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COMSOL Modeling and Fabrication of Polymer Solar Cells

Description :  The goal of this project is to develop and test a more efficient organic photovoltaic cell. In order to achieve this goal, variable configurations of organic polymer and active layer thicknesses are tested through the use of computational modeling of several configurations of organic photovoltaic cells. For this research, the organic polymers used are a combination of (P3HT), or poly(3-hexylthiophene) and (PCBM), or phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester. These polymers were selected based on their low production costs and high efficiency. In conjunction with fabricating efficient organic polymers, this project will also test graphene as a transparent anode to replace ITO, or indium tin oxide. These elements are combined to produce a simulated photovoltaic cell using the COMSOL modeling software in order to extract efficiency data. The data produced with COMSOL is then compared to the data produced by cells fabricated and tested by the investigators. The production of a more efficient photovoltaic cell is of particular interest for many reasons, including reducing dependence on nonrenewable resources and direct applications to the Space Technology (STDM) NASA Mission Directorate. 
Principal Investigator:  Zivanovic, Sandra  --  Electrical Engineering
Collaborators:  
Funding Agencies:  NASA/LaSPACE
Amount Awarded:  6,000

Start Period:  08/01/2013 End Period:  05/31/2014
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March 30th, 2017

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