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    Organic vs. Silicon-Based Solar Cells

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    Compare and contrast organic and present day silicon-based (inorganic) solar cells.

    Describe the physics behind the operation of these solar photovoltaic devices and then discuss how their efficiencies are determined.

    What advantages and disadvantages exist for both organic and inorganic solar cells?

    Describe the main barriers or technical difficulties associated with each.

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    Solution Preview

    Compare and contrast organic and present day silicon-based (inorganic) solar cells.

    - A fundamental difference between solar cells based on organic materials and conventional inorganic photovoltaic (IPV) cells is that light absorption results in the formation of excitons in molecular materials, rather than in free electrons and holes
    - A key difference between organic solar cells and IPVs is the relative importance of interfacial processes. Light absorption in IPV cells results directly in the formation of free charge carriers. Light absorption in organic materials almost always results in the production of a mobile excited state rather than in free charge carriers.
    - In most organic solar cells, charges are created by photoinduced electron transfer
    - The charge transport mechanisms operating in IPV cells and organic solar cells to drive
    charge carriers towards the electrodes are different
    - Organic solar cells have lower efficiency rate compared to an inorganic semiconducting solar cell (only 5% efficiency compared to the 15% of ...

    Solution Summary

    The expert compares and contrasts organic and present day silicon-based solar cells. The advantages and disadvantages for both organic and inorganic solar cells are determined.