The Light Management in New Photovoltaic Materials (LMPV) program is a research program within the Center for Nanophotonics at AMOLF, a national research laboratory funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
The goal of the LMPV program is to develop fundamental understanding of the interaction of light with photovoltaic nanomaterials, and apply this knowledge to realize photovoltaic conversion concepts that surpass existing technology. The LMPV research program targets three long-term efficiency goals:
(1) Towards 30% efficiency
Light coupling, trapping and carrier collection geometries to reach or stretch the ultimate limits of Si technology;
(2) 30-40% efficiency
Hybrid solar cell geometries based on organic/inorganic materials, and thin-film/wafer-Si tandem cells;
(3) Beyond 40% efficiency
Novel III-V nanowire geometries and other hybrid architectures.
Achieving these goals requires synthesis and development of entirely new materials and solar cell architectures. It requires fundamental research on hybridizing strategies combining concepts from dielectric and plasmonic metasurfaces and metamaterials, with the management of light on length scales from the molecular scale to that of a solar panel. Our work also involves harnessing extreme materials properties to reach the limits of what is possible under reciprocity and thermodynamics. The LMPV program’s primary goal is to achieve fundamental understanding of basic physical phenomena that are relevant for future application in photovoltaics. In many cases, demonstrator devices are made as well, either at AMOLF or with external collaborators.
The LMPV Focus Group is composed of four research groups, headed by Albert Polman, Erik Garnett, Bruno Ehrler, and Esther Alarcón Lladó. In addition, the LMPV program funds two satellite PhD projects in the groups of Daniel Vanmaekelbergh (UU) and Ruud Schropp (TUE). The LMPV research is carried out by PhD students, postdocs, master students and international visitors.