Carbon nanotubes to improve solar cells

January 17, 2002 | Source: EE Times

Researchers from Cambridge University’s engineering department have developed photovoltaic devices that, when doped with single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNTs), perform better than undoped devices.The nanotube diodes were made by depositing organic films containing SWNTs on to glass substrates coated with indium-tin oxide (ITO). Aluminium electrodes were then thermally evaporated under a vacuum to form a sandwich configuration, EE Times reports.

The interaction of the carbon nanotubes with the polymer poly(3-octylthiophene) (P3OT) allows excitons generated by light in the polymer to dissociate into their separate charges and travel more easily.

The team believes that further improvements in device performance will occur with more controlled film preparation and polymer doping.