Metal halide perovskites have gained significant attention as a potential solution for the development of efficient photovoltaic technology. Recent breakthroughs have demonstrated metal halide perovskite-based solar cells (PSCs) with power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) above 25.8%. While this is promising, the existing fabrication processes for these solar cells have limited their large-scale production and deployment due to the need for an inert atmosphere, which increases costs. In a recent study published in Nature Energy, researchers from North China Electric Power University have presented a strategy to fabricate metal halide PSCs with PCEs above 25% in ambient air, advancing the potential for their commercialization.
One of the major challenges in fabricating metal halide PSCs in ambient air is the degradation of the perovskite layer caused by moisture. Moisture induces severe decomposition, limiting the efficiency and stability of the device. The research team identified that water molecules are absorbed near vacancy defects in the perovskite layer, leading to hydration and material degradation.
To overcome the challenge of hydration of the perovskite layer, the researchers introduced a novel approach using guanabenz acetate salt (GBA). This acetate salt form of guanabenz blocks both cation and anion vacancies, preventing perovskite hydration and enabling the crystallization of a high-quality film in ambient air. With the incorporation of guanabenz acetate salt, the team successfully prepared PSCs in ambient air with a certified efficiency of 25.08%.
Initial tests of the fabrication strategy revealed remarkable results, with stable solar cells exhibiting commercially viable PCEs above 25% and retaining their performance even after operating in humid environments. The PSCs maintained around 96% of their initial efficiency after 2,000 hours of aging in ambient air and 85% of their initial efficiency after 300 hours under damp heat conditions. These findings demonstrate the potential for the large-scale production and deployment of metal halide PSCs.
The recent breakthrough by the research team offers a promising step towards the commercialization of metal halide PSCs. By developing a low-cost fabrication strategy in ambient air, the barriers to large-scale production and deployment have been significantly reduced. This advancement opens up new opportunities for the future enhancement of solar cell performance. The researchers believe that their strategy can be adapted and perfected to further increase the efficiency and stability of metal halide PSCs.
Metal halide perovskite solar cells hold great potential for the advancement of photovoltaic technology. The research conducted by the team from North China Electric Power University showcases a breakthrough in ambient air fabrication, presenting a strategy to create high-efficiency PSCs with PCEs above 25%. By blocking perovskite hydration using guanabenz acetate salt, the researchers have demonstrated the feasibility of fabricating stable solar cells in ambient conditions, eliminating the need for an inert atmosphere. This breakthrough paves the way for the future commercialization of metal halide PSCs, contributing to the development of low-cost and efficient photovoltaic technology. With further research and optimization, metal halide perovskite solar cells may become a leading solar technology in the market.