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Nano Lett. 2009 Jan;9(1):449-52. doi: 10.1021/nl8034338.

Hybrid solar cells from P3HT and silicon nanocrystals.

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  • 1Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Minnesota, 111 Church Street SE, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA.


We are reporting new hybrid solar cells based on blends of silicon nanocrystals (Si NCs) and poly-3(hexylthiophene) (P3HT) polymer in which a percolating network of the nanocrystals acts as the electron-conducting phase. The properties of composite Si NCs/P3HT devices made by spin-coating Si NCs and P3HT from a common solvent were studied as a function of Si NC size and Si NC/P3HT ratio. The open-circuit voltage and short-circuit current are observed to depend on the Si NC size due to changes in the bandgap and surface-area-to-volume ratio. Under simulated one-sun A.M. 1.5 direct illumination (100 mW/cm2), devices made with 35 wt % Si NCs 3-5 nm in size showed 1.15% power conversion efficiency.

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