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Korean researchers' solar cell achieves world's highest efficiency

Korean researchers' solar cell achieves world's highest efficiency

Posted April. 24, 2019 08:09,   

Updated April. 24, 2019 08:09


A perovskite solar cell developed by the Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology has created a new world efficiency record. According to the research institute on Tuesday, its senior researchers Seo Jang-won and Shin Sung-sik in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) succeeded in increasing the efficiency of a perovskite solar cell to 24.23 percent, up 0.53 percentage point from the existing record of 23.7 percent held by the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

The Korean institute said this year’s first-quarter new record has been officially registered on the best research cell efficiency chart of the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), which announces the best research cell efficiency every quarter.

Solar cells made of perovskite convert solar energy to electricity. Their relatively easy manufacturing process and lower production cost than widely-used silicon solar cells have led to very active research worldwide. The efficiency of converting sunlight into electric power was very low in its early stage of development but it has now reached 26 percent of the best efficiency of a silicon solar cell, a first generation solar cell widely used today. It has already surpassed the best efficiency rate (22.9 percent) of a thin-film solar cell, one of second-generation solar cells.

This is the sixth time that the Korean research institute has topped NREL’s best perovskite solar cell efficiency chart. The Korean institute is leading the development of perovskite solar cells along with the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne.