The University of Tulsa, in collaboration with Oklahoma State University and University of Oklahoma chemistry faculty, has been awarded an Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) grant from NASA to develop solar cells for the NASA Artemis moon mission. This award totals $750,000 over three years, of which TU will receive $135,000.
“Our team at TU will be working on the electrical characterization of the solar cells fabricated explicitly for the conditions on the moon,” said Parameswar Hari, professor of physics in the Oxley College of Health & Natural Sciences and a subcontractor on the project. “We will predict the optical and electrical properties of perovskite solar cells from simulation studies and validate them by conducting experiments in the lab.”
The goal of the study is to demonstrate that perovskite solar cells prepared by vacuum thermal evaporation (VTE) are suitable for the moon-based fabrication process. Metal halide perovskites are a material of considerable interest in solar cell applications due to their rapid increase in power conversion efficiency. The work done at TU will focus on calibrating and testing high-grade perovskite solar cells fabricated by VTE before and after proton irradiation for efficiency changes and stability before and after irradiation.
“In 2025, NASA is set to resume human missions to the moon under the Artemis project,” Hari said. “Our research will develop a method to produce high-efficiency solar cells that can be fabricated and assembled on the moon.”