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Todays solar cells are fabricated using metal oxide based transparent conductive coatings (TCC) or metal wires with optoelectronic performance exceeding that currently possible with Carbon Nanotube (CNT) based TCCs. The motivation for replacing current TCC is their inherent brittleness, high deposition cost, and high deposition temperatures; leading to reduced performance on thin substrates. With improved processing, application and characterization techniques Nanofiber and/or CNT based TCCs can overcome these shortcomings while offering the ability to be applied in atmospheric conditions using low cost coating processes At todays level of development, CNT based TCC are nearing commercial use in touch screens, some types of information displays (i.e. electronic paper), and certain military applications. However, the resistivity and transparency requirements for use in current commercial solar cells are more stringent than in many of these applications. Therefore, significant research on fundamental nanotube composition, dispersion and deposition are required to reach the required performance commanded by photovoltaic devices. The objective of this project was to research and develop transparent conductive coatings based on novel nanomaterial composite coatings, which comprise nanotubes, nanofibers, and other nanostructured materials along with binder materials. One objective was to show that these new nanomaterials perform at an electrical resistivity andmore » optical transparency suitable for use in solar cells and other energy-related applications. A second objective was to generate new structures and chemistries with improved resistivity and transparency performance. The materials also included the binders and surface treatments that facilitate the utility of the electrically conductive portion of these composites in solar photovoltaic devices. Performance enhancement venues included: CNT purification and metallic tube separation techniques, chemical doping, CNT patterning and alignment, advances in commercial and research materials and field effect schemes. In addition, Eikos continued to develop improved efficiency coating materials and transfer methods suitable for batch and continuous roll-to-roll fabrication requirements. Finally, Eikos collaborated with NREL and the PV-community at large in fabricating and characterizing InvisiconĀ® enabled solar cells.« less
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Eikos Inc
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE); USDOE EE Office of Solar Energy Technology (EE-2A)
Country of Publication:
United States
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 77 NANOSCIENCE AND NANOTECHNOLOGY Nanotube; PV; conductors; transparent; TCO