Doubling Down: Combining Lead-Trapping Charge Extraction Layer and Cation Exchange Resins for Safe-to-Use Perovskite Solar Cells

Project: Research

View graph of relations


PV technology has become a perfect solution to the energy crisis in modern world. Hong Kong has an achievable renewable energy potential of 3-4% to the city’s total electricity consumption by 2030, solar cells will play a key role in this process. Perovskite solar cells (PVSCs) have achieved certified 25.5% efficiency with significantly enhanced stability, making them the most promising thin-film PV technology for commercialization in Hong Kong and the world. However, commonly used perovskites in high-performance devices always contain toxic lead, which will cause devastating effects on human health. Hong Kong and other regions all established regulations on the lead-based commercialized materials, exploring facile and efficient strategies with low-cost materials to prevent the leakage of lead becomes the biggest challenge. Although several groups have reported various methods to suppress lead leakage, their inadequate lead capture capability and high cost still hinder the fabrication of safe-to-use PVSCs.This project aims to explore efficient lead-trapping charge extraction layers and cation exchange resins to solve the toxicity problem of PVSCs. The key challenge here is how to find proper materials and strategy with minimizing the amount of released Pb to a safe-to-use level. To address this challenge, this project proposed to develop lead-trapping materials with superior lead capture ability, including functionalized 2D MOF as charge extraction materials and cation exchange resin as encapsulation layer. The combination of such two materials will dramatically enhance the lead sequestration efficiency than previous report without damage on the device performance. Moreover, the extreme weather and external damage will be simulated to test the environmental duration of fabricated PVSCs modules in real application scenarios. The project will provide efficient and low-cost methods to promote the perovskite into market without health concerns.The PI has rich experience in fabricating high-performance PVSCs, including perovskite growth, interfacial engineering, charge transporting materials synthesis and defects passivation. The PI has also reported the employment of 2D MOF materials to simultaneously enhance the stability and suppress the lead leakage in PVSCs, which established the foundation for this project. The equipment for device fabrication and characterization in the PI’s lab will ensure the successful delivery of this project. The successful completion of this project will provide facile and effective methods to solve the toxicity problems of PVSCs and benefit the academic and industrial communities in Hong Kong and around the world. 


Project number9043211
Grant typeGRF
Effective start/end date1/01/22 → …