Nanowire Photovoltaic Devices

Award Information
Agency:
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$99,887.00
Award Year:
2010
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
NNX10CF61P
Award Id:
95639
Agency Tracking Number:
090028
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
T3
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
2082 Hackberry Lane, Shakopee, MN, 55379
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
828188347
Principal Investigator:
David Forbes
Principal Investigator
(608) 698-0935
dvfsps@rit.edu
Business Contact:
Michael Nesnidal
Chief Technical Officer
(608) 698-0935
Research Institute:
Rochester Institute of Technology

One Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY, 14623
(585) 475-2480
Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
Firefly, in collaboration with Rochester Institute of Technology, proposes an STTR program for the development of a space solar cell having record efficiency exceeding 40% (AM0) by the introduction of nanowires within the active region of the current limiting sub-cell. The introduction of these nanoscale features will enable realization of an intermediate band solar cell (IBSC), while simultaneously increasing the effective absorption volume that can otherwise limit short circuit current generated by thin quantized layers. The triple junction cell follows conventional designs comprised of bottom Ge cell (0.67eV), a current-limiting middle GaAs (1.43eV) cell, and a top InGaP (1.90eV) cell. The GaAs cell will be modified to contain InAs nanowires to enable an IBSC, which is predicted to demonstrate ~45% efficiency under 1-sun AM0 conditions. The InAs nanowires will be implemented in-situ within the epitaxy environment which is a significant innovation relative to conventional semiconductor nanowire generation using ex-situ gold nanoparticles. Successful completion of the proposed work will result in ultra-high efficiency, radiation-tolerant space solar cells that are compatible with existing manufacturing processes. Significant cost savings are expected with higher efficiency cells which enables increased payload capability and longer mission durations.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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