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      Perovskites for Solar and Thermal Energy Harvesting: State of the Art Technologies, Current Scenario and Future Directions

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          Abstract

          Solar energy is anticipated to be the most viable source of sustainable green energy. Perovskites have gained significant research attention in recent years as a solar energy harvesting material due to their desirable photovoltaic enabling properties. The potential strategies for a more effective use of these materials can involve multiple energy conversion mechanisms through a single device or employing materials where a solar or thermal input provides multiple electrical outputs to enhance the overall energy harvesting capability. In this context, the present review focuses on perovskites, including both organic halide perovskites and inorganic oxide perovskites, due to their proven properties as photovoltaic materials and their intriguing potential for additional functionality, such as ferroelectricity. Ferroelectrics are a special class of perovskites that have been studied in detail for photoferroic, pyroelectric and thermoelectric effects and energy storage, which we briefly review here. Furthermore, the possibilities of simultaneously tuning these mechanisms in perovskite materials for multiple energy conversion mechanisms and storage for ultra-high density capacitor and battery applications is also examined in order to attain a better understanding and to present novel opportunities. An understanding of all these mechanisms and device prospects will inspire and inform the selection of appropriate materials and potential novel designs so that the available solar and thermal resource could be utilized in a more effective manner. This review will not only help in selecting an appropriate material from the existing pool of perovskite materials, but will also provide an outlook and assistance to researchers in developing new material systems.

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          Most cited references 23

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          Perovskite oxides for visible-light-absorbing ferroelectric and photovoltaic materials.

          Ferroelectrics have recently attracted attention as a candidate class of materials for use in photovoltaic devices, and for the coupling of light absorption with other functional properties. In these materials, the strong inversion symmetry breaking that is due to spontaneous electric polarization promotes the desirable separation of photo-excited carriers and allows voltages higher than the bandgap, which may enable efficiencies beyond the maximum possible in a conventional p-n junction solar cell. Ferroelectric oxides are also stable in a wide range of mechanical, chemical and thermal conditions and can be fabricated using low-cost methods such as sol-gel thin-film deposition and sputtering. Recent work has shown how a decrease in ferroelectric layer thickness and judicious engineering of domain structures and ferroelectric-electrode interfaces can greatly increase the current harvested from ferroelectric absorber materials, increasing the power conversion efficiency from about 10(-4) to about 0.5 per cent. Further improvements in photovoltaic efficiency have been inhibited by the wide bandgaps (2.7-4 electronvolts) of ferroelectric oxides, which allow the use of only 8-20 per cent of the solar spectrum. Here we describe a family of single-phase solid oxide solutions made from low-cost and non-toxic elements using conventional solid-state methods: [KNbO3]1 - x[BaNi1/2Nb1/2O3 - δ]x (KBNNO). These oxides exhibit both ferroelectricity and a wide variation of direct bandgaps in the range 1.1-3.8 electronvolts. In particular, the x = 0.1 composition is polar at room temperature, has a direct bandgap of 1.39 electronvolts and has a photocurrent density approximately 50 times larger than that of the classic ferroelectric (Pb,La)(Zr,Ti)O3 material. The ability of KBNNO to absorb three to six times more solar energy than the current ferroelectric materials suggests a route to viable ferroelectric semiconductor-based cells for solar energy conversion and other applications.
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            Depolarization fields in thin ferroelectric films

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              Electrocaloric and pyroelectric properties of 0.75Pb(Mg1∕3Nb2∕3)O3–0.25PbTiO3 single crystals

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                2017-05-16
                Article
                1705.05529

                http://arxiv.org/licenses/nonexclusive-distrib/1.0/

                Custom metadata
                56 Pages, 10 Figures, 2 Tables
                cond-mat.mtrl-sci

                Condensed matter

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