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Dr Hind Ahmed

Research Fellow
Dept. of Civil, Structural & Environmental Engineering


Plasmonic Enhancement and Directionality of Emission for Advanced Luminescent Solar Devices [PEDAL]

Keywords: Photovoltaics; efficiency; luminescent materials; plasmonic coupling; synthesis of MNPs.

Buildings play a significant role in the global energy balance. Typically they account for 20-30% of the total primary energy requirement of industrialized countries, 40% in the EU. Applying photovoltaic (PV) panels to buildings is an important application for wider PV deployment and to achieving our 20% Renewable Energy EU target by 2020. In this proposed research, a disruptive PV technology is described where record increases in efficiency are achieved and costs reduced. In Europe about 50% of the solar radiation is diffuse. This research project will concentrate both direct and diffuse solar radiation in a static building component delivering not only breakthroughs in solar device efficiencies but also the development of unique building integrated components.


  1. Diffuse solar radiation will be captured to produce higher efficiencies with concentration ratios over 3 in a plasmonically enhanced luminescent solar concentrator;
  2. Plasmonically enhanced downshifting thin-films will be tailored to increase the efficiency of all solar cells types independent of material composition and;
  3. These novel systems will be designed, up-scald and a building integrated component fabricated, with the ability not only to generate power but with options for demand side management within the building.


Previous work has been limited by quantum efficiency of luminescent species, with the use of metal nanoparticles (MNP) for plasmonic emission enhancement and alignment inducing directionality of emission, will lead to efficiencies of both PLSC and PLDS being radically improved.

Project Mentor: Associate Prof. Sarah McCormack