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Nanotech: Making Photovoltaics Possible

  • March 2014
  • -
  • Aruvian's R'search
  • -
  • 160 pages

Photovoltaics is the technical term for generating electricity from light and today it is fast becoming an important industrial product. Presently the PV market is dominated by wafer based crystalline Si cells, but is hampered with high costs. Today’s solar cells are simply not efficient enough and are currently too expensive to manufacture for large-scale electricity generation. However, the cost of these cells is likely decrease in the future by using thinner wafers and devices with higher conversion efficiency. It is here where nanotechnology is expected to will play an important role in the longer run in order to further lower the PV cost. PV is also likely to profit from cross fertilization with micro- and nano-electronics.

Nanotechnologies are worldwide regarded as key technologies for innovations and technological progress in almost all branches of economy. Nanotechnologies as key and cross-sectional technologies exhibit the unique potential for decisive technological breakthroughs in the energy sector, thus making substantial contributions to sustainable energy supply. In recent years, nanotechnology researchers are achieving astonishing results in many fields of medicine and electronics: from microscopic sensors to transistors constantly decreasing in size, industry is pushing to innovate and find always new, cost-effective solutions. One of the most promising and exciting progress has been shown in the field of solar cells development.

The range of possible nanoapplications in the energy sector comprises gradual short and medium-term improvements for a more efficient use of conventional and renewable energy sources as well as completely new long-term approaches for energy recovery and utilization.

Presently, the climate of economic difficulty facing the world is resulting in a rising demand for going green. An attempt is being made to stimulate economies by an expansion of government spending in the areas of sustainability, energy conservation and renewable energy. However the credit crunch and wild swings in the price of oil could get in the way of these nanotech solutions being aggressively pursued.

In this scenario, Aruvian's R'search brings to you its research report – Nanotech: Making Photovoltaics Possible. This research report takes a look at how nanotechnology is changing the world of solar photovoltaics and making possible advances which earlier one could not even possibly imagine. The report looks at the technology which is making this possible. Basics of nanotechnology, of photovoltaics, of the current PV industry worldwide, and of course, of the usage of solar power worldwide, is all analyzed in this report. Information on companies making possible the usage of nanotechnology to further increase the profitability of photovoltaics is also provided in this report.

Table Of Contents

Nanotech: Making Photovoltaics Possible
A. Executive Summary

B. Solar Power?
B.1 What is Solar Power?
B.2 Pros and Cons of Solar Power
B.3 Ready Availability of Solar Power

C. What is Solar Energy?
C.1 Overview
C.2 Deriving Energy from the Sun

D. Various Uses of Solar Power
D.1 Daylighting
D.2 Heliostat Power Plants
D.3 Passive Solar Building Design
D.4 Solar Cookers
D.5 Solar Electric Vehicles
D.6 Solar Hot Water Systems
D.7 Solar Photovoltaic Technology
D.8 Solar Power Satellites
D.9 Solar Thermal Energy
D.10 Solar Updraft Tower

E. About Nanotechnology
E.1 The Basics
E.2 Usage of Nanotechnology
E.2.1 Sensors
E.2.2 Nanofibres
E.2.3 Ultra Light Materials
E.2.4 Corrosion and Corrosion Prevention
E.2.5 Nanocomposites
E.2.6 Nanocrystals
E.2.7 Nanoparticles
E.2.8 Nanostructured Materials
E.2.9 Nanoclays and Nanocomposites
E.2.10 Nanocomposite Coatings
E.2.11 Nanotubes
E.2.12 Nanocatalysts
E.2.13 Nanofilters
E.3 Some Current Applications of Nanotechnology
E.3.1 Sunscreens and Cosmetics
E.3.2 Composites
E.3.3 Clays
E.3.4 Coatings and Surfaces
E.3.5 Tougher and Harder Cutting Tools
E.3.6 Some Short Term Future Applications of Nanotechnology
E.4 Challenges of Using Nanotechnology
E.4.1 Brief Look on the Ethical Position
E.4.2 Potential Risks
E.4.3 Security Risk
E.5 Future Trends in Nanotechnology Developments

