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Sample records for cigs thin-film solar

  1. Printable CIGS thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Xiaojuan

    2013-03-01

    Among the various thin film solar cells in the market, CuInGaSe thin film solar cells have been considered as the most promising alternatives to crystalline silicon solar cells because of their high photo-electricity conversion efficiency, reliability, and stability. However, many fabrication methods of CIGS thin film are based on vacuum processes such as evaporation and sputtering techniques which are not cost efficient. This work develops a solution method using paste or ink liquid spin-coated on glass that would be competitive to conventional ways in terms of cost effective, non-vacuum needed, and quick processing. A mixture precursor was prepared by dissolving appropriate amounts of composition chemicals. After the mixture solution was cooled, a viscous paste was prepared and ready for spin-coating process. A slight bluish CIG thin film on substrate was then put in a tube furnace with evaporation of metal Se followed by depositing CdS layer and ZnO nanoparticle thin film coating to complete a solar cell fabrication. Structure, absorption spectrum, and photo-electricity conversion efficiency for the as-grown CIGS thin film solar cell are under study.

  2. Printable CIGS thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Xiaojuan

    2014-03-01

    Among the various thin film solar cells in the market, CuInGaSe thin film cells have been considered as the most promising alternatives to silicon solar cells because of their high photo-electricity efficiency, reliability, and stability. However, many fabrication of CIGS thin film are based on vacuum processes such as evaporation sputtering techniques which are not cost efficient. This work develops a method using paste or ink liquid spin-coated on glass that would be to conventional ways in terms of cost effective, non-vacuum needed, quick processing. A mixture precursor was prepared by dissolving appropriate amounts of chemicals. After the mixture solution was cooled, a viscous paste prepared and ready for spin-coating process. A slight bluish CIG thin film substrate was then put in a tube furnace with evaporation of metal Se by depositing CdS layer and ZnO nanoparticle thin film coating to a solar cell fabrication. Structure, absorption spectrum, and photo-conversion efficiency for the as-grown CIGS thin film solar cell under study.

  3. CIGS2 Thin-Film Solar Cells on Flexible Foils for Space Power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dhere, Neelkanth G.; Ghongadi, Shantinath R.; Pandit, Mandar B.; Jahagirdar, Anant H.; Scheiman, David

    2002-01-01

    CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)S2 (CIGS2) thin-film solar cells are of interest for space power applications because of the near optimum bandgap for AM0 solar radiation in space. CIGS2 thin film solar cells on flexible stainless steel (SS) may be able to increase the specific power by an order of magnitude from the current level of 65 Wkg(sup -1). CIGS solar cells are superior to the conventional silicon and gallium arsenide solar cells in the space radiation environment. This paper presents research efforts for the development of CIGS2 thin-film solar cells on 127 micrometers and 20 micrometers thick, bright-annealed flexible SS foil for space power. A large-area, dual-chamber, inline thin film deposition system has been fabricated. The system is expected to provide thickness uniformity of plus or minus 2% over the central 5" width and plus or minus 3% over the central 6" width. During the next phase, facilities for processing larger cells will be acquired for selenization and sulfurization of metallic precursors and for heterojunction CdS layer deposition both on large area. Small area CIGS2 thin film solar cells are being prepared routinely. Cu-rich Cu-Ga/In layers were sputter-deposited on unheated Mo-coated SS foils from CuGa (22%) and In targets. Well-adherent, large-grain Cu-rich CIGS2 films were obtained by sulfurization in a Ar: H2S 1:0.04 mixture and argon flow rate of 650 sccm, at the maximum temperature of 475 C for 60 minutes with intermediate 30 minutes annealing step at 120 C. Samples were annealed at 500 C for 10 minutes without H2S gas flow. The intermediate 30 minutes annealing step at 120 C was changed to 135 C. p-type CIGS2 thin films were obtained by etching the Cu-rich layer segregated at the surface using dilute KCN solution. Solar cells were completed by deposition of CdS heterojunction partner layer by chemical bath deposition, transparent-conducting ZnO/ZnO: Al window bilayer by RF sputtering, and vacuum deposition of Ni/Al contact fingers through metal

  4. Analysis of laser scribes at CIGS thin-film solar cells by localized electrical and optical measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wehrmann, Anja; Puttnins, Stefan; Hartmann, Lars; Ehrhardt, Martin; Lorenz, Pierre; Zimmer, Klaus

    2012-09-01

    Laser patterning of thin-film solar cells is essential to perform external serial and integrated monolithic interconnections for module application and has recently received increasing attention. Current investigations show, however, that the efficiency of thin-film Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) modules is reduced due to laser scribing also with ultrashort laser pulses. Hence, to investigate the reasons of the laser-induced material modifications, thin-film CIGS solar cells were laser-scribed with femto- and picosecond laser pulses using different scribing procedures and laser processing parameters. Besides standard electrical current voltage (I-V) measurements, additional electrical and optical analysis were performed such as laser beam-induced current (LBIC), dark lock-in thermography (DLIT), and electroluminescence (EL) measurements to characterize and localize electrical losses due to material removal/modifications at the scribes that effecting the electrical solar cell properties. Both localized as well as distributed shunts were found at laser scribe edges whereas the laser spot intensity distribution affecting the shunt formation. Already laser irradiation below the ablation threshold of the TCO film causes material modification inside the thin film solar cell stack resulting in shunt formation as a result of materials melting near the TCO/CIGS interface that probably induces the damage of the pn-junction.

  5. On the origin of the spatial inhomogeneity of photoluminescence in thin-film CIGS solar devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Hajje, Gilbert; Ory, Daniel; Guillemoles, Jean-François; Lombez, Laurent

    2016-07-01

    In this letter, we investigate the origin of the spatial inhomogeneity of the photoluminescence (PL) intensity maps obtained on thin-film solar cells. Based on a hyperspectral imager setup, we record an absolute map of the quasi-Fermi level splitting Δμ by applying the generalized Planck's law. Then, using scanning confocal microscopy, we perform spatially and time-resolved photoluminescence measurements. This allowed us to quantify and map the micrometric fluctuations of the trapping defect density within these solar cells. Finally, we demonstrate the existence of a direct correlation between the spatial fluctuations of the quasi-Fermi level splitting and the trapping defect density. The latter was found to be correlated with the frequently reported spatially inhomogeneous PL maps of thin-film solar cells. Based on the observed correlation, we can quantify the local losses in quasi-Fermi level splitting induced by the spatial distribution of the trapping defects.

  6. High Performance CIGS Thin-Film Solar Cells: A Laboratory Perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Ramanathan, K.; Bhattacharya, R.; Contreras, M.; Keane, J. C.; To, B.; Dhere, R. G.; Noufi, R.

    2005-11-01

    We present a summary of our work on the preparation of CuInGaSe2 (CIGS) absorbers that has led to fabricating record-efficiency solar cells. The use of the three-stage process in conjunction with composition monitoring facilitates the fabrication of solar cells with efficiencies between 18% and 19.5% for absorber bandgap in the range of 1.1-1.2 eV. We describe our recent results in reducing absorber thickness and low-temperature deposition. Our preliminary results on absorbers grown from low-purity source materials show promise of reducing the cost of fabricating the absorber.

  7. Structural, Electrical, and Optical Properties of ZnO Film Used as Buffer Layer for CIGS Thin-Film Solar Cell.

    PubMed

    Choi, Eun Chang; Cha, Ji-Hyun; Jung, Duk-Young; Hong, Byungyou

    2016-05-01

    The CuIn(x)Ga(1-x)Se2 (CIGS) using the solution-based fabrication method is attractive for thin film solar cells because of its possibilities for large-area and low-cost production. ZnO films between transparent conductive oxide (TCO) and the CdS films can improve the performances of CIGS thin-film solar cells. In this study, we investigated the characteristics of ZnO film between TCO and CIGS layers in a solar cell (AZO/ZnO/CdS/CIGS/Mo), which were deposited at various thicknesses to investigate the role of the films in CIGS solar cells. It was confirmed that the conversion efficiency of a CIGS solar cell depends on the ZnO film. For a ZnO film thickness of 80 nm, the highest power conversion efficiency that a solar cell achieved was J(sc) of 18.73 mA/cm2. PMID:27483877

  8. High-Efficiency CdTe and CIGS Thin-Film Solar Cells: Highlights and Challenges; Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Noufi, R.; Zweibel, K.

    2006-05-01

    Thin-film photovoltaic (PV) modules of CdTe and Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) have the potential to reach cost-effective PV-generated electricity. These technologies have transitioned from the laboratory to the market place. Pilot production and first-time manufacturing are ramping up to higher capacity and enjoying a flood of venture-capital funding. CIGS solar cells and modules have achieved 19.5% and 13% efficiencies, respectively. Likewise, CdTe cells and modules have reached 16.5% and 10.2% efficiencies, respectively. Even higher efficiencies from the laboratory and from the manufacturing line are only a matter of time. Manufacturing-line yield continues to improve and is surpassing 85%. Long-term stability has been demonstrated for both technologies; however, some failures in the field have also been observed, emphasizing the critical need for understanding degradation mechanisms and packaging options. The long-term potential of the two technologies require R&D emphasis on science and engineering-based challenges to find solutions to achieve targeted cost-effective module performance, and in-field durability. Some of the challenges are common to both, e.g., in-situ process control and diagnostics, thinner absorber, understanding degradation mechanisms, protection from water vapor, and innovation in high-speed processing and module design. Other topics are specific to the technology, such as lower-cost and fast-deposition processes for CIGS, and improved back contact and voltage for CdTe devices.

  9. Unveiling the effects of post-deposition treatment with different alkaline elements on the electronic properties of CIGS thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Pianezzi, Fabian; Reinhard, Patrick; Chirilă, Adrian; Bissig, Benjamin; Nishiwaki, Shiro; Buecheler, Stephan; Tiwari, Ayodhya N

    2014-05-21

    Thin film solar cells with a Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) absorber layer achieved efficiencies above 20%. In order to achieve such high performance the absorber layer of the device has to be doped with alkaline material. One possibility to incorporate alkaline material is a post deposition treatment (PDT), where a thin layer of NaF and/or KF is deposited onto the completely grown CIGS layer. In this paper we discuss the effects of PDT with different alkaline elements (Na and K) on the electronic properties of CIGS solar cells. We demonstrate that whereas Na is more effective in increasing the hole concentration in CIGS, K significantly improves the pn-junction quality. The beneficial role of K in improving the PV performance is attributed to reduced recombination at the CdS/CIGS interface, as revealed by temperature dependent J-V measurements, due to a stronger electronically inverted CIGS surface region. Computer simulations with the software SCAPS are used to verify this model. Furthermore, we show that PDT with either KF or NaF has also a distinct influence on other electronic properties of the device such as the position of the N1 signal in admittance spectroscopy and the roll-over of the J-V curve at low temperature. In view of the presented results we conclude that a model based on a secondary diode at the CIGS/Mo interface can best explain these features. PMID:24675872

  10. Characterization of Flexible CIGS Thin Film Solar Cells or Stainless Steel with Intrinsic ZnO Diffusion Barriers.

    PubMed

    Kim, Chae-Woong; Kim, Hye Jin; Kim, Jin Hyeok; Jeong, Chaehwan

    2016-05-01

    ZnO diffusion barrier layer was deposited by RF magnetron sputtering by using the same method as intrinsic ZnO layer. The CIGS solar cells were fabricated on stainless steel substrate. The 50-200 nm thin ZnO diffusion barriers effectively reduced the diffusion of Fe and Cr, from stainless steel substrates into the CIGS absorbers. The CIGS solar cells with ZnO diffusion barriers increased the J(sc) and FF, which resulted in an increase of cell efficiency from 5.9% up to 9.06%. PMID:27483885

  11. Electrodeposition of Mg doped ZnO thin film for the window layer of CIGS solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Mang; Yi, Jie; Yang, Sui; Cao, Zhou; Huang, Xiaopan; Li, Yuanhong; Li, Hongxing; Zhong, Jianxin

    2016-09-01

    Mg doped ZnO (ZMO) film with the tunable bandgap can adjust the conduction band offset of the window/chalcopyrite absorber heterointerface to positive to reduce the interface recombination and resulting in an increasement of chalcopyrite based solar cell efficiency. A systematic study of the effect of the electrodeposition potential on morphology, crystalline structure, crystallographic orientation and optical properties of ZMO films was investigated. It is interestingly found that the prepared doped samples undergo a significant morphological change induced by the deposition potential. With negative shift of deposition potential, an obvious morphology evolution from nanorod structrue to particle covered films was observed. A possible growth mechanism for explaining the morphological change is proposed and briefly discussed. The combined optical techniques including absorption, transmission and photoluminescence were used to study the obtained ZMO films deposited at different potential. The sample deposited at -0.9 V with the hexagonal nanorods morphology shows the highest optical transparency of 92%. The photoluminescence spectra reveal that the crystallization of the hexagonal nanorod ZMO thin film deoposited at -0.9 V is much better than the particles covered ZMO thin film. Combining the structural and optical properties analysis, the obtained normal hexagonal nanorod ZMO thin film could potentially be useful in nanostructured chalcopyrite solar cells to improve the device performance.

  12. Thin film solar cells based on CdTe and Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) compounds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gladyshev, P. P.; Filin, S. V.; Puzynin, A. I.; Tanachev, I. A.; Rybakova, A. V.; Tuzova, V. V.; Kozlovskiy, S. A.; Gremenok, V. F.; Mudryi, A. V.; Zaretskaya, E. P.; Zalesskiy, V. B.; Kravchenko, V. M.; Leonova, U. R.; Khodin, A. A.; Pilipovich, V. A.; Polikanin, A. M.; Khrypunov, G. S.; Chernyh, E. P.; Kovtun, N. A.; Belonogov, E. K.; Ievlev, V. M.; Dergacheva, M. B.; Stacuk, V. N.; Fogel, L. A.

    2011-04-01

    We are publishing recent results in chalcogenide photoelectric convertors fabrication, which are efforts of many scientific teams from Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan. Competitively high efficiency of photoelectric convertors (11.4% for CdTe and 11% for CIGS) was achieved in the process of our work. Furthermore, luminescent filters for improvement of spectral response of such chalcogenide solar cells in a short wavelengths region were also developed and investigated here.

  13. Non-Stoichiometric Amorphous Indium Selenide Thin Films as a Buffer Layer for CIGS Solar Cells with Various Temperatures in Rapid Thermal Annealing.

    PubMed

    Yoo, Myoung Han; Kim, Nam-Hoon

    2016-05-01

    The conventional structure of most of copper indium gallium diselenide (Culn(1-x)Ga(x)Se2, CIGS) solar cells includes a CdS thin film as a buffer layer. Cd-free buffer layers have attracted great interest for use in photovoltaic applications to avoid the use of hazardous and toxic materials. The RF magnetron sputtering method was used with an InSe2 compound target to prepare the indium selenide precursor. Rapid thermal annealing (RTA) was conducted in ambient N2 gas to control the concentration of volatile Se from the precursor with a change in temperature. The nature of the RTA-treated indium selenide thin films remained amorphous under annealing temperatures of ≤ 700 degrees C. The Se concentration of the RTA-treated specimens demonstrated an opposite trend to the annealing temperature. The optical transmittance and band gap energies were 75.33% and 2.451-3.085 eV, respectively, and thus were suitable for the buffer layer. As the annealing temperature increased, the resistivity decreased by an order-of-magnitude from 10(4) to 10(1) Ω-cm. At lower Se concentrations, the conductivity abruptly changed from p-type to n-type without crystallite formation in the amorphous phase, with the carrier concentration in the order of 10(17) cm(-3). PMID:27483873

  14. Thin Film CIGS and CdTe Photovoltaic Technologies: Commercialization, Critical Issues, and Applications; Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Ullal, H. S.; von Roedern, B.

    2007-09-01

    We report here on the major commercialization aspects of thin-film photovoltaic (PV) technologies based on CIGS and CdTe (a-Si and thin-Si are also reported for completeness on the status of thin-film PV). Worldwide silicon (Si) based PV technologies continues to dominate at more than 94% of the market share, with the share of thin-film PV at less than 6%. However, the market share for thin-film PV in the United States continues to grow rapidly over the past several years and in CY 2006, they had a substantial contribution of about 44%, compared to less than 10% in CY 2003. In CY 2007, thin-film PV market share is expected to surpass that of Si technology in the United States. Worldwide estimated projections for CY 2010 are that thin-film PV production capacity will be more than 3700 MW. A 40-MW thin-film CdTe solar field is currently being installed in Saxony, Germany, and will be completed in early CY 2009. The total project cost is Euro 130 million, which equates to an installed PV system price of Euro 3.25/-watt averaged over the entire solar project. This is the lowest price for any installed PV system in the world today. Critical research, development, and technology issues for thin-film CIGS and CdTe are also elucidated in this paper.

  15. Silver nanowire composite thin films as transparent electrodes for Cu(In,Ga)Se₂/ZnS thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Tan, Xiao-Hui; Chen, Yu; Liu, Ye-Xiang

    2014-05-20

    Solution processed silver nanowire indium-tin oxide nanoparticle (AgNW-ITONP) composite thin films were successfully applied as the transparent electrodes for Cu(In,Ga)Se₂ (CIGS) thin film solar cells with ZnS buffer layers. Properties of the AgNW-ITONP thin film and its effects on performance of CIGS/ZnS thin film solar cells were studied. Compared with the traditional sputtered ITO electrodes, the AgNW-ITONP thin films show comparable optical transmittance and electrical conductivity. Furthermore, the AgNW-ITONP thin film causes no physical damage to the adjacent surface layer and does not need high temperature annealing, which makes it very suitable to use as transparent conductive layers for heat or sputtering damage-sensitive optoelectronic devices. By using AgNW-ITONP electrodes, the required thickness of the ZnS buffer layers for CIGS thin film solar cells was greatly decreased. PMID:24922214

  16. Thin film solar cell workshop

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Armstrong, Joe; Jeffrey, Frank

    1993-01-01

    A summation of responses to questions posed to the thin-film solar cell workshop and the ensuing discussion is provided. Participants in the workshop included photovoltaic manufacturers (both thin film and crystalline), cell performance investigators, and consumers.

  17. Overview and Challenges of Thin Film Solar Electric Technologies

    SciTech Connect

    Ullal, H. S.

    2008-12-01

    In this paper, we report on the significant progress made worldwide by thin-film solar cells, namely, amorphous silicon (a-Si), cadmium telluride (CdTe), and copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS). Thin-film photovoltaic (PV) technology status is also discussed in detail. In addition, R&D and technology challenges in all three areas are elucidated. The worldwide estimated projection for thin-film PV technology production capacity announcements are estimated at more than 5000 MW by 2010.

  18. Interaction of ultra-short laser pulses with CIGS and CZTSe thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gečys, P.; Markauskas, E.; Dudutis, J.; Račiukaitis, G.

    2014-01-01

    The thin-film solar cell technologies based on complex quaternary chalcopyrite and kesterite materials are becoming more attractive due to their potential for low production costs and optimal spectral performance. As in all thin-film technologies, high efficiency of small cells might be maintained with the transition to larger areas when small segments are interconnected in series to reduce photocurrent and related ohmic losses in thin films. Interconnect formation is based on the three scribing steps, and the use of a laser is here crucial for performance of the device. We present our simulation and experimental results on the ablation process investigations in complex CuIn1- x Ga x Se2 (CIGS) and Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 (CZTSe) cell's films using ultra-short pulsed infrared (~1 μm) lasers which can be applied to the damage-free front-side scribing processes. Two types of processes were investigated—direct laser ablation of ZnO:Al/CIGS films with a variable pulse duration of a femtosecond laser and the laser-induced material removal with a picosecond laser in the ZnO:Al/CZTSe structure. It has been found that the pulse energy and the number of laser pulses have a significantly stronger effect on the ablation quality in ZnO:Al/CIGS thin films rather than the laser pulse duration. For the thin-film scribing applications, it is very important to carefully select the processing parameters and use of ultra-short femtosecond pulses does not have a significant advantage compared to picosecond laser pulses. Investigations with the ZnO:Al/CZTSe thin films showed that process of the absorber layer removal was triggered by a micro-explosive effect induced by high pressure of sublimated material due to a rapid temperature increase at the molybdenum-CZTSe interface.

  19. Nanoengineered CIGS thin films for low cost photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eldada, Louay; Taylor, Matthew; Sang, Baosheng; McWilliams, Scott; Oswald, Robert; Stanbery, Billy J.

    2008-08-01

    Low cost manufacturing of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) films for high efficiency photovoltaic devices by the innovative Field-Assisted Simultaneous Synthesis and Transfer (FASST®) process is reported. The FASST® process is a two-stage reactive transfer printing method relying on chemical reaction between two separate precursor films to form CIGS, one deposited on the substrate and the other on a printing plate in the first stage. In the second stage these precursors are brought into intimate contact and rapidly reacted under pressure in the presence of an applied electrostatic field. The method utilizes physical mechanisms characteristic of anodic wafer bonding and rapid thermal annealing, effectively creating a sealed micro-reactor that ensures high material utilization efficiency, direct control of reaction pressure, and low thermal budget. The use of two independent ink-based or PVD-based nanoengineered precursor thin films provides the benefits of independent composition and flexible deposition technique optimization, and eliminates pre-reaction prior to the second stage FASST® synthesis of CIGS. High quality CIGS with large grains on the order of several microns are formed in just several minutes based on compositional and structural analysis by XRF, SIMS, SEM and XRD. Cell efficiencies of 12.2% have been achieved using this method.

  20. Characterization of ZnInxSey Thin Films as a Buffer Layer for High Efficiency Cu(InGa)Se2 Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohtake, Yasutoshi; Chaisitsak, Sutichai; Yamada, Akira; Konagai, Makoto

    1998-06-01

    The structural, optical and electrical properties of ZnInxSey (ZIS) thin films on Cu(InGa)Se2 (CIGS) thin films and glass substrates were characterized. Polycrystalline ZIS thin films were grown by the coevaporation method using three constituent elements. We confirmed the formation of ZnIn2Se4 from the X-ray diffraction patterns of the ZIS thin films on glass substrates. From the transmittance and reflectance measurements of these films, the bandgap of ZIS is estimated at around 2.0 eV in this study. In addition, the ZIS films on glass substrates show low dark conductivity and high photosensitivity, which are suitable for the buffer layer in CIGS thin-film solar cells. We also fabricated the CIGS thin-film solar cells with a ZnO/ZIS/CIGS structure, and investigated the relationship between the cell performance and the beam intensity ratio of zinc to indium.

  1. Development of CIGS2 Thin Films on Ultralightweight Flexible Large Area Foil Sunstrates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dhere, Neelkanth G.; Gade, Vivek S.; Kadam, Ankur A.; Jahagirdar, Anant H.; Kulkarni, Sachin S.; Bet, Sachin M.

    2005-01-01

    The development of thin film solar cells is aimed at reducing the costs for photovoltaic systems. Use of thin film technology and thin foil substrate such as 5-mil thick stainless steel foil or 1-mil thick Ti would result in considerable costs savings. Another important aspect is manufacturing cost. Current single crystal technology for space power can cost more than $ 300 per watt at the array level and weigh more than 1 kg/sq m equivalent to specific power of approx. 65 W/kg. Thin film material such as CuIn1-xGaxS2 (CIGS2), CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se(2-y)S(y) (CIGSS) or amorphous hydrogenated silicon (a-Si:H) may be able to reduce both the cost and mass per unit area by an order of magnitude. Manufacturing costs for solar arrays are an important consideration for total spacecraft budget. For a medium sized 5kW satellite for example, the array manufacturing cost alone may exceed $ 2 million. Moving to thin film technology could reduce this expense to less than $ 500K. Earlier publications have demonstrated the potential of achieving higher efficiencies from CIGSS thin film solar cells on 5-mil thick stainless steel foil as well as initial stages of facility augmentation for depositing thin film solar cells on larger (6 in x 4 in) substrates. This paper presents the developmental study of achieving stress free Mo coating; uniform coatings of Mo back contact and metallic precursors. The paper also presents the development of sol gel process, refurbishment of selenization/sulfurization furnace, chemical bath deposition (CBD) for n-type CdS and scrubber for detoxification of H2S and H2Se gases.

  2. Study on the Humidity Susceptibility of Thin-Film CIGS Absorber

    SciTech Connect

    Pern, F. J.; Egaas, B.; To, B.; Jiang, C. S.; Li, J. V.; Glynn, S.; DeHart, C.

    2010-01-01

    The report summarizes the research on the susceptibility of a thermally co-evaporated CuInGaSe2 (CIGS) thin-film absorber to humidity and its consequence on composition, morphology, electrical and electronic properties, and device efficiency.

  3. NREL Produces Highly Efficient, Wide-Bandgap, Thin-Film Solar Cells (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2012-09-01

    Researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) are finding new ways to manufacture thin-film solar cells made from copper, indium, gallium, and selenium - called CIGS cells - that are different than conventional CIGS solar cells. Their use of high-temperature glass, designed by SCHOTT AG, allows higher fabrication temperatures, opening the door to new CIGS solar cells employing light-absorbing materials with wide 'bandgaps.'

  4. Thin film solar energy collector

    DOEpatents

    Aykan, Kamran; Farrauto, Robert J.; Jefferson, Clinton F.; Lanam, Richard D.

    1983-11-22

    A multi-layer solar energy collector of improved stability comprising: (1) a substrate of quartz, silicate glass, stainless steel or aluminum-containing ferritic alloy; (2) a solar absorptive layer comprising silver, copper oxide, rhodium/rhodium oxide and 0-15% by weight of platinum; (3) an interlayer comprising silver or silver/platinum; and (4) an optional external anti-reflective coating, plus a method for preparing a thermally stable multi-layered solar collector, in which the absorptive layer is undercoated with a thin film of silver or silver/platinum to obtain an improved conductor-dielectric tandem.

  5. Effects of duty cycle on properties of CIGS thin films fabricated by pulse-reverse electrodeposition technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jadhav, Harsharaj S.; Kalubarme, Ramchandra S.; Ahn, SeJin; Yun, Jae Ho; Park, Chan-Jin

    2013-03-01

    DC and pulse-reverse electrodeposition mode were employed for the deposition of polycrystalline Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin films. In comparison with DC electrodeposition mode, films obtained by pulse-reverse electrodeposition were smoother, denser and more uniform with good adhesion. The Ga content in final composition of CIGS thin film was improved in pulse-reverse electrodeposition mode. In addition, pulse-reverse electrodeposited CIGS thin films were more crystalline with chalcopyrite structure. The compact morphology without pores in the deposit was achieved in the pulse-reverse electrodeposited CIGS thin films by varying duty cycle.

  6. Comparative alternative materials assessment to screen toxicity hazards in the life cycle of CIGS thin film photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Eisenberg, Daniel A; Yu, Mengjing; Lam, Carl W; Ogunseitan, Oladele A; Schoenung, Julie M

    2013-09-15

    Copper-indium-gallium-selenium-sulfide (CIGS) thin film photovoltaics are increasingly penetrating the market supply for consumer solar panels. Although CIGS is attractive for producing less greenhouse gas emissions than fossil-fuel based energy sources, CIGS manufacturing processes and solar cell devices use hazardous materials that should be carefully considered in evaluating and comparing net environmental benefits of energy products. Through this research, we present a case study on the toxicity hazards associated with alternative materials selection for CIGS manufacturing. We applied two numeric models, The Green Screen for Safer Chemicals and the Toxic Potential Indicator. To improve the sensitivity of the model outputs, we developed a novel, life cycle thinking based hazard assessment method that facilitates the projection of hazards throughout material life cycles. Our results show that the least hazardous CIGS solar cell device and manufacturing protocol consist of a titanium substrate, molybdenum metal back electrode, CuInS₂ p-type absorber deposited by spray pyrolysis, ZnS buffer deposited by spray ion layer gas reduction, ZnO:Ga transparent conducting oxide (TCO) deposited by sputtering, and the encapsulant polydimethylsiloxane. PMID:23811631

  7. Process Development for CIGS-Based Thin-Film Photovoltaic Modules; Phase I Technical Report, 5 February 1998--4 February 1999

    SciTech Connect

    Britt, J., Wiedeman, S.; Wendt, R.; Albright, S.

    1999-09-13

    This report describes work performed by Global Solar Energy (GSE) under Phase I of this subcontract. GSE has initiated an extensive and systematic plan to accelerate the commercialization of thin-film photovoltaics (PV) on copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS). GSE is developing the technology to deposit and monolithically integrate CIGS photovoltaics on a flexible substrate. CIGS-deposited on flexible substrates can be fabricated into either flexible or rigid modules. Low-cost, rigid PV panels for remote power, bulk/utility, telecommunications, and rooftop applications will be produced by affixing the flexible CIGS to an expensive rigid panel by lamination or adhesive. In the GSE approach, long (up to 700 m) continuous rolls of substrate are processed, as opposed to individual small glass plates. In combination with roll-to-roll processing, GSE is developing evaporation deposition operations that enable low-cost and high-efficiency CIGS modules. Efforts are under way to transition the CIGS deposition process into manufacturing at GSE. CIGS process development is focused on synchronizing the operation of the effusion sources, the Se delivery profile, substrate temperature, and a host of other parameters. GSE has selected an interconnect scheme and procured, installed, and tested the equipment necessary to implement the cell interconnection for thin-film CIGS modules on a polyimide substrate.

  8. Thin film solar cell module

    SciTech Connect

    Gay, R.R.

    1987-01-20

    A thin film solar cell module is described comprising a first solar cell panel containing an array of solar cells consisting of a TFS semiconductor sandwiched between a transparent conductive zinc oxide layer and a transparent conductive layer selected from the group consisting of tin oxide, indium tin oxide, and zinc oxide deposited upon a transparent superstrate, and a second solar cell panel containing an array of solar cells consisting of a CIS semiconductor layer sandwiched between a zinc oxide semiconductor layer and a conductive metal layer deposited upon an insulating substrate. The zinc oxide semiconductor layer contains a first relatively thin layer of high resistivity zinc oxide adjacent the CIS semiconductor and a second relatively thick layer of low resistivity zinc oxide overlying the high resistivity zinc oxide layer. The transparent conductive zinc oxide layer of the first panel faces the low resistivity zinc oxide layer of the second panel, the first and second panels being positioned optically in series and separated by a transparent insulating layer.

  9. Rapid composition analysis of compound semiconductor thin film solar cell by laser induced breakdown spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, S. H.; Kim, C. K.; In, J. H.; Jeong, S. H.

    2014-03-01

    The characteristics of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) such as short measurement time and no sample preparation provide clear advantages over other analytical techniques for rapid elemental analysis at manufacturing sites where the composition of products need to be determined in real-time for process monitoring or quality control. Thin film solar cells based on CuIn1-xGaxSe2 (CIGS), polycrystalline compound semiconductor material, have unique advantages of high efficiency (>20%), long-term stability, and low manufacturing cost over other types of solar cell. The electrical and optical properties of the thin CIGS films are closely related to the concentration ratios among its major constituent elements Cu, In, Ga and Se such as Ga/(Ga + In) and Cu/(Ga + In), and thus an accurate measurement of the composition of CIGS thin films has been an issue among CIGS solar cell researchers, requiring a fast and reliable technique for composition analysis. This paper presents the results of nanosecond (ns) and femtosecond (fs) laser based LIBS analysis of thin CIGS films. The critical issues for LIBS analysis of CIGS thin films such are discussed in comparison with ns- and fs-LIBS measurement results. The calibration of LIBS signal intensity ratios with respect to reference concentration data is carried out and the results of optimal line selection for LIBS analysis, depth profiling capability, and reproducibility are discussed.

  10. Recent developments in thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhere, Neelkanth G.

    The present status of the development of thin film solar cells is reviewed, with emphasis on important areas for further research. The following aperture-area efficiencies were measured for thin film modules: a-Si:H, 9.8 percent, 933 sq cm; CuIn(Ga)Se2, 11.1 percent, 938 sq cm; and CdTe, 7.3 percent, 838 sq cm. CuIn(Ga)Se2 cells and modules demonstrated excellent efficiencies and stability. The cost advantage of thin film modules and the higher efficiency and improved stability resulting from multijunctions are shown. Engineering solutions are found to minimize light-induced degradation of a-Si:H solar cells. CdTe cells and modules, and cleaved epitaxial thin film III-V compound cells showed remarkable efficiencies.

  11. High-Efficiency Polycrystalline Thin Film Tandem Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Kranz, Lukas; Abate, Antonio; Feurer, Thomas; Fu, Fan; Avancini, Enrico; Löckinger, Johannes; Reinhard, Patrick; Zakeeruddin, Shaik M; Grätzel, Michael; Buecheler, Stephan; Tiwari, Ayodhya N

    2015-07-16

    A promising way to enhance the efficiency of CIGS solar cells is by combining them with perovskite solar cells in tandem devices. However, so far, such tandem devices had limited efficiency due to challenges in developing NIR-transparent perovskite top cells, which allow photons with energy below the perovskite band gap to be transmitted to the bottom cell. Here, a process for the fabrication of NIR-transparent perovskite solar cells is presented, which enables power conversion efficiencies up to 12.1% combined with an average sub-band gap transmission of 71% for photons with wavelength between 800 and 1000 nm. The combination of a NIR-transparent perovskite top cell with a CIGS bottom cell enabled a tandem device with 19.5% efficiency, which is the highest reported efficiency for a polycrystalline thin film tandem solar cell. Future developments of perovskite/CIGS tandem devices are discussed and prospects for devices with efficiency toward and above 27% are given. PMID:26266847

  12. Effects of Antimony Doping on Cu(In1-x,Gax)Se2 Thin Films and Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yatsushiro, Yuta; Nakakoba, Hiroya; Mise, Takahiro; Kobayashi, Taizo; Nakada, Tokio

    2012-10-01

    The effects of antimony (Sb) doping into Cu(In1-x,Gax)Se2 (CIGS) thin films and solar cells have been investigated. 10-50-nm-thick Sb thin layers were deposited onto Mo-coated sodalime glass (SLG) and SiOx-coated SLG substrates by vacuum evaporation. CIGS thin films were then deposited by a three-stage process at substrate temperatures of 450-550 °C. The grain growth of CIGS thin films was enhanced, and the open-circuit voltage and hence the conversion efficiency improved with the Sb doping when the SLG substrates were used. However, little or no effect was observed when the alkali barrier SiOx layer was deposited on SLG substrates. As a result, we found that Sb doping is beneficial for improving the cell performance when sodium exists simultaneously in CIGS layers.

  13. Effects of Bi Incorporation on Cu(In1-x,Gax)Se2 Thin Films and Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakakoba, Hiroya; Yatsushiro, Yuta; Mise, Takahiro; Kobayashi, Taizo; Nakada, Tokio

    2012-10-01

    The effects of bismuth (Bi) incorporation into Cu(In1-x,Gax)Se2 (CIGS) thin films and solar cells have been investigated. 10-50-nm-thick Bi thin layers were deposited onto Mo-coated soda-lime glass (SLG) and SiOx-coated SLG substrates by vacuum evaporation. CIGS thin films were then deposited by a three-stage process at substrate temperatures of 450-550 °C. The grain growth of CIGS thin films was enhanced, and the open-circuit voltage and hence the conversion efficiency was improved by the Bi incorporation when the SLG substrates were used. However, little effect was observed when the alkali barrier SiOx layer was deposited on SLG substrates. As a result, we found that the Bi incorporation is beneficial for improving the cell performance when sodium exists simultaneously in CIGS layers.

  14. Thin film absorber for a solar collector

    DOEpatents

    Wilhelm, William G.

    1985-01-01

    This invention pertains to energy absorbers for solar collectors, and more particularly to high performance thin film absorbers. The solar collectors comprising the absorber of this invention overcome several problems seen in current systems, such as excessive hardware, high cost and unreliability. In the preferred form, the apparatus features a substantially rigid planar frame with a thin film window bonded to one planar side of the frame. An absorber in accordance with the present invention is comprised of two thin film layers that are sealed perimetrically. In a preferred embodiment, thin film layers are formed from a metal/plastic laminate. The layers define a fluid-tight planar envelope of large surface area to volume through which a heat transfer fluid flows. The absorber is bonded to the other planar side of the frame. The thin film construction of the absorber assures substantially full envelope wetting and thus good efficiency. The window and absorber films stress the frame adding to the overall strength of the collector.

  15. Thin-film solar cells on perlite glass-ceramic substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrosyan, Stepan G.; Babayan, Virab H.; Musayelyan, Ashot S.; Harutyunyan, Levon A.; Zalesski, Valery B.; Kravchenko, Vladimir M.; Leonova, Tatyana R.; Polikanin, Alexander M.; Khodin, Alexander A.

