Increase in energy consumption across the world has brought issues of depleting coal & oil reserves and rising global warming into the spotlight. The scientific community has long looked at renewable and clean energy alternatives such as solar, wind, tidal sources. Of them all, solar energy has emerged to be one of the most viable and popular alternative energy sources today. Solar panels are being integrated in housing architecture to power water heaters, homes and buildings.
Much of this success stems from the research and progress made on the basic unit of a solar panel – the solar cell, which converts light (solar energy) into electricity. The physics underlying the photovoltaic effect has been explored and well understood in the 20th century. However, making solar cells more cost-effective and efficient is of interest globally, especially in regions receiving abundant solar energy such as India. This is possible only through continuous innovations in the materials used and in the cell design.
Following are some of our contributions in this field.
Theoretical analysis and numerical simulations identify the detailed balance performance limits