Indoor light recycling: a new home for organic photovoltaics†
The field of organic photovoltaics (OPVs) has long focused on matching silicon solar cells, both in high power conversion efficiency (PCE) under solar light and broad absorption of the solar spectrum. We show that OPV devices, which have significantly lower PCEs than high-performing crystalline silicon cells when measured under the typical AM 1.5G solar standard, can surpass silicon cells with PCEs >20% measured under LED light. We highlight that the conflation of the terms “solar cell” and “photovoltaic” gives an incomplete view of the potential of many photovoltaic materials, especially organic materials. By expanding the definition and assessment of photovoltaic devices to include multiple light sources, OPVs—with their higher PCEs under indoor light and qualitative benefits of being lightweight, thin, flexible, and semi-transparent—could have a home in previously unconsidered low-power indoor applications.