New perovskite solar panels will last about 30 years

Perovskite may become the main material for solar cells, but before that it needs to overcome

durability problem. Princeton engineers have unveiled a new design for a perovskite solar array that tests show can last up to 30 years under real-world conditions. Discuss

Silicon was the main material for solarbatteries for decades, but in recent years perovskites have been rapidly gaining momentum. They approach the efficiency of silicon, but are cheaper to manufacture, lighter and more flexible.

The problem, however, is thatPerovskites are not very stable and tend to break down when exposed to the environment. In a new study, the Princeton team solved the stability issue by adding an ultra-thin capping layer between the light-absorbing perovskite layer and the charge-carrying layer. Made from carbon disulphide, lead, iodine, and chlorine, this capping layer, just a few atoms thick, protected the device from burning out for several weeks.

The team estimates that perovskite solar panels made using this capping layer can last up to 30 years outdoors.