Abstract

A new type of lens is described that, when used as a secondary concentrator together with a primary Fresnel lens to illuminate a silicon solar cell, would tend to return escaping light to the cell and therefore enhance the light trapping caused primarily by internal reflection within the silicon. In the ideal case of a perfect mirror at the back surface of the cell, it is calculated that, with a lens with a refractive index of 1.5, the cell could be reduced in thickness by a factor of 3 and still absorb as much light. The thinner cell would permit higher concentration and efficiency. Uniformity of illumination would also be improved by the lens. There are no metallic reflectors used; instead the lens traps light by total internal reflection. Its geometry and properties are presented in terms of the refractive index of the lens material.

© 1992 Optical Society of America

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