The technology of polymer-based organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells has made great progress in the past decade, with the power conversion efficiency increasing from just a few per cent to around 12%, and the stability increasing from hours to years. One of the important milestones in this progress has been the invention of infrared-absorbing low-bandgap polymers, which allows the OPV cells to form effective tandem structures for harvesting near-infrared energy from the solar spectrum. In this Review, we focus on the progress in low-bandgap conjugated polymers and several tandem OPV cells enabled by these low-bandgap polymers. Specifically, we cover polymer-based tandem solar cells; hybrid tandem solar cells combining polymers with hydrogenated amorphous silicon; and unconventional solar cells. For each of these technologies, we address the challenges and offer our perspectives for future development.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Energy (miscellaneous)
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Materials Chemistry