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Solar Cell Utilizing Doped Selenium

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000086384D
Original Publication Date: 1976-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-03
Document File: 1 page(s) / 11K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Crowe, JW: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

The conversion of radiant energy to electrical energy in what has come to be known as "solar cells" is well known. Various inorganic and organic materials have been utilized in such devices. The efficiency of such cells is normally quite limited.

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Solar Cell Utilizing Doped Selenium

The conversion of radiant energy to electrical energy in what has come to be known as "solar cells" is well known. Various inorganic and organic materials have been utilized in such devices. The efficiency of such cells is normally quite limited.

It has now been determined that a family of doped selenium alloys having known utility as charge generating photoconductors in electro-photographic imaging systems also have substantial utility in solar cell, systems. Included within this family of compounds are, for example, selenium-tellurium, selenium- arsenic, selenium-germanium and selenium-antimony.

A solar cell can be constructed utilizing these materials by sandwiching the doped selenium material between conductive or semiconductive materials. In order to be operational, at least one of the outer layers must be radiation transmitting to the wavelength of radiation to which the cell is exposed. Additionally, the two outer layers should be of dissimilar metals.

In operation, radiation striking the doped selenium alloy creates hole-electron pairs. The dissimilar metal outer layers effectively cause a built in field gradient which sweeps the holes and electrons towards different outer layers, thus generating a potential difference which can be used as a source of voltage.

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