Silicon solar cells are operating close to the theoretical maximum efficiency limit. To increase their efficiency beyond this limit, it is necessary to decrease energy losses occurring for high-energy photons. A sensitizing layer of singlet-fission material can in principle double the current generated by high-energy photons, and significantly reduce energy losses from high-energy photons within the solar cell. Here, we construct a model of such a solar cell, using Si(111) surfaces and tetracene. To increase the energy transfer between the two layers, a series of tetracene derivatives was synthesized, and the molecules were covalently attached onto the silicon surface as a seed layer. Using X-ray diffraction, a shift in crystal structure and ordering of the tetracene close to the seed layer can be observed. Unfortunately, the effect on the energy transfer was limited, showing a need for further investigations into the effect of the seed layer.

The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO)
J. Phys. Chem. Lett.
Hybrid Solar Cells

van den Boom, A., Ferro, S., Gelvez-Rueda, M., Zuilhof, H., & Ehrler, B. (2023). Toward Improving Triplet Energy Transfer from Tetracene to Silicon Using a Covalently Bound Tetracene Seed Layer. J. Phys. Chem. Lett., 14(19), 4454–4461. doi:10.1021/acs.jpclett.3c00589