    2013-06-01

    For the first time, thin-film CIGS solar cells have been fabricated by co-evaporation on specially developed non-conducting perlite (an aluminum potassium sodium silicate natural mineral of volcanic origin) glass-ceramic substrates to develop a fully integrated photovoltaic and building element. Such glass-ceramic material can meet the physical requirements to solar cells substrates as well as the cost goals. The preliminary data presented show that CIGS solar cells deposited on ceramic substrates can exhibit efficiency higher than 10%.

  16. The influence of pre-heating temperature on the CIGS thin film growth and device performance prepared in cracked-Se atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Guangmin; Liu, Wei; Liu, Yiming; Lin, Shuping; Li, Xiaodong; Zhang, Yi; Zhou, Zhiqiang; He, Qing; Sun, Yun

    2015-10-01

    The influence of pre-heating temperature on cracked-selenized Cu(In, Ga)Se2 (CIGS) films’ structure, growth kinetics, and photovoltaic performance is investigated. The ‘large island grains’ on the upper surface are the precursors of Cu2-xSe and finally evolve into Cu2-xSe as the pre-heating temperature increases to 400 °C. The ‘large island grains’, as well as In2Se3, are considered to be two decisive factors in forming CIGS as they facilitate the diffusion of cracked-Se into the thin films, because they make the films more incompact and suppress the fast formation of complete single CuInSe2 (CIS) during the 2nd heating. Stoichiometric CIGS thin films without a bi-layer structure and phase separation can be achieved by adjusting the appropriate pre-heating temperature. The performance of the solar cells is mainly influenced by the current leakage caused by small grains and cavities near the CIGS/Mo back contact.

  17. US polycrystalline thin film solar cells program

    SciTech Connect

    Ullal, H.S.; Zweibel, K.; Mitchell, R.L. )

    1989-11-01

    The Polycrystalline Thin Film Solar Cells Program, part of the United States National Photovoltaic Program, performs R D on copper indium diselenide and cadmium telluride thin films. The objective of the Program is to support research to develop cells and modules that meet the US Department of Energy's long-term goals by achieving high efficiencies (15%-20%), low-cost ($50/m{sup 2}), and long-time reliability (30 years). The importance of work in this area is due to the fact that the polycrystalline thin-film CuInSe{sub 2} and CdTe solar cells and modules have made rapid advances. They have become the leading thin films for PV in terms of efficiency and stability. The US Department of Energy has increased its funding through an initiative through the Solar Energy Research Institute in CuInSe{sub 2} and CdTe with subcontracts to start in Spring 1990. 23 refs., 5 figs.

  18. US Polycrystalline Thin Film Solar Cells Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ullal, Harin S.; Zweibel, Kenneth; Mitchell, Richard L.

    1989-11-01

    The Polycrystalline Thin Film Solar Cells Program, part of the United States National Photovoltaic Program, performs R and D on copper indium diselenide and cadmium telluride thin films. The objective of the program is to support research to develop cells and modules that meet the U.S. Department of Energy's long-term goals by achieving high efficiencies (15 to 20 percent), low-cost ($50/m(sup 2)), and long-time reliability (30 years). The importance of work in this area is due to the fact that the polycrystalline thin-film CuInSe2 and CdTe solar cells and modules have made rapid advances. They have become the leading thin films for PV in terms of efficiency and stability. The U.S. Department of Energy has increased its funding through an initiative through the Solar Energy Research Institute in CuInSe2 and CdTe with subcontracts to start in spring 1990.

  19. Monolithic DSSC/CIGS tandem solar cell fabricated by a solution process

    PubMed Central

    Moon, Sung Hwan; Park, Se Jin; Kim, Sang Hoon; Lee, Min Woo; Han, Jisu; Kim, Jin Young; Kim, Honggon; Hwang, Yun Jeong; Lee, Doh-Kwon; Min, Byoung Koun

    2015-01-01

    Tandem architecture between organic (dye-sensitized solar cell, DSSC) and inorganic (CuInGaSe2 thin film solar cell, CIGS) single-junction solar cells was constructed particularly based on a solution process. Arc-plasma deposition was employed for the Pt interfacial layer to minimize the damage to the layers of the CIGS bottom cell. Solar cell efficiency of 13% was achieved, which is significant progress from individual single-junction solar cells (e.g., 7.25 and 6.2% for DSSC and CIGS, respectively). PMID:25759191

  20. Photovoltaic Manufacturing Cost and Throughput Improvements for Thin-Film CIGS-Based Modules; Phase II Annual Subcontract Technical Report, July 1999 - August 2000

    SciTech Connect

    Wendt, T.G.; Wiedeman, S.

    2001-03-12

    Thin-film photovoltaics (PV) has expanded dramatically in the last five years, but commercial use remains limited by performance, cost, and reliability. Of all the thin-film systems, copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) has demonstrated the greatest potential for achieving high performance at a low cost. The highest-quality CIGS has been formed by multi-source co-evaporation, a technique pioneered in this country by researchers at NREL. Multi-source co-evaporation is also potentially the fastest and most cost-effective method of CIGS absorber deposition. Global Solar Energy (GSE) has adapted multi-source co-evaporation of CIGS to large-area, roll-to-roll processing on flexible substrates, enabling several manufacturing and product capability advantages. Roll-to-roll processing enables a low-cost, automated continuous manufacturing process. Flexible substrates enable product application in unique, as well as traditional, areas. The primary objectives of the GSE Photovoltaic Manufacturing Technology (PVMaT) subcontract are to reduce cost and expand the production rate of thin-film CIGS-based PV modules on flexible substrates. Improvements will be implemented in monolithic integration, CIGS deposition, contact deposition, and in-situ CIGS control and monitoring. Specific goals of the three-year contract are: - Monolithic Integration - Increase integration speed by developing high-speed, all-laser scribing processes that are more than 100% faster than the baseline process and offer clean, selective scribing; increase capacity and substantially reduce module area losses by insulating materials with high accuracy into laser scribes. - Absorber Deposition - Increase absorber-layer deposition rate by 75% in the large-area, continuous GSE process, increasing throughput and reducing labor and capital costs. Integrate a parallel detector spectroscopic ellipsometer (PDSE) with mathematical algorithms for in-situ control of the CIGS absorber, enabling runs of over 300 meters

  1. Electroreflectance of thin-film solar cells: Simulation and experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huber, Christian; Krämmer, Christoph; Sperber, David; Magin, Alice; Kalt, Heinz; Hetterich, Michael

    2015-08-01

    Electromodulated reflectance (ER) is a standard characterization method to determine critical points such as the band gap in the band structure of semiconductors. These critical points show up as spectrally narrow features in ER and are typically evaluated using Aspnes's third-derivative functional form. ER spectra of stratified semiconductor systems such as thin-film solar cells, however, are significantly distorted by optical interference due to their layered structure. Furthermore, strong built-in electric fields result in a deviation from the typically assumed low-field conditions. We present here simulations of ER spectra from stratified systems based on transfer matrices using the Franz-Keldysh theory in its general form. For realistic thin-film solar cell conditions, distortions of ER line shapes due to the above-mentioned interferences and strong electric fields appear in the simulations. Furthermore, the results show good agreement with measured ER spectra of a structurally well-characterized Cu (In ,Ga ) Se2 (CIGS) solar cell. Our analysis points out the restrictions on the determination of energetic position and number of critical points from ER spectra of stratified systems.

  2. Fabrication of solution processed 3D nanostructured CuInGaS₂ thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Chu, Van Ben; Cho, Jin Woo; Park, Se Jin; Hwang, Yun Jeong; Park, Hoo Keun; Do, Young Rag; Min, Byoung Koun

    2014-03-28

    In this study we demonstrate the fabrication of CuInGaS₂ (CIGS) thin film solar cells with a three-dimensional (3D) nanostructure based on indium tin oxide (ITO) nanorod films and precursor solutions (Cu, In and Ga nitrates in alcohol). To obtain solution processed 3D nanostructured CIGS thin film solar cells, two different precursor solutions were applied to complete gap filling in ITO nanorods and achieve the desirable absorber film thickness. Specifically, a coating of precursor solution without polymer binder material was first applied to fill the gap between ITO nanorods followed by deposition of the second precursor solution in the presence of a binder to generate an absorber film thickness of ∼1.3 μm. A solar cell device with a (Al, Ni)/AZO/i-ZnO/CdS/CIGS/ITO nanorod/glass structure was constructed using the CIGS film, and the highest power conversion efficiency was measured to be ∼6.3% at standard irradiation conditions, which was 22.5% higher than the planar type of CIGS solar cell on ITO substrate fabricated using the same precursor solutions. PMID:24569126

  3. Photovoltaic manufacturing cost and throughput improvements for thin-film CIGS-based modules: Phase 1 technical report, July 1998--July 1999

    SciTech Connect

    Wiedeman, S.; Wendt, R.G.

    2000-03-01

    The primary objectives of the Global Solar Energy (GSE) Photovoltaic Manufacturing Technology (PVMaT) subcontract are directed toward reducing cost and expanding the production rate of thin-film CuInGaSe{sub 2} (CIGS)-based PV modules on flexible substrates. Improvements will be implemented in monolithic integration, CIGS deposition, contact deposition, and in-situ CIGS control and monitoring. In Phase 1, GSE has successfully attacked many of the highest risk aspects of each task. All-laser, selective scribing processes for CIGS have been developed, and many end-of-contract goals for scribing speed have been exceeded in the first year. High-speed ink-jet deposition of insulating material in the scribes now appears to be a viable technique, again exceeding some end-of-contract goals in the first year. Absorber deposition of CIGS was reduced corresponding to throughput speeds of up to 24-in/min, also exceeding an end-of-contract goal. Alternate back-contact materials have been identified that show potential as candidates for replacement of higher-cost molybdenum, and a novel, real-time monitoring technique (parallel-detector spectroscopic ellipsometry) has shown remarkable sensitivity to relevant properties of the CIGS absorber layer for use as a diagnostic tool. Currently, one of the bilayers has been baselined by GSE for flexible CIGS on polymeric substrates. Resultant back-contacts meet sheet-resistance goals and exhibit much less intrinsic stress than Mo. CIGS has been deposited, and resultant devices are comparable in performance to pure Mo back-contacts. Debris in the chamber has been substantially reduced, allowing longer roll-length between system cleaning.

  4. Thin-film cadmium telluride solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, T. L.

    1987-10-01

    Cadmium telluride, with a room-temperature band-gap energy of 1.5 eV, is a promising thin-film photovoltaic material. The major objective of this research has been to demonstrate thin-film CdTe heterojunction solar cells with a total area greater than 1 sq cm and photovoltaic efficiencies of 13 percent or more. Thin-film p-CdTe/CdS/SnO2:F/glass solar cells with an AM1.5 efficiency of 10.5 percent have been reported previously. This report contains results of work done on: (1) the deposition, resistivity control, and characterization of p-CdTe films by the close-spaced sublimation process; (2) the deposition of large-band-gap window materials; (3) the electrical properties of CdS/CdTe heterojunctions; (4) the formation of stable, reproducible, ohmic contacts (such as p-HgTe) to p-CdTe; and (5) the preparation and evaluation of heterojunction solar cells.

  5. Thin-film cadmium telluride solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1986-09-01

    This is the final technical progress report of a research program entitled Thin-Film Cadmium Telluride Solar Cells. The major objective was to demonstrate chemical vapor deposition (CVD)-grown CdTe devices with a photovoltaic efficiency of at least 10%. The work included: (1) CVD and characterization of p-CdTe films of controlled resistivity; (2) deposition and characterization of heterojunction partners; (3) surface passivation of CdTe; and (4) preparation and characterization of thin-film solar cells. The CVD of p-CdTe was optimized with emphasis on resistivity control through nonstoichiometry and extrinsic doping. Both carbon and oxygen were identified as acceptors. The use of thermal oxidation for surface passivation of CdTe was investigated using capacitance-voltage measurement. Device-quality thermal oxide can be prepared by hydrogen annealing of CdTe before oxidation. Deposition and characterization of CdS, CdO, and ZnO:In were also carried out. The best thin-film cell to date had a conversion efficiency near 9%.

  6. Radiation effects on thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Gay, C.F.; Anspaugh, B.E.; Potter, R.R.; Tanner, D.P.

    1984-05-01

    A study has been undertaken to assess the effects of 1 MeV electron radiation on two types of thin film solar cells, thin-film silicon:hydrogen alloy (TFS) and copper indium diselenide (CIS). Using TFS devices with efficiencies between 8-9% AM 0 (9-10% AM 1.5), and CIS devices with efficiencies between 7-8% AM 0 (8-9% AM 1.5), the results show the devices are more stable to electron radiation than the typical crystalline silicon aerospace cells. In fact the CIS showed no degradation at all and with low temperature annealing the TFS could be restored to within 97% of initial power output.

  7. Antimony selenide thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Kai; Xue, Ding-Jiang; Tang, Jiang

    2016-06-01

    Due to their promising applications in low-cost, flexible and high-efficiency photovoltaics, there has been a booming exploration of thin-film solar cells using new absorber materials such as Sb2Se3, SnS, FeS2, CuSbS2 and CuSbSe2. Among them, Sb2Se3-based solar cells are a viable prospect because of their suitable band gap, high absorption coefficient, excellent electronic properties, non-toxicity, low cost, earth-abundant constituents, and intrinsically benign grain boundaries, if suitably oriented. This review surveys the recent development of Sb2Se3-based solar cells with special emphasis on the material and optoelectronic properties of Sb2Se3, the solution-based and vacuum-based fabrication process and the recent progress of Sb2Se3-sensitized and Sb2Se3 thin-film solar cells. A brief overview further addresses some of the future challenges to achieve low-cost, environmentally-friendly and high-efficiency Sb2Se3 solar cells.

  8. Research on polycrystalline thin-film CuGaInSe[sub 2] solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Stanbery, B.J.; Chen, W.S.; Devaney, W.E.; Stewart, J.W. . Defense and Space Systems Group)

    1992-11-01

    This report describes research to fabricate high-efficiency CdZnS/CuInGaSe[sub 2] (CIGS) thin-film solar cells, and to develop improved transparent conductor window layers such as ZnO. A specific technical milestone was the demonstration of an air mass (AM) 1.5 global, 13% efficient, 1-cm[sup 2]-total-area CIGS thin-film solar cell. Our activities focused on three areas. First, a CIGS deposition: system was modified to double its substrate capacity, thus increasing throughput, which is critical to speeding the process development by providing multiple substrates from the same CIGS run. Second, new tooling was developed to enable an investigation of a modified aqueous CdZnS process. The goal was to improve the yield of this critical step in the device fabrication process. Third, our ZnO sputtering system was upgraded to improve its reliability, and the sputtering parameters were further optimized to improve its properties as a transparent conducting oxide. The characterization of the new CIGS deposition system substrate fixturing was completed, and we produced good thermal uniformity and adequately high temperatures for device-quality CIGS deposition. Both the CIGS and ZnO deposition processes were refined to yield a ZnO//Cd[sub 0.82]Zn[sub 0.18]S/CuIn[sub 0.80]Ga[sub 0.20]Se[sub 2] cell that was verified at NREL under standard testing conditions at 13.1% efficiency with V[sub oc] = 0.581 V, J[sub sc] = 34.8 mA/cm[sup 2], FF = 0.728, and a cell area of 0.979 cm[sup 2].

  9. Nanocrystalline silicon based thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Swati

    2012-06-01

    Amorphous silicon solar cells and panels on glass and flexible substrate are commercially available. Since last few years nanocrystalline silicon thin film has attracted remarkable attention due to its stability under light and ability to absorb longer wavelength portion of solar spectrum. For amorphous silicon/ nanocrystalline silicon double junction solar cell 14.7% efficiency has been achieved in small area and 13.5% for large area modules internationally. The device quality nanocrystalline silicon films have been fabricated by RF and VHF PECVD methods at IACS. Detailed characterizations of the materials have been done. Nanocrystalline films with low defect density and high stability have been developed and used as absorber layer of solar cells.

  10. Thin-film cadmium telluride solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, T. L.

    1986-08-01

    The major objective of this work was to demonstrate CdTe devices grown by chemical vapor deposition (CVD) with a total area greater than 1 cm2 and photovoltic efficiencies of at least 13%. During the period covered, various processing steps were investigated for the preparation of thin-film CdTe heterojunction solar cells of the inverted configuration. Glass coated with fluorine-doped tin oxide was used as the substrate. Thin-film heterojunction solar cells were prepared by depositing p-CdTe films on substrates using CVD and close-spaced sublimation (CSS). Cells prepared from CSS CdTe usually have a higher conversion efficiency than those prepared from CVD CdTe, presumably due to the chemical interaction between CdS and CdTe at the interface during the CVD process. The best cell, about 1.2 sq cm in area, had an AM 1.5 (global) efficiency of 10.5%, and further improvements are expected by optimizing the process parameters.

  11. Nanostructured refractory thin films for solar applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ollier, E.; Dunoyer, N.; Dellea, O.; Szambolics, H.

    2014-08-01

    Selective solar absorbers are key elements of all solar thermal systems. Solar thermal panels and Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) systems aim respectively at producing heat and electricity. In both cases, a surface receives the solar radiation and is designed to have the highest optical absorption (lowest optical reflectivity) of the solar radiation in the visible wavelength range where the solar intensity is the highest. It also has a low emissivity in the infrared (IR) range in order to avoid radiative thermal losses. Current solutions in the state of the art usually consist in deposited interferential thin films or in cermets [1]. Structured surfaces have been proposed and have been simulated because they are supposed to be more efficient when the solar radiation is not normal to the receiving surface and because they could potentially be fabricated with refractory materials able to sustain high operating temperatures. This work presents a new method to fabricate micro/nanostructured surfaces on molybdenum (refractory metal with a melting temperature of 2623°C). This method now allows obtaining a refractory selective surface with an excellent optical selectivity and a very high absorption in the visible range. This high absorption performance was obtained by achieving a double structuration at micro and nano scales thanks to an innovative process flow.

  12. Materials availability for thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Makita, Yunosuke

    1997-04-01

    Materials availability is one of the most important factors when we consider the mass-production of next generation photovoltaic devices. "In (indium)" is a vital element to produce high efficient thin film solar cells such as InP and CuIn(Ga)Se2 but its lifetime as a natural resource is suggested to be of order of 10˜15 years. The lifetime of a specific natural resource as an element to produce useful device substances is directly related with its abundance in the earth's crust, consumption rate and recycling rate (if recycling is economically meaningful). The chemical elements having long lifetime as a natural resource are those existing in the atmosphere such as N (nitrogen) and O (oxygen); the rich elements in the earth's crust such as Si, Ca, Sr and Ba; the mass-used metals such as Fe (iron), Al (aluminum) and Cu (copper) that reached the stage of large-scale recycling. We here propose a new paradigm of semiconductor material-science for the future generation thin film solar cells in which only abundant chemical elements are used. It is important to remark that these abundant chemical elements are normally not toxic and are fairly friendly to the environment. β-FeSi2 is composed of two most abundant and nontoxic chemical elements. This material is one of the most promising device materials for future generation energy devices (solar cells and thermoelectric device that is most efficient at temperature range of 700-900 °C). One should remind of the versatility of β-FeSi2 that this material can be used not only as energy devices but also as photodetector, light emitting diode and/or laser diode at the wavelength of 1.5 μm that can be monolithically integrated on Si substrates due to the relatively small lattice mismatch.

  13. Selective Ablation of Thin Films with Picosecond-Pulsed Lasers for Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Račiukaitis, G.; Gečys, P.; Gedvilas, M.; Regelskis, K.; Voisiat, B.

    2010-10-01

    Functional thin-films are of high importance in modern electronics for flat panel displays, photovoltaics, flexible and organic electronics. Versatile technologies are required for patterning thin-film materials on rigid and flexible substrates. The large-area applications of thin films such as photovoltaics need high speed and simple to use techniques. Ultra-short laser processing with its flexibility is one of the ways to achieve high quality material etching but optimization of the processes is required to meet specific needs of the applications. Lasers with picosecond pulse duration were applied in selective ablation of conducting, semi-conducting and isolating films in the complex multilayered thin-film solar cells based on amorphous Si and CuInxGa(1-x)Se2 (CIGS) deposited on glass and polymer substrates. Modeling of energy transition between the layers and temperature evolution was performed to understand the processes. Selection of the right laser wavelength was important to keep the energy coupling in a well defined volume at the interlayer interface. Ultra-short pulses ensured high energy input rate into absorbing material permitting peeling of the layers with no influence on the remaining material. Use of high repetition rate lasers with picosecond pulse duration offers new possibilities for high quality and efficiency patterning of advanced materials for thin-film electronics.

  14. CZTSSe thin film solar cells: Surface treatments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joglekar, Chinmay Sunil

    Chalcopyrite semiconducting materials, specifically CZTS, are a promising alternative to traditional silicon solar cell technology. Because of the high absorption coefficient; films of the order of 1 micrometer thickness are sufficient for the fabrication of solar cells. Liquid based synthesis methods are advantageous because they are easily scalable using the roll to roll manufacturing techniques. Various treatments are explored in this study to enhance the performance of the selenized CZTS film based solar cells. Thiourea can be used as a sulfur source and can be used to tune band gap of CZTSSe. Bromine etching can be used to manipulate the thickness of sintered CZTSSe film. The etching treatment creates recombination centers which lead to poor device performance. Various after treatments were used to improve the performance of the devices. It was observed that the performance of the solar cell devices could not be improved by any of the after treatment steps. Other surface treatment processes are explored including KCN etching and gaseous H2S treatments. Hybrid solar cells which included use of CIGS nanoparticles at the interface between CZTSSe and CdS are also explored.

  15. Metastability of copper indium gallium diselenide polycrystalline thin film solar cell devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Jinwoo

    High efficiency thin film solar cells have the potential for being a world energy solution because of their cost-effectiveness. Looking to the future of solar energy, there is the opportunity and challenge for thin film solar cells. The main theme of this research is to develop a detailed understanding of electronically active defect states and their role in limiting device performance in copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) solar cells. Metastability in the CIGS is a good tool to manipulate electronic defect density and thus identify its effect on the device performance. Especially, this approach keeps many device parameters constant, including the chemical composition, grain size, and interface layers. Understanding metastability is likely to lead to the improvement of CIGS solar cells. We observed systematic changes in CIGS device properties as a result of the metastable changes, such as increases in sub-bandgap defect densities and decreases in hole carrier mobilities. Metastable changes were characterized using high frequency admittance spectroscopy, drive-level capacitance profiling (DLCP), and current-voltage measurements. We found two distinctive capacitance steps in the high frequency admittance spectra that correspond to (1) the thermal activation of hole carriers into/out of acceptor defect and (2) a temperature-independent dielectric relaxation freeze-out process and an equivalent circuit analysis was employed to deduce the dielectric relaxation time. Finally, hole carrier mobility was deduced once hole carrier density was determined by DLCP method. We found that metastable defect creation in CIGS films can be made either by light-soaking or with forward bias current injection. The deep acceptor density and the hole carrier density were observed to increase in a 1:1 ratio, which seems to be consistent with the theoretical model of VCu-V Se defect complex suggested by Lany and Zunger. Metastable defect creation kinetics follows a sub-linear power law

  16. Selectiveness of laser processing due to energy coupling localization: case of thin film solar cell scribing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Račiukaitis, G.; Grubinskas, S.; Gečys, P.; Gedvilas, M.

    2013-07-01

    Selectiveness of the laser processing is the top-most important for applications of the processing technology in thin-film electronics, including photovoltaics. Coupling of laser energy in multilayered thin-film structures, depending on photo-physical properties of the layers and laser wavelength was investigated experimentally and theoretically. Energy coupling within thin films highly depends on the film structure. The finite element and two-temperature models were applied to simulate the energy and temperature distributions inside the stack of different layers of a thin-film solar cell during a picosecond laser irradiation. Reaction of the films to the laser irradiation was conditioned by optical properties of the layers at the wavelength of laser radiation. Simulation results are consistent with the experimental data achieved in laser scribing of copper-indium-gallium diselenide (CIGS) solar cells on a flexible polymer substrate using picosecond-pulsed lasers. Selection of the right laser wavelength (1064 nm or 1572 nm) enabled keeping the energy coupling in a well-defined volume at the interlayer interface. High absorption at inner interface of the layers triggered localized temperature increase. Transient stress caused by the rapid temperature rise facilitating peeling of the films rather than evaporation. Ultra-short pulses ensured high energy input rate into absorbing material permitting peeling of the layers with no influence on the remaining material.

  17. UV imprinting for thin film solar cell application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escarré, J.; Battaglia, C.; Söderström, K.; Pahud, C.; Biron, R.; Cubero, O.; Haug, F.-J.; Ballif, C.

    2012-02-01

    UV imprinting is an interesting, low cost technique to produce large area thin film solar cells incorporating nanometric textures. Here, we review and present new results confirming that replicas of the most common textures used in photovoltaics can be obtained by UV imprinting with an excellent fidelity. The use of these replicas as substrates for amorphous and micromorph thin film silicon solar cells is also shown, together with a comparison with devices obtained on the original textures.

  18. Recent technological advances in thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Ullal, H.S.; Zwelbel, K.; Surek, T.

    1990-03-01

    High-efficiency, low-cost thin film solar cells are an exciting photovoltaic technology option for generating cost-effective electricity in 1995 and beyond. This paper reviews the substantial advances made by several thin film solar cell technologies, namely, amorphous silicon, copper indium diselenide, cadmium telluride, and polycrystalline silicon. Recent examples of utility demonstration projects of these emerging materials are also discussed. 8 refs., 4 figs.

  19. Thin-Film Solar Cells on Metal Foil Substrates for Space Power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raffaelle, Ryne P.; Hepp, Aloysius F.; Hoffman, David J.; Dhere, N.; Tuttle, J. R.; Jin, Michael H.

    2004-01-01

    Photovoltaic arrays have played a key role in power generation in space. The current technology will continue to evolve but is limited in the important mass specific power metric (MSP or power/weight ratio) because it is based on bulk crystal technology. The objective of this research is to continue development of an innovative photovoltaic technology for satellite power sources that could provide up to an order of magnitude saving in both weight and cost, and is inherently radiation-tolerant through use of thin film technology and thin foil substrates such as 5-mil thick stainless steel foil or 1-mil thick Ti. Current single crystal technology for space power can cost more than $300 per watt at the array level and weigh more than 1 kg/sq m equivalent to specific power of approx. 65 W/kg. Thin film material such as CuIn(1-x),Ga(x)S2, (CIGS2), CuIn(1-x), G(x)Se(2-y),S(y), (CIGSS) or amorphous hydrogenated silicon (a-Si:H) may be able to reduce both the cost and mass per unit area by an order of magnitude. Manufacturing costs for solar arrays are an important consideration for total spacecraft budget. For a medium sized 5kW satellite, for example, the array manufacturing cost alone may exceed $2 million. Moving to thin film technology could reduce this expense to less than $500 K. Previous work at FSEC demonstrated the potential of achieving higher efficiencies from CIGSS thin film solar cells on 5-mil thick stainless steel foil as well as initial stages of facility augmentation for depositing thin film solar cells on larger (6"x 4") substrates. This paper presents further progress in processing on metal foil substrates. Also, previous work at DayStar demonstrated the feasibility of flexible-thin-film copper-indium-gallium-diselenide (CIGS) solar cells with a power-to-weight ratio in excess of 1000 W/kg. We will comment on progress on the critical issue of scale-up of the solar cell absorber deposition process. Several important technical issues need to be resolved

  20. Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, T. L.; Chu, Shirley S.; Ang, S. T.; Mantravadi, M. K.

    1987-08-01

    Thin-film p-CdTe/CdS/SnO2:F/glass solar cells of the inverted configuration were prepared by the deposition of p-type CdTe films onto CdS/SnO2:F/glass substrates using CVD or close-spaced sublimation (CSS) techniques based on the procedures of Chu et al. (1983) and Nicholl (1963), respectively. The deposition rates of p-CdTe films deposited by CSS were higher than those deposited by the CVD technique (4-5 min were sufficient), and the efficiencies higher than 10 percent were obtained. However, the resistivity of films prepared by CSS was not as readily controlled as that of the CVD films. The simplest technique to reduce the resistivity of the CSS p-CdTe films was to incorporate a dopant, such as As or Sb, into the reaction mixture during the preparation of the source material. The films with resistivities in the range of 500-1000 ohm cm were deposited in this manner.

  1. Novel wide band gap materials for highly efficient thin film tandem solar cells. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Brian E. Hardin; Connor, Stephen T.; Peters, Craig H.

    2012-06-11

    films using a mixture of solution and physical vapor deposition processing, but these films lacked the p-type doping levels that are required to make decent solar cells. Over the course of the project PLANT PV was able to fabricate efficient CIGS solar cells (8.7%) but could not achieve equivalent performance using AIGS. During the nine-month grant PLANT PV set up a variety of thin film characterization tools (e.g. drive-level capacitance profiling) at the Molecular Foundry, a Department of Energy User Facility, that are now available to both industrial and academic researchers via the grant process. PLANT PV was also able to develop the back end processing of thin film solar cells at Lawrence Berkeley National Labs to achieve 8.7% efficient CIGS solar cells. This processing development will be applied to other types of thin film PV cells at the Lawrence Berkeley National Labs. While PLANT PV was able to study AIGS film growth and optoelectronic properties we concluded that AIGS produced using these methods would have a limited efficiency and would not be commercially feasible. PLANT PV did not apply for the Phase II of this grant.

  2. Highly stable tandem solar cell monolithically integrating dye-sensitized and CIGS solar cells

    PubMed Central

    Chae, Sang Youn; Park, Se Jin; Joo, Oh-Shim; Jun, Yongseok; Min, Byoung Koun; Hwang, Yun Jeong

    2016-01-01

    A highly stable monolithic tandem solar cell was developed by combining the heterogeneous photovoltaic technologies of dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) and solution-processed CuInxGa1-xSeyS1-y (CIGS) thin film solar cells. The durability of the tandem cell was dramatically enhanced by replacing the redox couple from to [Co(bpy)3]2+ /[Co(bpy)3]3+), accompanied by a well-matched counter electrode (PEDOT:PSS) and sensitizer (Y123). A 1000 h durability test of the DSSC/CIGS tandem solar cell in ambient conditions resulted in only a 5% decrease in solar cell efficiency. Based on electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and photoelectrochemical cell measurement, the enhanced stability of the tandem cell is attributed to minimal corrosion by the cobalt-based polypyridine complex redox couple. PMID:27489138

  3. Highly stable tandem solar cell monolithically integrating dye-sensitized and CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chae, Sang Youn; Park, Se Jin; Joo, Oh-Shim; Jun, Yongseok; Min, Byoung Koun; Hwang, Yun Jeong

    2016-08-01

    A highly stable monolithic tandem solar cell was developed by combining the heterogeneous photovoltaic technologies of dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) and solution-processed CuInxGa1-xSeyS1-y (CIGS) thin film solar cells. The durability of the tandem cell was dramatically enhanced by replacing the redox couple from to [Co(bpy)3]2+ /[Co(bpy)3]3+), accompanied by a well-matched counter electrode (PEDOT:PSS) and sensitizer (Y123). A 1000 h durability test of the DSSC/CIGS tandem solar cell in ambient conditions resulted in only a 5% decrease in solar cell efficiency. Based on electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and photoelectrochemical cell measurement, the enhanced stability of the tandem cell is attributed to minimal corrosion by the cobalt-based polypyridine complex redox couple.

  4. Thin-film copper indium gallium selenide solar cell based on low-temperature all-printing process.

    PubMed

    Singh, Manjeet; Jiu, Jinting; Sugahara, Tohru; Suganuma, Katsuaki

    2014-09-24

    In the solar cell field, development of simple, low-cost, and low-temperature fabrication processes has become an important trend for energy-saving and environmental issues. Copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) solar cells have attracted much attention due to the high absorption coefficient, tunable band gap energy, and high efficiency. However, vacuum and high-temperature processing in fabrication of solar cells have limited the applications. There is a strong need to develop simple and scalable methods. In this work, a CIGS solar cell based on all printing steps and low-temperature annealing is developed. CIGS absorber thin film is deposited by using dodecylamine-stabilized CIGS nanoparticle ink followed by printing buffer layer. Silver nanowire (AgNW) ink and sol-gel-derived ZnO precursor solution are used to prepare a highly conductive window layer ZnO/[AgNW/ZnO] electrode with a printing method that achieves 16 Ω/sq sheet resistance and 94% transparency. A CIGS solar cell based on all printing processes exhibits efficiency of 1.6% with open circuit voltage of 0.48 V, short circuit current density of 9.7 mA/cm(2), and fill factor of 0.34 for 200 nm thick CIGS film, fabricated under ambient conditions and annealed at 250 °C. PMID:25180569

  5. Recent Progress in CuInS2 Thin-Film Solar Cell Research at NASA Glenn

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jin, M. H.-C.; Banger, K. K.; Kelly, C. V.; Scofield, J. H.; McNatt, J. S.; Dickman, J. E.; Hepp, A. F.

    2005-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is interested in developing low-cost highly efficient solar cells on light-weight flexible substrates, which will ultimately lower the mass-specific power (W/kg) of the cell allowing extra payload for missions in space as well as cost reduction. In addition, thin film cells are anticipated to have greater resistance to radiation damage in space, prolonging their lifetime. The flexibility of the substrate has the added benefit of enabling roll-to-roll processing. The first major thin film solar cell was the "CdS solar cell" - a heterojunction between p-type CuxS and n-type CdS. The research on CdS cells started in the late 1950s and the efficiency in the laboratory was up to about 10 % in the 1980s. Today, three different thin film materials are leading the field. They include amorphous Si, CdTe, and Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS). The best thin film solar cell efficiency of 19.2 % was recently set by CIGS on glass. Typical module efficiencies, however, remain below 15 %.

  6. Micro-structuring of CIGS thin-film coated on Mo back contact by ultrafast laser `rail-roading' patterning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeoung, Sae Chae; Lee, Heung-Soon; Yahng, Ji Sang; Lee, Hyun Kyu; Moon, Heh Young; Kim, Kyoun Joon; Lee, Dong Geun; Park, Duck Hoon; Yu, Young Sam; Ji, Suk-Jae

    2011-08-01

    We report selective patterning process, laser `rail-roading' scribing method, of which operating principle is based on transient force balance between the material properties including cohesion and adhesion forces subjected to underlying substrate and laser-induced shock compression and shear forces. By using dual fs-laser beam lines with an interval larger than laser spot size, we provide a proof of the concept by patterning the photovoltaic modules based on CIGS (Cu(In,Ga)Se2) coated on Mo electrode. With varying the interval between the two laser beam tracks, we can provide intact Mo back contact surface without any residues in a manner of more facile, high-speed and high scribing efficiency. We have interpreted the effect of the ambient gases and grooving width on the scribing performance in terms of the cohesion forces between the grains of CIGS thin films as well as adhesion force between underlying Mo layer and CIGS, which are mainly governed by local laser ablation and peening process followed by laser-induced shock compression, respectively.

  7. Micro-structuring of CIGS thin-film coated on Mo back contact by ultrafast laser 'rail-roading' patterning.

    PubMed

    Jeoung, Sae Chae; Lee, Heung-Soon; Yahng, Ji Sang; Lee, Hyun Kyu; Moon, Heh Young; Kim, Kyoun Joon; Lee, Dong Geun; Park, Duck Hoon; Yu, Young Sam; Ji, Suk-Jae

    2011-08-29

    We report selective patterning process, laser 'rail-roading' scribing method, of which operating principle is based on transient force balance between the material properties including cohesion and adhesion forces subjected to underlying substrate and laser-induced shock compression and shear forces. By using dual fs-laser beam lines with an interval larger than laser spot size, we provide a proof of the concept by patterning the photovoltaic modules based on CIGS (Cu(In,Ga)Se2) coated on Mo electrode. With varying the interval between the two laser beam tracks, we can provide intact Mo back contact surface without any residues in a manner of more facile, high-speed and high scribing efficiency. We have interpreted the effect of the ambient gases and grooving width on the scribing performance in terms of the cohesion forces between the grains of CIGS thin films as well as adhesion force between underlying Mo layer and CIGS, which are mainly governed by local laser ablation and peening process followed by laser-induced shock compression, respectively. PMID:21935035

  8. Ternary Precursors for Depositing I-III-VI2 Thin Films for Solar Cells via Spray CVD

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banger, K. K.; Hollingsworth, J. A.; Jin, M. H.-C.; Harris, J. D.; Duraj, S. A.; Smith, M.; Scheiman, D.; Bohannan, E. W.; Switzer, J. A.; Buhro, W. E.

