Project TitleTin Based 'Perovskites' as Lead-Free Alternative Photovoltaic Materials for Solar Cell Production
Track Code2015-050
Short Description

New, environmentally safe, inorganic material for production of stable and cost-effective solar cells

#materials #energy #solar


Northwestern scientists have developed a novel tin-based perovskite-like material for use in photovoltaic materials for solar cell production. While perovskites have found ample use in solar cell design due to their high efficiency, these minerals often contain lead and are unstable under ambient conditions making them a suboptimal choice for large-scale solar cell production. To solve these issues, Prof. Kanatzidis and colleagues have produced perovskite-like materials that do not contain harmful metals. Their innovative materials are inexpensive to produce, do not pollute the environment and are stable at ambient conditions, which greatly simplifies solar cell manufacturing. In laboratory tests, photovoltaic cells utilizing these alternative 'safe' materials have adequate conversion efficiency, which is currently as high as 8%. By combining low-cost starting materials with simple and scalable manufacturing procedures, this new technology may facilitate implementation of photovoltaics into the current electricity production landscape.

TagsENERGY: solar, materials
Posted DateJun 12, 2015 4:33 PM


Mercouri Kanatzidis*

Robert Chang*

Konstantinos Stoumpos

Byunghong Lee


  • Solar cells


  • Stable in ambient conditions
  • Less harmful to environment
  • Inexpensive
  • Scalable production


IP Status

Provisional patent application has been filed.

Contact Information

Dimitra Georganopoulou, PhD

Invention Manager

(p) 847.467.3095