The world demand for power now exceeds 15 TW, with the vast majority of that demand being met by the consumption of fossil fuels in the form of oil (5.3 TW), coal (4.2 TW) and natural gas (3.5 TW). Currently, solar supplies only 0.004 TW and yet the earth receives in excess 120,000 TW of power from the sun each day, which means that the earths power demands could be met by covering 0.125 % of the earths surface with solar cells with an efficiency of only 10%.
As the demand for cleaner energy increases, it is an imperative that new forms of low cost solar energy be found. To meet that demand and to address the high energy and high cost of vapour deposition, which is currently used in the production of solar cells, Nanoco has utilized its expertise in the synthesis of nanocrystals or quantum dots (QDs) to develop a range of novel copper, indium, gallium and selenium (CIS, CGS and CIGS) containing QDs of varying composition that can be used to manufacture low cost solar cells with good efficiencies.
Nanoco’s advanced PV based QDs are being developed in such a way that they are capable of forming printable inks in a variety of solvents, paving the way for low cost, roll to roll production of new solar cell technologies.
Nanoco’s advanced PV-QDs comprise a proprietary organic ‘capping agent’ or ‘ligand’, which allows for ease of printing utilizing a variety of printing techniques. Once printed, the organic capping agent is removed via heating providing an inorganic photoactive layer of the desired phase.