    2002-01-01

    The development of thin-film solar cells on flexible, lightweight, space-qualified substrates provides an attractive cost solution to fabricating solar arrays with high specific power (W/kg). Thin-film fabrication studies demonstrate that ternary single source precursors (SSP's) can be used in either a hot or cold-wall spray chemical vapour deposition (CVD) reactor, for depositing CuInS2, CuGaS2, and CuGaInS2 at reduced temperatures (400 to 450 C), which display good electrical and optical properties suitable for photovoltaic (PV) devices. X-ray diffraction studies, energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) confirmed the formation of the single phase CIS, CGS, CIGS thin-films on various substrates at reduced temperatures.

  9. Thin-Film Solar Array Earth Orbit Mission Applicability Assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, David J.; Kerslake, Thomas W.; Hepp, Aloysius F.; Raffaelle, Ryne P.

    2002-01-01

    This is a preliminary assessment of the applicability and spacecraft-level impact of using very lightweight thin-film solar arrays with relatively large deployed areas for representative Earth orbiting missions. The most and least attractive features of thin-film solar arrays are briefly discussed. A simple calculation is then presented illustrating that from a solar array alone mass perspective, larger arrays with less efficient but lighter thin-film solar cells can weigh less than smaller arrays with more efficient but heavier crystalline cells. However, a proper spacecraft-level systems assessment must take into account the additional mass associated with solar array deployed area: the propellant needed to desaturate the momentum accumulated from area-related disturbance torques and to perform aerodynamic drag makeup reboost. The results for such an assessment are presented for a representative low Earth orbit (LEO) mission, as a function of altitude and mission life, and a geostationary Earth orbit (GEO) mission. Discussion of the results includes a list of specific mission types most likely to benefit from using thin-film arrays. NASA Glenn's low-temperature approach to depositing thin-film cells on lightweight, flexible plastic substrates is also briefly discussed to provide a perspective on one approach to achieving this enabling technology. The paper concludes with a list of issues to be addressed prior to use of thin-film solar arrays in space and the observation that with their unique characteristics, very lightweight arrays using efficient, thin-film cells on flexible substrates may become the best array option for a subset of Earth orbiting missions.

  10. Thin-Film Photovoltaic Solar Array Parametric Assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, David J.; Kerslake, Thomas W.; Hepp, Aloysius F.; Jacobs, Mark K.; Ponnusamy, Deva

    2000-01-01

    This paper summarizes a study that had the objective to develop a model and parametrically determine the circumstances for which lightweight thin-film photovoltaic solar arrays would be more beneficial, in terms of mass and cost, than arrays using high-efficiency crystalline solar cells. Previous studies considering arrays with near-term thin-film technology for Earth orbiting applications are briefly reviewed. The present study uses a parametric approach that evaluated the performance of lightweight thin-film arrays with cell efficiencies ranging from 5 to 20 percent. The model developed for this study is described in some detail. Similar mass and cost trends for each array option were found across eight missions of various power levels in locations ranging from Venus to Jupiter. The results for one specific mission, a main belt asteroid tour, indicate that only moderate thin-film cell efficiency (approx. 12 percent) is necessary to match the mass of arrays using crystalline cells with much greater efficiency (35 percent multi-junction GaAs based and 20 percent thin-silicon). Regarding cost, a 12 percent efficient thin-film array is projected to cost about half is much as a 4-junction GaAs array. While efficiency improvements beyond 12 percent did not significantly further improve the mass and cost benefits for thin-film arrays, higher efficiency will be needed to mitigate the spacecraft-level impacts associated with large deployed array areas. A low-temperature approach to depositing thin-film cells on lightweight, flexible plastic substrates is briefly described. The paper concludes with the observation that with the characteristics assumed for this study, ultra-lightweight arrays using efficient, thin-film cells on flexible substrates may become a leading alternative for a wide variety of space missions.

  11. Single Source Precursors for Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banger, Kulbinder K.; Hollingsworth, Jennifer A.; Harris, Jerry D.; Cowen, Jonathan; Buhro, William E.; Hepp, Aloysius F.

    2002-01-01

    The development of thin film solar cells on flexible, lightweight, space-qualified substrates provides an attractive cost solution to fabricating solar arrays with high specific power, (W/kg). The use of a polycrystalline chalcopyrite absorber layer for thin film solar cells is considered as the next generation photovoltaic devices. At NASA GRC we have focused on the development of new single source precursors (SSP) and their utility to deposit the chalcopyrite semi-conducting layer (CIS) onto flexible substrates for solar cell fabrication. The syntheses and thermal modulation of SSPs via molecular engineering is described. Thin-film fabrication studies demonstrate the SSPs can be used in a spray CVD (chemical vapor deposition) process, for depositing CIS at reduced temperatures, which display good electrical properties, suitable for PV (photovoltaic) devices.

  12. Thin film metallic glass as a diffusion barrier for copper indium gallium selenide solar cell on stainless steel substrate: A feasibility study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diyatmika, Wahyu; Xue, Lingjun; Lin, Tai-Nan; Chang, Chia-wen; Chu, Jinn P.

    2016-08-01

    The feasibility of using Zr53.5Cu29.1Al6.5Ni10.9 thin-film metallic glass (TFMG) as a diffusion barrier for copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) solar cells on stainless steel (SS) is investigated. The detrimental Fe diffusion from SS into CIGS is found to be effectively hindered by the introduction of a 70-nm-thick TFMG barrier; the cell performance is thus improved. Compared with the 2.73% of CIGS on bare SS, a higher efficiency of 5.25% is obtained for the cell with the Zr52Cu32Al9Ni7 TFMG barrier.

  13. Advanced Thin Film Solar Arrays for Space: The Terrestrial Legacy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bailey, Sheila; Hepp, Aloysius; Raffaelle, Ryne; Flood, Dennis

    2001-01-01

    As in the case for single crystal solar cells, the first serious thin film solar cells were developed for space applications with the promise of better power to weight ratios and lower cost. Future science, military, and commercial space missions are incredibly diverse. Military and commercial missions encompass both hundreds of kilowatt arrays to tens of watt arrays in various earth orbits. While science missions also have small to very large power needs there are additional unique requirements to provide power for near sun missions and planetary exploration including orbiters, landers, and rovers both to the inner planets and the outer planets with a major emphasis in the near term on Mars. High power missions are particularly attractive for thin film utilization. These missions are generally those involving solar electric propulsion, surface power systems to sustain an outpost or a permanent colony on the surface of the Moon or Mars, space based lasers or radar, or large Earth orbiting power stations which can serve as central utilities for other orbiting spacecraft, or potentially beaming power to the Earth itself. This paper will discuss the current state of the art of thin film solar cells and the synergy with terrestrial thin film photovoltaic evolution. It will also address some of the technology development issues required to make thin film photovoltaics a viable choice for future space power systems.

  14. Insect Thin Films as Sun Blocks, Not Solar Collectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koon, Daniel W.; Crawford, Andrew B.

    2000-05-01

    We measured the visible reflectance spectra of whole wing sections from three species of iridescent butterflies and moths, for normal incidence, integrated over all reflected angles. In this manner, we separated the optics of the thin films causing the iridescence from the optics of the rest of the scale. We found that iridescence reduces solar absorption by the wing in all cases, typically by approximately 20% or less, in contrast to claims by Miaoulis and Heilman Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 91, 122 (1998) that the thin-film structures that produce iridescence act as solar collectors.

  15. Integrated thin film cadmium sulfide solar cell module

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mickelsen, R. A.; Abbott, D. D.

    1971-01-01

    The design, development, fabrication and tests of flexible integrated thin-film cadmium sulfide solar cells and modules are discussed. The development of low cost and high production rate methods for interconnecting cells into large solar arrays is described. Chromium thin films were applied extensively in the deposited cell structures as a means to: (1) achieve high adherence between the cadmium sulfide films and the vacuum-metallized copper substrates, (2) obtain an ohmic contact to the cadmium sulfide films, and (3) improve the adherence of gold films as grids or contact areas.

  16. Annealing of Solar Cells and Other Thin Film Devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Escobar, Hector; Kuhlman, Franz; Dils, D. W.; Lush, G. B.; Mackey, Willie R. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Annealing is a key step in most semiconductor fabrication processes, especially for thin films where annealing enhances performance by healing defects and increasing grain sizes. We have employed a new annealing oven for the annealing of CdTe-based solar cells and have been using this system in an attempt to grow US on top of CdTe by annealing in the presence of H2S gas. Preliminary results of this process on CdTe solar cells and other thin-film devices will be presented.

  17. Polycrystalline thin-film solar cells and modules

    SciTech Connect

    Ullal, H.S.; Stone, J.L.; Zweibel, K.; Surek, T.; Mitchell, R.L.

    1991-12-01

    This paper describes the recent technological advances in polycrystalline thin-film solar cells and modules. Three thin film materials, namely, cadmium telluride (CdTe), copper indium diselenide (CuInSe{sub 2}, CIS) and silicon films (Si-films) have made substantial technical progress, both in device and module performance. Early stability results for modules tested outdoors by various groups worldwide are also encouraging. The major global players actively involved in the development of the these technologies are discussed. Technical issues related to these materials are elucidated. Three 20-kW polycrystalline thin-film demonstration photovoltaic (PV) systems are expected to be installed in Davis, CA in 1992 as part of the Photovoltaics for Utility-Scale Applications (PVUSA) project. This is a joint project between the US Department of Energy (DOE), Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), California Energy Commission (CEC), and a utility consortium.

  18. Polycrystalline thin-film solar cells and modules

    SciTech Connect

    Ullal, H.S.; Stone, J.L.; Zweibel, K.; Surek, T.; Mitchell, R.L.

    1991-12-01

    This paper describes the recent technological advances in polycrystalline thin-film solar cells and modules. Three thin film materials, namely, cadmium telluride (CdTe), copper indium diselenide (CuInSe{sub 2}, CIS) and silicon films (Si-films) have made substantial technical progress, both in device and module performance. Early stability results for modules tested outdoors by various groups worldwide are also encouraging. The major global players actively involved in the development of the these technologies are discussed. Technical issues related to these materials are elucidated. Three 20-kW polycrystalline thin-film demonstration photovoltaic (PV) systems are expected to be installed in Davis, CA in 1992 as part of the Photovoltaics for Utility-Scale Applications (PVUSA) project. This is a joint project between the US Department of Energy (DOE), Pacific Gas and Electric (PG E), Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), California Energy Commission (CEC), and a utility consortium.

  19. Impact of different Na-incorporating methods on Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin film solar cells with a low-Na substrate.

    PubMed

    Ye, Shenglin; Tan, Xiaohui; Jiang, Minlin; Fan, Bin; Tang, Ken; Zhuang, Songlin

    2010-03-20

    As a kind of Na-incorporating control method, NaF co-evaporation or soda-lime glass thin films (SLGTFs) are useful to improve the photovoltaic performance of Cu(In,Ga)Se(2) (CIGS) cells fabricated on low-Na substrates. X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns and scanning electron microscope pictures demonstrate that the grain size of CIGS thin film is reduced with the addition of Na. In addition, a variance of the preferred orientation is found by XRD patterns in terms of SLGTF samples. By a use of 100 nm thick SLGTF as a Na source, the best CIGS solar cell with an efficiency of 13.42% has been obtained. PMID:20300164

  20. Process for making thin film solar cell

    SciTech Connect

    Eberspacher, C.; Ermer, J.H.; Mitchell, K.W.

    1991-09-03

    This paper describes a semiconducting thin film forced on a substrate by the method. It comprises: depositing a composite film of copper and indium on a substrate, the film having an atomic copper to indium ratio of about one, depositing a film of selenium on the composite copper indium film, the selenium film thickness selected to provide an atomic ratio of selenium to copper and indium of less than one, and heating the substrate with the composite copper indium film and the selenium film in the presence of H{sub 2}S gas for a time and at a temperature sufficient to cause interdiffusion of copper, indium, selenium and sulfur to form a semiconductor of the class CuInSe{sub 2{minus}x}S{sub x} where x is less than two.

  1. Buried contact multijunction thin film silicon solar cell

    SciTech Connect

    Green, M.

    1995-08-01

    In early 1994, the Center for Photovoltaic Devices and Systems announced the filing of patent applications on an improved silicon thin film photovoltaic module approach. With material costs estimated to be about 20 times lower than those in present silicon solar cell modules along with other production advantages, this technology appears likely to make low cost, high performance solar modules available for the first time. This paper describes steps involved in making a module and module performance.

  2. Optical and electrical characterization of CIGS thin films grown by electrodeposition route

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adel, Chihi; Fethi, Boujmil Mohamed; Brahim, Bessais

    2016-02-01

    In this paper, the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy was handled to study the electrochemical attitude of quaternary alloy Cu (In, Ga) Se2/Na2SO4 electrolyte interface. Subsequently, an annealing treatment was performed at various temperatures (250-400 °C). The material features of Cu (In, Ga) Se2 films are controlled by the percentage of gallium content. XRD studies showed three favorite orientations along the (112), (220), and (116) planes for all samples. The morphological and chemical composition studies exhibited Ga/(Ga + In) ratio ranging from 0.27 to 0.32, and RMS surface roughness was in the range 54.2-77.8 nm, respectively. The optical band gap energy of the CIGS alloys can be strongly controlled by adjusting gallium and indium concentrations. EIS measurement has been modeled by using an equivalent circuit. Mott-Schottky plot illustrates p-type conductivity of CIGS film with a carrier concentration around 1016 cm-3, a flat band potential V fb ranging from -0.68 to -0.57 V, and depletion layer thickness rises from 0.24 to 0.36 μm.

  3. Photovoltaic technology: the case for thin-film solar cells

    PubMed

    Shah; Torres; Tscharner; Wyrsch; Keppner

    1999-07-30

    The advantages and limitations of photovoltaic solar modules for energy generation are reviewed with their operation principles and physical efficiency limits. Although the main materials currently used or investigated and the associated fabrication technologies are individually described, emphasis is on silicon-based solar cells. Wafer-based crystalline silicon solar modules dominate in terms of production, but amorphous silicon solar cells have the potential to undercut costs owing, for example, to the roll-to-roll production possibilities for modules. Recent developments suggest that thin-film crystalline silicon (especially microcrystalline silicon) is becoming a prime candidate for future photovoltaics. PMID:10426984

  4. Metal nanoparticles enhanced optical absorption in thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Wanlu; Liu, Fang; Qu, Di; Xu, Qi; Huang, Yidong

    2011-12-01

    The plasmonic enhanced absorption for thin film solar cells with silver nanoparticles (NPs) deposited on top of the amorphous silicon film (a-Si:H) solar cells and embedded inside the active layer of organic solar cells (OSCs) has been simulated and analyzed. Obvious optical absorption enhancement is obtained not only at vertical incidence but also at oblique incidence. By properly adjusting the period and size of NPs, an increased absorption enhancement of about 120% and 140% is obtained for a-Si:H solar cells and OSCs, respectively.

  5. High efficiency thin-film GaAs solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stirn, R. J.

    1977-01-01

    Several oxidation techniques are discussed which have been found to increase the open circuit (V sub oc) of metal-GaAs Schottky barrier solar cells, the oxide chemistry, attempts to measure surface state parameters, the evolving characteristics of the solar cell as background contamination (has been decreased, but not eliminated), results of focused Nd/YAG laser beam recrystallization of Ge films evaporated onto tungsten, and studies of AMOS solar cells fabricated on sliced polycrystalline GaAs wafers. Also discussed are projected materials availability and costs for GaAs thin-film solar cells.

  6. Recycling of high purity selenium from CIGS solar cell waste materials.

    PubMed

    Gustafsson, Anna M K; Foreman, Mark R StJ; Ekberg, Christian

    2014-10-01

    Copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) is a promising material in thin film solar cell production. To make CIGS solar cells more competitive, both economically and environmentally, in comparison to other energy sources, methods for recycling are needed. In addition to the generally high price of the material, significant amounts of the metals are lost in the manufacturing process. The feasibility of recycling selenium from CIGS through oxidation at elevated temperatures was therefore examined. During oxidation gaseous selenium dioxide was formed and could be separated from the other elements, which remained in solid state. Upon cooling, the selenium dioxide sublimes and can be collected as crystals. After oxidation for 1h at 800°C all of the selenium was separated from the CIGS material. Two different reduction methods for reduction of the selenium dioxide to selenium were tested. In the first reduction method an organic molecule was used as the reducing agent in a Riley reaction. In the second reduction method sulphur dioxide gas was used. Both methods resulted in high purity selenium. This proves that the studied selenium separation method could be the first step in a recycling process aimed at the complete separation and recovery of high purity elements from CIGS. PMID:24472714

  7. Light-Induced Degradation of Thin Film Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamelmann, F. U.; Weicht, J. A.; Behrens, G.

    2016-02-01

    Silicon-wafer based solar cells are still domination the market for photovoltaic energy conversion. However, most of the silicon is used only for mechanical stability, while only a small percentage of the material is needed for the light absorption. Thin film silicon technology reduces the material demand to just some hundred nanometer thickness. But even in a tandem stack (amorphous and microcrystalline silicon) the efficiencies are lower, and light-induced degradation is an important issue. The established standard tests for characterisation are not precise enough to predict the performance of thin film silicon solar cells under real conditions, since many factors do have an influence on the degradation. We will show some results of laboratory and outdoor measurements that we are going to use as a base for advanced modelling and simulation methods.

  8. Polymer Substrates For Lightweight, Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lewis, Carol R.

    1993-01-01

    Substrates survive high deposition temperatures. High-temperature-resistant polymers candidate materials for use as substrates of lightweight, flexible, radiation-resistant solar photovoltaic cells. According to proposal, thin films of copper indium diselenide or cadmium telluride deposited on substrates to serve as active semiconductor layers of cells, parts of photovoltaic power arrays having exceptionally high power-to-weight ratios. Flexibility of cells exploited to make arrays rolled up for storage.

  9. Design, development and manufacture of high-efficiency low-cost solar modules based on CIGS PVICs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eldada, Louay

    2010-02-01

    We describe the design, development and manufacture of solar power panels based on photovoltaic integrated circuits (PVICs) with high-quality high-uniformity Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) thin films produced with the unique combination of low-cost ink-based and physical vapor deposition (PVD) based nanoengineered precursor thin films and a reactive transfer printing method. Reactive transfer is a two-stage process relying on chemical reaction between two separate precursor films to form CIGS, one deposited on the substrate and the other on a printing plate in the first stage. In the second stage, these precursors are brought into intimate contact and rapidly reacted under pressure in the presence of an electrostatic field while heat is applied. The use of two independent thin films provides the benefits of independent composition and flexible deposition technique optimization, and eliminates pre-reaction prior to the synthesis of CIGS. High quality CIGS with large grains on the order of several microns, and of preferred crystallographic orientation, are formed in just several minutes based on compositional and structural analysis by XRF, SIMS, SEM and XRD. Cell efficiencies of 14% and module efficiencies of 12% have been achieved using this method. When atmospheric pressure deposition of inks is utilized for the precursor films, the approach additionally provides lower energy consumption, higher throughput, and further reduced capital equipment cost with higher uptime.

  10. Development of sputtering systems for large-area deposition of CuIn1-xGaxSe1-ySy thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhere, Neelkanth G.; Gade, Vivek S.; Jahagirdar, Anant H.; Kadam, Ankur A.; Patil, Harshad P.; Kulkarni, Sachin S.

    2003-07-01

    CuIn1-xGaxSe1-ySy (CIGS) thin-film modules are expected to become cheaper than crystalline silicon modules within 5 yr. At present, commissioning and reaching full production of thin film modules is delayed because of nonavailability of turnkey manufacturing plants. Very few universities are conducting research on development of PV plants. CIGS thin-film solar cells are being prepared routinely at Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) on glass and metallic foil substrates for terrestrial and space applications. Earlier, the substrate size was limited to 3×3 cm2. This article presents results of development of large-area sputtering systems for preparation of large (15.2×15.2 cm2) CIGS thin-film solar cells. The facilities have the potential of serving as a nucleus of a pilot plant for fabrication of CIGS minimodules. Initial problems of bowing of the brass diaphragm, restriction of effective water flow and consequent heating of the target material were resolved by increasing the thickness of the backing plate and redesigning the structural members. Thickness uniformity was improved by modifying the magnetic field distribution in the middle 15 cm portion of the 10.2×30.5 cm2 magnetron sputtering sources by selectively removing nickel-coated soft-iron pieces at the rear. This resulted in Mo layer thickness uniformity of +/-3% over 10.2×10.2 cm2. The magnetic field was boosted at extremities to avoid precipitous ~15% drop beyond 10.2 cm. With this, thickness uniformities of +/-2.5% for Mo and +/-4.5% for ZnO over 12.7×10.2 cm2 have been achieved however with a continuing drop beyond 12.7 cm width. Modifying the magnetic field to achieve better distribution by preferentially removing soft irons pieces and also boosting of the magnetic field at the ends are two new concepts introduced and successfully utilized in this study. Scaling up of the large-area uniform deposition of metallic precursor layers was a challenging task. The efforts were directed towards obtaining

  11. Thin-film polycrystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Funghnan, B. W.; Blanc, J.; Phillips, W.; Redfield, D.

    1980-08-01

    Thirty-four new solar cells were fabricated on Wacker Sislo substrates and the AM-1 parameters were measured. A detailed comparison was made between the measurement of minority carrier diffusion length by the OE method and the penetrating light laser scan grain boundary photoresponse linewidth method. The laser scan method has more experimental uncertainty and agrees within 10 to 50% with the QE method. It allows determination of L over a large area. Atomic hydrogen passivation studies continued on Wacker material by three techniques. A method of determining surface recombination velocity, s, from laser scan data was developed. No change in s in completed solar cells after H-plasma treatment was observed within experimental error. H-passivation of bare silicon cars as measured by the new laser scan photoconductivity technique showed very large effects.

  12. Systems and methods for solar cells with CIS and CIGS films made by reacting evaporated copper chlorides with selenium

    SciTech Connect

    Albin, David S.; Noufi, Rommel

    2015-06-09

    Systems and methods for solar cells with CIS and CIGS films made by reacting evaporated copper chlorides with selenium are provided. In one embodiment, a method for fabricating a thin film device comprises: providing a semiconductor film comprising indium (In) and selenium (Se) upon a substrate; heating the substrate and the semiconductor film to a desired temperature; and performing a mass transport through vapor transport of a copper chloride vapor and se vapor to the semiconductor film within a reaction chamber.

  13. Microcrystalline organic thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Verreet, Bregt; Heremans, Paul; Stesmans, Andre; Rand, Barry P

    2013-10-11

    Microcrystalline organic films with tunable thickness are produced directly on an indium-tin-oxide substrate, by crystallizing a thin amorphous rubrene film followed by its use as a template for subsequent homoepitaxial growth. These films, with exciton diffusion lengths exceeding 200 nm, produce solar cells with increasing photocurrents at thicknesses up to 400 nm with a fill factor >65%, demonstrating significant potential for microcrystalline organic electronic devices. PMID:23939936

  14. High efficiency thin film cadmium telluride solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, T. L.; Chu, S. S.; Ang, S. T.; Han, K. D.; Liu, Y. Z.

    Thin films of cadmium telluride deposited by the close-spaced sublimation (CSS) technique have been characterized and used for the preparation of CdS/CdTe heterojunction solar cells. The current-voltage and capacitance-voltage relations of CdS/CdTe heterojunctions indicate that the cleanliness of the interface is an important factor affecting the characteristics of the solar cells. The best cell has an area of about 1.2 sq cm and an AM1.5 (global) efficiency of 10.5 percent.

  15. Thin film polycrystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Ghosh, A. K.; Feng, T.; Eustace, D. J.; Maruska, H. P.

    1980-01-01

    During the present quarter efficiency of heterostructure solar cells has been increased from 13 to 13.7% for single crystal and from 10.3 to 11.2% for polysilicon. For polysilicon the improvements can be attributed to reductions in grid-area coverage and in reflection losses and for single crystal to a combination of reduction in grid-area coverage and increase in fill factor. The heterostructure cells in both cases were IT0/n-Si solar cells. Degradation in Sn0/sub 2//n-Si solar cells can be greatly reduced to negligible proportions by proper encapsulation. The cells used in stability tests have an average initial efficiency of 11% which reduces to a value of about 10.5% after 6 months of exposure to sunlight and ambient conditions. This small degradation occurs within the first month, and the efficiency remains constant subsequently. The reduction in efficiency is due to a decrease in the open-circuit voltage only, while the short-circuit current and fill factor remain constant. The effects of grain-size on the Hall measurements in polysilicon have been analyzed and interpreted, with some modifications, using a model proposed by Bube. This modified model predicts that the measured effective Hall voltage is composed of components originating from the bulk and space-charge region. For materials with large grains, the carrier concentration is independent of the inter-grain boundary barrier, whereas the mobility is dependent on it. However, for small rains, both the carrier density and mobility depend on the barrier. These predictions are consistant with experimental results of mm-size Wacker polysilicon and ..mu..m-size NTD polysilicon.

  16. Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Chu, T.L.; Chu, S.S.; Xi, X.J.; Yang, Y.T.

    1983-05-01

    Cadmium telluride films have been deposited on coated graphite and mullite substrates by the direct combination of the vapors of the elements in a hydrogen atmosphere. The properties of nearly stoichiometric films on mullite substrates were measured by the van der Pauw technique in the temperature range of 25/sup 0/ - 150/sup 0/C. The deposition of n-type cadmium telluride by using hydrogen iodide as a dopant and the deposition of p-type cadmium telluride films by using arsine or phosphine as a dopant were studied. Schottky barrier solar cells were prepared from n-type cadmium telluride films and heterojunction cells from p-type cadmium telluride films.

  17. Methods for fabricating thin film III-V compound solar cell

    DOEpatents

    Pan, Noren; Hillier, Glen; Vu, Duy Phach; Tatavarti, Rao; Youtsey, Christopher; McCallum, David; Martin, Genevieve

    2011-08-09

    The present invention utilizes epitaxial lift-off in which a sacrificial layer is included in the epitaxial growth between the substrate and a thin film III-V compound solar cell. To provide support for the thin film III-V compound solar cell in absence of the substrate, a backing layer is applied to a surface of the thin film III-V compound solar cell before it is separated from the substrate. To separate the thin film III-V compound solar cell from the substrate, the sacrificial layer is removed as part of the epitaxial lift-off. Once the substrate is separated from the thin film III-V compound solar cell, the substrate may then be reused in the formation of another thin film III-V compound solar cell.

  18. A comparative study of solution-processed low- and high-band-gap chalcopyrite thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Se Jin; Cho, Yunae; Moon, Sung Hwan; Kim, Ji Eun; Lee, Doh-Kwon; Gwak, Jihye; Kim, Jihyun; Kim, Dong-Wook; Koun Min, Byoung

    2014-04-01

    Low-cost and printable chalcopyrite thin-film solar cells were fabricated by a precursor solution-based coating method with a multi-step heat-treatment process (oxidation, sulfurization, and selenization). The high-band-gap (1.57 eV) Cu(InxGa1-x)S2 (CIGS) solar cell showed a high open-circuit voltage of 787 mV, whereas the low-band-gap (1.12 eV) Cu(InxGa1-x)(S1-ySey)2 (CIGSSe) cell exhibited a high short-circuit current density of 32.6 mA cm-2. The energy conversion efficiencies were 8.28% for CIGS and 8.81% for CIGSSe under standard irradiation conditions. Despite similar efficiencies, the two samples showed notable differences in grain size, surface morphology, and interfacial properties. Low-temperature transport and admittance characteristics of the samples clearly revealed how their structural differences influenced their photovoltaic and electrical properties. Such analyses provide insight into the enhanced solar cell performance of the solution-processed chalcopyrite thin films.

  19. Thin film transistors and solar cells. (Latest citations from the US Patent bibliographic file with exemplary claims). Published Search

    SciTech Connect

    1995-01-01

    The bibliography contains citations of selected patents concerning the fabrication and application methods of thin film transistors and thin film solar cells. Methods of manufacturing thin film transistors for use in electronic display devices are presented. Techniques for continuously producing durable and reliable thin film solar cells are discussed. (Contains 250 citations and includes a subject term index and title list.)

  20. Recycling of high purity selenium from CIGS solar cell waste materials

    SciTech Connect

    Gustafsson, Anna M.K. Foreman, Mark R.StJ.; Ekberg, Christian

    2014-10-15

    Highlights: • A new method for recycling of selenium from CIGS solar cell materials is presented. • Separation of selenium as selenium dioxide after heating in oxygen atmosphere. • Complete selenium separation after oxidation of <63 μm particles at 800 °C for 1 h. • After reduction of selenium dioxide the selenium purity was higher than 99.999 wt%. - Abstract: Copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) is a promising material in thin film solar cell production. To make CIGS solar cells more competitive, both economically and environmentally, in comparison to other energy sources, methods for recycling are needed. In addition to the generally high price of the material, significant amounts of the metals are lost in the manufacturing process. The feasibility of recycling selenium from CIGS through oxidation at elevated temperatures was therefore examined. During oxidation gaseous selenium dioxide was formed and could be separated from the other elements, which remained in solid state. Upon cooling, the selenium dioxide sublimes and can be collected as crystals. After oxidation for 1 h at 800 °C all of the selenium was separated from the CIGS material. Two different reduction methods for reduction of the selenium dioxide to selenium were tested. In the first reduction method an organic molecule was used as the reducing agent in a Riley reaction. In the second reduction method sulphur dioxide gas was used. Both methods resulted in high purity selenium. This proves that the studied selenium separation method could be the first step in a recycling process aimed at the complete separation and recovery of high purity elements from CIGS.

  1. Ecofriendly and Nonvacuum Electrostatic Spray-Assisted Vapor Deposition of Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2 Thin Film Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Hossain, Md Anower; Wang, Mingqing; Choy, Kwang-Leong

    2015-10-14

    Chalcopyrite Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2 (CIGSSe) thin films have been deposited by a novel, nonvacuum, and cost-effective electrostatic spray-assisted vapor deposition (ESAVD) method. The generation of a fine aerosol of precursor solution, and their controlled deposition onto a molybdenum substrate, results in adherent, dense, and uniform Cu(In,Ga)S2 (CIGS) films. This is an essential tool to keep the interfacial area of thin film solar cells to a minimum value for efficient charge separation as it helps to achieve the desired surface smoothness uniformity for subsequent cadmium sulfide and window layer deposition. This nonvacuum aerosol based approach for making the CIGSSe film uses environmentally benign precursor solution, and it is cheaper for producing solar cells than that of the vacuum-based thin film solar technology. An optimized CIGSSe thin film solar cell with a device configuration of molybdenum-coated soda-lime glass substrate/CIGSSe/CdS/i-ZnO/AZO shows the photovoltaic (j-V) characteristics of Voc=0.518 V, jsc=28.79 mA cm(-2), fill factor=64.02%, and a promising power conversion efficiency of η=9.55% under simulated AM 1.5 100 mW cm(-2) illuminations, without the use of an antireflection layer. This demonstrates the potential of ESAVD deposition as a promising alternative approach for making thin film CIGSSe solar cells at a lower cost. PMID:26390182

  2. Silver Nanoparticle Enhanced Freestanding Thin-Film Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winans, Joshua David

    As the supply of fossil fuels diminishes in quantity the demand for alternative energy sources will consistently increase. Solar cells are an environmentally friendly and proven technology that suffer in sales due to a large upfront cost. In order to help facilitate the transition from fossil fuels to photovoltaics, module costs must be reduced to prices well below $1/Watt. Thin-film solar cells are more affordable because of the reduced materials costs, but lower in efficiency because less light is absorbed before passing through the cell. Silver nanoparticles placed at the front surface of the solar cell absorb and reradiate the energy of the light in ways such that more of the light ends being captured by the silicon. Silver nanoparticles can do this because they have free electron clouds that can take on the energy of an incident photon through collective action. This bulk action of the electrons is called a plasmon. This work begins by discussing the economics driving the need for reduced material use, and the pros and cons of taking this step. Next, the fundamental theory of light-matter interaction is briefly described followed by an introduction to the study of plasmonics. Following that we discuss a traditional method of silver nanoparticle formation and the initial experimental studies of their effects on the ability of thin-film silicon to absorb light. Then, Finite-Difference Time-Domain simulation software is used to simulate the effects of nanoparticle morphology and size on the scattering of light at the surface of the thin-film.

  3. Thin film CdTe solar cells - A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basol, Bulent M.

    High-efficiency thin-film CdTe solar cells can be fabricated using various methods ranging from the wet chemical techniques such as electrodeposition to the more conventional semiconductor processing methods such as vacuum evaporation. An examination of these different methods reveals that there are similarities between the postdeposition treatments that the CdTe films are subjected to, before they are used for device fabrication. Some of the cell fabrication techniques are reviewed, and the processing steps common to all methods are highlighted.

  4. Research on polycrystalline thin-film CuGaInSe{sub 2} solar cells. Annual subcontract report, 3 May 1991--2 May 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Stanbery, B.J.; Chen, W.S.; Devaney, W.E.; Stewart, J.W.

    1992-11-01

    This report describes research to fabricate high-efficiency CdZnS/CuInGaSe{sub 2} (CIGS) thin-film solar cells, and to develop improved transparent conductor window layers such as ZnO. A specific technical milestone was the demonstration of an air mass (AM) 1.5 global, 13% efficient, 1-cm{sup 2}-total-area CIGS thin-film solar cell. Our activities focused on three areas. First, a CIGS deposition: system was modified to double its substrate capacity, thus increasing throughput, which is critical to speeding the process development by providing multiple substrates from the same CIGS run. Second, new tooling was developed to enable an investigation of a modified aqueous CdZnS process. The goal was to improve the yield of this critical step in the device fabrication process. Third, our ZnO sputtering system was upgraded to improve its reliability, and the sputtering parameters were further optimized to improve its properties as a transparent conducting oxide. The characterization of the new CIGS deposition system substrate fixturing was completed, and we produced good thermal uniformity and adequately high temperatures for device-quality CIGS deposition. Both the CIGS and ZnO deposition processes were refined to yield a ZnO//Cd{sub 0.82}Zn{sub 0.18}S/CuIn{sub 0.80}Ga{sub 0.20}Se{sub 2} cell that was verified at NREL under standard testing conditions at 13.1% efficiency with V{sub oc} = 0.581 V, J{sub sc} = 34.8 mA/cm{sup 2}, FF = 0.728, and a cell area of 0.979 cm{sup 2}.

  5. Thin-film Solar Cells for Space Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lush, Gregory B.

    2003-01-01

    The proposed work supports MURED goals by fostering research and development activities at Fisk and UTEP which contribute substantially to NASA's mission, preparing faculty and students at Fisk and UTEP to successfully participate in the conventional, competitive research and education process, and increasing the number of students to successfully complete degrees in NASA related fields. The project also addresses directly a core need of NASA for space power and is consistent with the Core Responsibilities of the John Glenn Space Center. Current orbital missions are limited by radiation from high energy particles trapped in the Van Allen Belt because that solar radiation degrades cell performance by damaging the crystalline lattice. Some potential orbits have been inaccessible because the radiation is too severe. Thin-film solar cells, if they can be adapted for use in the unfriendly space environment, could open new orbits to satellites by providing a radiation hard source of power. The manned mission to Mars requires photovoltaic devices for both the trip there and as a power supply on the surface. Solar arrays using thin films offer a low power/weight ratio solution that provides reliable photovoltaic power.

  6. Thin Film Solar Cells: Organic, Inorganic and Hybrid

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dankovich, John

    2004-01-01

    Thin film solar cells are an important developing resource for hundreds of applications including space travel. In addition to being more cost effective than traditional single crystal silicon cells, thin film multi-crystaline cells are plastic and light weight. The plasticity of the cells allows for whole solar panels to be rolled out from reams. Organic layers are being investigated in order to increase the efficiency of the cells to create an organic / inorganic hybrid cell. The main focus of the group is a thin film inorganic cell made with the absorber CuInS2. So far the group has been successful in creating the layer from a single-source precursor. They also use a unique method of film deposition called chemical vapor deposition for this. The general makeup of the cell is a molybdenum back contact with the CuInS2 layer, then CdS, ZnO and aluminum top contacts. While working cells have been produced, the efficiency so far has been low. Along with quantum dot fabrication the side project of this that is currently being studied is adding a polymer layer to increase efficiency. The polymer that we are using is P3OT (Poly(3-octylthiopene-2,5-diyll), retroregular). Before (and if) it is added to the cell, it must be understood in itself. To do this simple diodes are being constructed to begin to look at its behavior. The P3OT is spin coated onto indium tin oxide and silver or aluminum contacts are added. This method is being studied in order to find the optimal thickness of the layer as well as other important considerations that may later affect the composition of the finished solar cell. Because the sun is the most abundant renewable, energy source that we have, it is important to learn how to harness that energy and begin to move away from our other depleted non-renewable energy sources. While traditional silicon cells currently create electricity at relatively high efficiencies, they have drawbacks such as weight and rigidness that make them unattractive

  7. Chemically Deposited Thin-Film Solar Cell Materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raffaelle, R.; Junek, W.; Gorse, J.; Thompson, T.; Harris, J.; Hehemann, D.; Hepp, A.; Rybicki, G.

