanowires leads to efficiency improvements by enhanced light trapping and collection of charge carriers. Growth of nanowires on stainless steel and carbon nanotube fabrics leads to low cost solar cells. We have already fabricated prototype cells and will report some of the major issues for developing nanowire technology into high efficiency solar cells.
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