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Nanomaterials 2017, 7(12), 437; doi:10.3390/nano7120437

Increased Efficiency of Solar Cells Protected by Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Anti-Reflecting Nanostructured Glasses

1
Instituto de Micro y Nanotecnología, CSIC, 28760 Tres Cantos, Madrid, Spain
2
IES-Instituto de Energía Solar, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, 28040 Madrid, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 4 October 2017 / Revised: 31 October 2017 / Accepted: 6 December 2017 / Published: 14 December 2017
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Abstract

We investigated the fabrication of large-area (cm2) nanostructured glasses for solar cell modules with hydrophobic and hydrophilic properties using soft lithography and colloidal lithography. Both of these techniques entail low-cost and ease of nanofabrication. We explored the use of simple 1D and 2D nanopatterns (nanowires and nanocones) and the effect of introducing disorder in the nanostructures. We observed an increase in the transmitted light for ordered nanostructures with a maximum value of 99% for wavelengths >600 nm when ordered nanocones are fabricated on the two sides of the solar glass. They produced an increment in the efficiency of the packaged solar cell with respect to the glass without nanostructures. On the one hand, the wettability properties showed that the ordering of the nanostructures improved the hydrophobicity of the solar glasses and increased their self-cleaning capacity. On the other hand, the disordered nanostructures improved the hydrophilic properties of solar glasses, increasing their anti-fogging capacity. The results show that by selecting the appropriate nanopattern, the wettability properties (hydrophobic or hydrophilic) can be easily improved without decreasing the efficiency of the solar cell underneath. View Full-Text
Keywords: glass; nanostructuration; nanolithography; plasma etching; optical properties; solar cells; hydrophobic; hydrophilic glass; nanostructuration; nanolithography; plasma etching; optical properties; solar cells; hydrophobic; hydrophilic
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Baquedano, E.; Torné, L.; Caño, P.; Postigo, P.A. Increased Efficiency of Solar Cells Protected by Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Anti-Reflecting Nanostructured Glasses. Nanomaterials 2017, 7, 437.

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