    2005-01-01

    We have been working on the development of thin film photovoltaic solar cell materials that can be produced entirely by wet chemical methods on low-cost flexible substrates. P-type copper indium diselenide (CIS) absorber layers have been deposited via electrochemical deposition. Similar techniques have also allowed us to incorporate both Ga and S into the CIS structure, in order to increase its optical bandgap. The ability to deposit similar absorber layers with a variety of bandgaps is essential to our efforts to develop a multi-junction thin-film solar cell. Chemical bath deposition methods were used to deposit a cadmium sulfide (CdS) buffer layers on our CIS-based absorber layers. Window contacts were made to these CdS/CIS junctions by the electrodeposition of zinc oxide (ZnO). Structural and elemental determinations of the individual ZnO, CdS and CIS-based films via transmission spectroscopy, x-ray diffraction, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and energy dispersive spectroscopy will be presented. The electrical characterization of the resulting devices will be discussed.

  8. Photovoltaic Manufacturing Cost and Throughput Improvements for Thin Film CIGS-Based Modules: Final Technical Report, July 1998 -- September 2001

    SciTech Connect

    Britt, J.

    2002-04-01

    This report describes the marked improvements made of the production line under the PVMaT program: successfully developed a high-speed, all-laser, monolithic integration process for CIGS-based modules on polyimide substrates; exceeded PVMaT goals for scribing rate and total interconnect width; developed robust, well-controlled techniques for selective scribing; improved CIGS evaporation sources to allow uniform, controllable delivery; completed foundation required to integrate higher CIGS deposition rates into the production line; developed well-controlled Se delivery system to minimize Se consumption; successfully integrated the parallel-detector spectroscope ellipsometer (PDSE) into a production CIGS deposition chamber; collected useful, in-situ data with PDSE; validated the performance of the X-ray fluorescometry (XRF) sensor in the production CIGS deposition chamber; and successfully incorporated the XRF sensor into the control architecture of the production CIGS deposition chamber .

  9. Damp-Heat Induced Degradation of Transparent Conducting Oxides for Thin Film Solar Cells (Presentation)

    SciTech Connect

    Pern, J.; Noufi, R.; Li, X.; DeHart, C.; To, B.

    2008-05-01

    The objectives are: (1) To achieve a high long-term performance reliability for the thin-film CIGS PV modules with more stable materials, device structure designs, and moisture-resistant encapsulation materials and schemes; (2) to evaluate the DH stability of various transparent conducting oxides (TCOs); (3) to identify the degradation mechanisms and quantify degradation rates; (4) to seek chemical and/or physical mitigation methods, and explore new materials. It's important to note that direct exposure to DH represents an extreme condition that a well-encapsulated thin film PV module may never experience.

  10. High efficiency copper ternary thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Basol, B.M.; Kapur, V.K. )

    1991-04-01

    This report describes work to develop a high efficiency, thin film CuInSe{sub 2} solar cell using a potentially low-cost process. The technique used in this development program is a two-stage process. The two-stage process involves depositing the metallic elements of the CuInSe{sub 2} compound (i.e., Cu and In) on a substrate in the form of stacked layers, and then selenizing this stacked metallic film in an atmosphere containing Se. Early results showed that the electrodeposition/selenization technique could yield CuInSe{sub 2} films with good electrical and optical properties on small-area substrates. This report concentrates on the later half of the research effort; this portion was directed toward developing a two-stage process using evaporated Cu-In layers. The selenization technique has the potential of yielding solar cells with efficiencies in excess of 15 percent. 7 refs., 12 figs.

  11. Analysis of loss mechanisms in polycrystalline thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sites, J. R.

    1990-08-01

    Our goal for thin-film polycrystalline solar cell analysis was to increase the useful information extracted from relatively straightforward electrical measurements. The strategy was to (1) systematize measurements and reporting, (2) organize results in terms of quantitative values for individual sources of current and voltage loss, and (3) evaluate possible analytical techniques to enhance precision and avoid pitfalls, and (4) insist on a viable physical explanation of each loss mechanism. Current-voltage, quantum efficiency, and capacitance measurements on CuInSe2 and CdTe solar cells from a variety of sources have been analyzed. In many cases losses were identified that may be lessened relatively easily. However, the operating voltage loss due to excessive forward recombination current throughout the depletion region remains the primary obstacle to efficiencies competitive with single crystal cells.

  12. Interface mechanisms in CIGS solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Jayapayalan, A.; Sankaranarayanan, H.; Shankaradas, M.; Panse, P.; Narayanaswamy, R.; Ferekides, C.S.; Morel, D.L.

    1999-03-01

    The role of Ga in CIGS solar cells is complex. In addition to its primary role of alloying agent to increase the band gap we also observe its influence on passivation, transport, trapping and doping. At low levels it can positively influence all of these mechanisms and improve performance. As its level is increased, there are complex tradeoffs among these that must be controlled to maintain good performance. We have applied photocapacitance techniques to study the junction interface region and the role that Ga plays in its formation and operation. We observe a correlation between the defect that provides doping and the recombination centers, which control Voc. The dominant centers are deep in the band gap and are located near the metallurgical junction. It is proposed that a reduction of the correlated doping defect will result in improved interface properties. {copyright} {ital 1999 American Institute of Physics.}

  13. Cu(In,Ga)S2, Thin-Film Solar Cells Prepared by H2S Sulfurization of CuGa-In Precursor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dhere, Neelkanth G.; Kulkarni, Shashank R.; Chavan, Sanjay S.; Ghongadi, Shantinath R.

    2005-01-01

    Thin-film CuInS2 solar cell is the leading candidate for space power because of bandgap near the optimum value for AM0 solar radiation outside the earth's atmosphere, excellent radiation hardness, and freedom from intrinsic degradation mechanisms unlike a-Si:H cells. Ultra-lightweight thin-film solar cells deposited on flexible polyimide plastic substrates such as Kapton(trademark), Upilex(trademark), and Apical(trademark) have a potential for achieving specific power of 1000 W/kg, while the state-of-art specific power of the present day solar cells is 66 W/kg. This paper describes the preparation of Cu-rich CuIn(sub 1-x)Ga(sub x)S(sub 2) (CIGS2) thin films and solar cells by a process of sulfurization of CuGa-In precursor similar to that being used for preparation of large-compact-grain CuIn(sub 1-x)Ga(sub x)Se2 thin films and efficient solar cells at FSEC PV Materials Lab.

  14. Commercial Development Of Ovonic Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ovshinsky, Stanford R.

    1983-09-01

    subsequent paper) which has clearly demonstrated that the basic barrier to low-cost production has been broken through and that one can now speak realistically of delivering power directly from the sun for under a dollar per peak watt merely by making larger versions of this basic continuous web, large-area thin-film machine. We have made one square foot amorphous silicon alloy PIN devices with conversion efficiencies in the range of 7%, and in the laboratory, we have reported smaller area PIN de-vices in the 10% conversion efficiency range. In addition, much higher energy conversion efficiencies can be obtained within the same process by using multi-cell layered or tandem thin-film solar cell structures (see Figure 1). These devices exhibit enhanced efficiency by utilizing a wider range of the solar spectrum. Since the theoretical maximum efficiency for multi-cell structures is over 60%, one can certainly realistically anticipate the pro-duction of thin-film amorphous photovoltaic devices with efficiencies as high as 30%. Our production device is already a two-cell tandem, as we have solved not only the problems of interfacing the individual cell components but also the difficulties associated with a one foot square format deposited on a continuous web. Figure 2 shows a continuous roll of Ovonic solar cells. Realistic calculations for a three-cell tandem thin-film device using amorphous semiconductor alloys with 1.8eV, 1.5eV, and 1.0eV optical band gaps indicate that solar energy conversion efficiencies of 20-30% can be achieved.

  15. Optimization of photonics for corrugated thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deparis, Olivier; Vigneron, Jean Pol; Agustsson, Otto; Decroupet, Daniel

    2009-11-01

    The amount of solar energy reaching the active (photovoltaic) layer in a thin-film solar cell can be increased by reducing the Fresnel reflection losses at the interfaces. By using corrugated interfaces (at the wavelength scale), adiabatic propagation of the electromagnetic radiation is achieved over a broad wavelength range throughout the structure, which leads to an increase in the light that is absorbed in the active layer and, ultimately, to the improvement of the photovoltaic conversion efficiency. In this article, we have considered the case of corrugated thin-film solar cell structures and we have studied theoretically the optimization of such structures from the point of view of photonics. The focus was put on periodic pyramidal interface corrugations because they were similar to those existing at the surface of corrugated transparent electrodes on which active layers can be deposited. Because of their technological importance, we chose to work with fluorine-doped tin oxide as front electrode material and with amorphous silicon as active material. Using an original three dimensional transfer matrix method, we solved the electromagnetic wave propagation problem in the general case of laterally periodic stratified media and we compared this solution with effective medium approximated solution. On the basis of typical pyramid sizes, we demonstrated, through numerical simulations, the optimization of the global light energy intake by means of corrugations of increasing complexity. The best structures were found to be based on pyramid arrays having subwavelength periods and aspect ratio values close to one. Typically, a pyramidal structure with base and height both equal to 300 nm led to a global energy intake equal to I =0.98 (integrated over the spectral range 400-710 nm), which represented a 24% improvement in comparison with the global energy intake of a planar structure (I =0.79).

  16. Flexible carbon nanotube/mono-crystalline Si thin-film solar cells

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Flexible heterojunction solar cells were fabricated from carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and mono-crystalline Si thin films at room temperature. The Si thin films with thickness less than 50 μm are prepared by chemically etching Si wafer in a KOH solution. The initial efficiency of the thin-film solar cell varies from approximately 3% to 5%. After doping with a few drops of 1 M HNO3, the efficiency increases to 6% with a short-circuit current density of 16.8 mA/cm2 and a fill factor of 71.5%. The performance of the solar cells depends on the surface state and thickness of Si thin films, as well as the interface of CNT/Si. The flexible CNT/Si thin-film solar cells exhibit good stability in bending-recovery cycles. PMID:25258617

  17. Flexible carbon nanotube/mono-crystalline Si thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Sun, Huanhuan; Wei, Jinquan; Jia, Yi; Cui, Xian; Wang, Kunlin; Wu, Dehai

    2014-01-01

    Flexible heterojunction solar cells were fabricated from carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and mono-crystalline Si thin films at room temperature. The Si thin films with thickness less than 50 μm are prepared by chemically etching Si wafer in a KOH solution. The initial efficiency of the thin-film solar cell varies from approximately 3% to 5%. After doping with a few drops of 1 M HNO3, the efficiency increases to 6% with a short-circuit current density of 16.8 mA/cm(2) and a fill factor of 71.5%. The performance of the solar cells depends on the surface state and thickness of Si thin films, as well as the interface of CNT/Si. The flexible CNT/Si thin-film solar cells exhibit good stability in bending-recovery cycles. PMID:25258617

  18. Circuit analysis method for thin-film solar cell modules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burger, D. R.

    1985-01-01

    The design of a thin-film solar cell module is dependent on the probability of occurrence of pinhole shunt defects. Using known or assumed defect density data, dichotomous population statistics can be used to calculate the number of defects expected in a module. Probability theory is then used to assign the defective cells to individual strings in a selected series-parallel circuit design. Iterative numerical calculation is used to calcuate I-V curves using cell test values or assumed defective cell values as inputs. Good and shunted cell I-V curves are added to determine the module output power and I-V curve. Different levels of shunt resistance can be selected to model different defect levels.

  19. Highly efficient single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cell on flexible substrate.

    PubMed

    Moon, Sunghyun; Kim, Kangho; Kim, Youngjo; Heo, Junseok; Lee, Jaejin

    2016-01-01

    There has been much interest in developing a thin-film solar cell because it is lightweight and flexible. The GaAs thin-film solar cell is a top contender in the thin-film solar cell market in that it has a high power conversion efficiency (PCE) compared to that of other thin-film solar cells. There are two common structures for the GaAs solar cell: n (emitter)-on-p (base) and p-on-n. The former performs better due to its high collection efficiency because the electron diffusion length of the p-type base region is much longer than the hole diffusion length of the n-type base region. However, it has been limited to fabricate highly efficient n-on-p single-junction GaAs thin film solar cell on a flexible substrate due to technical obstacles. We investigated a simple and fast epitaxial lift-off (ELO) method that uses a stress originating from a Cr/Au bilayer on a 125-μm-thick flexible substrate. A metal combination of AuBe/Pt/Au is employed as a new p-type ohmic contact with which an n-on-p single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cell on flexible substrate was successfully fabricated. The PCE of the fabricated single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cells reached 22.08% under air mass 1.5 global illumination. PMID:27435899

  20. Highly efficient single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cell on flexible substrate

    PubMed Central

    Moon, Sunghyun; Kim, Kangho; Kim, Youngjo; Heo, Junseok; Lee, Jaejin

    2016-01-01

    There has been much interest in developing a thin-film solar cell because it is lightweight and flexible. The GaAs thin-film solar cell is a top contender in the thin-film solar cell market in that it has a high power conversion efficiency (PCE) compared to that of other thin-film solar cells. There are two common structures for the GaAs solar cell: n (emitter)-on-p (base) and p-on-n. The former performs better due to its high collection efficiency because the electron diffusion length of the p-type base region is much longer than the hole diffusion length of the n-type base region. However, it has been limited to fabricate highly efficient n-on-p single-junction GaAs thin film solar cell on a flexible substrate due to technical obstacles. We investigated a simple and fast epitaxial lift-off (ELO) method that uses a stress originating from a Cr/Au bilayer on a 125-μm-thick flexible substrate. A metal combination of AuBe/Pt/Au is employed as a new p-type ohmic contact with which an n-on-p single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cell on flexible substrate was successfully fabricated. The PCE of the fabricated single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cells reached 22.08% under air mass 1.5 global illumination. PMID:27435899

  1. Highly efficient single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cell on flexible substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moon, Sunghyun; Kim, Kangho; Kim, Youngjo; Heo, Junseok; Lee, Jaejin

    2016-07-01

    There has been much interest in developing a thin-film solar cell because it is lightweight and flexible. The GaAs thin-film solar cell is a top contender in the thin-film solar cell market in that it has a high power conversion efficiency (PCE) compared to that of other thin-film solar cells. There are two common structures for the GaAs solar cell: n (emitter)-on-p (base) and p-on-n. The former performs better due to its high collection efficiency because the electron diffusion length of the p-type base region is much longer than the hole diffusion length of the n-type base region. However, it has been limited to fabricate highly efficient n-on-p single-junction GaAs thin film solar cell on a flexible substrate due to technical obstacles. We investigated a simple and fast epitaxial lift-off (ELO) method that uses a stress originating from a Cr/Au bilayer on a 125-μm-thick flexible substrate. A metal combination of AuBe/Pt/Au is employed as a new p-type ohmic contact with which an n-on-p single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cell on flexible substrate was successfully fabricated. The PCE of the fabricated single-junction GaAs thin-film solar cells reached 22.08% under air mass 1.5 global illumination.

  2. Fabrication of Cu2ZnSnS4 thin films using oxides nanoparticles ink for solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Guilin; Yuan, Chenchen; Liu, Jiwan; Huang, Zhigao; Chen, Shuiyuan; Liu, Weifeng; Jiang, Guoshun; Zhu, Changfei

    2015-02-01

    Oxides nanoparticles-based process is one of the successful approaches to CuIn1-xGaxSe2 (CIGS) formation. To explore systematically the possibility of application of the similar methods to high quality Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS), an oxides nanoparticles-based process for preparation of CZTS films is described. The CZTS films are prepared by sulfurizing oxides precursor. Thermodynamic appreciation of sulfurization of oxides precursor is first studied. The development of the CZTS formation with increasing temperature is also investigated. Through optimizing the sulfurization, phase-pure CZTS films with very large grains are obtained. The loss of tin can be avoided, due to the stability of oxides. Finally, preliminary CZTS thin-film solar cells with efficiencies of 1.47% have been fabricated. This study provides basis for low-cost and large area CZTS solar cells.

  3. Molecular solution processing of metal chalcogenide thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wenbing

    The barrier to utilize solar generated electricity mainly comes from their higher cost relative to fossil fuels. However, innovations with new materials and processing techniques can potentially make cost effective photovoltaics. One such strategy is to develop solution processed photovoltaics which avoid the expensive vacuum processing required by traditional solar cells. The dissertation is mainly focused on two absorber material system for thin film solar cells: chalcopyrite CuIn(S,Se)2 (CISS) and kesterite Cu2ZnSn(S,Se) 4 organized in chronological order. Chalcopyrite CISS is a very promising material. It has been demonstrated to achieve the highest efficiency among thin film solar cells. Scaled-up industry production at present has reached the giga-watt per year level. The process however mainly relies on vacuum systems which account for a significant percentage of the manufacturing cost. In the first section of this dissertation, hydrazine based solution processed CISS has been explored. The focus of the research involves the procedures to fabricate devices from solution. The topics covered in Chapter 2 include: precursor solution synthesis with a focus on understanding the solution chemistry, CISS absorber formation from precursor, properties modification toward favorable device performance, and device structure innovation toward tandem device. For photovoltaics to have a significant impact toward meeting energy demands, the annual production capability needs to be on TW-level. On such a level, raw materials supply of rare elements (indium for CIS or tellurium for CdTe) will be the bottleneck limiting the scalability. Replacing indium with zinc and tin, earth abundant kesterite CZTS exhibits great potential to reach the goal of TW-level with no limitations on raw material availability. Chapter 3 shows pioneering work towards solution processing of CZTS film at low temperature. The solution processed devices show performances which rival vacuum

  4. Amorphous silicon thin films: The ultimate lightweight space solar cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vendura, G. J., Jr.; Kruer, M. A.; Schurig, H. H.; Bianchi, M. A.; Roth, J. A.

    1994-01-01

    Progress is reported with respect to the development of thin film amorphous (alpha-Si) terrestrial solar cells for space applications. Such devices promise to result in very lightweight, low cost, flexible arrays with superior end of life (EOL) performance. Each alpha-Si cell consists of a tandem arrangement of three very thin p-i-n junctions vapor deposited between film electrodes. The thickness of this entire stack is approximately 2.0 microns, resulting in a device of negligible weight, but one that must be mechanically supported for handling and fabrication into arrays. The stack is therefore presently deposited onto a large area (12 by 13 in), rigid, glass superstrate, 40 mil thick, and preliminary space qualification testing of modules so configured is underway. At the same time, a more advanced version is under development in which the thin film stack is transferred from the glass onto a thin (2.0 mil) polymer substrate to create large arrays that are truly flexible and significantly lighter than either the glassed alpha-Si version or present conventional crystalline technologies. In this paper the key processes for such effective transfer are described. In addition, both glassed (rigid) and unglassed (flexible) alpha-Si cells are studied when integrated with various advanced structures to form lightweight systems. EOL predictions are generated for the case of a 1000 W array in a standard, 10 year geosynchronous (GEO) orbit. Specific powers (W/kg), power densities (W/sq m) and total array costs ($/sq ft) are compared.

  5. Progress in polycrystalline thin-film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Zweibel, K; Hermann, A; Mitchell, R

    1983-07-01

    Photovoltaic devices based on several polycrystalline thin-film materials have reached near and above 10% sunlight-to-electricity conversion efficiencies. This paper examines the various polycrystalline thin-film PV materials including CuInSe/sub 2/ and CdTe in terms of their material properties, fabrication techniques, problems, and potentials.

  6. Thin film, concentrator and multijunction space solar cells: Status and potential

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Flood, Dennis J.

    1991-01-01

    Recent, rapid advances in a variety of solar cell technologies offer the potential for significantly enhancing, or enabling entirely new, mission capabilities. Thin film solar cells are of particular interest in that regard. A review is provided of the status of those thin film cell technologies of interest for space applications, and the issues to be resolved before mission planners can consider them. A short summary is also given of recent developments in concentrator and multijunction space solar cell and array technology.

  7. Thin film, concentrator, and multijunction space solar cells: Status and potential

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Flood, Dennis J.

    1991-01-01

    Recent, rapid advances in a variety of solar cell technologies offer the potential for significantly enhancing, or enabling entirely new, mission capabilities. Thin film solar cells are of particular interest. A review is provided of the status of those thin film cell technologies of interest for space applications, and the issues to be resolved before mission planners can consider them. A short summary of recent developments in concentrator and multijunction space solar cell and array technology is given.

  8. Fabrication of contact holes by rear side laser ablation of polyimide foils for CIGS solar modules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehrhardt, Martin; Scheit, Christian; Ragnow, Steffen; Lorenz, Pierre; Wehrmann, Anja; Braun, Alexander; Zimmer, Klaus

    2013-08-01

    Laser technology is of increasing interest for the improvement of photovoltaic generators also for mass production. Copper-indium-gallium-diselenide (CIGS) thin film solar cells on flexible polyimide (PI) foil have great potential for specific applications requiring mechanical flexibility. To reduce the dead area of solar modules especially that of the serial interconnection shingling of the solar cells is one encouraging approach. The former developed back side opening process is utilized for via preparation to realize the serial interconnection at the rear side of the solar cells. Arrays of square vias that were fabricated into the polyimide foil by UV laser ablation were filled with a silver-based conductive adhesive for realizing the electrical and mechanical interconnection. Contact resistance of the silver-based adhesive to the solar cell back contact of less than 0.2 Ω mm2 has been measured. Shingled CIGS modules with a size of 100 cm2 having an open circuit voltage of 2.3 V and a short circuit current of more than 500 mA demonstrate the great potential of this interconnection approach for flexible electronic applications.

  9. Fabrication and Performance of Organic Thin Film Solar Cells Using the Brush Painting Method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishihara, Hirohumi; Kojima, Kenzo; Mizutani, Teruyoshi; Ochiai, Shizuyasu

    As organic solar thin films fabricated by an active layer of organic materials are economical, lightweight, and flexible, as well as facilitating processing, organic solar cells have attracted considerable attention within the past few decades as a clean energy source. With this in mind, there have been global investigations and studies of the power conversion efficiency (PCE) within organic solar cells. In organic thin-film solar cells, the effect of the performance is not only dependent on an adopted active material but also the molecular orientation on the electrode. Using the mixed solution of Poly (3-hexylthiophene) and PCBM, both dissolved by solvent, an organic thin film is fabricated using the paint method (The conceptual diagram of the paint method is shown in Fig. 1) The form of the thin film was evaluated, an organic thin-film solar cell using the paint method for the active layer was made, and its performance was evaluated and examined. Using the mixed solution of Poly(3-hexylthiophene) and PCBM, both dissolved by solvent, an organic thin film is fabricated using the paint method (The conceptual diagram of the paint method is shown in Fig. 1) The morphology of the thin film was evaluated using an AFM image, UV/vis spectra, and so forth. Based on these data, an organic thin-film solar cell that used the paint method for the active layer was fabricated, and the performance was evaluated and examined. For the organic thin film solar cell fabricated using the brush painting method, the open-circuit voltage (Voc) is 0.41 V, the short circuit current density (Jsc) is 2.07 mA/cm2, and the fill factor is 0.34. The efficiency η of PCE becomes 0.29%.

  10. Chemical Vapor Deposition for Ultra-lightweight Thin-film Solar Arrays for Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hepp, Aloysius F.; Raffaelle, Ryne P.; Banger, Kulbinder K.; Jin, Michael H.; Lau, Janice E.; Harris, Jerry D.; Cowen, Jonathan E.; Duraj, Stan A.

    2002-01-01

    The development of thin-film solar cells on flexible, lightweight, space-qualified substrates provides an attractive cost solution to fabricating solar arrays with high specific power, (W/kg). The use of a polycrystalline chalcopyrite absorber layer for thin film solar cells is considered as the next generation photovoltaic devices. A key technical issues outlined in the 2001 U.S. Photovoltaic Roadmap, is the need to develop low cost, high throughput manufacturing for high-efficiency thin film solar cells. At NASA GRC we have focused on the development of new single-source-precursors (SSPs) and their utility to deposit the chalcopyrite semi-conducting layer (CIS) onto flexible substrates for solar cell fabrication. The syntheses and thermal modulation of SSPs via molecular engineering is described. Thin-film fabrication studies demonstrate the SSPs can be used in a spray CVD process, for depositing CIS at reduced temperatures, which display good electrical properties, suitable for PV devices.

  11. Utility of Thin-Film Solar Cells on Flexible Substrates for Space Power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dickman, J. E.; Hepp, A. F.; Morel, D. L.; Ferekides, C. S.; Tuttle, J. R.; Hoffman, D. J.; Dhere, N. G.

    2004-01-01

    The thin-film solar cell program at NASA GRC is developing solar cell technologies for space applications which address two critical metrics: specific power (power per unit mass) and launch stowed volume. To be competitive for many space applications, an array using thin film solar cells must significantly increase specific power while reducing stowed volume when compared to the present baseline technology utilizing crystalline solar cells. The NASA GRC program is developing two approaches. Since the vast majority of the mass of a thin film solar cell is in the substrate, a thin film solar cell on a very lightweight flexible substrate (polymer or metal films) is being developed as the first approach. The second approach is the development of multijunction thin film solar cells. Total cell efficiency can be increased by stacking multiple cells having bandgaps tuned to convert the spectrum passing through the upper cells to the lower cells. Once developed, the two approaches will be merged to yield a multijunction, thin film solar cell on a very lightweight, flexible substrate. The ultimate utility of such solar cells in space require the development of monolithic interconnections, lightweight array structures, and ultra-lightweight support and deployment techniques.

  12. Degradation of ZnO-Based Window Layers for Thin-Film CIGS by Accelerated Stress Exposures

    SciTech Connect

    Pern, F. J.; Noufi, R.; To, B.; DeHart, C.; Li, X.; Glick, S. H.

    2008-01-01

    The reliability of ZnO-based window layer for CuInGaSe{sub 2} (CIGS) solar cells was investigated. Samples of RF magnetron-sputtered, single-layer intrinsic and Al-doped ZnO and their combined bilayer on glass substrates were exposed in a weatherometer (WOM) and damp heat (DH) conditions with or without acetic acid vapor. Some preliminary samples of single-layer Al-doped Zn{sub 1-x}Mg{sub x}O (ZMO) alloy, a potential replacement for Al:ZnO with a wider bandgap, were also evaluated in the DH. The Al-doped ZnO and ZMO films showed irreversible loss in the conducting properties, free carrier mobility, and characteristic absorption band feature after <500-h DH exposure, with the originally clear transparent films turned into white hazy insulating films and the degradation rate follows the trend of (DH + acetic acid) > DH > WOM. The degradation rate was also reduced by higher film thickness, higher deposition substrate temperature, and dry-out intervals. The results of X-ray diffraction analysis indicate that the ZnO-based films underwent structural degeneration by losing their highly (002) preferential orientation with possible transformation from hexagonal into cubic and formation of Zn(OH){sub 2}. Periodic optical micro-imaging observations suggested a temporal process that involves initial hydrolysis of the oxides at sporadic weak spots, swelling and popping of the hydrolyzed spots due to volume increase, segregation of hydrolyzed regions causing discontinuity of electrical path, hydrolysis of the oxide-glass interface, and finally, formation of insulating oxides/hydroxides with visible delamination over larger areas.

  13. Back surface studies of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simchi, Hamed

    Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin film solar cells have attracted a lot of interest because they have shown the highest achieved efficiency (21%) among thin film photovoltaic materials, long-term stability, and straightforward optical bandgap engineering by changing relative amounts of present elements in the alloy. Still, there are several opportunities to further improve the performance of the Cu(In,Ga)Se2 devices. The interfaces between layers significantly affect the device performance, and knowledge of their chemical and electronic structures is essential in identifying performance limiting factors. The main goal of this research is to understand the characteristics of the Cu(In,Ga)Se2-back contact interface in order to design ohmic back contacts for Cu(In,Ga)Se2-based solar cells with a range of band gaps and device configurations. The focus is on developing either an opaque or transparent ohmic back contact via surface modification or introduction of buffer layers in the back surface. In this project, candidate back contact materials have been identified based on modeling of band alignments and surface chemical properties of the absorber layer and back contact. For the first time, MoO3 and WO 3 transparent back contacts were successfully developed for Cu(In,Ga)Se 2 solar cells. The structural, optical, and surface properties of MoO 3 and WO3 were optimized by controlling the oxygen partial pressure during reactive sputtering and post-deposition annealing. Valence band edge energies were also obtained by analysis of the XPS spectra and used to characterize the interface band offsets. As a result, it became possible to illuminate of the device from the back, resulting in a recently developed "backwall superstrate" device structure that outperforms conventional substrate Cu(In,Ga)Se2 devices in the absorber thickness range 0.1-0.5 microm. Further enhancements were achieved by introducing moderate amounts of Ag into the Cu(In,Ga)Se2 lattice during the co-evaporation method

  14. High-efficiency copper ternary thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kapur, V. K.; Basol, B. M.; Kullberg, R. C.

    1989-09-01

    A project is described which developes a high efficiency thin film CuInSe2 solar cell using a low-cost process. The two-stage process involves depositing the metallic elements of Cu and In on a substrate in the form of stacked layers, and then selenizing this stacked metallic film in an atmosphere containing Se. Early research concentrated on the electrodeposition technique for depositing the Cu and In films on Mo-coated glass substrates. This resulted in small-area cells with around 10 percent efficiency, indicating that the technique could yield CuInSe2 films with good electrical and optical properties. The program then involved scaling up the electrodeposition/selenization technique; fixtures for large-area plating were designed and built, but poor adhesion of the CuInSe2 films to the Mo-coated substrates and the stoichiometric non-uniformities encountered in the large-area films hindered the efficiency of the devices. The latter part of the program explored a new approach to the two-stage process. An evaporation/selenization approach, where the elemental layers were evaporated onto the Mo-coated substrates for selenization. Solar cells were produced with efficiencies approaching 11 percent using E-beam evaporated/selenized CuInSe2 films.

  15. Toward omnidirectional light absorption by plasmonic effect for high-efficiency flexible nonvacuum Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shih-Chen; Chen, Yi-Ju; Chen, Wei Ting; Yen, Yu-Ting; Kao, Tsung Sheng; Chuang, Tsung-Yeh; Liao, Yu-Kuang; Wu, Kaung-Hsiung; Yabushita, Atsushi; Hsieh, Tung-Po; Charlton, Martin D B; Tsai, Din Ping; Kuo, Hao-Chung; Chueh, Yu-Lun

    2014-09-23

    We have successfully demonstrated a great advantage of plasmonic Au nanoparticles for efficient enhancement of Cu(In,Ga)Se2(CIGS) flexible photovoltaic devices. The incorporation of Au NPs can eliminate obstacles in the way of developing ink-printing CIGS flexible thin film photovoltaics (TFPV), such as poor absorption at wavelengths in the high intensity region of solar spectrum, and that occurs significantly at large incident angle of solar irradiation. The enhancement of external quantum efficiency and photocurrent have been systematically analyzed via the calculated electromagnetic field distribution. Finally, the major benefits of the localized surface plasmon resonances (LSPR) in visible wavelength have been investigated by ultrabroadband pump-probe spectroscopy, providing a solid evidence on the strong absorption and reduction of surface recombination that increases electron-hole generation and improves the carrier transportation in the vicinity of pn-juction. PMID:25093682

  16. Thin film multilayer filters for solar EUV telescopes.

    PubMed

    Chkhalo, N I; Drozdov, M N; Kluenkov, E B; Kuzin, S V; Lopatin, A Ya; Luchin, V I; Salashchenko, N N; Tsybin, N N; Zuev, S Yu

    2016-06-10

    Al, with a passband in the wavelength range of 17-60 nm, and Zr, with a passband in the wavelength range of 6.5-17 nm, thin films on a support grid or support membrane are frequently used as UV, visible, and near-IR blocking filters in solar observatories. Although they possess acceptable optical performance, these filters also have some shortcomings such as low mechanical strength and low resistance to oxidation. These shortcomings hinder meeting the requirements for filters of future telescopes. We propose multilayer thin film filters on the basis of Al, Zr, and other materials with improved characteristics. It was demonstrated that stretched multilayer films on a support grid with a mesh size up to 5 mm can withstand vibration loads occurring during spacecraft launch. A large mesh size is preferable for filters of high-resolution solar telescopes, since it allows image distortion caused by light diffraction on the support grid to be avoided. We have investigated the thermal stability of Al/Si and Zr/Si multilayers assuming their possible application as filters in the Intergelioprobe project, in which the observation of coronal plasma will take place close to the Sun. Zr/Si films show high thermal stability and may be used as blocking filters in the wavelength range of 12.5-17 nm. Al/Si films show lower thermal stability: a significant decrease in the film's transmission in the EUV spectral range and an increase in the visible spectrum have been observed. We suppose that the low thermal stability of Al/Si films restricts their application in the Intergelioprobe project. Thus, there is a lack of filters for the wavelength range of λ>17  nm. Be/Si and Cr/Si filters have been proposed for the wavelength range near 30.4 nm. Although these filters have lower transparency than Al/Si, they are superior in thermal stability. Multilayer Sc/Al filters with relatively high transmission at a wavelength of 58.4 nm (HeI line) and simultaneously sufficient rejection in the

  17. Effects of excitation intensity on the photocurrent response of thin film silicon solar modules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Q.; Shumka, A.; Trask, J.

    1986-01-01

    Photocurrent responses of amorphous thin film silicon solar modules at room temperature were studied at different excitation intensities using various monochromatic light sources. Photocurrent imaging techniques have been effectively used to locate rapidly, and non-destructively, failure and defect sites in the multilayer thin film device. Differences observed in the photocurrent response characteristics for two different cells in the same amorphous thin film silicon solar module suggest the possibility of the formation of dissimilarly active devices, even though the module is processed in the same fabrication process. Possible mechanisms are discussed.

  18. Ecotoxicological assessment of solar cell leachates: Copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) cells show higher activity than organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells.

    PubMed

    Brun, Nadja Rebecca; Wehrli, Bernhard; Fent, Karl

    2016-02-01

    Despite the increasing use of photovoltaics their potential environmental risks are poorly understood. Here, we compared ecotoxicological effects of two thin-film photovoltaics: established copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) and organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells. Leachates were produced by exposing photovoltaics to UV light, physical damage, and exposure to environmentally relevant model waters, representing mesotrophic lake water, acidic rain, and seawater. CIGS cell leachates contained 583 μg L(-1) molybdenum at lake water, whereas at acidic rain and seawater conditions, iron, copper, zinc, molybdenum, cadmium, silver, and tin were present up to 7219 μg L(-1). From OPV, copper (14 μg L(-1)), zinc (87 μg L(-1)) and silver (78 μg L(-1)) leached. Zebrafish embryos were exposed until 120 h post-fertilization to these extracts. CIGS leachates produced under acidic rain, as well as CIGS and OPV leachates produced under seawater conditions resulted in a marked hatching delay and increase in heart edema. Depending on model water and solar cell, transcriptional alterations occurred in genes involved in oxidative stress (cat), hormonal activity (vtg1, ar), metallothionein (mt2), ER stress (bip, chop), and apoptosis (casp9). The effects were dependent on the concentrations of cationic metals in leachates. Addition of ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid protected zebrafish embryos from morphological and molecular effects. Our study suggests that metals leaching from damaged CIGS cells, may pose a potential environmental risk. PMID:26615488

  19. Dual-Layer Nanostructured Flexible Thin-Film Amorphous Silicon Solar Cells with Enhanced Light Harvesting and Photoelectric Conversion Efficiency.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yinyue; Xu, Zhen; Yu, Dongliang; Lu, Linfeng; Yin, Min; Tavakoli, Mohammad Mahdi; Chen, Xiaoyuan; Hao, Yuying; Fan, Zhiyong; Cui, Yanxia; Li, Dongdong

    2016-05-01

    Three-dimensional (3-D) structures have triggered tremendous interest for thin-film solar cells since they can dramatically reduce the material usage and incident light reflection. However, the high aspect ratio feature of some 3-D structures leads to deterioration of internal electric field and carrier collection capability, which reduces device power conversion efficiency (PCE). Here, we report high performance flexible thin-film amorphous silicon solar cells with a unique and effective light trapping scheme. In this device structure, a polymer nanopillar membrane is attached on top of a device, which benefits broadband and omnidirectional performances, and a 3-D nanostructure with shallow dent arrays underneath serves as a back reflector on flexible titanium (Ti) foil resulting in an increased optical path length by exciting hybrid optical modes. The efficient light management results in 42.7% and 41.7% remarkable improvements of short-circuit current density and overall efficiency, respectively. Meanwhile, an excellent flexibility has been achieved as PCE remains 97.6% of the initial efficiency even after 10 000 bending cycles. This unique device structure can also be duplicated for other flexible photovoltaic devices based on different active materials such as CdTe, Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS), organohalide lead perovskites, and so forth. PMID:27052357

  20. Nano-photonic Light Trapping In Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callahan, Dennis M., Jr.

    Over the last several decades there have been significant advances in the study and understanding of light behavior in nanoscale geometries. Entire fields such as those based on photonic crystals, plasmonics and metamaterials have been developed, accelerating the growth of knowledge related to nanoscale light manipulation. Coupled with recent interest in cheap, reliable renewable energy, a new field has blossomed, that of nanophotonic solar cells. In this thesis, we examine important properties of thin-film solar cells from a nanophotonics perspective. We identify key differences between nanophotonic devices and traditional, thick solar cells. We propose a new way of understanding and describing limits to light trapping and show that certain nanophotonic solar cell designs can have light trapping limits above the so called ray-optic or ergodic limit. We propose that a necessary requisite to exceed the traditional light trapping limit is that the active region of the solar cell must possess a local density of optical states (LDOS) higher than that of the corresponding, bulk material. Additionally, we show that in addition to having an increased density of states, the absorber must have an appropriate incoupling mechanism to transfer light from free space into the optical modes of the device. We outline a portfolio of new solar cell designs that have potential to exceed the traditional light trapping limit and numerically validate our predictions for select cases. We emphasize the importance of thinking about light trapping in terms of maximizing the optical modes of the device and efficiently coupling light into them from free space. To further explore these two concepts, we optimize patterns of superlattices of air holes in thin slabs of Si and show that by adding a roughened incoupling layer the total absorbed current can be increased synergistically. We suggest that the addition of a random scattering surface to a periodic patterning can increase incoupling by

  1. Review of thin film solar cell technology and applications for ultra-light spacecraft solar arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    1991-01-01

    Developments in thin-film amorphous and polycrystalline photovoltaic cells are reviewed and discussed with a view to potential applications in space. Two important figures of merit are discussed: efficiency (i.e., what fraction of the incident solar energy is converted to electricity), and specific power (power to weight ratio).

