1 Solar Energy Programme, Risø National Laboratory for Sustainable Energy, Technical University of Denmark2 Risø National Laboratory for Sustainable Energy, Technical University of Denmark3 Department of Micro- and Nanotechnology, Technical University of Denmark4 Department of Energy Conversion and Storage, Technical University of Denmark
A simple and low cost thin film solution processing system comprising a single roll coating machine has been developed to allow direct investigation of variable parameter effects in roll-to-roll processing. We present roll coating of the active layers in polymer solar cells and validate the instrument by reinvestigating the well known effect of solvent on performance. We obtained a maximum power conversion efficiency of 1.6% for the reference cells, which compares well with reported roll-to-roll coated cells according to ProcessOne, with a relative deviation caused by solvent type nearing 40% on roll coated cells, confirming the solvent to have a significant influence on the performance of the finished cell. We further present a slot-die coating head with an ultra low dead volume allowing for the preparation of roll coated polymer solar cells on flexible substrates with nearly no loss of solution, enabling roll coating testing of new polymers where only small amounts are often available. We demonstrate the formation of >50 solar cells (each with an active area of 1 cm2) with printed metal back electrodes using as little as 0.1 mL of active layer solution. This approach outperforms spin coating with respect to temperature control, ink usage, speed and is directly compatible with industrial processing and upscaling.
Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, 2012, Vol 97, p. 191-196