Single-Course English 5 ECTS

Light emitting diodes and photovoltaics for energy applications

Overall Course Objectives

Photonic devices, which by definition convert energy between electrical and optical find more and more applications in the sphere of energy saving and renewable energy generating devices.
In this course we want to discuss physics, materials, design and operation rules specific to photovoltaic devices and LEDs for solid state illumination.

Learning Objectives

  • Analyse light absorption/emission processes in most important classes of photonic materials (inorganic, organic, nanostructured materials)
  • Compare charge transport in those materials
  • Analyse operation of photovoltaic devices: device physics, maximum possible conversion efficiency, factors limiting internal efficiency, strategies for light coupling
  • Describe advanced concepts for future generations of photovoltaic devices
  • Describe the operation of LEDs for solid state illumination: design issues specific to high power light emitters, factors defining internal efficiency, strategies for light extraction
  • Describe advanced concepts for future generations of high brightness LEDs
  • Describe strategies used for generating white light based on LEDs (colour mixing, phosphor based LEDs
  • Characterise solid state illumination using photometry, spectroradiometry and colorimetry

Course Content

The course consists of four parts:
1.Photonic devices for power generation.
2.Light emitting diodes for solid state illumination.
3.Light management for maximum efficiency.
4.Solid state illumination.
We start from presenting the principle of operation of photovoltaic devices including analysis of their ideal power conversion efficiency. We will then discuss the performance of the real devices and analyse the factors limiting their efficiency compared with the ideal case. Various technologies (present and future) and materials will be included in comparison.
In a second part of the course we will discuss specific issues of design and operation of light emitting diodes needed for solid state illumination. Materials and strategies for achieving high efficiency and high power of emission at visible light wavelengths will be analysed. Future trends in this rapidly changing subject will be presented as well as the current ones.
Light management in both types of devices is a key element for achieving high efficiency. Optics, micro-optics and chip level strategies for efficient light coupling into the photovoltaic devices and light out-coupling from the LEDs will be discussed. Modelling of optical components of the systems will be included.
Based on understanding both the LEDs and optics we will present strategies for white light generation used in solid state illumination. The students will have the opportunity to learn about photometry, which analyses light as seen by human eye and about colour measurement.

Recommended prerequisites

34020/34021, Can be taken at the same time

Teaching Method

lectures, problem solving, laboratory exercises



Paul Michael Petersen , Risø Campus, Building 130, Ph. (+45 46774512),,
Haiyan Ou , Lyngby Campus, Building 345A, Ph. (+45) 4525 3782 ,
Yiyu Ou, Lyngby Campus, Building 345A, Ph. (+45) 4525 6637,;

See course in the course database.





13 weeks




DTU Lyngby Campus

Course code 34540
Course type Candidate
Semester start Week 35
Semester end Week 48
Days Mon 13-17

7.500,00 DKK