  2. A Parametric Assessment of the Mission Applicability of Thin-film Solar Arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, David J.

    2002-01-01

    Results are presented from a parametric assessment of the applicability and spacecraft-level impacts of very lightweight thin-film solar arrays with relatively large deployed areas for representative space missions. The most and least attractive features of thin-film solar arrays are briefly discussed. A calculation is then presented illustrating that from a solar array alone mass perspective, larger arrays with less efficient but lighter thin-film solar cells can weigh less than smaller arrays with more efficient but heavier crystalline cells. However, a spacecraft-level systems assessment must take into account the additional mass associated with solar array deployed area: the propellant needed to desaturate the momentum accumulated from area-related disturbance torques and to perform aerodynamic drag makeup reboost. The results for such an assessment are presented for a representative low Earth orbit (LEO) mission, as a function of altitude and mission life, and a geostationary Earth orbit (GEO) mission. Discussion of the results includes a list of specific mission types most likely to benefit from using thin-film arrays. The presentation concludes with a list of issues to be addressed prior to use of thin-film solar arrays in space and the observation that with their unique characteristics, very lightweight arrays using efficient, thin film cells on flexible substrates may become the best array option for a subset of Earth orbiting and deep space missions.

  3. Advances in thin-film solar cells for lightweight space photovoltaic power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Bailey, Sheila G.; Flood, Dennis J.

    1989-01-01

    The present stature and current research directions of photovoltaic arrays as primary power systems for space are reviewed. There have recently been great advances in the technology of thin-film solar cells for terrestrial applications. In a thin-film solar cell the thickness of the active element is only a few microns; transfer of this technology to space arrays could result in ultralow-weight solar arrays with potentially large gains in specific power. Recent advances in thin-film solar cells are reviewed, including polycrystalline copper-indium selenide (CuInSe2) and related I-III-VI2 compounds, polycrystalline cadmium telluride and related II-VI compounds, and amorphous silicon:hydrogen and alloys. The best experimental efficiency on thin-film solar cells to date is 12 percent AMO for CuIn Se2. This efficiency is likely to be increased in the next few years. The radiation tolerance of thin-film materials is far greater than that of single-crystal materials. CuIn Se2 shows no degradation when exposed to 1 MeV electrons. Experimental evidence also suggests that most of all of the radiation damage on thin-films can be removed by a low temperature anneal. The possibility of thin-film multibandgap cascade solar cells is discussed, including the tradeoffs between monolithic and mechanically stacked cells. The best current efficiency for a cascade is 12.5 percent AMO for an amorphous silicon on CuInSe2 multibandgap combination. Higher efficiencies are expected in the future. For several missions, including solar-electric propulsion, a manned Mars mission, and lunar exploration and manufacturing, thin-film photovolatic arrays may be a mission-enabling technology.

  4. Advances in thin-film solar cells for lightweight space photovoltaic power

    SciTech Connect

    Landis, G.A.; Bailey, S.G.; Flood, D.J.

    1989-01-01

    The present stature and current research directions of photovoltaic arrays as primary power systems for space are reviewed. There have recently been great advances in the technology of thin-film solar cells for terrestrial applications. In a thin-film solar cell the thickness of the active element is only a few microns; transfer of this technology to space arrays could result in ultralow-weight solar arrays with potentially large gains in specific power. Recent advances in thin-film solar cells are reviewed, including polycrystalline copper-indium selenide (CuInSe2) and related I-III-VI2 compounds, polycrystalline cadmium telluride and related II-VI compounds, and amorphous silicon:hydrogen and alloys. The best experimental efficiency on thin-film solar cells to date is 12 percent AMO for CuInSe2. This efficiency is likely to be increased in the next few years. The radiation tolerance of thin-film materials is far greater than that of single-crystal materials. CuInSe2 shows no degradation when exposed to 1 MeV electrons. Experimental evidence also suggests that most of all of the radiation damage on thin-films can be removed by a low temperature anneal. The possibility of thin-film multibandgap cascade solar cells is discussed, including the tradeoffs between monolithic and mechanically stacked cells. The best current efficiency for a cascade is 12.5 percent AMO for an amorphous silicon on CuInSe2 multibandgap combination. Higher efficiencies are expected in the future. For several missions, including solar-electric propulsion, a manned Mars mission, and lunar exploration and manufacturing, thin-film photovolatic arrays may be a mission-enabling technology.

  5. Surface Engineering of ZnO Thin Film for High Efficiency Planar Perovskite Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tseng, Zong-Liang; Chiang, Chien-Hung; Wu, Chun-Guey

    2015-09-01

    Sputtering made ZnO thin film was used as an electron-transport layer in a regular planar perovskite solar cell based on high quality CH3NH3PbI3 absorber prepared with a two-step spin-coating. An efficiency up to 15.9% under AM 1.5G irradiation is achieved for the cell based on ZnO film fabricated under Ar working gas. The atmosphere of the sputtering chamber can tune the surface electronic properties (band structure) of the resulting ZnO thin film and therefore the photovoltaic performance of the corresponding perovskite solar cell. Precise surface engineering of ZnO thin film was found to be one of the key steps to fabricate ZnO based regular planar perovskite solar cell with high power conversion efficiency. Sputtering method is proved to be one of the excellent techniques to prepare ZnO thin film with controllable properties.

  6. Copper Oxide Substrates and Epitaxial Copper Oxide/Zinc Oxide Thin Film Heterostructures for Solar Energy Conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darvish, Davis Solomon

    Future fossil fuel scarcity and environmental degradation have demonstrated the need for renewable, low-carbon sources of energy to power an increasingly industrialized world. Solar energy with its infinite supply makes it an extraordinary resource that should not go unused. However with current materials, adoption is limited by cost and so a paradigm shift must occur to get everyone on the same page embracing solar technology. Cuprous Oxide (Cu2O) is a promising earth abundant material that can be a great alternative to traditional thin-film photovoltaic materials like CIGS, CdTe, etc. We have prepared Cu 2O bulk substrates by the thermal oxidation of copper foils as well Cu2O thin films deposited via plasma-assisted Molecular Beam Epitaxy. From preliminary Hall measurements it was determined that Cu2O would need to be doped extrinsically. This was further confirmed by simulations of ZnO/Cu2O heterojunctions. A cyclic interdependence between, defect concentration, minority carrier lifetime, film thickness, and carrier concentration manifests itself a primary reason for why efficiencies greater than 4% has yet to be realized. Our growth methodology for our thin-film heterostructures allow precise control of the number of defects that incorporate into our film during both equilibrium and nonequilibrium growth. We also report process flow/device design/fabrication techniques in order to create a device. A typical device without any optimizations exhibited open-circuit voltages Voc, values in excess 500mV; nearly 18% greater than previous solid state devices.

  7. Properties of Cd and Zn Partial Electrolyte Treated CIGS Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Ramanathan, K.; Hasoon, F. S.; Smith, S.; Mascarenhas, A.; Al-Thani, H.; Alleman, J.; Ullal, H. S.; Keane, J.; Johnson, P. K.; Sites, J. R.

    2002-05-01

    We study the influence of Cd partial baths on the photovoltaic properties of CuInGaSe2 (CIGS) and CuIn-GaSSe2 (CIGSS) thin film absorbers. We find that efficient solar cells can be fabricated by this treatment, and we compare their properties with those containing CdS window layers grown by chemical bath deposition. The results suggest that Cd plays a dominant role in establishing efficient photovoltaic junctions in CuInSe2 alloys. Micron scale photoluminescence scans show non-uniformity along the length probed. Cd treatment quenches one of the luminescence transitions, which indicates a change in shallow acceptor level density. We present a model that helps to explain the evolution of photovoltaic action.

  8. Reliability of thin films for solar photovoltaic applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamasha, Mohammad M.

    Degradation of the solar cell over the time under different mechanical and loading during the manufacturing or use is one of the most common problems in the solar industry. One of the major reasons for this degradation is the cracks and/or film damage of one of the conductive layers, (i.e., front electrode and back electrode). The primary objective of this research is to investigate the behavior the front and back electrodes under different mechanical and environmental loads. Therefore, bending fatigue, stretching, thermal aging, thermal cycling and damp heat experiments were conducted on Indium tin oxide (ITO), aluminum doped zinc oxide (AZO) and aluminum thin films that deposited on different substrate, such as Polyethylene terephthalate (PET), cardinal glass, and silicon wafer. The electrical resistance was monitored during the application of mechanical and thermal loads to see the pattern of relationship between the load and the electrical continuity as a consequent of failure. Moreover, the cracks init iation and preparation were monitored during the cyclic bending fatigue and stretching experiments. Finally, after completing the environmental loading experiments (i.e., thermal aging, thermal cycling and damp heat), scanning electronic microscopy (SEM), Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and film transmittance tests were conducted on the as-produced, tested samples to show the effect of the environmental condition on the material property. SEM images were obtained to observe the surface morphology change, EDAX was conducted to monitor the film composition change, and XRD was performed to study the change in the material crystallinity. Change in the transmittance of the films was tested as well.

  9. Characterization of CdTe thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramanathan, V.; Russell, L.; Liu, C. H.; Meyers, P. V.; Ullal, H. S.

    Experimental results are presented for two types of solar cells produced from electrodeposited CdTe thin films, namely n-i-p CdS/CdTe/ZnTe and np CdS/CdTe structures. Properties of the n-i-p structure are highlighted and it is shown that the distribution of the electric field in the entire CdTe layer is crucial for producing high conversion efficiency solar cells. The properties of n-p and n-i-p devices of 0.08 sq cm area are compared and typical light I-V data are reported. Although neither device was fully optimized, the advantages of the n-i-p structure is reflected in increased short circuit current density, fill factor and as a reduced series resistance. The variation of the acceptor density (NA) with distance in the CdTe layer is shown for both devices. The zero bias depletion widths are 1.3 micron for the n-p and 1.58 micron for the n-i-p devices. The external quantum efficiency vs. wavelength for the two devices is given. For light incident from CdS side, the n-i-p device has a higher long wavelength response. Carriers generated deep in the CdTe are collected efficiently as the electric field extends throughout the i layer. Recombination in the field-free region of the n-p device is responsible for the losses. For short wavelength light, which is absorbed close to the CdTe surface, collection is limited due to diffusion and recombination. In the n-i-p device, however, these carriers are also collected by the drift field.

  10. Optical Metrology for CIGS Solar Cell Manufacturing and its Cost Implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sunkoju, Sravan Kumar

    Solar energy is a promising source of renewable energy which can meet the demand for clean energy in near future with advances in research in the field of photovoltaics and cost reduction by commercialization. Availability of a non-contact, in-line, real time robust process control strategies can greatly aid in reducing the gap between cell and module efficiencies, thereby leading to cost-effective large-scale manufacturing of high efficiency CIGS solar cells. In order to achieve proper process monitoring and control for the deposition of the functional layers of CuIn1-xGaxSe 2 (CIGS) based thin film solar cell, optical techniques such as spectroscopic reflectometry and polarimetry are advantageous because they can be set up in an unobtrusive manner in the manufacturing line, and collect data in-line and in-situ. The use of these techniques requires accurate optical models that correctly represent the properties of the layers being deposited. In this study, Spectroscopic ellipsometry (SE) has been applied for the characterization of each individual stage of CIGS layers deposited using the 3-stage co-evaporation process along with the other functional layers. Dielectric functions have been determined for the energy range from 0.7 eV to 5.1 eV. Critical-point line-shape analysis was used in this study to determine the critical point energies of the CIGS based layers. To control the compositional and thickness uniformity of all the functional layers during the fabrication of CIGS solar cells over large areas, multilayer photovoltaics (PV) stack optical models were developed with the help of extracted dielectric functions. In this study, mapping capability of RC2 spectroscopic ellipsometer was used to map all the functional layer thicknesses of a CIGS solar cell in order to probe the spatial non-uniformities that can affect the performance of a cell. The optical functions for each of the stages of CIGS 3-stage deposition process along with buffer layer and transparent

  11. Electrodeposition of ZnO-doped films as window layer for Cd-free CIGS-based solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsin, Fabien; Vénérosy, Amélie; Hildebrandt, Thibaud; Hariskos, Dimitrios; Naghavi, Negar; Lincot, Daniel; Rousset, Jean

    2016-02-01

    The Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin film solar cell technology has made a steady progress within the last decade reaching efficiency up to 22.3% on laboratory scale, thus overpassing the highest efficiency for polycrystalline silicon solar cells. High efficiency CIGS modules employ a so-called buffer layer of cadmium sulfide CdS deposited by Chemical Bath Deposition (CBD), which presence and Cd-containing waste present some environmental concerns. A second potential bottleneck for CIGS technology is its window layer made of i-ZnO/ZnO:Al, which is deposited by sputtering requiring expensive vacuum equipment. A non-vacuum deposition of transparent conductive oxide (TCO) relying on simpler equipment with lower investment costs will be more economically attractive, and could increase competitiveness of CIGS-based modules with the mainstream silicon-based technologies. In the frame of Novazolar project, we have developed a low-cost aqueous solution photo assisted electrodeposition process of the ZnO-based window layer for high efficiency CIGS-based solar cells. The window layer deposition have been first optimized on classical CdS buffer layer leading to cells with efficiencies similar to those measured with the sputtered references on the same absorber (15%). The the optimized ZnO doped layer has been adapted to cadmium free devices where the CdS is replaced by chemical bath deposited zinc oxysulfide Zn(S,O) buffer layer. The effect of different growth parameters has been studied on CBD-Zn(S,O)-plated co-evaporated Cu(In,Ga)Se2 substrates provided by the Zentrum für Sonnenenergie-und Wasserstoff-Forschung (ZSW). This optimization of the electrodeposition of ZnO:Cl on CIGS/Zn(S,O) stacks led to record efficiency of 14%, while the reference cell with a sputtered (Zn,Mg)O/ZnO:Al window layer has an efficiency of 15.2%.

  12. Device Modeling and Characterization for CIGS Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Sang Ho

    We studied the way to achieve high efficiency and low cost of CuIn1-xGaxSe2 (CIGS) solar cells. The Fowler-Nordheim (F-N) tunneling currents at low bias decreased the shunt resistances and degraded the fill factor and efficiency. The activation energies of majority traps were directly related with F-N tunneling currents by the energy barriers. Air anneals decreased the efficiency from 7.74% to 5.18% after a 150 °C, 1000 hour anneal. The decrease of shunt resistance due to F-N tunneling and the increase of series resistance degrade the efficiencies of solar cells. Air anneal reduces the free carrier densities by the newly generated Cu interstitial defects (Cui). Mobile Cui defects induce the metastability in CIGS solar cell. Since oxygen atoms are preferred to passivate the Se vacancies thus Cu interstitial defects explains well metastability of CIGS solar cells. Lattice mismatch and misfit stress between layers in CIGS solar cells can explain the particular effects of CIGS solar cells. The misfits of 35.08° rotated (220/204) CIGS to r-plane (102) MoSe2 layers are 1% ˜ -4% lower than other orientation and the lattice constants of two layers in short direction are matched at Ga composition x=0.35. This explains well the preferred orientation and the maximum efficiency of Ga composition effects. Misfit between CIGS and CdS generated the dislocations in CdS layer as the interface traps. Thermionic emission currents due to interface traps limit the open circuit voltage at high Ga composition. The trap densities were calculated by critical thickness and dislocation spacing and the numerical device simulation results were well matched with the experimental results. A metal oxide broken-gap p-n heterojunction is suggested for tunnel junction for multi-junction polycrystalline solar cells and we examined the characteristics of broken-gap tunnel junction by numerical simulation. Ballistic transport mechanism explains well I-V characteristics of broken-gap junction. P

  13. Polycrystalline Thin Film Photovoltaics: From the Laboratory to Solar Fields (Presentation)

    SciTech Connect

    von Roedern, B.; Ullal, H.; Zweibel, K.

    2006-05-01

    The conclusions of this report are that: (1) many issues how thin-film solar cells work remain unresolved, requiring further fundamental R and D effort; (2) commercial thin-film PV module production reached 29% in 2005 in the US, indicating much more rapid growth than crystalline Si PV; (3) commercial module performance is increasing based on current knowledge, more R and D will lead to further improvement; and (4) stability of thin-film modules is acceptable ({le} 1% per year power loss) if the right manufacturing processes are used for manufacturing.

  14. Large-scale micro- and nanopatterns of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin film solar cells by mold-assisted chemical-etching process.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yi-Chung; Cheng, Hsiang-Ying; Yen, Yu-Ting; Wu, Tsung-Ta; Hsu, Cheng-Hung; Tsai, Hung-Wei; Shen, Chang-Hong; Shieh, Jia-Min; Chueh, Yu-Lun

    2015-04-28

    A reactive mold-assisted chemical etching (MACE) process through an easy-to-make agarose stamp soaked in bromine methanol etchant to rapidly imprint larger area micro- and nanoarrays on CIGS substrates was demonstrated. Interestingly, by using the agarose stamp during the MACE process with and without additive containing oil and triton, CIGS microdome and microhole arrays can be formed on the CIGS substrate. Detailed formation mechanisms of microstructures and the chemical composition variation after the etching process were investigated. In addition, various microand nanostructures were also demonstrated by this universal approach. The microstructure arrays integrated into standard CIGS solar cells with thinner thickness can still achieve an efficiency of 11.22%, yielding an enhanced efficiency of ∼18% compared with that of their planar counterpart due to an excellent absorption behavior confirmed by the simulation results, which opens up a promising way for the realization of high-efficiency micro- or nanostructured thin-film solar cells. Finally, the complete dissolution of agarose stamp into hot water demonstrates an environmentally friendly method by the mold-assisted chemical etching process through an easy-to-make agarose stamp. PMID:25769317

  15. Effects of Sulfurization Temperature on Cu(In, Ga)S2 Thin Film Solar Cell Performance by Rapid Thermal Process.

    PubMed

    Kim, Kilim; Kim, Dongjin; Ahn, Kyung-Jun; Jeong, Cheahwan

    2016-05-01

    Cu(In, Ga)S2 (CIGS) absorbers were prepared using two-step process. Cu-In-Ga precursors were deposited by sputtering method and then were sulfurized by rapid thermal process based on H2S gas. Sulfurization temperature was changed from 470 degrees C to 510 degrees C. As the processing temperature increased, larger grains and denser absorbers were observed. The polycrystalline chalcopyrite structure of CuInGaS2 was shown in all samples, and their XRD peak was dominantly observed at (112) direction. CIGS thin film solar cells were fabricated with wide-bandgap absorbers obtained by varying sulfurization temperature. The best efficiency was shown with the processing temperature of 490 degrees C and 8.93% with 1.507 eV of wide optical bandgap. PMID:27483834

  16. Carrier lifetimes in thin-film photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baek, Dohyun

    2015-09-01

    The carrier lifetimes in thin-film solar cells are reviewed and discussed. Shockley-Read-Hall recombination is dominant at low carrier density, Auger recombination is dominant under a high injection condition and high carrier density, and surface recombination is dominant under any conditions. Because the surface photovoltage technique is insensitive to the surface condition, it is useful for bulk lifetime measurements. The photoconductance decay technique measures the effective recombination lifetime. The time-resolved photoluminescence technique is very useful for measuring thin-film semiconductor or solar-cell materials lifetime, because the sample is thin, other techniques are not suitable for measuring the lifetime. Many papers have provided time-resolved photoluminescence (TRPL) lifetimes for copper-indium-gallium-selenide (CIGS) and CdTe thin-film solar cell. The TRPL lifetime strongly depends on open-circuit voltage and conversion efficiency; however, the TRPL life time is insensitive to the short-circuit current.

  17. Potential of thin-film solar cell module technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shimada, K.; Ferber, R. R.; Costogue, E. N.

    1985-01-01

    During the past five years, thin-film cell technology has made remarkable progress as a potential alternative to crystalline silicon cell technology. The efficiency of a single-junction thin-film cell, which is the most promising for use in flat-plate modules, is now in the range of 11 percent with 1-sq cm cells consisting of amorphous silicon, CuInSe2 or CdTe materials. Cell efficiencies higher than 18 percent, suitable for 15 percent-efficient flat plate modules, would require a multijunction configuration such as the CdTe/CuInSe2 and tandem amorphous-silicon (a-Si) alloy cells. Assessments are presented of the technology status of thin-film-cell module research and the potential of achieving the higher efficiencies required for large-scale penetration into the photovoltaic (PV) energy market.

  18. Rapid Deposition Technology Holds the Key for the World's Largest Manufacturer of Thin-Film Solar Modules (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2013-08-01

    First Solar, Inc. has been collaborating with NREL since 1991, advancing its thin-film cadmium telluride solar technology to grow from a startup company to become one of the world's largest manufacturers of solar modules, and the world's largest manufacturer of thin-film solar modules.

  19. Polycrystalline silicon thin-film solar cell prepared by the solid phase crystallization (SPC) method

    SciTech Connect

    Baba, T.; Matsuyama, T.; Sawada, T.; Takahama, T.; Wakisaka, K.; Tsuda, S.; Nakano, S.

    1994-12-31

    A solid phase crystallization (SPC) method was applied to the fabrication of thin-film polycrystalline silicon (poly-Si) for solar cells for the first time. Among crystalline silicon solar cells crystallized at a low temperature of less than 600 C, the world`s highest conversion efficiency of 8.5% was achieved in a solar cell using thin-film poly-Si with only 10 {micro}m thickness prepared by the SPC method. This solar cell showed high photosensitivity in the long-wavelength region of more than 800 nm and also exhibited no light-induced degradation after light exposure.

  20. Applications of thin film technology toward a low-mass solar power satellite

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Cull, Ronald C.

    1990-01-01

    Previous concepts for solar power satellites have used conventional-technology photovoltaics and microwave tubes. The authors propose using thin film photovoltaics and an integrated solid state phased array to design an ultra-lightweight solar power satellite, resulting in a potential reduction in weight by a factor of ten to a hundred over conventional concepts for solar power satellites.

  1. Effects of phosphorous doping to poly (methylphenyl silane) and fabrication of thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakagawa, Junya; Oku, Takeo; Suzuki, Atsushi; Akiyama, Tsuyoshi; Tokumitsu, Katsuhisa; Yamada, Masahiro; Nakamura, Mika

    2013-04-01

    Effects of phosphorus bromine (PBr3) doping to polysilane were investigated for spin-coating thin films. Phosphorus doped poly (methylphenyl silane) (PMPS) provided n-type semiconductor behavior, which was confirmed by Hall effect measurements. Desorption of phenyl and methyl groups in doped PMPS thin films was observed after annealing at 300 °C from Raman scattering measurements and theoretical calculations. The band gap energy of PMPS was measured to be 3.2 eV. Decrease of photoluminescence intensity of PMPS was observed by phosphorus doping. Microstructures of the doped PMPS thin films were investigated by using X-ray diffraction, which indicated doped PMPS had an amorphous structure after annealing. A solar cell with PMPS(PBr3):poly[3-hexylthiophene] bulk-heterojunction structure was fabricated, and provided a photovoltaic behavior. Formation mechanism and carrier transport mechanism of the doped PMPS thin films were proposed.

  2. Development of an Ultraflex-Based Thin Film Solar Array for Space Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, Steve; Douglas, Mark; Spence, Brian; Jones, P. Alan; Piszczor, Michael F.

    2003-01-01

    As flexible thin film photovoltaic (FTFPV) cell technology is developed for space applications, integration into a viable solar array structure that optimizes the attributes of this cell technology is critical. An advanced version of ABLE'sS UltraFlex solar array platform represents a near-term, low-risk approach to demonstrating outstanding array performance with the implementation of FTFPV technology. Recent studies indicate that an advanced UltraFlex solar array populated with 15% efficient thin film cells can achieve over 200 W/kg EOL. An overview on the status of hardware development and the future potential of this technology is presented.

  3. Broadband Absorption Enhancement in Thin Film Solar Cells Using Asymmetric Double-Sided Pyramid Gratings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alshal, Mohamed A.; Allam, Nageh K.

    2016-07-01

    A design for a highly efficient modified grating crystalline silicon (c-Si) thin film solar cell is demonstrated and analyzed using the two-dimensional (2-D) finite element method. The suggested grating has a double-sided pyramidal structure. The incorporation of the modified grating in a c-Si thin film solar cell offers a promising route to harvest light into the few micrometers active layer. Furthermore, a layer of silicon nitride is used as an antireflection coating (ARC). Additionally, the light trapping through the suggested design is significantly enhanced by the asymmetry of the top and bottom pyramids. The effects of the thickness of the active layer and facet angle of the pyramid on the spectral absorption, ultimate efficiency (η), and short-circuit current density (J sc) are investigated. The numerical results showed 87.9% efficiency improvement over the conventional thin film c-Si solar cell counterpart without gratings.

  4. Characterizing Non-Uniformity of Performance of Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, Eric B. (Technical Monitor); Lush, Gregory B.

    2003-01-01

    Thin-film Solar Cells are being actively studied for terrestrial and space applications because of their potential to provide low-cost, lightweight, and flexible electric power system. Currently, thin-film solar cell performance is limited partially by the nonuniformity of performance that they typically exhibit. This nonuniformity of performance necessitates more detailed characterization techniques than the well-known macroscopic measurements such as current-voltage and efficiency. This project seeks to explore methods of characterization that take into account the spatial nonuniformity of thin-film solar cells. In this presentation we show results of electroluminescence images, short-circuit maps, and Kelvin Probe maps. All these mapping characterization and analysis tools show that the non-uniformities can correlated with device performance and efficiency.

  5. Optical Metrology for CIGS Solar Cell Manufacturing and its Cost Implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sunkoju, Sravan Kumar

    Solar energy is a promising source of renewable energy which can meet the demand for clean energy in near future with advances in research in the field of photovoltaics and cost reduction by commercialization. Availability of a non-contact, in-line, real time robust process control strategies can greatly aid in reducing the gap between cell and module efficiencies, thereby leading to cost-effective large-scale manufacturing of high efficiency CIGS solar cells. In order to achieve proper process monitoring and control for the deposition of the functional layers of CuIn1-xGaxSe 2 (CIGS) based thin film solar cell, optical techniques such as spectroscopic reflectometry and polarimetry are advantageous because they can be set up in an unobtrusive manner in the manufacturing line, and collect data in-line and in-situ. The use of these techniques requires accurate optical models that correctly represent the properties of the layers being deposited. In this study, Spectroscopic ellipsometry (SE) has been applied for the characterization of each individual stage of CIGS layers deposited using the 3-stage co-evaporation process along with the other functional layers. Dielectric functions have been determined for the energy range from 0.7 eV to 5.1 eV. Critical-point line-shape analysis was used in this study to determine the critical point energies of the CIGS based layers. To control the compositional and thickness uniformity of all the functional layers during the fabrication of CIGS solar cells over large areas, multilayer photovoltaics (PV) stack optical models were developed with the help of extracted dielectric functions. In this study, mapping capability of RC2 spectroscopic ellipsometer was used to map all the functional layer thicknesses of a CIGS solar cell in order to probe the spatial non-uniformities that can affect the performance of a cell. The optical functions for each of the stages of CIGS 3-stage deposition process along with buffer layer and transparent

  6. The impact of sodium contamination in tin sulfide thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinmann, Vera; Brandt, Riley E.; Chakraborty, Rupak; Jaramillo, R.; Young, Matthew; Ofori-Okai, Benjamin K.; Yang, Chuanxi; Polizzotti, Alex; Nelson, Keith A.; Gordon, Roy G.; Buonassisi, Tonio

    2016-02-01

    Through empirical observations, sodium (Na) has been identified as a benign contaminant in some thin-film solar cells. Here, we intentionally contaminate thermally evaporated tin sulfide (SnS) thin-films with sodium and measure the SnS absorber properties and solar cell characteristics. The carrier concentration increases from 2 × 1016 cm-3 to 4.3 × 1017 cm-3 in Na-doped SnS thin-films, when using a 13 nm NaCl seed layer, which is detrimental for SnS photovoltaic applications but could make Na-doped SnS an attractive candidate in thermoelectrics. The observed trend in carrier concentration is in good agreement with density functional theory calculations, which predict an acceptor-type NaSn defect with low formation energy.

  7. Cost-effective nanostructured thin-film solar cell with enhanced absorption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Peng Hui; Nowak, Regina-Elisabeth; Geißendörfer, Stefan; Vehse, Martin; Reininghaus, Nies; Sergeev, Oleg; von Maydell, Karsten; Brolo, Alexandre G.; Agert, Carsten

    2014-11-01

    Nanostructured transparent conductive electrodes are highly interesting for efficient light management in thin-film solar cells, but they are often costly to manufacture and limited to small scales. This work reports on a low-cost and scalable bottom-up approach to fabricate nanostructured thin-film solar cells. A folded solar cell with increased optical absorber volume was deposited on honeycomb patterned zinc oxide nanostructures, fabricated in a combined process of nanosphere lithography and electrochemical deposition. The periodicity of the honeycomb pattern can be easily varied in the fabrication process, which allows structural optimization for different absorber materials. The implementation of this concept in amorphous silicon thin-film solar cells with only 100 nm absorber layer was demonstrated. The nanostructured solar cell showed approximately 10% increase in the short circuit current density compared to a cell on an optimized commercial textured reference electrode. The concept presented here is highly promising for low-cost industrial fabrication of nanostructured thin-film solar cells, since no sophisticated layer stacks or expensive techniques are required.

  8. Optoelectronic characterization of wide-bandgap (AgCu)(InGa)Se 2 thin-film polycrystalline solar cells including the role of the intrinsic zinc oxide layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obahiagbon, Uwadiae

    Experiments and simulations were conducted to vary the thickness and the sheet resistance of the high resistance (HR) ZnO layer in polycrystalline thin film (AgCu)(GaIn)Se2 (ACIGS) solar cells. The effect of varying these parameters on the electric field distribution, depletion width and hence capacitance were studied by SCAPS simulation. Devices were then fabricated and characterized by a number of optoelectronic techniques. Thin film CIGS has received a lot of attention, for its use as an absorber layer for thin film solar cells. However, the addition of Silver (Ag) to the CIGS alloy system increases the band gap as indicated from optical transmission measurements and thus higher open circuit voltage (Voc) could be obtained. Furthermore, addition of Ag lowers the melting temperature of the alloy and it is expected that this lowers the defect densities in the absorber and thus leads to higher performance. Transient photocapacitance analysis on ACIGS devices shows sharper band edge indicating lower disorder than CIGS. Presently there is a lack of fundamental knowledge relating film characteristics to device properties and performance. This is due to the fact that some features in the present solar cell structure have been optimized empirically. The goal of this research effort was to develop a fundamental and detailed understanding of the device operation as well as the loss mechanism(s) limiting these devices. Recombination mechanisms in finished ACIGS solar cell devices was studied using advanced admittance techniques (AS, DLCP, CV) to identify electronically active defect state(s) and to study their impact on electronic properties and device performance. Analysis of various optoelectronic measurements of ACIGS solar cells provided useful feedback regarding the impact on device performance of the HR ZnO layer. It was found that thickness between 10-100 nm had negligible impact on performance but reducing the thickness to 0 nm resulted in huge variability in all

  9. Optimizing Ga-profiles for highly efficient Cu(In, Ga)Se2 thin film solar cells in simple and complex defect models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frisk, C.; Platzer-Björkman, C.; Olsson, J.; Szaniawski, P.; Wätjen, J. T.; Fjällström, V.; Salomé, P.; Edoff, M.

    2014-12-01

    Highly efficient Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2 photovoltaic thin film solar cells often have a compositional variation of Ga to In in the absorber layer, here described as a Ga-profile. In this work, we have studied the role of Ga-profiles in four different models based on input data from electrical and optical characterizations of an in-house state-of-the-art Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) solar cell with power conversion efficiency above 19%. A simple defect model with mid-gap defects in the absorber layer was compared with models with Ga-dependent defect concentrations and amphoteric defects. In these models, optimized single-graded Ga-profiles have been compared with optimized double-graded Ga-profiles. It was found that the defect concentration for effective Shockley-Read-Hall recombination is low for high efficiency CIGS devices and that the doping concentration of the absorber layer, chosen according to the defect model, is paramount when optimizing Ga-profiles. For optimized single-graded Ga-profiles, the simulated power conversion efficiency (depending on the model) is 20.5-20.8%, and the equivalent double-graded Ga-profiles yield 20.6-21.4%, indicating that the bandgap engineering of the CIGS device structure can lead to improvements in efficiency. Apart from the effects of increased doping in the complex defect models, the results are similar when comparing the complex defect models to the simple defect models.

  10. Research on polycrystalline thin-film CuInGaSe{sub 2} solar cells. Annual subcontract report, 3 May 1991--21 May 1993

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, W.S.; Stewart, J.M.; Mickelsen, R.A.; Devaney, W.E.; Stanbery, B.J.

    1993-10-01

    This report describes work to fabricate high-efficiency CdZnS/CuInGaSe{sub 2}, thin-film solar cells and to develop improved transparent conductor window layers such as ZnO. The specific technical milestone for Phase I was to demonstrate an air mass (AM) 1.5 global 13% , 1-cm{sup 2} total-area CuInGaSe{sub 2} (CIGS) thin-film solar cell. For Phase II, the objective was to demonstrate an AM1.5 global 13.5%, 1-cm{sup 2} total-area efficiency. We focused our activities on three areas. First, we modified the CIGS deposition system to double its substrate capacity. Second, we developed new tooling to enable investigation of a modified aqueous CdZnS process in which the goal was to improve the yield of this critical step in the device fabrication process. Third, we upgraded the ZnO sputtering system to improve its reliability and reproducibility. A dual rotatable cathode metallic source was installed, and the sputtering parameters were further optimized to improve ZnO`s properties as a transparent conducting oxide (TCO). Combining the refined CdZnS process with CIGS from the newly fixtured deposition system enable us to fabricate and deliver a ZnO/Cd{sub 0.08}Zn{sub 0.20}S/CuIn{sub 0.74}Ga{sub 0.26}Se{sub 2} cell on alumina with I-V characteristics, as measured by NREL under standard test conditions, of 13.7% efficiency with V{proportional_to} = 0.5458 V, J{sub sc} = 35.48 mA/cm{sup 2}, FF = 0.688, and efficiency = 14.6%.

  11. Improved Transparent Conducting Oxides Boost Performance of Thin-Film Solar Cells (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2011-02-01

    Today?s thin-film solar cells could not function without transparent conducting oxides (TCOs). TCOs act as a window, both protecting the cell and allowing light to pass through to the cell?s active layers. Until recently, TCOs were seen as a necessary, but static, layer of a thin-film photovoltaic (PV) cell. But a group of researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has identified a pathway to producing improved TCO films that demonstrate higher infrared transparency. To do so, they have modified the TCOs in ways that did not seem possible a few years ago.

