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Small. 2010 Jan;6(2):313-8. doi: 10.1002/smll.200901364.

Theoretical efficiency of nanostructured graphene-based photovoltaics.

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Departments of Chemistry, Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, The Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology, Rice University, Houston, TX 77005, USA.


Graphene-based organic photovoltaics (OPVs) have the potential for single-cell efficiencies exceeding 12% (and 24% in a stacked structure). A generalized equivalent circuit for OPVs is proposed and the validation of the proposed models is verified by simulation. The simulated short-circuit photocurrent density (computed using the simulated incident photon flux density and quantum yield), simulated current-voltage curve, and simulated 3D surface and 2D contour plots of solar-power-conversion efficiency versus carrier mobility and photoactive layer thickness are in good agreement with experimental observations. The results suggest that graphene renders a credible material for the construction of next-generation flexible solar-energy-conversion devices that are low-cost, high-efficiency, thermally stable, environmentally friendly, and lightweight.

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