If you’re unfamiliar with the word perovskite don't be too alarmed. This strange, wonderful and obscure material first discovered in the Ural mountains some 100 years ago, was virtually unknown until several years ago, when a young Polish science student was introduced to it. Today, perovskite crystals are fast making a name for themselves in the world of solar science thanks to their flexible, crystalline structure and ability to absorb light.
Dr Olga Malinkiewicz was that student. Today she is co-founder and CTO of Saule Technologies. “I first saw a demonstration of the material at a conference in Seville. I could see that it had potential to convert the sun’s energy very efficiently - the attraction was instant.”
The biggest obstacle facing Olga was the fact that perovskite solar cells only worked if high temperatures (500 degrees c) were applied during the fabrication. Eventually she developed a novel cell architecture that eliminated the need for high temperatures during the process.