  12. Advances in thin-film solar cells for lightweight space photovoltaic power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Bailey, Sheila G.; Flood, Dennis J.

    1989-01-01

    The development of photovoltaic arrays beyond the next generation is discussed with attention given to the potentials of thin-film polycrystalline and amorphous cells. Of particular importance is the efficiency (the fraction of incident solar energy converted to electricity) and specific power (power to weight ratio). It is found that the radiation tolerance of thin-film materials is far greater than that of single crystal materials. CuInSe2 shows no degradation when exposed to 1-MeV electrons.

  13. Dielectric Scattering Patterns for Efficient Light Trapping in Thin-Film Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    van Lare, Claire; Lenzmann, Frank; Verschuuren, Marc A; Polman, Albert

    2015-08-12

    We demonstrate an effective light trapping geometry for thin-film solar cells that is composed of dielectric light scattering nanocavities at the interface between the metal back contact and the semiconductor absorber layer. The geometry is based on resonant Mie scattering. It avoids the Ohmic losses found in metallic (plasmonic) nanopatterns, and the dielectric scatterers are well compatible with nearly all types of thin-film solar cells, including cells produced using high temperature processes. The external quantum efficiency of thin-film a-Si:H solar cells grown on top of a nanopatterned Al-doped ZnO, made using soft imprint lithography, is strongly enhanced in the 550-800 nm spectral band by the dielectric nanoscatterers. Numerical simulations are in good agreement with experimental data and show that resonant light scattering from both the AZO nanostructures and the embedded Si nanostructures are important. The results are generic and can be applied on nearly all thin-film solar cells. PMID:26107806

  14. Method of forming particulate materials for thin-film solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Eberspacher, Chris; Pauls, Karen Lea

    2004-11-23

    A method for preparing particulate materials useful in fabricating thin-film solar cells is disclosed. Particulate materials is prepared by the method include for example materials comprising copper and indium and/or gallium in the form of single-phase, mixed-metal oxide particulates; multi-phase, mixed-metal particulates comprising a metal oxide; and multinary metal particulates.

  15. Light absorption enhancement in thin-film solar cells using whispering gallery modes in dielectric nanospheres

    SciTech Connect

    Grandidier, Jonathan; Callahan, Dennis M; Munday, Jeremy N; Atwater, Harry A.

    2011-03-07

    A novel approach to increasing light absorption in thin-film solar cells is demonstrated. This new method involves redirecting the incident sunlight into the cell via coupling to the whispering gallery modes of dielectric spheres, which lie atop the cell. Such a scheme leads to a predicted current enhancement of >12% for a-Si.

  16. Optical and structural properties of sputtered CdS films for thin film solar cell applications

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Donguk; Park, Young; Kim, Minha; Choi, Youngkwan; Park, Yong Seob; Lee, Jaehyoeng

    2015-09-15

    Graphical abstract: Photo current–voltage curves (a) and the quantum efficiency (QE) (b) for the solar cell with CdS film grown at 300 °C. - Highlights: • CdS thin films were grown by a RF magnetron sputtering method. • Influence of growth temperature on the properties of CdS films was investigated. • At higher T{sub g}, the crystallinity of the films improved and the grains enlarged. • CdS/CdTe solar cells with efficiencies of 9.41% were prepared at 300 °C. - Abstract: CdS thin films were prepared by radio frequency magnetron sputtering at various temperatures. The effects of growth temperature on crystallinity, surface morphology and optical properties of the films were characterized with X-ray diffraction (XRD), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), Raman spectra, UV–visible spectrophotometry, and photoluminescence (PL) spectra. As the growth temperature was increased, the crystallinity of the sputtered CdS films was improved and the grains were enlarged. The characteristics of CdS/CdTe thin film solar cell appeared to be significantly influenced by the growth temperature of the CdS films. Thin film CdS/CdTe solar cells with efficiencies of 9.41% were prepared at a growth temperature of 300 °C.

  17. Effects of simulated solar radiation on the transmission of magnesium fluoride and cryolite thin films

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heslin, T.

    1974-01-01

    Thin films of cryolite magnesium fluoride on fused silica substrates were exposed to 1126 equivalent sun-hours of radiation. The optical transmissions of the samples were measured before and after irradiation. The results indicate that, after the degradation of the silica substrate is accounted for, the cryolite is severely affected by the simulated solar radiation, but the magnesium fluoride is only slightly affected.

  18. Disorder improves nanophotonic light trapping in thin-film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Paetzold, U. W. Smeets, M.; Meier, M.; Bittkau, K.; Merdzhanova, T.; Smirnov, V.; Carius, R.; Rau, U.; Michaelis, D.; Waechter, C.

    2014-03-31

    We present a systematic experimental study on the impact of disorder in advanced nanophotonic light-trapping concepts of thin-film solar cells. Thin-film solar cells made of hydrogenated amorphous silicon were prepared on imprint-textured glass superstrates. For periodically textured superstrates of periods below 500 nm, the nanophotonic light-trapping effect is already superior to state-of-the-art randomly textured front contacts. The nanophotonic light-trapping effect can be associated to light coupling to leaky waveguide modes causing resonances in the external quantum efficiency of only a few nanometer widths for wavelengths longer than 500 nm. With increasing disorder of the nanotextured front contact, these resonances broaden and their relative altitude decreases. Moreover, overall the external quantum efficiency, i.e., the light-trapping effect, increases incrementally with increasing disorder. Thereby, our study is a systematic experimental proof that disorder is conceptually an advantage for nanophotonic light-trapping concepts employing grating couplers in thin-film solar cells. The result is relevant for the large field of research on nanophotonic light trapping in thin-film solar cells which currently investigates and prototypes a number of new concepts including disordered periodic and quasi periodic textures.

  19. Ag Nanodots Emitters Embedded in a Nanocrystalline Thin Film Deposited on Crystalline Si Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Park, Seungil; Ryu, Sel Gi; Ji, HyungYong; Kim, Myeong Jun; Peck, Jong Hyeon; Kim, Keunjoo

    2016-06-01

    We fabricated crystalline Si solar cells with the inclusion of various Ag nanodots into the additional emitters of nanocrystallite Si thin films. The fabricated process was carried out on the emitter surface of p-n junction for the textured p-type wafer. The Ag thin films were deposited on emitter surfaces and annealed at various temperatures. The amorphous Si layers were also deposited on the Ag annealed surfaces by hot-wire chemical vapor deposition and then the deposited layers were doped by the second n-type doping process to form an additional emitter. From the characterization, both the Ag nanodots and the deposited amorphous Si thin films strongly reduce photo-reflectances in a spectral region between 200-400 nm. After embedding Ag nanodots in nanocrystallite Si thin films, a conversion efficiency of the sample with added emitter was achieved to 15.1%, which is higher than the 14.1% of the reference sample and the 14.7% of the de-posited sample with a-Si:H thin film after the Ag annealing process. The additional nanocrystallite emitter on crystalline Si with Ag nanodots enhances cell properties. PMID:27427665

  20. Fabrication and performance of organic thin film solar cells using a painting method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ochiai, S.; Ishihara, H.; Mizutani, T.; Kojima, K.

    2010-05-01

    As organic thin film solar cells fabricated by the active layer of organic materials are economical, lightweight, and flexible, as well as generating no CO2, and being easy to fabricate, they have attracted significant attention as green energy sources from a past decade to date. Therefore, their power conversion efficiency (PCE) has been investigated and studied worldwide. In organic thinfilm solar cells, the effect of the performance depends not only on the adopted active material but also relates to the molecular orientation on the electrode. Using a mixed solution of Poly(3-hexylthiophene) and PCBM, both of which were dissolved in a solvent, the organic thin films were fabricated using the paint and spray methods, while the morphology of the thin film was evaluated by an AFM image, UV/vis spectra, and so forth. Based on these data, an organic thin-film solar cell using both solution methods for the active layer was fabricated, and the performance evaluated and examined. For organic thin film solar cells fabricated using a spin-coating method, the open-circuit voltage (Voc) is 0.41V, the short circuit current density (Jsc) is 2.07mA/cm2, and the fill factor is 0.34, while the efficiency η of PCE become 0.29%. In the spray method, the short circuit current (Isc) is 2.5 mA/cm2, the open circuit voltage (Voc) is 0.45 V, the fill factor (FF) is 0.28, and the power conversion factor (PCE) 0.35%. The area of organic solar cells fabricated by spin coating and spray methods is 1 cm2 respectively. The organic solar cells are not thermally treated, and hence have high respective power conversion efficiencies.

  1. Fabrication of organic-inorganic perovskite thin films for planar solar cells via pulsed laser deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Yangang; Yao, Yangyi; Zhang, Xiaohang; Hsu, Wei-Lun; Gong, Yunhui; Shin, Jongmoon; Wachsman, Eric D.; Dagenais, Mario; Takeuchi, Ichiro

    2016-01-01

    We report on fabrication of organic-inorganic perovskite thin films using a hybrid method consisting of pulsed laser deposition (PLD) of lead iodide and spin-coating of methylammonium iodide. Smooth and highly crystalline CH3NH3PbI3 thin films have been fabricated on silicon and glass coated substrates with fluorine doped tin oxide using this PLD-based hybrid method. Planar perovskite solar cells with an inverted structure have been successfully fabricated using the perovskite films. Because of its versatility, the PLD-based hybrid fabrication method not only provides an easy and precise control of the thickness of the perovskite thin films, but also offers a straightforward platform for studying the potential feasibility in using other metal halides and organic salts for formation of the organic-inorganic perovskite structure.

  2. Perovskite solar cell using a two-dimensional titania nanosheet thin film as the compact layer.

    PubMed

    Li, Can; Li, Yahui; Xing, Yujin; Zhang, Zelin; Zhang, Xianfeng; Li, Zhen; Shi, Yantao; Ma, Tingli; Ma, Renzhi; Wang, Kunlin; Wei, Jinquan

    2015-07-22

    The compact layer plays an important role in conducting electrons and blocking holes in perovskite solar cells (PSCs). Here, we use a two-dimensional titania nanosheet (TNS) thin film as the compact layer in CH3NH3PbI3 PSCs. TNS thin films with thicknesses ranging from 8 to 75 nm were prepared by an electrophoretic deposition method from a dilute TNS/tetrabutylammonium hydroxide solution. The TNS thin films contact the fluorine-doped tin oxide grains perfectly. Our results show that a 8-nm-thick TNS film is sufficient for acting as the compact layer. Currently, the PSC with a TNS compact layer has a high efficiency of 10.7% and relatively low hysteresis behavior. PMID:26158908

  3. Indium phosphide/cadmium sulfide thin-film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Zanio, K.

    1980-02-01

    Thin-film InP/CdS structures were prepared by depositing, in sequence, ITO on a low-cost glass substrate, CdS on the ITO by thermal evaporation, and InP on the CdS by planar reactive deposition (PRD). Films of CdS, 15 ..mu..m thick, were recrystallized in flowing H/sub 2//H/sub 2/S at 500/sup 0/C. Lateral dimensions of typical grains were 50..mu..m with values up to 200 ..mu..m. The sheet resistance of the recrystallized CdS (RXCdS) was lowered from greater than 10/sup 5/ ..cap omega../O = cm/sup 2/ to values as low as 16 ..cap omega../O = cm/sup 2/ by annealing in either H/sub 2/ Cd atmospheres. Epitaxy of InP was undertaken on (100) InP at a substrate temperature of 320/sup 0/C. Room-temperature electron mobilities of about 2000 cm/sup 2//V-sec were found. Mobilities and hole concentrations of 60 cm/sup 2//V-sec and 10/sup 17/ cm-/sup 3/, respectively, were achieved with Be-doped films. P-type films with hole concentrations as high as a few times 10/sup 18/cm-/sup 3/ were achieved with increased doping. Be-doped InP was deposited onto the RXCdS/ITO/GLASS substrate to form a thin-film cell. However, p-type InP could not be prepared with CdS as a substrat4e, presumably due to interdiffusion or vapor transport of sulfur. Consequently, blocking action and a photovoltage could only be achieved using a gold Schottky barrier on the InP/RXCdS/ITO/GLASS structure. Plans for the next quarter include determining whether n-type doping from the CdS occurs by either interdiffusion or vapor transport, characterizing InP epitaxy on the RXCdS, and preparing additional thin-film structures.

  4. Surface Engineering of ZnO Thin Film for High Efficiency Planar Perovskite Solar Cells

    PubMed Central

    Tseng, Zong-Liang; Chiang, Chien-Hung; Wu, Chun-Guey

    2015-01-01

    Sputtering made ZnO thin film was used as an electron-transport layer in a regular planar perovskite solar cell based on high quality CH3NH3PbI3 absorber prepared with a two-step spin-coating. An efficiency up to 15.9% under AM 1.5G irradiation is achieved for the cell based on ZnO film fabricated under Ar working gas. The atmosphere of the sputtering chamber can tune the surface electronic properties (band structure) of the resulting ZnO thin film and therefore the photovoltaic performance of the corresponding perovskite solar cell. Precise surface engineering of ZnO thin film was found to be one of the key steps to fabricate ZnO based regular planar perovskite solar cell with high power conversion efficiency. Sputtering method is proved to be one of the excellent techniques to prepare ZnO thin film with controllable properties. PMID:26411577

  5. Surface Engineering of ZnO Thin Film for High Efficiency Planar Perovskite Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Tseng, Zong-Liang; Chiang, Chien-Hung; Wu, Chun-Guey

    2015-01-01

    Sputtering made ZnO thin film was used as an electron-transport layer in a regular planar perovskite solar cell based on high quality CH3NH3PbI3 absorber prepared with a two-step spin-coating. An efficiency up to 15.9% under AM 1.5G irradiation is achieved for the cell based on ZnO film fabricated under Ar working gas. The atmosphere of the sputtering chamber can tune the surface electronic properties (band structure) of the resulting ZnO thin film and therefore the photovoltaic performance of the corresponding perovskite solar cell. Precise surface engineering of ZnO thin film was found to be one of the key steps to fabricate ZnO based regular planar perovskite solar cell with high power conversion efficiency. Sputtering method is proved to be one of the excellent techniques to prepare ZnO thin film with controllable properties. PMID:26411577

  6. Method and apparatus for fabricating a thin-film solar cell utilizing a hot wire chemical vapor deposition technique

    DOEpatents

    Wang, Qi; Iwaniczko, Eugene

    2006-10-17

    A thin-film solar cell is provided. The thin-film solar cell comprises an a-SiGe:H (1.6 eV) n-i-p solar cell having a deposition rate of at least ten (10) .ANG./second for the a-SiGe:H intrinsic layer by hot wire chemical vapor deposition. A method for fabricating a thin film solar cell is also provided. The method comprises depositing a n-i-p layer at a deposition rate of at least ten (10) .ANG./second for the a-SiGe:H intrinsic layer.

  7. A facile process to prepare copper oxide thin films as solar selective absorbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiao, Xiudi; Miao, Lei; Xu, Gang; Lu, Limei; Su, Zhanmin; Wang, Ning; Tanemura, Sakae

    2011-10-01

    Copper oxide thin films as solar selective absorbers were conveniently prepared by one-step chemical conversion method. X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), UV-vis-NIR spectra and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectra were employed to characterize the composition, structure and optical properties of thin films. The results indicated that the composition, structure and optical properties of thin films were greatly influenced by reaction temperature, time and concentration of NaOH. When reaction temperature was fixed at 40 °C, the as-prepared films consist of pure cubic Cu 2O. The surface morphology of thin films was changed from square-like structure (reaction time ≤ 25 min) to porous belt-like structure (reaction time ≥ 30 min) with the elongation of reaction time. While for thin films prepared at 60 °C and 80 °C, single Cu 2O was observed after 5 min reaction. When reaction time is longer than 5 min, CuO appears and the content of CuO is increasing with the elongation of reaction time. With the increase of reaction temperature, the belt-like structure was easily formed for 60 °C/10 min and 80 °C/5 min. Decreasing concentration of NaOH also could result in the formation of CuO and porous belt-like structure. Simultaneously, the film thickness is increasing with the increase of reaction time, temperature and concentration. Films containing CuO with belt-like structure exhibited high absorptance (>0.9), and the emissivity of films increased with elongation of reaction time. Combination of the composition, structure and optical properties, it can be deduced that the porous belt-like structure like as a light trap can greatly enhance absorbance ( α), while the composition, thickness and roughness of thin films can greatly influence the emissivity ( ɛ). The highest photo-thermal conversion efficiency was up to 0.86 ( α/ ɛ = 0.94/0.08) for thin films prepared at 80 °C/5 min, which proved that the CuO x thin films can be served as

  8. Thin film cadmium telluride, zinc telluride, and mercury zinc telluride solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Chu, T.L. )

    1992-04-01

    This report describes research to demonstrate (1) thin film cadmium telluride solar cells with a quantum efficiency of 75% or higher at 0. 44 {mu}m and a photovoltaic efficiency of 11.5% or greater, and (2) thin film zinc telluride and mercury zinc telluride solar cells with a transparency to sub-band-gap radiation of 65% and a photovoltaic conversion efficiency of 5% and 8%, respectively. Work was directed at (1) depositing transparent conducting semiconductor films by solution growth and metal-organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) technique, (2) depositing CdTe films by close-spaced sublimation (CSS) and MOCVD techniques, (3) preparing and evaluating thin film CdTe solar cells, and (4) preparing and characterizing thin film ZnTe, CD{sub 1-x}Zn{sub 1-x}Te, and Hg{sub 1-x}Zn{sub x}Te solar cells. The deposition of CdS films from aqueous solutions was investigated in detail, and their crystallographic, optical, and electrical properties were characterized. CdTe films were deposited from DMCd and DIPTe at 400{degrees}C using TEGa and AsH{sub 3} as dopants. CdTe films deposited by CSS had significantly better microstructures than those deposited by MOCVD. Deep energy states in CdTe films deposited by CSS and MOCVD were investigated. Thin films of ZnTe, Cd{sub 1- x}Zn{sub x}Te, and Hg{sub 1-x}Zn{sub x}Te were deposited by MOCVD, and their crystallographic, optical, and electrical properties were characterized. 67 refs.

  9. MIS and PN junction solar cells on thin-film polycrystalline silicon

    SciTech Connect

    Ariotedjo, A.; Emery, K.; Cheek, G.; Pierce, P.; Surek, T.

    1981-05-01

    The Photovoltaic Advanced Silicon (PVAS) Branch at the Solar Energy Research Institute (SERI) has initiated a comparative study to assess the potential of MIS-type solar cells for low-cost terrestrial photovoltaic systems in terms of performance, stability, and cost-effectiveness. Several types of MIS and SIS solar cells are included in the matrix study currently underway. This approach compares the results of MIS and p/n junction solar cells on essentially identical thin-film polycrystalline silicon materials. All cell measurements and characterizations are performed using uniform testing procedures developed in the Photovoltaic Measurements and Evaluation (PV M and E) Laboratory at SERI. Some preliminary data on the different cell structures on thin-film epitaxial silicon on metallurgical-grade substrates are presented here.

  10. Real time intelligent process control system for thin film solar cell manufacturing

    SciTech Connect

    George Atanasoff

    2010-10-29

    This project addresses the problem of lower solar conversion efficiency and waste in the typical solar cell manufacturing process. The work from the proposed development will lead toward developing a system which should be able to increase solar panel conversion efficiency by an additional 12-15% resulting in lower cost panels, increased solar technology adoption, reduced carbon emissions and reduced dependency on foreign oil. All solar cell manufacturing processes today suffer from manufacturing inefficiencies that currently lead to lower product quality and lower conversion efficiency, increased product cost and greater material and energy consumption. This results in slower solar energy adoption and extends the time solar cells will reach grid parity with traditional energy sources. The thin film solar panel manufacturers struggle on a daily basis with the problem of thin film thickness non-uniformity and other parameters variances over the deposited substrates, which significantly degrade their manufacturing yield and quality. Optical monitoring of the thin films during the process of the film deposition is widely perceived as a necessary step towards resolving the non-uniformity and non-homogeneity problem. In order to enable the development of an optical control system for solar cell manufacturing, a new type of low cost optical sensor is needed, able to acquire local information about the panel under deposition and measure its local characteristics, including the light scattering in very close proximity to the surface of the film. This information cannot be obtained by monitoring from outside the deposition chamber (as traditional monitoring systems do) due to the significant signal attenuation and loss of its scattering component before the reflected beam reaches the detector. In addition, it would be too costly to install traditional external in-situ monitoring systems to perform any real-time monitoring over large solar panels, since it would require

  11. Failure analysis of thin-film amorphous-silicon solar-cell modules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Q.

    1984-01-01

    A failure analysis of thin film amorphous silicon solar cell modules was conducted. The purpose of this analysis is to provide information and data for appropriate corrective action that could result in improvements in product quality and reliability. Existing techniques were expanded in order to evaluate and characterize degradational performance of a-Si solar cells. Microscopic and macroscopic defects and flaws that significantly contribute to performance degradation were investigated.

  12. Processing and modeling issues for thin-film solar cell devices. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Birkmire, R.W.; Phillips, J.E.

    1997-11-01

    During the third phase of the subcontract, IEC researchers have continued to provide the thin film PV community with greater depth of understanding and insight into a wide variety of issues including: the deposition and characterization of CuIn{sub 1-x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2}, a-Si, CdTe, CdS, and TCO thin films; the relationships between film and device properties; and the processing and analysis of thin film PV devices. This has been achieved through the systematic investigation of all aspects of film and device production and through the analysis and quantification of the reaction chemistries involved in thin film deposition. This methodology has led to controlled fabrications of 15% efficient CuIn{sub 1-x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2} solar cells over a wide range of Ga compositions, improved process control of the fabrication of 10% efficient a-Si solar cells, and reliable and generally applicable procedures for both contacting and doping films. Additional accomplishments are listed below.

  13. Space Plasma Testing of High-Voltage Thin-Film Solar Arrays with Protective Coatings

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tlomak, Pawel; Hausgen, Paul E.; Merrill, John; Senft, Donna; Piszczor, Michael F., Jr.

    2007-01-01

    This paper gives an overview of the space plasma test program for thin-film photovoltaics (TFPV) technologies developed at the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). The main objective of this program is to simulate the effects of space plasma characteristic of LEO and MEO environments on TFPV. Two types of TFPV, amorphous silicon (a-Si) and copper-indium-gallium-diselenide (CIGS), coated with two types of thin-film, multifunctional coatings were used for these studies. This paper reports the results of the first phase of this program, namely the results of preliminary electrostatic charging, arcing, dielectric breakdown, and collection current measurements carried out with a series of TFPV exposed to simulated space plasma at the NASA Glenn Plasma Interaction Facility. The experimental data demonstrate that multifunctional coatings developed for this program provide effective protection against the plasma environment while minimizing impact on power generation performance. This effort is part of an ongoing program led by the Space Vehicles Directorate at the AFRL devoted to the development and space qualification of TFPV and their protective coatings.

  14. Application of ICP-OES to the determination of CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se2 thin films used as absorber materials in solar cell devices.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Martínez, Rodolfo; Caballero, Raquel; Guillén, Cecilia; Gutiérrez, María Teresa; Rucandio, María Isabel

    2005-05-01

    CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se2 [CIGS; x=Ga/(In+Ga)] thin films are among of the best candidates as absorber materials for solar cell applications. The material quality and main properties of the polycrystalline absorber layer are critically influenced by deviations in the stoichiometry, particularly in the Cu/(In+Ga) atomic ratio. In this work a simple, sensitive and accurate method has been developed for the quantitative determination of these thin films by inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES). The proposed method involves an acid digestion of the samples to achieve the complete solubilization of CIGS, followed by the analytical determination by ICP-OES. A digestion procedure with 50% HNO3 alone or in the presence of 10% HCl was performed to dissolve those thin films deposited on glass or Mo-coated glass substrates, respectively. Two analytical lines were selected for each element (Cu 324.754 and 327.396 nm, Ga 294.364 and 417.206 nm, In 303.936 and 325.609 nm, Se 196.090 and 203.985 nm, and Mo 202.030 and 379.825 nm) and a study of spectral interferences was performed which showed them to be suitable, since they offered a high sensitivity and no significant inter-element interferences were detected. Detection limits for all elements at the selected lines were found to be appropriate for this kind of application, and the relative standard deviations were lower than 1.5% for all elements with the exception of Se (about 5%). The Cu/(In+Ga) atomic ratios obtained from the application of this method to CIGS thin films were consistent with the study of the structural and morphological properties by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). PMID:15702309

  15. Challenges to Scaling CIGS Photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stanbery, B. J.

    2011-03-01

    The challenges of scaling any photovoltaic technology to terawatts of global capacity are arguably more economic than technological or resource constraints. All commercial thin-film PV technologies are based on direct bandgap semiconductors whose absorption coefficient and bandgap alignment with the solar spectrum enable micron-thick coatings in lieu to hundreds of microns required using indirect-bandgap c-Si. Although thin-film PV reduces semiconductor materials cost, its manufacture is more capital intensive than c-Si production, and proportional to deposition rate. Only when combined with sufficient efficiency and cost of capital does this tradeoff yield lower manufacturing cost. CIGS has the potential to become the first thin film technology to achieve the terawatt benchmark because of its superior conversion efficiency, making it the only commercial thin film technology which demonstrably delivers performance comparable to the dominant incumbent, c-Si. Since module performance leverages total systems cost, this competitive advantage bears directly on CIGS' potential to displace c-Si and attract the requisite capital to finance the tens of gigawatts of annual production capacity needed to manufacture terawatts of PV modules apace with global demand growth.

  16. Recent advances in the transparent conducting ZnO for thin-film Si solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moon, Taeho; Shin, Gwang Su; Park, Byungwoo

    2015-11-01

    The key challenge for solar-cell development lies in the improvement of power-conversion efficiency and the reduction of fabrication cost. For thin-film Si solar cells, researches have been especially focused on the light trapping for the breakthrough in the saturated efficiencies. The ZnO-based transparent conducting oxides (TCOs) have therefore received strong attention because of their excellent light-scattering capability by the texture-etched surface and cost effectiveness through in-house fabrication. Here, we have highlighted our recent studies on the transparent conducting ZnO for thin-film Si solar cells. From the electrical properties and their degradation mechanisms, bilayer deposition and organic-acid texturing approaches for enhancing the light trapping, and finally the relation between textured ZnO and electrical cell performances are sequentially introduced in this review article. [Figure not available: see fulltext.

  17. High-efficiency thin-film solar cells for the conversion of concentrated radiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreev, V. M.; Burba, T. S.; Dorgan, V. V.; Trofim, V. G.; Chumak, V. A.

    1987-09-01

    The objective of the study was to investigate the possibility of increasing the efficiency of thin-film solar cells with coplanar back contacts for the conversion of concentrated solar radiation. It is shown that, in the thin-film solar cells described here, the cell shading factor can be reduced to a minimum since it does not depend on the p-contact area but is determined solely by the area of etched grooves in a thin (7 microns) layer of GaAs. The cells used in the study have a shading factor of 2.5 percent, and a further reduction by an order of magnitude is shown to be possible.

  18. Thin-film solar cell fabricated on a flexible metallic substrate

    DOEpatents

    Tuttle, John R.; Noufi, Rommel; Hasoon, Falah S.

    2006-05-30

    A thin-film solar cell (10) is provided. The thin-film solar cell (10) comprises a flexible metallic substrate (12) having a first surface and a second surface. A back metal contact layer (16) is deposited on the first surface of the flexible metallic substrate (12). A semiconductor absorber layer (14) is deposited on the back metal contact. A photoactive film deposited on the semiconductor absorber layer (14) forms a heterojunction structure and a grid contact (24) deposited on the heterjunction structure. The flexible metal substrate (12) can be constructed of either aluminium or stainless steel. Furthermore, a method of constructing a solar cell is provided. The method comprises providing an aluminum substrate (12), depositing a semiconductor absorber layer (14) on the aluminum substrate (12), and insulating the aluminum substrate (12) from the semiconductor absorber layer (14) to inhibit reaction between the aluminum substrate (12) and the semiconductor absorber layer (14).

  19. Thin-Film Solar Cell Fabricated on a Flexible Metallic Substrate

    DOEpatents

    Tuttle, J. R.; Noufi, R.; Hasoon, F. S.

    2006-05-30

    A thin-film solar cell (10) is provided. The thin-film solar cell (10) comprises a flexible metallic substrate (12) having a first surface and a second surface. A back metal contact layer (16) is deposited on the first surface of the flexible metallic substrate (12). A semiconductor absorber layer (14) is deposited on the back metal contact. A photoactive film deposited on the semiconductor absorber layer (14) forms a heterojunction structure and a grid contact (24) deposited on the heterjunction structure. The flexible metal substrate (12) can be constructed of either aluminium or stainless steel. Furthermore, a method of constructing a solar cell is provided. The method comprises providing an aluminum substrate (12), depositing a semiconductor absorber layer (14) on the aluminum substrate (12), and insulating the aluminum substrate (12) from the semiconductor absorber layer (14) to inhibit reaction between the aluminum substrate (12) and the semiconductor absorber layer (14).

  20. Long term endurance test and contact degradation of CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ott, Thomas; Schönberger, Francillina; Walter, Thomas; Hariskos, Dimitrios; Kiowski, Oliver; Schäffler, Raymund

    2013-09-01

    CIGS is the most promising technology for thin-film solar cells with record efficiencies of 20.4 % on laboratory scale and 17.8 % aperture area efficiency on a 900 cm² module. Another important factor besides the cell efficiency is the reliability and long term stability of the manufactured modules, which can be assessed by accelerated ageing. In this contribution the accelerated ageing of CIGS mini modules has been investigated. Therefore, modules were dark annealed under dry heat conditions at different temperatures. During the endurance test a positive or negative bias was applied to the cells. In regular intervals the IV- and CV-characteristics were measured at room temperature. After an overall stress time of 3500 h the IV-characteristics were determined under different illumination conditions (intensity, spectral illumination). Our previous publications suggest a barrier at the back contact to explain the observed parameter drifts. This contribution is focused on the influence of different bias conditions during the endurance test on the generation of a back diode and on the change of the acceptor concentration. These parameter drifts have an impact on the open circuit voltage, fill factor and on the appearance of a cross over between dark and illuminated IV-characteristics. The interpretation of the observed parameter drifts was supported by SCAPS simulations based on the above mentioned back barrier model. As an outcome of the simulations signatures for the existence of a back barrier diode were established. IVmeasurements, temperature dependent Voc measurements and SunsVoc measurements are helpful means to detect such back diodes.

  1. Sulfidation of electrodeposited microcrystalline/nanocrystalline cuprous oxide thin films for solar energy applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jayathilaka, K. M. D. C.; Kapaklis, V.; Siripala, W.; Jayanetti, J. K. D. S.

    2012-12-01

    Grain size of polycrystalline semiconductor thin films in solar cells is optimized to enhance the efficiency of solar cells. This paper reports results on an investigation carried out on electrodeposited n-type cuprous oxide (Cu2O) thin films on Ti substrates with small crystallites and sulfidation of them to produce a thin-film solar cell. During electrodeposition of Cu2O films, pH of an aqueous acetate bath was optimized to obtain films of grain size of about 100 nm, that were then used as templates to grow thicker n-type nanocrystalline Cu2O films. XRD and SEM analysis revealed that the films were of single phase and the substrates were well covered by the films. A junction of Cu2O/CuxS was formed by partially sulfiding the Cu2O films using an aqueous sodium sulfide solution. It was observed that the photovoltaic properties of nano Cu2O/CuxS heterojunction structures are better than micro Cu2O/CuxS heterojunction solar cells. Resulting Ti/nano Cu2O/CuxS/Au solar cell structure produced an energy conversion efficiency of 0.54%, Voc = 610 mV and Jsc = 3.4 mA cm-2, under AM 1.5 illumination. This is a significant improvement compared to the use of microcrystalline thin film Cu2O in the solar cell structure where the efficiency of the cell was limited to 0.11%. This improvement is attributed mainly to the increased film surface area associated with nanocrystalline Cu2O films.

  2. Preparation of Device-Quality Cu(In, Ga)Se2 Thin Films Deposited by Coevaporation with Composition Monitor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohara, Naoki; Negami, Takayuki; Nishitani, Mikihiko; Wada, Takahiro

    1995-09-01

    The chemical composition of Cu(In, Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin film was monitored in real time during the physical vapor deposition. The temperature of growing CIGS film was found to depend on the composition ratio of Cu/(In+Ga) when the film was deposited under constant heating power. The composition monitoring system can be easily applied to a 3-stage deposition process of the CIGS films. The solar cells (active area: 1 cm2) fabricated by using the obtained CIGS absorber layer showed an efficiency of 15.4% under standard AM 1.5 illumination.

  3. Computational and experimental study of a multi-layer absorptivity enhanced thin film silicon solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hajimirza, Shima; Howell, John R.

    2014-08-01

    We report on the computational design, fabrication and validation of a multi-layer silicon based thin film solar cell. The cell structure consists of a thin absorber layer of amorphous silicon deposited on a back-reflector aluminum layer and coated on top with ITO transparent conductive oxide. The structure is mounted on a glass substrate. We first use constrained optimization techniques along with numerical solvers of the electromagnetic equations (i.e. FDTD) to tune the geometry of the design. The resulting structure suggests that photon absorptivity in the thin film silicon can be enhanced by as much as 100% over the uncoated layer. The proposed design is then fabricated using thin film deposition techniques, along with a control sample of bare silicon absorber for comparison. AFM imaging and spectrophotometry experiments are applied to image and record the surface roughness and measure the reflectivity spectrum of the sample. Using the measured reflectivity spectrum, we then use inverse optimization to estimate the realized thin film dimensions, deposition error and unwanted oxidation volume. At the end, we use a statistical Monte Carlo analysis as a second method of verification to demonstrate that the measured spectra are in accordance with the expected curves from simulation, and to estimate the effects of fabrication error.

  4. Schottky solar cells based on CsSnI3 thin-films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zhuo; Wang, Jian J.; Ren, Yuhang; Yu, Chonglong; Shum, Kai

    2012-08-01

    We describe a Schottky solar cell based on the perovskite semiconductor CsSnI3 thin-film. The cell consists of a simple layer structure of indium-tin-oxide/CsSnI3/Au/Ti on glass substrate. The measured power conversion efficiency is 0.9%, which is limited by the series and shunt resistance. The influence of light intensity on open-circuit voltage and short-circuit current supports the Schottky solar cell model. Additionally, the spectrally resolved short-circuit current was measured, confirming the unintentionally doped CsSnI3 is of p-type characteristics. The CsSnI3 thin-film was synthesized by alternately depositing layers of SnCl2 and CsI on glass substrate followed by a thermal annealing process.

  5. Solution-processed In2S3 buffer layer for chalcopyrite thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Lan; Lin, Xianzhong; Ennaoui, Ahmed; Wolf, Christian; Lux-Steiner, Martha Ch.; Klenk, Reiner

    2016-02-01

    We report a route to deposit In2S3 thin films from air-stable, low-cost molecular precursor inks for Cd-free buffer layers in chalcopyrite-based thin film solar cells. Different precursor compositions and processing conditions were studied to define a reproducible and robust process. By adjusting the ink properties, this method can be applied in different printing and coating techniques. Here we report on two techniques, namely spin-coating and inkjet printing. Active area efficiencies of 12.8% and 12.2% have been achieved for In2S3-buffered solar cells respectively, matching the performance of CdS-buffered cells prepared with the same batch of absorbers.

  6. Operation of a Thin-Film Inflatable Concentrator System Demonstrated in a Solar Thermal Vacuum Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wong, Wayne A.

    2002-01-01

    Thin-film inflatable solar concentrators offer significant advantages in comparison to stateof- the-art rigid panel concentrators, including low weight, low stowage volume, and simple gas deployment. From June 10 to 22, 2001, the ElectroMagnetic Radiation Control Experiment (EMRCE) Team used simulated solar energy to demonstrate the operation of an inflatable concentrator system at NASA Glenn Research Center's Tank 6 thermal vacuum facility. The joint Government/industry test team was composed of engineers and technicians from Glenn, the Air Force Research Laboratory, SRS Technologies, and ATK Thiokol Propulsion. The research hardware consisted of the following: 1) A thin-film inflatable concentrator; 2) The hexapod pointing and focus control system; 3) Two rigidized support struts using two candidate technologies - ultraviolet-rigidized glass and radiation-cured isographite.

