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Energies 2017, 10(3), 285; doi:10.3390/en10030285

Sensitivity of the Drift-Diffusion Approach in Estimating the Power Conversion Efficiency of Bulk Heterojunction Polymer Solar Cells

1
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Technical University of Munich, 80333 Munich, Germany
2
CHOSE—Centre for Hybrid and Organic Solar Energy, Department Electronic Engineering, University of Rome “Tor Vergata”, 00133 Rome, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Senthilarasu Sundaram
Received: 12 January 2017 / Revised: 12 February 2017 / Accepted: 21 February 2017 / Published: 28 February 2017
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [3105 KB, uploaded 28 February 2017]   |  

Abstract

There are numerous theoretical approaches to estimating the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of organic solar cells (OSCs), ranging from the empirical approach to calculations based on general considerations of thermodynamics. Depending on the level of abstraction and model assumptions, the accuracy of PCE estimation and complexity of the calculation can change dramatically. In particular, PCE estimation with a drift-diffusion approach (widely investigated in the literature), strongly depends on the assumptions made for the physical models and optoelectrical properties of semiconducting materials. This has led to a huge deviation as well as complications in the analysis of simulated results aiming to understand the factors limiting the performance of OSCs. In this work, we intend to highlight the complex relation between mobility, exciton dynamics, nanoscale dimension, and loss mechanisms in one framework. Our systematic analysis represents key information on the sensitivity of the drift-diffusion approach, to estimate how physical parameters and physical processes bind the PCE of the device under the influence of structure, contact, and material layer properties. The obtained results ultimately led to recommendations for putting effort into certain properties to get the most out of avoidable losses, presented the impact and importance of modification of material properties, and in particular, recommended to what degree the design of new material could improve OSC performance. View Full-Text
Keywords: solar cells; power conversion efficiency (PCE); modelling and simulation; drift-diffusion; organic semiconductor solar cells; power conversion efficiency (PCE); modelling and simulation; drift-diffusion; organic semiconductor
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Fallahpour, A.H.; Di Carlo, A.; Lugli, P. Sensitivity of the Drift-Diffusion Approach in Estimating the Power Conversion Efficiency of Bulk Heterojunction Polymer Solar Cells. Energies 2017, 10, 285.

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