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Research Award: UB-led team receives DOE SunShot award to develop thin films for solar cell devices

BaZrS3, a synthesized perovskite material, is shown in powder and thin film form (center). To the left is the crystal structure of BaZrS3, and to the right is a schematic of a thin film solar cell incorporating perovskite as the light absorber. Image: Yiyang Sun

With an eye toward improving the efficiency and affordability of solar cells, physicists from UB and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) will develop light-harvesting films using funds from the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative. The study will focus on a class of promising materials: chalcogenide perovskites, which are nontoxic, earth-abundant compounds whose electronic properties make them ideal for cultivating energy from the sun. The idea is to incorporate this material into solar cells as thin films that absorb and convert sunlight into usable electricity.