Integrated front–rear-grid optimization of free-form solar cells

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Free-form solar cells expand solar power beyond traditional rectangular geometries. With the flexibility of being installed on objects of daily use, they allow making better use of available space and are expected to bring in new possibilities of generating solar power in the coming future. In addition, their customizable shape can add to the aesthetics of the surroundings. Evidently, free-form solar cells need to be efficient as well. One way to improve their performance is to optimize the metallization patterns for these cells. This work introduces an optimization strategy to optimize the metallization designs of a solar cell such that its performance can be maximized. For the purpose of optimization, we model an existing transparent free-form solar cell design, including front and rear electrode patterns, to validate it against previously published experimental results. The front and rear metallizations of this transparent free-form solar cell are subsequently redesigned using topology optimization. More than 50% improvement in output power is achieved by using topology optimization.