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Research Abstracts Online
January - December 2011

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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
College of Science and Engineering
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

PI: Sang-Hyun Oh

High-Throughput Nanofabrication Technologies for Low-Cost Plasmonic Photovoltaics

For widespread implementation of thin film solar cells, issues related to efficiency, cost, and manufacturability must be addressed. In this project, researchers will combine novel high-throughput fabrication technologies and optical design to make low-cost, high-efficiency thin-film solar cells integrated with nanostructured metal electrodes. The project goal is to demonstrate thin film photovoltaic cells with power conversion efficiencies exceeding that of conventional indium tin oxide (ITO)-based solar cells.

Towards the project goal, three activities will be completed. First, key technologies for making nanostructured solar cell electrodes will be scaled up to meet the challenges of low cost and high throughput nano-manufacturing. Second, the research team will use quantitative 3D modeling techniques to optimize thin film solar cells’ device architecture and optics. Within this second activity, researchers will extensively use finite-element modeling (FEM) of electromagnetic fields in metallic nanostructures. Third, the team will leverage its expertise in nanofabrication and nano-optics to demonstrate high efficiency thin film solar cells.

Group Member

Timothy Johnson, Graduate Student