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Solar energy conversion


The solar energy conversion aspect of the project will include studies of new concepts for the so-called third-generation solar cells. Such cells may include thin film structures or variations of the so-called Graetzel cells (dye sensitized cells). The advantage of these solutions is that cells can be made on flexible substrates (eg polymer foil). There are several interesting ways in which nanophotonics and the use of specially crafted organometallic molecules may help in improving the existing designs of the third-generation cells. Nanostructures may help in improving the processes of light absorption (eg through antenna-shaped structures or plasmonic enhancements), charge dissociation and its transport to the collecting electrodes (eg by including mobility enhancers exhibiting ballistic transport).
The studies will include investigations of the fundamental mechanisms of the enhancements of solar cell performance employing various techniques. These will include spectral dependence of the photocurrent experiments as well as a number of different time-resolved experiments performed using short pulse laser sources