Abstract

This Letter details a theoretical investigation of self-absorption within an upconverter (UC) material, consisting of trivalent erbium (Er3+)-doped hexagonal sodium yttrium fluoride (β-NaYF4) and its implications on two experimental situations: the case of a quantum yield measurement, and on the effective performance in a UC-enhanced photovoltaic (PV) device. The study demonstrates that an optimization of the thickness is essential in order to reduce the effect of self-absorption and maximize the possible additional photocurrent that could be harvested. It also has been found that the external photoluminescence quantum yield (ePLQY) measured through an integrating sphere may result in an underestimation with respect to the performance that the UC material could achieve in a UC-PV device. Finally, it has been found the optimal thickness and the molar concentration of Er3+ ions are inversely proportional, suggesting that an optimal number (1.32.9·1017) of Er3+ ions should be contained within the UC layer.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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