  7. BiSI Micro-Rod Thin Films: Efficient Solar Absorber Electrodes?

    PubMed

    Hahn, Nathan T; Self, Jeffrey L; Mullins, C Buddie

    2012-06-01

    The development of improved solar energy conversion materials is critical to the growth of a sustainable energy infrastructure in the coming years. We report the deposition of polycrystalline BiSI thin films exhibiting promising photoelectrochemical properties on both metal foils and fluorine-doped tin-oxide-coated glass slides using a single-source chemical spray pyrolysis technique. Their strong light absorption in the visible range and well-crystallized layered structure give rise to their excellent photoelectrochemical performance through improved electron-hole generation and separation. The structure and surface composition of the films are dependent on deposition temperature, resulting in dramatic differences in performance over the temperature range studied. These results reveal the potential of n-BiSI as an alternative thin film solar energy conversion material and may stimulate further investigation into V-VI-VII compounds for these applications. PMID:26285640

  8. Modeling and analysis of CuGaS2 thin-film solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Pravesh; Gautam, Ruchita; Verma, Ajay Singh; Kumari, Sarita

    2016-05-01

    The authors have performed, the modeling of thin film CuGaS2 based solar cell with ZnTe buffer layer. The efficiency of the cell, short circuit current density and fill factor are calculated. In addition the effect of thickness of absorption layer over performance parameters of the cell is studied and it is found that maximum efficiency of the cell is achieved for 2000 nm thick absorption layer.

  9. Energy band alignment in chalcogenide thin film solar cells from photoelectron spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Klein, Andreas

    2015-04-10

    Energy band alignment plays an important role in thin film solar cells. This article presents an overview of the energy band alignment in chalcogenide thin film solar cells with a particular focus on the commercially available material systems CdTe and Cu(In,Ga)Se2. Experimental results from two decades of photoelectron spectroscopy experiments are compared with density functional theory calculations taken from literature. It is found that the experimentally determined energy band alignment is in good agreement with theoretical predictions for many interfaces. These alignments, in particular the theoretically predicted alignments, can therefore be considered as the intrinsic or natural alignments for a given material combination. The good agreement between experiment and theory enables a detailed discussion of the interfacial composition of Cu(In,Ga)Se2/CdS interfaces in terms of the contribution of ordered vacancy compounds to the alignment of the energy bands. It is furthermore shown that the most important interfaces in chalcogenide thin film solar cells, those between Cu(In,Ga)Se2 and CdS and between CdS and CdTe are quite insensitive to the processing of the layers. There are plenty of examples where a significant deviation between experimentally-determined band alignment and theoretical predictions are evident. In such cases a variation of band alignment of sometimes more than 1 eV depending on interface preparation can be obtained. This variation can lead to a significant deterioration of device properties. It is suggested that these modifications are related to the presence of high defect concentrations in the materials forming the contact. The particular defect chemistry of chalcogenide semiconductors, which is related to the ionicity of the chemical bond in these materials and which can be beneficial for material and device properties, can therefore cause significant device limitations, as e.g. in the case of the CuInS2 thin film solar cells or for new

  10. Porous copper zinc tin sulfide thin film as photocathode for double junction photoelectrochemical solar cells.

    PubMed

    Dai, Pengcheng; Zhang, Guan; Chen, Yuncheng; Jiang, Hechun; Feng, Zhenyu; Lin, Zhaojun; Zhan, Jinhua

    2012-03-21

    Porous copper zinc tin sulfide (CZTS) thin film was prepared via a solvothermal approach. Compared with conventional dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs), double junction photoelectrochemical cells using dye-sensitized n-type TiO(2) (DS-TiO(2)) as the photoanode and porous p-type CZTS film as the photocathode shows an increased short circuit current, external quantum efficiency and power conversion efficiency. PMID:22322239

  11. Synthesis of Cu2ZnSnS4 thin films by a precursor solution paste for thin film solar cell applications.

    PubMed

    Cho, Jin Woo; Ismail, Agus; Park, Se Jin; Kim, Woong; Yoon, Sungho; Min, Byoung Koun

    2013-05-22

    Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) is a very promising semiconductor material when used for the absorber layer of thin film solar cells because it consists of only abundant and inexpensive elements. In addition, a low-cost solution process is applicable to the preparation of CZTS absorber films, which reduces the cost when this film is used for the production of thin film solar cells. To fabricate solution-processed CZTS thin film using an easily scalable and relatively safe method, we suggest a precursor solution paste coating method with a two-step heating process (oxidation and sulfurization). The synthesized CZTS film was observed to be composed of grains of a size of ~300 nm, showing an overall densely packed morphology with some pores and voids. A solar cell device with this film as an absorber layer showed the highest efficiency of 3.02% with an open circuit voltage of 556 mV, a short current density of 13.5 mA/cm(2), and a fill factor of 40.3%. We also noted the existence of Cd moieties and an inhomogeneous Zn distribution in the CZTS film, which may have been triggered by the presence of pores and voids in the CZTS film. PMID:23611655

  12. PEDOT:PSS emitters on multicrystalline silicon thin-film absorbers for hybrid solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Junghanns, Marcus; Plentz, Jonathan; Andrä, Gudrun; Gawlik, Annett; Höger, Ingmar; Falk, Fritz

    2015-02-01

    We fabricated an efficient hybrid solar cell by spin coating poly(3,4-ethylene-dioxythiophene):polystyrenesulfonate (PEDOT:PSS) on planar multicrystalline Si (mc-Si) thin films. The only 5 μm thin Si absorber layers were prepared by diode laser crystallization of amorphous Si deposited by electron beam evaporation on glass. On these absorber layers, we studied the effect of SiOx and Al2O3 terminated Si surfaces. The short circuit density and power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the mc-Si/Al2O3/PEDOT:PSS solar cell increase from 20.6 to 25.4 mA/cm2 and from 7.3% to 10.3%, respectively, as compared to the mc-Si/SiOx/PEDOT:PSS cell. Al2O3 lowers the interface recombination and improves the adhesion of the polymer film on the hydrophobic mc-Si thin film. Open circuit voltages up to 604 mV were reached. This study demonstrates the highest PCE so far of a hybrid solar cell with a planar thin film Si absorber.

  13. PEDOT:PSS emitters on multicrystalline silicon thin-film absorbers for hybrid solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Junghanns, Marcus; Plentz, Jonathan Andrä, Gudrun; Gawlik, Annett; Höger, Ingmar; Falk, Fritz

    2015-02-23

    We fabricated an efficient hybrid solar cell by spin coating poly(3,4-ethylene-dioxythiophene):polystyrenesulfonate (PEDOT:PSS) on planar multicrystalline Si (mc-Si) thin films. The only 5 μm thin Si absorber layers were prepared by diode laser crystallization of amorphous Si deposited by electron beam evaporation on glass. On these absorber layers, we studied the effect of SiO{sub x} and Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} terminated Si surfaces. The short circuit density and power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the mc-Si/Al{sub 2}O{sub 3}/PEDOT:PSS solar cell increase from 20.6 to 25.4 mA/cm{sup 2} and from 7.3% to 10.3%, respectively, as compared to the mc-Si/SiO{sub x}/PEDOT:PSS cell. Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} lowers the interface recombination and improves the adhesion of the polymer film on the hydrophobic mc-Si thin film. Open circuit voltages up to 604 mV were reached. This study demonstrates the highest PCE so far of a hybrid solar cell with a planar thin film Si absorber.

  14. Potassium-induced surface modification of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin films for high-efficiency solar cells.

    PubMed

    Chirilă, Adrian; Reinhard, Patrick; Pianezzi, Fabian; Bloesch, Patrick; Uhl, Alexander R; Fella, Carolin; Kranz, Lukas; Keller, Debora; Gretener, Christina; Hagendorfer, Harald; Jaeger, Dominik; Erni, Rolf; Nishiwaki, Shiro; Buecheler, Stephan; Tiwari, Ayodhya N

    2013-12-01

    Thin-film photovoltaic devices based on chalcopyrite Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) absorber layers show excellent light-to-power conversion efficiencies exceeding 20%. This high performance level requires a small amount of alkaline metals incorporated into the CIGS layer, naturally provided by soda lime glass substrates used for processing of champion devices. The use of flexible substrates requires distinct incorporation of the alkaline metals, and so far mainly Na was believed to be the most favourable element, whereas other alkaline metals have resulted in significantly inferior device performance. Here we present a new sequential post-deposition treatment of the CIGS layer with sodium and potassium fluoride that enables fabrication of flexible photovoltaic devices with a remarkable conversion efficiency due to modified interface properties and mitigation of optical losses in the CdS buffer layer. The described treatment leads to a significant depletion of Cu and Ga concentrations in the CIGS near-surface region and enables a significant thickness reduction of the CdS buffer layer without the commonly observed losses in photovoltaic parameters. Ion exchange processes, well known in other research areas, are proposed as underlying mechanisms responsible for the changes in chemical composition of the deposited CIGS layer and interface properties of the heterojunction. PMID:24185758

  15. Photoelectrochemistry of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin-films fabricated by sequential pulsed electrodeposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandati, Sreekanth; Sarada, Bulusu V.; Dey, Suhash R.; Joshi, Shrikant V.

    2015-01-01

    A novel approach for the fabrication of compact stoichiometric copper indium gallium selenium (CIGS) thin-films is reported. It uses a solution of CuCl2, GaCl3 and H2SeO3, pH adjusted with HCl with LiCl as additive employing a high purity graphite plate anode and Mo sputtered glass cathode during a simplified sequential pulsed current electrodeposition which avoids impurities from the use of a reference electrode during deposition and a separate selenization step. A Cu-Ga-Se film is optimally deposited by optimizing the deposition voltage, followed by deposition of In from InCl3 solution, and then annealing of the Cu-Ga-Se/In thin-film in an Argon atmosphere at 550 °C. A single phase chalcopyrite CIGS forms with a compact morphology and well-controlled composition of individual elements. The flat-band potential and carrier density of CIGS thin-films are -0.15 V and 2.6 × 1016 cm-3, respectively, as determined by Mott-Schottky studies. The photoelectrochemical performance of CIGS films shows a photocurrent density of -0.8 mA cm-2 at -0.4 V vs. SCE, an eight fold increment compared to our previous reported value. This simplified preparation using pulse plating gives superior quality CIGS films which are promising for application in thin-film solar cells and photoelectrochemical cells.

  16. Development of a Thin Film Solar Cell Interconnect for the Powersphere Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simburger, Edward J.; Matsumoto, James H.; Giants, Thomas W.; Garcia, Alexander, III; Liu, Simon; Rawal, Suraj P.; Perry, Alan R.; Marshall, Craig H.; Lin, John K.; Scarborough, Stephen

    2003-01-01

    Progressive development of microsatellite technologies has resulted in increased demand for lightweight electrical power subsystems including solar arrays. The use of thin film photovoltaics has been recognized as a key solution to meet the power needs. The lightweight cells can generate sufficient power and still meet critical mass requirements. Commercially available solar cells produced on lightweight substrates are being studied as an option to fulfill the power needs. The commercially available solar cells are relatively inexpensive and have a high payoff potential. Commercially available thin film solar cells are primarily being produced for terrestrial applications. The need to convert the solar cell from a terrestrial to a space compatible application is the primary challenge. Solar cell contacts, grids and interconnects need to be designed to be atomic oxygen resistant and withstand rapid thermal cycling environments. A mechanically robust solar cell interconnect is also required in order to withstand handling during fabrication and survive during launch. The need to produce the solar cell interconnects has been identified as a primary goal of the Powersphere program and is the topic of this paper. Details of the trade study leading to the final design involving the solar cell wrap around contact, flex blanket, welding process, and frame will be presented at the conference.

  17. Thin film solar cells grown by organic vapor phase deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Fan

    Organic solar cells have the potential to provide low-cost photovoltaic devices as a clean and renewable energy resource. In this thesis, we focus on understanding the energy conversion process in organic solar cells, and improving the power conversion efficiencies via controlled growth of organic nanostructures. First, we explain the unique optical and electrical properties of organic materials used for photovoltaics, and the excitonic energy conversion process in donor-acceptor heterojunction solar cells that place several limiting factors of their power conversion efficiency. Then, strategies for improving exciton diffusion and carrier collection are analyzed using dynamical Monte Carlo models for several nanostructure morphologies. Organic vapor phase deposition is used for controlling materials crystallization and film morphology. We improve the exciton diffusion efficiency while maintaining good carrier conduction in a bulk heterojunction solar cell. Further efficiency improvement is obtained in a novel nanocrystalline network structure with a thick absorbing layer, leading to the demonstration of an organic solar cell with 4.6% efficiency. In addition, solar cells using simultaneously active heterojunctions with broad spectral response are presented. We also analyze the efficiency limits of single and multiple junction organic solar cells, and discuss the challenges facing their practical implementations.

  18. Effect of deposition pressure on the properties of magnetron-sputter-deposited molybdenum back contacts for CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Weimin; Yan, Xia; Aberle, Armin G.; Venkataraj, Selvaraj

    2015-08-01

    Molybdenum (Mo) thin films were deposited onto soda-lime glass substrates by DC magnetron sputtering of a Mo target at various chamber pressures ranging from 1.5 × 10-3 to 7.5 × 10-3 mbar. The film properties were analysed with regards to their application as back electrode in copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) solar cells. It is observed that the resulting film morphology and microstructure were strongly affected by deposition pressure. Mo films deposited at a low pressure possess a high density and a low sheet resistance. These films also have a compact microstructure and a compressive strain, which lead to poor adhesion. The adhesion can be improved by increasing the chamber pressure, which has negative effects on the sheet resistance, optical reflection and porosity of the films. On the basis of these results, a method has been established to fabricate low-resistivity Mo films on soda-lime glass with very good adhesion for CIGS solar cell applications.

  19. Thin film solar cell inflatable ultraviolet rigidizable deployment hinge

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simburger, Edward J. (Inventor); Matsumoto, James H. (Inventor); Giants, Thomas W. (Inventor); Garcia, III, Alec (Inventor); Perry, Alan R. (Inventor); Rawal, Suraj (Inventor); Marshall, Craig H. (Inventor); Lin, John K. H. (Inventor); Day, Jonathan Robert (Inventor); Kerslake, Thomas W. (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    A flexible inflatable hinge includes curable resin for rigidly positioning panels of solar cells about the hinge in which wrap around contacts and flex circuits are disposed for routing power from the solar cells to the power bus further used for grounding the hinge. An indium tin oxide and magnesium fluoride coating is used to prevent static discharge while being transparent to ultraviolet light that cures the embedded resin after deployment for rigidizing the inflatable hinge.

  20. Flexible, Thin-Film Solar-Cell Blanket

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stella, Paul M.

    1992-01-01

    Much of available area used to absorb solar energy. Proposed blanket of solar photovoltaic cells mounted on exterior surface of equipment it powers. Readily conforms to irregular shapes. Does not require separate supporting structure and saves space. Not added on to equipment but constitutes an integral part of it. Interconnection wiring deposited on sheet photolithographically or by other suitable masking/fabrication methods. Complete blanket, including cells and interconnections, fabricated as rigid unit directly on, and supported by, nonplanar surface to be covered.

  1. Amorphous silicon/polycrystalline thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Ullal, H.S.

    1991-03-13

    An improved photovoltaic solar cell is described including a p-type amorphous silicon layer, intrinsic amorphous silicon, and an n-type polycrystalline semiconductor such as cadmium sulfide, cadmium zinc sulfide, zinc selenide, gallium phosphide, and gallium nitride. The polycrystalline semiconductor has an energy bandgap greater than that of the amorphous silicon. The solar cell can be provided as a single-junction device or a multijunction device.

  2. Full potential of radial junction Si thin film solar cells with advanced junction materials and design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qian, Shengyi; Misra, Soumyadeep; Lu, Jiawen; Yu, Zhongwei; Yu, Linwei; Xu, Jun; Wang, Junzhuan; Xu, Ling; Shi, Yi; Chen, Kunji; Roca i Cabarrocas, Pere

    2015-07-01

    Combining advanced materials and junction design in nanowire-based thin film solar cells requires a different thinking of the optimization strategy, which is critical to fulfill the potential of nano-structured photovoltaics. Based on a comprehensive knowledge of the junction materials involved in the multilayer stack, we demonstrate here, in both experimental and theoretical manners, the potential of hydrogenated amorphous Si (a-Si:H) thin film solar cells in a radial junction (RJ) configuration. Resting upon a solid experimental basis, we also assess a more advanced tandem RJ structure with radially stacking a-Si:H/nanocrystalline Si (nc-Si:H) PIN junctions, and show that a balanced photo-current generation with a short circuit current density of Jsc = 14.2 mA/cm2 can be achieved in a tandem RJ cell, while reducing the expensive nc-Si:H absorber thickness from 1-3 μ m (in planar tandem cells) to only 120 nm. These results provide a clearly charted route towards a high performance Si thin film photovoltaics.

  3. Cross-sectional electrostatic force microscopy of thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ballif, C.; Moutinho, H. R.; Al-Jassim, M. M.

    2001-01-01

    In a recent work, we showed that atomic force microscopy (AFM) is a powerful technique to image cross sections of polycrystalline thin films. In this work, we apply a modification of AFM, namely, electrostatic force microscopy (EFM), to investigate the electronic properties of cleaved II-VI and multijunction thin-film solar cells. We cleave the devices in such a way that they are still working with their nominal photovoltaic efficiencies and can be polarized for the measurements. This allows us to differentiate between surface effects (work function and surface band bending) and bulk device properties. In the case of polycrystalline CdTe/CdS/SnO2/glass solar cells, we find a drop of the EFM signal in the area of the CdTe/CdS interface (±50 nm). This drop varies in amplitude and sign according to the applied external bias and is compatible with an n-CdS/p-CdTe heterojunction model, thereby invalidating the possibility of a deeply buried n-p CdTe homojunction. In the case of a triple-junction GaInP/GaAs/Ge device, we observe a variation of the EFM signal linked to both the material work-function differences and to the voltage bias applied to the cell. We attempt a qualitative explanation of the results and discuss the implications and difficulties of the EFM technique for the study of such thin-film devices.

  4. Accurate modeling of light trapping in thin film silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Abouelsaood, A.A.; Ghannam, M.Y.; Poortmans, J.; Mertens, R.P.

    1997-12-31

    An attempt is made to assess the accuracy of the simplifying assumption of total retransmission of light inside the escape or loss cone which is made in many models of optical confinement in thin-film silicon solar cells. A closed form expression is derived for the absorption enhancement factor as a function of the refractive index in the low-absorption limit for a thin-film cell with a flat front surface and a lambertian back reflector. Numerical calculations are carried out to investigate similar systems with antireflection coatings, and the investigation of cells with a textured front surface is achieved using a modified version of the existing ray-tracing computer simulation program TEXTURE.

  5. Chemical synthesis of p-type nanocrystalline copper selenide thin films for heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ambade, Swapnil B.; Mane, R. S.; Kale, S. S.; Sonawane, S. H.; Shaikh, Arif V.; Han, Sung-Hwan

    2006-12-01

    Nanocrystalline thin films of copper selenide have been grown on glass and tin doped-indium oxide substrates using chemical method. At ambient temperature, golden films have been synthesized and annealed at 200 °C for 1 h and were examined for their structural, surface morphological and optical properties by means of X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy and UV-vis spectrophotometry techniques, respectively. Cu 2- xSe phase was confirmed by XRD pattern and spherical grains of 30 ± 4 - 40 ± 4 nm in size aggregated over about 130 ± 10 nm islands were seen by SEM images. Effect of annealing on crystallinity improvement, band edge shift and photoelectrochemical performance (under 80 mW/cm 2 light intensity and in lithium iodide electrolyte) has been studied and reported. Observed p-type electrical conductivity in copper selenide thin films make it a suitable candidate for heterojunction solar cells.

  6. Identification of critical stacking faults in thin-film CdTe solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoo, Su-Hyun; Butler, Keith T.; Soon, Aloysius; Abbas, Ali; Walls, John M.; Walsh, Aron

    2014-08-01

    Cadmium telluride (CdTe) is a p-type semiconductor used in thin-film solar cells. To achieve high light-to-electricity conversion, annealing in the presence of CdCl2 is essential, but the underlying mechanism is still under debate. Recent evidence suggests that a reduction in the high density of stacking faults in the CdTe grains is a key process that occurs during the chemical treatment. A range of stacking faults, including intrinsic, extrinsic, and twin boundary, are computationally investigated to identify the extended defects that limit performance. The low-energy faults are found to be electrically benign, while a number of higher energy faults, consistent with atomic-resolution micrographs, are predicted to be hole traps with fluctuations in the local electrostatic potential. It is expected that stacking faults will also be important for other thin-film photovoltaic technologies.

  7. Identification of critical stacking faults in thin-film CdTe solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Yoo, Su-Hyun; Walsh, Aron; Butler, Keith T.; Soon, Aloysius; Abbas, Ali; Walls, John M.

    2014-08-11

    Cadmium telluride (CdTe) is a p-type semiconductor used in thin-film solar cells. To achieve high light-to-electricity conversion, annealing in the presence of CdCl{sub 2} is essential, but the underlying mechanism is still under debate. Recent evidence suggests that a reduction in the high density of stacking faults in the CdTe grains is a key process that occurs during the chemical treatment. A range of stacking faults, including intrinsic, extrinsic, and twin boundary, are computationally investigated to identify the extended defects that limit performance. The low-energy faults are found to be electrically benign, while a number of higher energy faults, consistent with atomic-resolution micrographs, are predicted to be hole traps with fluctuations in the local electrostatic potential. It is expected that stacking faults will also be important for other thin-film photovoltaic technologies.

  8. Thin film solar cell configuration and fabrication method

    DOEpatents

    Menezes, Shalini

    2009-07-14

    A new photovoltaic device configuration based on an n-copper indium selenide absorber and a p-type window is disclosed. A fabrication method to produce this device on flexible or rigid substrates is described that reduces the number of cell components, avoids hazardous materials, simplifies the process steps and hence the costs for high volume solar cell manufacturing.

  9. Design and long-term monitoring of DSC/CIGS tandem solar module

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vildanova, M. F.; Nikolskaia, A. B.; Kozlov, S. S.; Shevaleevskiy, O. I.

    2015-11-01

    This paper describes the design and development of tandem dye-sensitized/Cu(In, Ga)Se (DSC/CIGS) PV modules. The tandem PV module comprised of the top DSC module and a bottom commercial 0,8 m2 CIGS module. The top DSC module was made of 10 DSC mini-modules with the field size of 20 × 20 cm2 each. Tandem DSC/CIGS PV modules were used for providing the long-term monitoring of energy yield and electrical parameters in comparison with standalone CIGS modules under outdoor conditions. The outdoor test facility, containing solar modules of both types and a measurement unit, was located on the roof of the Institute of Biochemical Physics in Moscow. The data obtained during monitoring within the 2014 year period has shown the advantages of the designed tandem DSC/CIGS PV-modules over the conventional CIGS modules, especially for cloudy weather and low-intensity irradiation conditions.

  10. Ultra-Thin-Film GaAs Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, K. L.; Shin, B. K.; Yeh, Y. C. M.; Stirn, R. J.

    1982-01-01

    Process based on organo-metallic chemical vapor deposition (OM/CVD) of trimethyl gallium with arsine forms economical ultrathin GaAs epitaxial films. Process has higher potential for low manufacturing cost and large-scale production compared with more-conventional halide CVD and liquid-phase epitaxy processes. By reducing thickness of GaAs and substituting low-cost substrate for single-crystal GaAs wafer, process would make GaAs solar cells commercially more attractive.

  11. Radiation resistance of thin-film solar cells for space photovoltaic power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woodyard, James R.; Landis, Geoffrey A.

    1991-01-01

    Copper indium diselenide, cadmium telluride, and amorphous silicon alloy solar cells have achieved noteworthy performance and are currently being studied for space power applications. Cadmium sulfide cells had been the subject of much effort but are no longer considered for space applications. A review is presented of what is known about the radiation degradation of thin film solar cells in space. Experimental cadmium telluride and amorphous silicon alloy cells are reviewed. Damage mechanisms and radiation induced defect generation and passivation in the amorphous silicon alloy cell are discussed in detail due to the greater amount of experimental data available.

  12. Role of 2-D periodic symmetrical nanostructures in improving efficiency of thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Wei; Jiang, Liyong; Li, Xiangyin

    2016-01-01

    We systematically investigated several different nanostructures in crystalline silicon (c-Si) thin film solar cells and then proposed a brand-new structure with two dimensional (2-D) periodic dielectric cylinders on the top and annular metal columns on bottom surface to enhance the optical harvesting. The periodic symmetrical nanostructures affect the solar cell efficiency due to the grating diffraction effect of dielectric columns and surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) effect induced by metal nanostructures at the dielectric-metal interface. About 52.1% more optical absorption and 33.3% more power conversion efficiency are obtained, and the maximum short current reaches to 33.24 mA/cm2.

  13. Performance evaluation of thin film silicon solar cell based on dual diffraction grating.

    PubMed

    Dubey, Raghvendra Sarvjeet; Saravanan, Sigamani; Kalainathan, Sivaperuman

    2014-12-01

    Light-trapping structures are more demanding for optimal light absorption in thin film silicon solar cells. Accordingly, new design engineering of solar cells has been emphasized and found to be effective to achieve improved performance. This paper deals with a design of thin film silicon solar cells and explores the influence of bottom grating and combination of top and bottom (dual) grating as a part of back reflector with a distributed Bragg reflector (DBR). Use of metal layer as a part of back reflector has found to be promising for minimum requirement of DBR pairs. The effect of grating and anti-reflection coating thicknesses are also investigated for absorption enhancement. With optimization, high performance has been achieved from dual grating-based solar cell with a relative enhancement in short-circuit current approximately 68% while it was approximately 55% in case of bottom grating-based solar cell. Our designing efforts show enhanced absorption of light in UV and infrared part of solar spectrum. PMID:26088994

  14. Low-Cost, Light Weight, Thin Film Solar Concentrator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ganapathi, G.; Palisoc, A.; Nesmith, B.; Greschik, G.; Gidanian, K.; Kindler, A.

    2013-01-01

    This research addresses a cost barrier towards achieving a solar thermal collector system with an installed cost of $75/sq m and meet the Department of Energy's (DOE's) performance targets for optical errors, operations during windy conditions and lifetime. Current concentrators can cost as much as 40-50% of the total installed costs for a CSP plant. In order to reduce the costs from current $200-$250/sq m, it is important to focus on the overall system. The reflector surface is a key cost driver, and our film-based polymer reflector will help significantly in achieving DOE's cost target of $75/sq m. The ease of manufacturability, installation and replacement make this technology a compelling one to develop. This technology can be easily modified for a variety of CSP options including heliostats, parabolic dishes and parabolic troughs.

  15. High efficiency thin-film GaAs solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zwerdling, S.; Wang, K. L.; Yeh, Y. C. M.

    1981-01-01

    The paper demonstrates the feasibility of producing high-efficiency GaAs solar cells with high power-to-weight ratios by organic metallic chemical vapor deposition (OM-CVD) growth of thin epi-layers on suitable substrates. An AM1 conversion efficiency of 18% (14% AM0), or 17% (13% AM0) with a 5% grid coverage is achieved for a single-crystal GaAs n(+)/p cell grown by OM-CVD on a Ge wafer. Thin GaAs epi-layers OM-CVD grown can be fabricated with good crystallographic quality using a Si-substrate on which a thin Ge epi-interlayer is first deposited by CVD from GeH4 and processed for improved surface morphology

  16. Amorphous-silicon thin-film heterojunction solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Cretella, M. C.; Gregory, J. A.; Sandstrom, D. B.; Paul, W.

    1981-01-01

    The investigation of amorphous silicon materials at MTSEC has had two major thrusts: (1) to improve the amorphous material, i.e., obtain a low state density in the gap, improve the carrier collection depth and diminish non-radiative recombinations; and (2) to attempt to understand and improve on the limitations of the junction devices while evaluating the amorphous silicon materials. In the first of these efforts, the investigation has continued to examine the modifications to the a-Si(H) network by alloying silicon with other group IVA elements, either in binary or ternary compositions, and/or by replacing the hydrogenation for defect compensation with a combination of hydrogenation and alkylation or hydrogenation and halogenation. The doped junction layers are being examined in an attempt to determine the limiting characteristics of the junctions in solar cell devices of these amorphous materials. Amorphous alloys of Si-Ge, Si-C, Si-Sn were prepared as well as ternary compositions of Si-Ge-C and Si-Sn-C. In addition, Na vapor was added to the gas feed to deposit a-Si(Na, H) films, and to prepare Si-Sn, fluoride was added along with the tin by vapor additions of SnF/sub 4/ to the gas feed. The optical properties of these materials were measured, and structural and compositional information was obtained from the IR vibrational spectra using the scanning electron microscope and from analyses using scanning Auger microscopy. Electrical measurements have included the dark conductivity and the photo conductivity under room fluorescent light and at AM1 conditions. With alloys that displayed promising photoconductive properties n-i-p devices were prepared to assess the solar cell properties. Details are presented. (WHK)

  17. Sinusoidal nanotextures for light management in silicon thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Köppel, G; Rech, B; Becker, C

    2016-04-28

    Recent progresses in liquid phase crystallization enabled the fabrication of thin wafer quality crystalline silicon layers on low-cost glass substrates enabling conversion efficiencies up to 12.1%. Because of its indirect band gap, a thin silicon absorber layer demands for efficient measures for light management. However, the combination of high quality crystalline silicon and light trapping structures is still a critical issue. Here, we implement hexagonal 750 nm pitched sinusoidal and pillar shaped nanostructures at the sun-facing glass-silicon interface into 10 μm thin liquid phase crystallized silicon thin-film solar cell devices on glass. Both structures are experimentally studied regarding their optical and optoelectronic properties. Reflection losses are reduced over the entire wavelength range outperforming state of the art anti-reflective planar layer systems. In case of the smooth sinusoidal nanostructures these optical achievements are accompanied by an excellent electronic material quality of the silicon absorber layer enabling open circuit voltages above 600 mV and solar cell device performances comparable to the planar reference device. For wavelengths smaller than 400 nm and higher than 700 nm optical achievements are translated into an enhanced quantum efficiency of the solar cell devices. Therefore, sinusoidal nanotextures are a well-balanced compromise between optical enhancement and maintained high electronic silicon material quality which opens a promising route for future optimizations in solar cell designs for silicon thin-film solar cells on glass. PMID:27065440

  18. Sinusoidal nanotextures for light management in silicon thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Köppel, G.; Rech, B.; Becker, C.

    2016-04-01

    Recent progresses in liquid phase crystallization enabled the fabrication of thin wafer quality crystalline silicon layers on low-cost glass substrates enabling conversion efficiencies up to 12.1%. Because of its indirect band gap, a thin silicon absorber layer demands for efficient measures for light management. However, the combination of high quality crystalline silicon and light trapping structures is still a critical issue. Here, we implement hexagonal 750 nm pitched sinusoidal and pillar shaped nanostructures at the sun-facing glass-silicon interface into 10 μm thin liquid phase crystallized silicon thin-film solar cell devices on glass. Both structures are experimentally studied regarding their optical and optoelectronic properties. Reflection losses are reduced over the entire wavelength range outperforming state of the art anti-reflective planar layer systems. In case of the smooth sinusoidal nanostructures these optical achievements are accompanied by an excellent electronic material quality of the silicon absorber layer enabling open circuit voltages above 600 mV and solar cell device performances comparable to the planar reference device. For wavelengths smaller than 400 nm and higher than 700 nm optical achievements are translated into an enhanced quantum efficiency of the solar cell devices. Therefore, sinusoidal nanotextures are a well-balanced compromise between optical enhancement and maintained high electronic silicon material quality which opens a promising route for future optimizations in solar cell designs for silicon thin-film solar cells on glass.

  19. Geometric photovoltaics applied to amorphous silicon thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirkpatrick, Timothy

    Geometrically generalized analytical expressions for device transport are derived from first principles for a photovoltaic junction. Subsequently, conventional planar and unconventional coaxial and hemispherical photovoltaic architectures are applied to detail the device physics of the junction based on their respective geometry. For the conventional planar cell, the one-dimensional transport equations governing carrier dynamics are recovered. For the unconventional coaxial and hemispherical junction designs, new multi-dimensional transport equations are revealed. Physical effects such as carrier generation and recombination are compared for each cell architecture, providing insight as to how non-planar junctions may potentially enable greater energy conversion efficiencies. Numerical simulations are performed for arrays of vertically aligned, nanostructured coaxial and hemispherical amorphous silicon solar cells and results are compared to those from simulations performed for the standard planar junction. Results indicate that fundamental physical changes in the spatial dependence of the energy band profile across the intrinsic region of an amorphous silicon p-i-n junction manifest as an increase in recombination current for non-planar photovoltaic architectures. Despite an increase in recombination current, however, the coaxial architecture still appears to be able to surpass the efficiency predicted for the planar geometry, due to the geometry of the junction leading to a decoupling of optics and electronics.

  20. n +-Microcrystalline-Silicon Tunnel Layer in Tandem Si-Based Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ching-Ting; Lee, Hsin-Ying; Chen, Kuan-Hao

    2016-06-01

    In this study, the p-SiC/i-Si/n-Si cell and the p-SiC/i-SiGe/n-Si cell deposited using plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition were cascaded for forming the tandem Si-based thin film solar cells to absorb the wide solar spectrum. To further improve the performances of the tandem Si-based thin film solar cells, a 5-nm-thick n +-microcrystalline-Si (n +-μc-Si) tunnel layer deposited using the laser-assisted plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition was inserted between the p-SiC/i-Si/n-Si cell and the p-SiC/i-SiGe/n-Si cell. Since both the plasma and the CO2 laser were simultaneously utilized to efficiently decompose the reactant and doping gases, the carrier concentration and the carrier mobility of the n +-μc-Si tunnel layer were significantly improved. The ohmic contact formed between the p-SiC layer and the n +-μc-Si tunnel layer with low resistance was beneficial to the generated current transportation and the carrier recombination rate. Therefore, the conversion efficiency of the tandem solar cells was promoted from 8.57% and 8.82% to 9.91% compared to that without tunnel layer and with 5-nm-thick n +-amorphous-Si tunnel layer.

  1. A facile fabrication of chemically converted graphene oxide thin films and their uses as absorber materials for solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adelifard, Mehdi; Darudi, Hosein

    2016-07-01

    There is a great interest in the use of graphene sheets in thin film solar cells with low-cost and good-optoelectronic properties. Here, the production of absorbent conductive reduced graphene oxide (RGO) thin films was investigated. RGO thin films were prepared from spray-coated graphene oxide (GO) layers at various substrate temperature followed by a simple hydrazine-reducing method. The structural, morphological, optical, and electrical characterizations of graphene oxide (GO) and RGO thin films were investigated. X-ray diffraction analysis showed a phase shift from GO to RGO due to hydrazine treatment, in agreement with the FTIR spectra of the layers. FESEM images clearly exhibited continuous films resulting from the overlap of graphene nanosheets. The produced low-cost thin films had high absorption coefficient up to 1.0 × 105 cm-1, electrical resistance as low as 0.9 kΩ/sq, and effective optical band gap of about 1.50 eV, close to the optimum value for solar conversion. The conductive absorbent properties of the reduced graphene oxide thin films would be useful to develop photovoltaic cells.

  2. Engineering polymer-fullerene thin films and solar cells with external fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cabral, Joao

    2014-03-01

    Trace amounts of nanoparticles, including fullerenes, can impart stability to thin polymer films against dewetting by the combined effects of pinning the contact lines of dewetting holes and by effectively altering the polymer-substrate interaction. Polymer nanocomposite (meta)stable thin films can yield well-defined morphologies from uniform to spinodal-like, via spontaneous polymer-nanoparticle phase separation and crystallization. Confinement breaks the structural isotropy and generally causes (partial) segregation of components orthogonally to the film surface. Surface energy patterning can thus modulate composition and morphology, both in plane and normal to the surface. Further, UV-visible, and even background, light exposure, in both solutions and melts, is shown to tune the solution stucture and morphology of dewetting and phase separating polymer-fullerene thin films. Neutron reflectivity allows us to locate the various constituents within the film. We find a coupling of fullerene photo-sensitivity and both self-assembly processes which results in controlled pattern formation, and we illustrate the potential with a model polymer-fullerene circuit pattern. We then translate this approach into the directed assembly of energy harvesting bulk heterojunctions thin films. Indeed, a key challenge to the commercialization of organic solar cells remains the achievement of morphological stability, particularly under thermal stress conditions. The directed assembly a blend polymer:PC60BM solar cells via a simple light processing step results in a 10-100 fold increase in device thermal stability and, under certain conditions, enhanced device performance. The enhanced stability is linked to the light-induced oligomerisation of PC60BM that effectively hinders diffusion and crystallization in blends. This effect appears to be general and promises to be an effective and cost-effective strategy to optimize fullerene-based solar cell performance.

