Exceedingly Cheap Perovskite Solar Cells Using Iron Pyrite Hole Transport Materials

Aron J. Huckaba, Paek Sanghyun, Giulia Grancini, Ebin Bastola, Cho Kyung Taek, Lee Younghui, Khagendra P. Bhandari, Christophe Ballif, Randy J. Ellingson, Mohammad Khaja Nazeeruddin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Methyl ammonium lead tri iodide perovskite solar cells attracted significant interest due to their high efficiency over 20 % using polytriarylamine polymer (PTAA) and spiro-OMeTAD (Spiro). While the perovskite absorber material is relatively inexpensive to fabricate, the hole transport material is considerably expensive. Here we address the problem of cost by applying the vastly abundant mineral iron pyrite (FeS2) as a hole transporting material in perovskite solar cells. We report a power conversion efficiency of 11.2 % using n-i-p configuration where the perovskite is an intrinsic semiconductor, TiO2 as an electron acceptor (n-type layer), and FeS2 as hole transporter (p-type layer). We show through photoluminescence quenching studies that pyrite transfers holes at least as efficiently as Spiro. Cost analysis of the pyrite HTM and Spiro indicates that currently, pyrite is >300 times cheaper to produce for 1 m2 modules.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5316-5319
Number of pages4
Issue number16
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge SNSF NRP 70 project; number: 407040_154056. G.G. acknowledges support from the ‘EPFL Fellows’ fellowship programme co-funded by Marie Skłodowska-Curie, Horizon 2020 Grant agreement no. 665667. AH thank the European Commission H2020-ICT-2014-1, SOLEDLIGHT project, grant agreement N°: 643791 and the Swiss State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI). EB, KPB., and RJE thank the US National Science Foundation Sustainable Energy Pathways program, Grant CHE-1230246. RJE expresses gratitude to the EPFL Photovoltaics and Thin Film Electronics Labo- ratory for support during his appointment as Visiting Professor, August 2015 to July 2016.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim


  • Inorganic HTM
  • Iron Pyrite
  • Nanocrystals
  • Perovskites
  • Solar Cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry (all)


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