University of Sydney's project with SunDrive on commercializing perovskite-silicon cells secures ARENA funding

Jan 4, 2023 05:07 PM ET
  • University of Sydney's Professor Anita Ho-Baillie is joining forces with Sydney-based renewable technology firm SunDrive to commercialize perovskite-silicon cells, with support from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) of AUD$ 2.78 million (over USD$ 1.9 million).

Other investigators on the project consist of Professor David McKenzie, Dr Jianghui Zheng as well as Dr Arafat Mahmud, that are based at the University of Sydney, as well as Mr Vince Allen, Mr David Hu and also Professor Alison Lennon from SunDrive.

Round one of ARENA's Transformative Research Accelerating Commercialization Program, which started in February as well as came to a close in August, had a total amount of AUD$ 40 million to disperse to sustain ultra-low expense solar photovoltaic or pv (PV) r & d. With the financial backing of the Australian Government, the research project led by Professor Ho-Baillie, in collaboration with SunDrive, will boost the commercial feasibility of perovskite-silicon tandem solar cells.

This project will focus on stacking perovskite on top of silicon to form a tandem solar cell, instead of utilizing silicon on its own.

" The idea of this stacking is to convert more power from the sun to electrical power," said Professor Ho-Baillie. "The effectiveness that can be attained by a perovskite-silicon tandem in a laboratory is currently over 30 percent, while the greatest effectiveness for a silicon cell by itself is just below 27 percent in the laboratory as well as around 23 percent readily. There isn't much space for silicon to enhance since its theoretical limit is only 30 percent-- however, for perovskite-silicon tandem, it is 40 percent."

The cell style is the "future" of solar technology, according to Professor Ho-Baillie, but there are a few steps to tackle prior to reaching that endpoint.

" To make them the primary commercial option, we need to boost the sturdiness of these cells-- specifically under the combination of thermal as well as light stress," said Professor Ho-Baillie. "We also require to create industry-relevant production processes that are cost-effective.

" Finally, we need to establish technologies of enveloping as well as packaging the tandem cells to bigger photovoltaic panels. These panels, not simply the cells themselves, additionally have to be durable and highly efficient."

SunDrive is an Australian solar innovation firm founded in 2015 to commercialize its exclusive affordable metallization modern technology for silicon solar cells. The business has been successful in progressing from lab-scale proof-of-concept to commercial, full-size photovoltaic panel manufacture, and has elevated $21 million in its most current Series A financing round drawing assistance from Main Sequence Ventures, Virescent Ventures, Blackbird Ventures, Grok Ventures, former head of state Malcolm Turnbull and also Canva co-founder Cameron Adams.

SunDrive is just one of the only 2 business worldwide which has shown full-area commercial-size cells with a certified efficiency over 26 percent.

" It's interesting that ARENA is sustaining this project with the objective of speeding up the development of more dynamic solar modern technologies such as perovskite silicon tandems," said Vincent Allen, founder as well as chief executive of SunDrive. "We quite expect working with Professor Ho-Baillie and also her team."

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