Inverse Opal Photonic Nanostructures for Enhanced Light Harvesting in CH3NH3PbI3 Perovskite Solar Cells

Nathan Daem, Alexandre Mayer, Gilles Spronck, Pierre Colson, J.J.D. Loicq, Catherine Henrist, Rudi Cloots, Anthony Maho, Michael Lobet

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Light management strategies using photonic crystals have been proven to efficiently improve light harvesting and subsequently conversion efficiency of various optoelectronic devices. This study focuses on 3D inverse opal CH3NH3PbI3 photoanodes in perovskite solar cells from a combined numerical and experimental approach. Varying the pore size and the layer thickness in numerical simulations, we first determined theoretical optimum from a purely optical point of view. Corresponding 3D inverse opal photonic nanostructures were then fabricated through spin-coating protocols using polystyrene nanospheres of various diameters as hard templating sacrificial agents. It demonstrates how the photonic nanostructuration of the perovskite layer impacts both optical and electronic properties of experimental samples. Regarding the individual 3D inverse opal perovskite layers, an optimum of light absorption is reached for an ∼500 nm diameter pore photonic nanostructure, with a photonic absorption enhancement as high as 16.1% compared to an unstructured compact benchmark. However, in addition to electronic-related countereffects, local light absorption in the hole transporting material is observed in assembled solar cells, weakening the light management benefits of the perovskite layer nanostructuration to only ∼3% photonic enhancement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13583-13593
Number of pages11
JournalACS Applied Nano Materials
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2022

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  • CH3NH3PbI3 perovskite
  • photonic crystals
  • 3D inverse opal

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