Proton Radiation Hardness of Perovskite Solar Cells Utilizing a Mesoporous Carbon Electrode
Declan Hughes a, Simone Meroni a, Jeremy Barbe a, Dimitrios Raptis a, Kieth Heasman b, Felix Lang c, Trystan Watson a, Wing Tsoi a
a SPECIFIC – Swansea University Bay Campus, Fabian Way, Crymlyn Burrows, SA1 8EN Swansea
b University of Surrey, UK, Stag Hill, Guilford, United Kingdom
c Institute of Physics and Astronomy, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24–25, D-14476 Potsdam-Golm, Germany
Proceedings of New Generation Photovoltaics for Space (PVSPACE)
Online, Spain, 2022 June 21st - 22nd
Organizers: Narges Yaghoobi Nia, Aldo Di Carlo, Luigi Schirone and Mahmoud Zendehdel
Contributed talk, Declan Hughes, presentation 006
Publication date: 8th June 2022

Due to their high power-to-weight ratio (specific power) and potential to be fabricated as flexible devices, perovskite solar cells (PSCs) have gained increasing interest from the aerospace sector, to supersede the current technology. However, before they can be selected as the preferred candidate, they must be assessed in two different scenarios. One is the use in High Altitude Pseudo-Satellites (HAPS), in which thermal and light stability is important due to the increased altitude. Another is the use in space missions, where those factors, along with high energy particles, pose a threat to the operational stability of the devices.

We concentrate on the latter, by studying the proton irradiation hardness of perovskite solar cells. Here, we probe the 150 keV proton irradiation stability of mesoporous-carbon perovskite solar cells (m-CPSCs). These m-CPSCs are manufactured using a screen printer, showcasing their ability to be upscaled, and have already shown impressive lifetime stability in the literature. We demonstrate that the m-PSCs can withstand 150 keV proton irradiation up to 1x1015 protons/cm2 without any loss in efficiency. At this irradiation dose, Si, GaAs, and perovskite solar cells would be completely or severely degraded. Thereby making the m-CPSC the most proton irradiation stable solar cell at 150 keV proton energy. Through non-destructive characterization techniques such as Raman spectroscopy, Photoluminescence, and simulation programmes such as SRIM, the results showcase the superior radiation stability and stopping power of the carbon electrode. The crystalline structure of the carbon remains unchanged, even at 1x1015 protons/cm2, thereby acting as an encapsulation layer, as well as an electrode. This work shows the potential of m-CPSCs for use in space PV, as well as the stability advantages when utilising a carbon electrode.  

The authors would like to thank Airbus Endeavr Wales for their financial support. The authors would also like to acknowledge support from the UK EPSRC ATIP Programme Grant (EP/T028513/1), the UKRI Global Challenge Research Fund project SUNRISE (EP/P032591/1), the EPSRC fund on SPECIFIC Innovation and Knowledge Centre [EP/N020863/1], Innovate UK [920036], and the European Regional Development Fund [c80892] through the Welsh Government. K.C.H. acknowledges funding from EPSRC. F.L. acknowledges financial support from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation via the Feodor Lunen program.

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