Abstract

We demonstrate theoretically that by embedding plasmonic honeycomb nanoantenna arrays into the active layers of inorganic (c-Si) and organic (P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS) thin film solar cells, absorption efficiency can be improved. To obtain the solar cell absorption spectrum that conforms to the solar radiation, spectral broadening is achieved by breaking the symmetry within the Wigner–Seitz unit cell on a uniform hexagonal grid. For optimized honeycomb designs, absorption efficiency enhancements of 106.2% and 20.8% are achieved for c-Si and P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS thin film solar cells, respectively. We have demonstrated that the transverse modes are responsible for the enhancement in c-Si solar cells, whereas both the longitudinal and transverse modes, albeit weaker, are the main enhancement mechanisms for P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS solar cells. For both inorganic and organic solar cells, the absorption enhancement is independent of polarization.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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