Jinyoung Hwang, doctoral student in the electrical engineering program, received the best poster award at the 2011 Materials Research Society Fall Meeting, for the research project, Thermal emission in type-II GaSb/GaAs quantum dots and prospects for intermediate band solar energy conversion. Collaborators on the poster were her advisor, Prof. Jamie Phillips, and researchers in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Andrew Martin and Prof. Joanna Millunchick.
Ms. Hwang’s research focuses on engineered type-II quantum structures for enhanced solar energy conversion. In this study, characteristics of GaAsBi/GaAsN superlattice and GaSb/GaAs quantum dots are studied theoretically and experimentally to investigate their potential for improved multi-junction and intermediate band solar cells, respectively.
The researchers succeeded in drastically suppressing the thermal emission rate in GaSb/GaAs quantum dots. This prevents a reduction in the solar cell voltage, which will result in more efficient solar cells.
This work is supported as part of the University of Michigan Center for Solar and Thermal Energy Conversion (CSTEC), an Energy Frontier Research Center funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.