F. Introduction to Solar Photovoltaics
F.1 Overview
F.2 Historical Background of Solar Cells
F.3 Photovoltaic Systems
F.4 Looking at the Balance of System (BOS)
F.5 Analyzing the 3 Generations of Photovoltaic Cells
F.5.1 First Generation PV Cells
F.5.2 Second Generation PV Cells
F.5.3 Third Generation PV Cells
F.6 What are Concentrator Cells?
F.7 Applications of Solar Cells
F.8 Types of Solar Cells
F.9 PV Technology in Isolated Generation
F.10 Investments in Solar Technology
F.11 Novel PV Technologies
F.12 Socio-economic Aspects of Large-Scale PV Use
F.13 Current Photovoltaic Industry

G. Photovoltaics and Nanotechnology
G.1 Nanotechnology and Sustainable Energy
G.2 Nanotechnology for Energy Sources
G.2.1 Development of Primary Energy Sources
G.3 Nanotech Uses in the Energy Sector Snapshot
G.3.1 Chemical
G.3.2 Mechanical
G.3.3 Optical
G.3.4 Electronic
G.3.5 Thermal
G.4 Global Scenario of Nanotechnologies in Energy
G.4.1 Photovoltaics
G.4.2 Solar Thermal Energy
G.4.3 Energy Conversion
G.4.4 Fuel Cells
G.4.5 Photoelectric and Photovoltaic Devices
G.5 Solar Cells
G.5.1 Benefit to Solar Cells from Nanoparticles
G.5.2 Polymer Cells
G.5.3 Quantum Dots
G.5.4 Quantum Wells
G.5.5 Carbon Nanotubes and Fullerenes
G.5.6 Plastic Solar Cell
G.6 Nanotech for Solar Power is Here
G.7 Latest Developments
G.8 Working of Traditional Solar Cells and Role of Nanotechnology
G.9 Some Examples of Use of Inexpensive Solar Cells
G.9.1 Usage in Environment
G.9.2 Usage in Military
G.9.3 Usage in Rural Areas
G.9.4 Usage in Electronics Industry
G.10 Solar Cell Generations
G.11 Working of Nanotech Solar Cells
G.12 Cost and Efficiency

H. Applications of Nanotechnology in Energy
H.1 Use in Solar Cells
H.2 Thin-Layer Solar Cells
H.3 Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles in Dye Solar Cells
H.4 Fullerene Derivates as Electron Acceptors in Polymer Solar Cells
H.5 Nanolayers in Stack Cells
H.6 Quantum Dots for Solar Cells
H.7 Nanostructured Antireflection Layers
H.8 New Materials for Photovoltaics
H.9 Marketing Potential of Nanotechnologies in Energy

I. Global Scenario and RandD of Nano in Solar Cells

J. Present Market Economics of Nano and Future Prospects

K. Leading Industry Contributors
K.1 BP Solar International
K.2 Bloo Solar
K.3 Nanosolar Inc
K.4 NanoGram Corporation
K.5 SunFlake
K.6 HelioVolt Corporation
K.7 Konarka Technologies, Inc

L. Appendix
L.1 Rising Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Its Impact - The Need for Solar Photovoltaics
L.2 Conditions Impacting the Performance of Solar PV Cells
L.2.1 Sunlight Conditions
L.2.2 Weather Conditions
L.2.3 Environmental Impact of Solar PV Cells
L.3 Challenges and Barriers Facing PV Technology Development
L.3.1 Very High Costs
L.3.2 High Transaction Costs
L.3.3 No Dominant Player in the Market
L.3.4 No Public Awareness
L.3.5 Lack of Incentives
L.3.6 No Public Interest
L.3.7 Lack of Proper Infrastructure
L.3.8 Institutional Barriers
L.3.9 Lack of RandD Initiatives
L.4 Manufacturers of Solar Photovoltaics
L.5 Figures and Tables

M. Glossary of Terms

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