Silicon is one of the most abundant elements in the earth’s crust. It has been used for decades in the semiconductor and photovoltaic industries. Relative to some other semiconductor materials, silicon is safe, benign and inexpensive. We have a lot of good things to say about trusty old silicon…it’s just that we can make it even better.
Bandgap has pioneered the development of highly tunable and inexpensive methods for nano-structuring silicon. We call it nano-silicon and we are applying these technologies to high efficiency photovoltaic systems and high capacity Li-ion batteries.
Nano-silicon has several advantages over its regular, “bulk” cousin and over other methods for micro- or nano-structuring. Specifically, relative to bulk silicon, nano-silicon's optical properties can be tuned to dramatically reduce reflection and increase absorption, critical parameters for a high efficiency solar cell. It can also enable silicon to realize its potential as a material for high capacity lithium ion batteries, as it can expand and contract during cycling without degrading. Relative to other methods for achieving nano-structured silicon, Bandgap's nano-silicon processes are inexpensive, fast and controllable.
Bandgap Engineering, Inc.