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Graphene-based photovoltaic cells for near-field thermal energy conversion

Abstract : Thermophotovoltaic devices are energy-conversion systems generating an electric current from the thermal photons radiated by a hot body. While their efficiency is limited in far field by the Schockley-Queisser limit, in near field the heat flux transferred to a photovoltaic cell can be largely enhanced because of the contribution of evanescent photons, in particular for a source supporting a surface mode. Unfortunately, in the infrared where these systems operate, the mismatch between the surface-mode frequency and the semiconductor gap reduces drastically the potential of this technology. In this paper we propose a modified thermophotovoltaic device in which the cell is covered by a graphene sheet. By discussing the transmission coefficient and the spectral properties of the flux, we show that both the cell efficiency and the produced current can be enhanced, paving the way to promising developments for the production of electricity from waste heat.
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Contributor : Philippe Ben-Abdallah <>
Submitted on : Thursday, April 25, 2013 - 9:05:59 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, September 16, 2020 - 5:42:34 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, July 26, 2013 - 4:02:05 AM

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Riccardo Messina, Philippe Ben-Abdallah. Graphene-based photovoltaic cells for near-field thermal energy conversion. Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group, 2013, 3, pp.1383. ⟨10.1038/srep01383⟩. ⟨hal-00817548⟩

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