  3. Band alignment measurements at heterojunction interfaces in layered thin film solar cells & thermoelectrics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Fang

    2011-12-01

    Public awareness of the increasing energy crisis and the related serious environmental concerns has led to a significantly growing demand for alternative clean and renewable energy resources. Thin film are widely applied in multiple renewable energy devices owing to the reduced amount of raw materials and increase flexibility of choosing from low-cost candidates, which translates directly into reduced capital cost. This is a key driving force to make renewable technology competitive in the energy market. This thesis is focused on the measurement of energy level alignments at interfaces of thin film structures for renewable energy applications. There are two primary foci: II -VI semiconductor ZnSe/ZnTe thin film solar cells and Bi2Te3/Sb2Te3 thin film structures for thermoelectric applications. In both cases, the electronic structure and energy band alignment at interfaces usually controls the carrier transport behavior and determines the quality of the device. High-resolution photoemission spectroscopy (lab-based XPS & synchrotron-based UPS) was used to investigate the chemical and electronic properties of epitaxial Bi2Te3 and Sb2Te3 thin films, in order to validate the anticipated band alignment at interfaces in Bi 2Te3/Sb2Te3 superlattices as one favoring electron-transmission. A simple, thorough two-step treatment of a chemical etching in dilute hydrochloric acid solution and a subsequent annealing at ˜150°C under ultra-high vacuum environment is established to remove the surface oxides completely. It is an essential step to ensure the measurements on electronic states are acquired on stoichimetric, oxide-free clean surface of Bi 2Te3 and Sb2Te3 films. The direct measurement of valence band offsets (VBO) at a real Sb 2Te3/Bi2Te3 interface is designed based on the Kraut model; a special stacking film structure is prepared intentionally: sufficiently thin Sb2Te3 film on top of Bi2Te 3 that photoelectrons from both of them are collected simultaneously. From a

  4. Self-organized broadband light trapping in thin film amorphous silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Martella, C; Chiappe, D; Delli Veneri, P; Mercaldo, L V; Usatii, I; Buatier de Mongeot, F

    2013-06-01

    Nanostructured glass substrates endowed with high aspect ratio one-dimensional corrugations are prepared by defocused ion beam erosion through a self-organized gold (Au) stencil mask. The shielding action of the stencil mask is amplified by co-deposition of gold atoms during ion bombardment. The resulting glass nanostructures enable broadband anti-reflection functionality and at the same time ensure a high efficiency for diffuse light scattering (Haze). It is demonstrated that the patterned glass substrates exhibit a better photon harvesting than the flat glass substrate in p-i-n type thin film a-Si:H solar cells. PMID:23633473

  5. Cu2SnS3 as a potential absorber for thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tiwari, Devendra; Chaudhuri, T. K.; Shripathi, T.; Deshpande, U.

    2012-06-01

    The properties of pure Cu2SnS3 thin films synthesized by direct liquid coating method have been studied for application in TFSCs. The films have band gap of 1.12 eV and an absorption coefficient of ˜105 cm-1. They are p-type with electrical conductivity of 0.5 S/cm and show photoconductivity. TFSCs made of these p-CTS films and n-CdS have been analyzed. The maximum efficiency of CTS solar cells is 33% with VOC and ISC of 0.75 V and 40 mA/cm.

  6. Beyond optical enhancement due to embedded metal nanoparticles in thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murthy Mopurisetty, Sundara; Bajaj, Mohit; Ganguly, Swaroop

    2016-03-01

    Metal nanoparticles (MNPs) inside the active layer of thin-film solar cells are considered promising for light trapping, but they have also engendered concerns over their adverse impact on transport properties. Contrary to expectations, coupled optical and electrical simulations indicate that a purely electrical effect due to MNPs might result in an enhancement of the cell performance in addition to the gain from optical (plasmonic) effects. This electrical enhancement strongly depends on the MNP/semiconductor barrier height. On the other hand, the anticipated degradation due to trap states and surface recombination at the MNP/semiconductor interface may in fact be negligible.

  7. Performance of thin-film CdS/CdTe solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hussain, O. M.; Reddy, P. J.

    1991-07-01

    A polycrystalline thin-film CdS/CdTe solar cell has been fabricated by means of a laser evaporation of CdTe onto thermally-evaporated CdS films. The cell has demonstrated a maximum efficiency of about 8.25 percent, in conjunction with a quantum efficiency of about 80 percent. The In-doped CdS 0.5-micron thick films were deposited onto conducting glass substrates at 473 K and annealed at 673 K in a hydrogen atmosphere; the Sb-doped CdTe 5-micron thickness films were deposited and then heat-treated in air at 673 K.

  8. Non-Uniformities in Thin-Film Cadmium Telluride Solar Cells Using Electroluminescence and Photoluminescence: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Zaunbrecher, K.; Johnston, S.; Yan, F.; Sites, J.

    2011-07-01

    It is the purpose of this research to develop specific imaging techniques that have the potential to be fast, in-line tools for quality control in thin-film CdTe solar cells. Electroluminescence (EL) and photoluminescence (PL) are two techniques that are currently under investigation on CdTe small area devices made at Colorado State University. It is our hope to significantly advance the understanding of EL and PL measurements as applied to CdTe. Qualitative analysis of defects and non-uniformities is underway on CdTe using EL, PL, and other imaging techniques.

  9. Thin film tandem solar cells based on II-VI compounds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bloss, W. H.; Kimmerle, J.; Pfisterer, F.; Schock, H. W.

    The R & D efforts for the production of thin film tandem solar cells are presented. The tandem structures are based on II-VIand related compounds and are arranged as electrically isolated (4-terminal) cascades. For the high-bandgap part the material combinations under investigation are p-ZnTe/n-Zn(x)Cd(1-x)S, pn-ZnSe(y)Te(1-y), and p-CuGaSe2/n-Zn(x)Cd(1-x)S. The preliminary results of the investigations on all systems are promising; open circuit voltages of 1.3 V have been achieved.

  10. Enhanced photocurrent in thin-film amorphous silicon solar cells via shape controlled three-dimensional nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilali, Mohamed M.; Yang, Shuqiang; Miller, Mike; Xu, Frank; Banerjee, Sanjay; Sreenivasan, S. V.

    2012-10-01

    In this paper, we have explored manufacturable approaches to sub-wavelength controlled three-dimensional (3D) nano-patterns with the goal of significantly enhancing the photocurrent in amorphous silicon solar cells. Here we demonstrate efficiency enhancement of about 50% over typical flat a-Si thin-film solar cells, and report an enhancement of 20% in optical absorption over Asahi textured glass by fabricating sub-wavelength nano-patterned a-Si on glass substrates. External quantum efficiency showed superior results for the 3D nano-patterned thin-film solar cells due to enhancement of broadband optical absorption. The results further indicate that this enhanced light trapping is achieved with minimal parasitic absorption losses in the deposited transparent conductive oxide for the nano-patterned substrate thin-film amorphous silicon solar cell configuration. Optical simulations are in good agreement with experimental results, and also show a significant enhancement in optical absorption, quantum efficiency and photocurrent.

  11. Damage mechanisms in thin film solar cells during sputtering deposition of transparent conductive coatings

    SciTech Connect

    Fan Qihua; Liao Xianbo; Deng, Michael; Deng Xunming

    2009-02-01

    Amorphous silicon (a-Si) based thin film solar cell grown on flexible stainless steel substrate is one of the most promising energy conversion devices in the future. This type of solar cell uses a transparent conductive oxide (TCO) film as top electrode. It has been a widely accepted opinion that the radio frequency sputtering deposition of the TCO film produces a higher yield than direct current sputtering, and the reason is not clear. Here we show that the damage to the solar cell during the sputtering process is caused by a reverse bias applied to the n-i-p junction. This reverse bias is related to the characteristics of plasma discharge. The mechanism we reveal may significantly affect the solar cell process.

  12. Thin film GaAs solar cells on glass substrates by epitaxial liftoff

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, X.Y.; Goertemiller, M.; Boroditsky, M.; Ragan, R.; Yablonovitch, E.

    1997-02-01

    In this work, we describe the fabrication and operating characteristics of GaAs/AlGaAs thin film solar cells processed by the epitaxial liftoff (ELO) technique. This technique allows the transfer of these cells onto glass substrates. The performance of the lifted-off solar cell is demonstrated by means of electrical measurements under both dark and illuminated conditions. We have also optimized the light trapping conditions in this direct-gap material. The results show that good solar absorption is possible in active layers as thin as 0.32 {mu}m. In such a thin solar cell, the open circuit voltage would be enhanced. We believe that the combination of an epitaxial liftoff thin GaAs film, and nano-texturing can lead to record breaking performance. {copyright} {ital 1997 American Institute of Physics.}

  13. First-Principles Study of Back Contact Effects on CdTe Thin Film Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Du, Mao-Hua

    2009-01-01

    Forming a chemically stable low-resistance back contact for CdTe thin-film solar cells is critically important to the cell performance. This paper reports theoretical study of the effects of the back-contact material, Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3}, on the performance of the CdTe solar cells. First-principles calculations show that Sb impurities in p-type CdTe are donors and can diffuse with low diffusion barrier. There properties are clearly detrimental to the solar-cell performance. The Sb segregation into the grain boundaries may be required to explain the good efficiencies for the CdTe solar cells with Sb{sub 2}Te{sub 3} back contacts.

  14. Photonic and plasmonic structures for enhancing efficiency of thin film silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pattnaik, Sambit

    Crystalline silicon solar cells use high cost processing techniques as well as thick materials that are ˜ 200µm thick to convert solar energy into electricity. From a cost viewpoint, it is highly advantageous to use thin film solar cells which are generally made in the range of 0.1-3µm in thickness. Due to this low thickness, the quantity of material is greatly reduced and so is the number and complexity of steps involved to complete a device, thereby allowing a continuous processing capability improving the throughput and hence greatly decreasing the cost. This also leads to faster payback time for the end user of the photovoltaic panel. In addition, due to the low thickness and the possibility of deposition on flexible foils, the photovoltaic (PV) modules can be flexible. Such flexible PV modules are well suited for building-integrated applications and for portable, foldable, PV power products. For economical applications of solar cells, high efficiency is an important consideration. Since Si is an indirect bandgap material, a thin film of Si needs efficient light trapping to achieve high optical absorption. The previous work in this field has been mostly based on randomly textured back reflectors. In this work, we have used a novel approach, a periodic photonic and plasmonic structure, to optimize current density of the devices by absorbing longer wavelengths without hampering other properties. The two dimensional diffraction effect generated by a periodic structure with the plasmonic light concentration achieved by silver cones to efficiently propagate light in the plane at the back surface of a solar cell, achieves a significant increase in optical absorption. Using such structures, we achieved a 50%+ increase in short circuit current in a nano-crystalline (nc-Si) solar cell relative to stainless steel. In addition to nc-Si solar cells on stainless steel, we have also used the periodic photonic structure to enhance optical absorption in amorphous cells and

  15. Plasmonic enhancement of thin-film solar cells using gold-black coatings

    SciTech Connect

    Fredricksen, Christopher J.; Panjwani, D. R.; Arnold, J. P.; Figueiredo, P. N.; Rezaie, F. K.; Colwell, J. E.; Baillie, K.; Peppernick, Samuel J.; Joly, Alan G.; Beck, Kenneth M.; Hess, Wayne P.; Peale, Robert E.

    2011-08-11

    Coatings of conducting gold-black nano-structures on commercial thin-film amorphous-silicon solar cells enhance the short-circuit current by 20% over a broad spectrum from 400 to 800 nm wavelength. The efficiency, i.e. the ratio of the maximum electrical output power to the incident solar power, is found to increase 7% for initial un-optimized coatings. Metal blacks are produced cheaply and quickly in a low-vacuum process requiring no lithographic patterning. The inherently broad particle-size distribution is responsible for the broad spectrum enhancement in comparison to what has been reported for mono-disperse lithographically deposited or self-assembled metal nano-particles. Photoemission electron microscopy reveals the spatial-spectral distribution of hot-spots for plasmon resonances, where scattering of normally-incident solar flux into the plane increases the effective optical path in the thin film to enhance light harvesting. Efficiency enhancement is correlated with percent coverage and particle size distribution, which are determined from histogram and wavelet analysis of scanning electron microscopy images. Electrodynamic simulations reveal how the gold-black particles scatter the radiation and locally enhance the field strength.

  16. Broadband absorption enhancement in plasmonic thin-film solar cells with grating surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Li; Huo, Yiping; Zhao, Kaijun; Zhao, Ting; Li, Yuan

    2015-10-01

    The plasmonic thin-film solar cells with grating surface is structured and simulated by Comsol Multiphysics software using finite element method. The absorption efficiency of solar cells has been systemically studied by considering structure characteristic parameters. The absorption of grating surface cell is much broader and stronger than that of smooth surface on a-Si at the wavelength from 400 to 700 nm. The value of total absorption efficiency (TAE) increases from 47% to 69.3%. The embedded Ag nanoparticle array contributes to the improvement of the absorption of a-Si at longer wavelength range. The localized surface plasmon resonance is induced by Ag nanoparticles, and so that the TAE is increased to 75.1% when the radius of nanoparticle is 60 nm at the bottom of a-Si with periodic width 200 nm. The grating surface always plays a role to suppress light scattering from the active region, so more light can be absorbed again by a-Si in the infrared-region. Therefore, the results have significance in providing a theoretical foundation for the applications of thin-film solar cell.

  17. Impact of the nanorod structure on the tandem thin-film solar cell.

    PubMed

    Tang, M; Chang, S T; Huang, C-X; Liu, Y T; Chen, Y H

    2011-07-01

    The novel thin-film solar cell was investigated with a nanorod structure that could solve the conflict between light absorption and carrier transport in the amorphous silicon (a-Si)/amorphous silicon-germanium (a-SiGe) tandem thin-film solar cell. This structure has an n-type a-Si nanorod array on the substrate, and an a-SiOx p-layer and an a-SiGe i-layer are sequentially grown along the surface of each n-type a-Si nanorod, for the bottom cell. After the above bottom-cell process, a similar process is used to fabricate an amorphous Si p-i-n top cell on the bottom cell. Under sunlight illumination, the light is absorbed along the vertical direction of the nanorod, but as the carrier transport is along the horizontal direction, the nanorod may absorb most of the sunlight. In the meantime, the solar cell is still thin enough for the effective transport of photogenerated carriers. PMID:22121598

  18. 13.4% efficient thin-film CdS/CdTe solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, T. L.; Chu, S. S.; Ferekides, C.; Wu, C. Q.; Britt, J.; Wang, C.

    1991-12-01

    Cadmium telluride is a promising thin-film photovoltaic material as shown by the more than 10% efficient CdS/CdTe heterojunction solar cells. In this work, thin-film CdS/CdTe solar cells have been prepared using CdS films grown from an aqueous solution and p-CdTe films deposited by close-spaced sublimation (CSS). The properties of CdS films deposited from an ammonical solution of a Cd-salt, an ammonium salt, and thiourea have been controlled by optimizing the temperature and composition of the solution. The solution-grown CdS films have a high photoconductivity ratio, and its optical transmission is superior to that of vacuum evaporated CdS films. The properties of p-CdTe films deposited by CSS have been optimized by controlling the temperature and composition of the source material, and the substrate temperature. The properties of CdS/CdTe heterojunctions have been studied; junction photovoltage spectroscopy is used for the qualitative comparison of junction characteristics. Solar cells of 1-cm2 area with an AM 1.5 efficiency of 13.4% are reported.

  19. Novel concepts for low-cost and high-efficient thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gómez, D.; Menéndez, A.; Sánchez, P.; Martínez, A.; Andrés, L. J.; Menéndez, M. F.; Campos, N.; García, A.; Sánchez, B.

    2011-09-01

    This work presents the activities carried out at ITMA Materials Technology related to the building integration of thin film (TF) photovoltaics (PV). Three different approaches have been developed in order to achieve high efficient solar cells at low manufacturing costs: (i) a new route for manufacturing monolithical silicon based thin film solar cells on building materials, (ii) the use of metallic nanoparticles for light trapping (plasmonic effects and light scattering) and (iii) the luminescent sol-gel coating on glass for solar concentration. In the first case, amorphous silicon modules (single junction) have been successfully manufactured at lab scale on steel and commercial ceramic substrates with efficiencies of 5.4% and 4.0%, respectively. Promising initial attempts have been also made in ethylene tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE), a polymer with high potential in textile architecture. In a similar way, the development of nanotechnology based coatings (metallic nanoparticles and luminescent materials) represent the most innovative part of the work and some preliminary results are showed.

  20. Thin film polycrystalline silicon: Promise and problems in displays and solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Fonash, S.J.

    1995-08-01

    Thin film polycrystalline Si (poly-Si) with its carrier mobilities, potentially good stability, low intragrain defect density, compatibility with silicon processing, and ease of doping activation is an interesting material for {open_quotes}macroelectronics{close_quotes} applications such as TFTs for displays and solar cells. The poly-Si films needed for these applications can be ultra-thin-in the 500{Angstrom} to 1000{Angstrom} thickness range for flat panel display TFTs and in the 4{mu}m to 10{mu}m thickness range for solar cells. Because the films needed for these microelectronics applications can be so thin, an effective approach to producing the films is that of crystallizing a-Si precursor material. Unlike cast materials, poly-Si films made this way can be produced using low temperature processing. Unlike deposited poly-Si films, these crystallized poly-Si films can have grain widths that are much larger than the film thickness and almost atomically smooth surfaces. This thin film poly-Si crystallized from a-Si precursor films, and its promise and problems for TFTs and solar cells, is the focus of this discussion.

  1. Solar Selective Coatings Prepared From Thin-Film Molecular Mixtures and Evaluated

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jaworske, Don A.

    2003-01-01

    Thin films composed of molecular mixtures of metal and dielectric are being considered for use as solar selective coatings for a variety of space power applications. By controlling molecular mixing during ion-beam sputter deposition, researchers can tailor the solar selective coatings to have the combined properties of high solar absorptance and low infrared emittance. On orbit, these combined properties simultaneously maximize the amount of solar energy captured by the coating and minimize the amount of thermal energy radiated. The solar selective coatings are envisioned for use on minisatellites, for applications where solar energy is used to power heat engines or to heat remote regions in the interior of the spacecraft. Such systems may be useful for various missions, particularly those to middle Earth orbit. Sunlight must be concentrated by a factor of 100 or more to achieve the desired heat inlet operating temperature. At lower concentration factors, the temperature of the heat inlet surface of the heat engine is too low for efficient operation, and at high concentration factors, cavity type heat receivers become attractive. The an artist's concept of a heat engine, with the annular heat absorbing surface near the focus of the concentrator coated with a solar selective coating is shown. In this artist's concept, the heat absorbing surface powers a small Stirling convertor. The astronaut's gloved hand is provided for scale. Several thin-film molecular mixtures have been prepared and evaluated to date, including mixtures of aluminum and aluminum oxide, nickel and aluminum oxide, titanium and aluminum oxide, and platinum and aluminum oxide. For example, a 2400- Angstrom thick mixture of titanium and aluminum oxide was found to have a solar absorptance of 0.93 and an infrared emittance of 0.06. On the basis of tests performed under flowing nitrogen at temperatures as high as 680 C, the coating appeared to be durable at elevated temperatures. Additional durability

  2. P-doped strontium titanate grown using two target pulsed laser deposition for thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Man, Hamdi

    Thin-film solar cells made of Mg-doped SrTiO3 p-type absorbers are promising candidates for clean energy generation. This material shows p-type conductivity and also demonstrates reasonable absorption of light. In addition, p-type SrTiO3 can be deposited as thin films so that the cost can be lower than the competing methods. In this work, Mg-doped SrTiO3 (STO) thin-films were synthesized and analyzed in order to observe their potential to be employed as the base semiconductor in photovoltaic applications. Mg-doped STO thin-films were grown by using pulsed laser deposition (PLD) using a frequency quadrupled Yttrium Aluminum Garnet (YAG) laser and with a substrate that was heated by back surface absorption of infrared (IR) laser light. The samples were characterized using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and it was observed that Mg atoms were doped successfully in the stoichiometry. Reflection high energy electron diffraction (RHEED) spectroscopy proved that the thin films were polycrystalline. Kelvin Probe work function measurements indicated that the work function of the films were 4.167 eV after annealing. UV/Vis Reflection spectroscopy showed that Mg-doped STO thin-films do not reflect significantly except in the ultraviolet region of the spectrum where the reflection percentage increased up to 80%. Self-doped STO thin-films, Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) thin films and stainless steel foil (SSF) were studied in order to observe their characteristics before employing them in Mg-doped STO based solar cells. Self-doped STO thin films were grown using PLD and the results showed that they are capable of serving as the n-type semiconductor in solar cell applications with oxygen vacancies in their structure and low reflectivity. Indium Tin Oxide thin-films grown by PLD system showed low 25-50 ?/square sheet resistance and very low reflection features. Finally, commercially available stainless steel foil substrates were excellent substrates for the inexpensive growth of

  3. Novel p-Type Conductive Semiconductor Nanocrystalline Film as the Back Electrode for High-Performance Thin Film Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ming-Jian; Lin, Qinxian; Yang, Xiaoyang; Mei, Zongwei; Liang, Jun; Lin, Yuan; Pan, Feng

    2016-02-10

    Thin film solar cells, due to the low cost, high efficiency, long-term stability, and consumer applications, have been widely applied for harvesting green energy. All of these thin film solar cells generally adopt various metal thin films as the back electrode, like Mo, Au, Ni, Ag, Al, graphite, and so forth. When they contact with p-type layer, it always produces a Schottky contact with a high contact potential barrier, which greatly affects the cell performance. In this work, we report for the first time to find an appropriate p-type conductive semiconductor film, digenite Cu9S5 nanocrystalline film, as the back electrode for CdTe solar cells as the model device. Its low sheet resistance (16.6 Ω/sq) could compare to that of the commercial TCO films (6-30 Ω/sq), like FTO, ITO, and AZO. Different from the traditonal metal back electrode, it produces a successive gradient-doping region by the controllable Cu diffusion, which greatly reduces the contact potential barrier. Remarkably, it achieved a comparable power conversion efficiency (PCE, 11.3%) with the traditional metal back electrode (Cu/Au thin films, 11.4%) in CdTe cells and a higher PCE (13.8%) with the help of the Au assistant film. We believe it could also act as the back electrode for other thin film solar cells (α-Si, CuInS2, CIGSe, CZTS, etc.), for their performance improvement. PMID:26736028

  4. Development of Earth-Abundant and Non-Toxic Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Helen Hejin

    Although solar energy is the most abundant energy resource available, photovoltaic solar cells must consist of sufficiently abundant and environmentally friendly elements, for scalable low-cost production to provide a major amount of the world's energy supply. However, scalability is limited in current thin-film solar cell technologies based on Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2 and CdTe due to scarce, expensive, and toxic elements. Thin-film solar cells consisting of earth-abundant and non-toxic materials were made from pulsed chemical vapor deposition (pulsed-CVD) of SnS as the p-type absorber layer and atomic layer deposition (ALD) of Zn(O,S) as the n-type buffer layer. Solar cells with a structure of Mo/SnS/Zn(O,S)/ZnO/ITO were studied by varying the synthesis conditions of the SnS and Zn(O,S) layers. Annealing SnS in hydrogen sulfide increased the mobility by more than one order of magnitude, and improved the power conversion efficiency of the solar cell devices. Solar cell performance can be further optimized by adjusting the stoichiometry of Zn(O,S), and by tuning the electrical properties of Zn(O,S) through various in situ or post-annealing treatments. Zn(O,S) can be post-annealed in oxygen atmosphere or doped with nitrogen, by ammonium hydroxide or ammonia gas, during the ALD growth to reduce the carrier concentration, which can be critical for reducing interface recombination at the p-n junction. High carrier concentration buffer layers can be critical for reducing contact resistance with the ITO layer. Zn(O,S) can also be incorporated with aluminum by trimethylaluminum (TMA) doses to either increase or decrease the carrier concentration based on the stoichiometry of Zn(O,S).

  5. A two-layer structured PbI2 thin film for efficient planar perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ying, Chao; Shi, Chengwu; Wu, Ni; Zhang, Jincheng; Wang, Mao

    2015-07-01

    In this paper, a two-layer structured PbI2 thin film was constructed by the spin-coating procedure using a 0.80 M PbI2 solution in DMF and subsequent close-spaced vacuum thermal evaporation using PbI2 powder as a source. The bottom PbI2 thin film was compact with a sheet-like appearance, parallel to the FTO substrate, and can be easily converted to a compact perovskite thin film to suppress the charge recombination of the electrons of the TiO2 conduction band and the holes of the spiro-OMeTAD valence band. The top PbI2 thin film was porous with nano-sheet arrays, perpendicular to the FTO substrate, and can be easily converted to a porous perovskite thin film to improve the hole migration from the perovskite to spiro-OMeTAD and the charge separation at the perovskite/spiro-OMeTAD interface. The planar perovskite solar cells based on the two-layer structured PbI2 thin film exhibited a photoelectric conversion efficiency of 11.64%, along with an open-circuit voltage of 0.90 V, a short-circuit photocurrent density of 19.29 mA cm-2 and a fill factor of 0.67.

  6. A two-layer structured PbI2 thin film for efficient planar perovskite solar cells.

    PubMed

    Ying, Chao; Shi, Chengwu; Wu, Ni; Zhang, Jincheng; Wang, Mao

    2015-07-28

    In this paper, a two-layer structured PbI2 thin film was constructed by the spin-coating procedure using a 0.80 M PbI2 solution in DMF and subsequent close-spaced vacuum thermal evaporation using PbI2 powder as a source. The bottom PbI2 thin film was compact with a sheet-like appearance, parallel to the FTO substrate, and can be easily converted to a compact perovskite thin film to suppress the charge recombination of the electrons of the TiO2 conduction band and the holes of the spiro-OMeTAD valence band. The top PbI2 thin film was porous with nano-sheet arrays, perpendicular to the FTO substrate, and can be easily converted to a porous perovskite thin film to improve the hole migration from the perovskite to spiro-OMeTAD and the charge separation at the perovskite/spiro-OMeTAD interface. The planar perovskite solar cells based on the two-layer structured PbI2 thin film exhibited a photoelectric conversion efficiency of 11.64%, along with an open-circuit voltage of 0.90 V, a short-circuit photocurrent density of 19.29 mA cm(-2) and a fill factor of 0.67. PMID:26118756

  7. Transparent conducting oxide contacts and textured metal back reflectors for thin film silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franken, R. H.-J.

    2006-09-01

    With the growing population and the increasing environmental problems of the 'common' fossil and nuclear energy production, the need for clean and sustainable energy sources is evident. Solar energy conversion, such as in photovoltaic (PV) systems, can play a major role in the urgently needed energy transition in electricity production. At the present time PV module production is dominated by the crystalline wafer technology. Thin film silicon technology is an alternative solar energy technology that operates at lower efficiencies, however, it has several significant advantages, such as the possibility of deposition on cheap (flexible) substrates and the much smaller silicon material consumption. Because of the small thickness of the solar cells, light trapping schemes are needed in order to obtain enough light absorption and current generation. This thesis describes the research on thin film silicon solar cells with the focus on the optimization of the transparent conducting oxide (TCO) layers and textured metal Ag substrate layers for the use as enhanced light scattering back reflectors in n-i-p type of solar cells. First we analyzed ZnO:Al (TCO) layers deposited in an radio frequent (rf) magnetron deposition system equipped with a 7 inch target. We have focused on the improvement of the electrical properties without sacrificing the optical properties by increasing the mobility and decreasing the grain boundary density. Furthermore, we described some of the effects on light trapping of ZnO:Al enhanced back reflectors. The described effects are able to explain the observed experimental data. Furthermore, we present a relation between the surface morphology of the Ag back contact and the current enhancement in microcrystalline (muc-Si:H) solar cells. We show the importance of the lateral feature sizes of the Ag surface on the light scattering and introduce a method to characterize the quality of the back reflector by combining the vertical and lateral feature sizes

  8. Enhanced light trapping with double-groove grating in thin-film amorphous silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jun

    2016-05-01

    A design to enhance light absorption in thin-film amorphous silicon (a-Si) solar cells is proposed. It is achieved by patterning a double-groove grating with waveguide layer as the absorbing layer and coating a double-groove grating anti-reflective layer in the front window of the cell. The broadband absorption under normal incidence can be achieved for both TE and TM polarizations. It is shown that the averaged integrated absorptions have very large angle independence for the optimized solar cell. An qualitative understanding of such broadband enhanced absorption effect, which is attributed to the guided mode resonance, is presented. The conclusions can be exploited to guide the design of solar cells based on a grating structure.

  9. ZnO transparent conductive oxide for thin film silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Söderström, T.; Dominé, D.; Feltrin, A.; Despeisse, M.; Meillaud, F.; Bugnon, G.; Boccard, M.; Cuony, P.; Haug, F.-J.; Faÿ, S.; Nicolay, S.; Ballif, C.

    2010-03-01

    There is general agreement that the future production of electric energy has to be renewable and sustainable in the long term. Photovoltaic (PV) is booming with more than 7GW produced in 2008 and will therefore play an important role in the future electricity supply mix. Currently, crystalline silicon (c-Si) dominates the market with a share of about 90%. Reducing the cost per watt peak and energy pay back time of PV was the major concern of the last decade and remains the main challenge today. For that, thin film silicon solar cells has a strong potential because it allies the strength of c-Si (i.e. durability, abundancy, non toxicity) together with reduced material usage, lower temperature processes and monolithic interconnection. One of the technological key points is the transparent conductive oxide (TCO) used for front contact, barrier layer or intermediate reflector. In this paper, we report on the versatility of ZnO grown by low pressure chemical vapor deposition (ZnO LP-CVD) and its application in thin film silicon solar cells. In particular, we focus on the transparency, the morphology of the textured surface and its effects on the light in-coupling for micromorph tandem cells in both the substrate (n-i-p) and superstrate (p-i-n) configurations. The stabilized efficiencies achieved in Neuchâtel are 11.2% and 9.8% for p-i-n (without ARC) and n-i-p (plastic substrate), respectively.

  10. Characteristics of Sputtered ZnO Thin Films for an Inverted Organic Solar Cell.

    PubMed

    Park, Yong Seob; Park, Chul Min; Lee, Jaehyeong

    2016-05-01

    Several research groups have claimed high energy conversion efficiency in organic solar cells. However, it still has low efficiency and is unstable, because organic materials are easily oxidized by atmospheric humidity and UV light. In this work, ZnO thin film as the blocking layer attributed to the interference of the injection of the hole from the P3HT and no charge carrier recombination. We obtained the maximum power conversion efficiency of 1.9% under AM 1.5 G spectral illumination of 100 MWcm(-2), when we used a ZnO film of 60 nm and the optimized P3HT:PCBM, and Au as the back electrode to solve the reaction problem of Al electrode and to control the work function between the HOMO level of P3HT and the energy level of the metal electrode. Power conversion efficiency of inverted organic solar cell (IOSC) is significantly dependent on the thickness of the ZnO thin film deposited by unbalanced magnetron sputtering method. Also, the stability of IOSC is measured under ambient conditions. PMID:27483875

  11. Laser textured substrates for light in-coupling in thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakanga, Kambulakwao; Siepmann, Ortwin; Sergeev, Oleg; Geißendörfer, Stefan; von Maydell, Karsten; Agert, Carsten

    2014-03-01

    In this work we investigate the use of a picosecond (ps) laser used for monolithic connection to pattern glass substrates to achieve light in-coupling in silicon thin film solar cells. We present our results on the patterning of three commercially available and frequently used multi-component glasses Corning EAGLE XG®, Schott BOROFLOAT® 33 and Saint-Gobain SGG DIAMANT®. We find that the different glass structural components influence the degree of texturing obtained. This can be attributed to the different laser induced electron collision times and recombination rates, and thus the critical electron density evolution leading to ablation. Thus the ablated crater profile is glass composition dependent. The surface texture is altered from periodic to random with decreasing scribing speed. The transmission of the textured substrates gradually decreases while the reflection increases as a consequence of the topological and morphological changes. The angular resolved measurements illustrate that highly textured substrates scatter the light towards greater angles. This demonstrates potential for the application in substrate configuration (nip) thin film solar cells, as the scattering can increase the optical path, and hence the absorption in the absorber layer. Simulations of periodically textured glass substrates demonstrate a focused optical generation rate near the front contact and absorber layer interface. The influence of the modified refractive index region on the optical generation rate and reflection depends on the crater profile. The reflection is generally reduced when a periodic texture in the micrometre range is implemented.

  12. Electronic structure of electrodeposited thin film CdTe solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ullal, H. S.

    1988-05-01

    Independent experimental verification done at four research laboratories, namely, Ametek, Colorado State University (CSU), Institute of Energy Conversion (IEC), and Solar Energy Research Institute (SERI) confirm the n-i-p model proposed by Ametek. The experiments done for the verification of the n-i-p structure are the high frequency capacitance-voltage, light and voltage bias quantum efficiency, and EBIC measurements. All experimental evidence suggests that the n-i-p model is appropriate for the existing n-CdS/i-CdTe/p-ZnTe cell structure. From the C-V measurements, the depletion width has been estimated at 1.7 to 2.0 microns and corresponds to the thickness of the CdTe film. This unique thin films device design has resulted in improved stability and a SERI-verified world record single-junction total area AM1.5 global efficiency of 11 percent. Further refinements in device design and cell processing should result in 12 to 13 percent efficiencies for thin-film CdTe solar cells in the not-too-distant future.

  13. Light trapping regimes in thin-film silicon solar cells with a photonic pattern.

    PubMed

    Zanotto, Simone; Liscidini, Marco; Andreani, Lucio Claudio

    2010-03-01

    We present a theoretical study of crystalline and amorphous silicon thin-film solar cells with a periodic pattern on a sub-micron scale realized in the silicon layer and filled with silicon dioxide right below a properly designed antireflection (AR) coating. The study and optimization of the structure as a function of all the photonic lattice parameters, together with the calculation of the absorption in a single layer, allows to identify the different roles of the periodic pattern in determining an increase of the absorbance. From one side, the photonic crystal and the AR coating act as impedance matching layers, thus minimizing reflection of incident light over a particularly wide range of frequencies. Moreover a strong absorption enhancement is observed when the incident light is coupled into the quasi guided modes of the photonic slab. We found a substantial increase of the short-circuit current when the parameters are properly optimized, demonstrating the advantage of a wavelength-scale, photonic crystal based approach for patterning of thin-film silicon solar cells. PMID:20389438

  14. Enhancing the absorption capabilities of thin-film solar cells using sandwiched light trapping structures.

    PubMed

    Abdellatif, S; Kirah, K; Ghannam, R; Khalil, A S G; Anis, W

    2015-06-10

    A novel structure for thin-film solar cells is simulated with the purpose of maximizing the absorption of light in the active layer and of reducing the parasitic absorption in other layers. In the proposed structure, the active layer is formed from an amorphous silicon thin film sandwiched between silicon nanowires from above and photonic crystal structures from below. The upper electrical contact consists of an indium tin oxide layer, which serves also as an antireflection coating. A metal backreflector works additionally as the other contact. The simulation was done using a new reliable, efficient and generic optoelectronic approach. The suggested multiscale simulation model integrates the finite-difference time-domain algorithm used in solving Maxwell's equation in three dimensions with a commercial simulation platform based on the finite element method for carrier transport modeling. The absorption profile, the external quantum efficient, and the power conversion efficiency of the suggested solar cell are calculated. A noticeable enhancement is found in all the characteristics of the novel structure with an estimated 32% increase in the total conversion efficiency over a cell without any light trapping mechanisms. PMID:26192857

  15. Scribing of a-Si thin-film solar cells with picosecond laser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gečys, P.; Račiukaitis, G.

    2010-09-01

    The thin-film technology is the most promising technology to achieve a significant cost reduction in solar electricity. Laser scribing is an important step to preserve high efficiency of photovoltaic devices on large areas. The high-repetition-rate laser with the pulse duration of 10 ps was applied in selective ablation of multilayer thin-film a-Si solar cells deposited on flexible and rigid substrates. Two types of solar cells with flexible and rigid substrates have been investigated. The first type of solar cells was made of 400 nm a-Si layer coated on both sides with 2 μ m transparent ZnO:Al contact layers deposited by CVD technique on the glass plate. The second type of solar cells was made of a flexible polyimide substrate coated with the Al back-contact, a-Si light absorbing layer and the ITO top-contact. Selection of the right laser wavelength is important to keep the energy coupling in a well defined volume at the interlayer interface. Well-defined shapes of scribes were produced by laser ablation through layers of the solar cell on the glass substrate. Localization of the coupled energy at the inner interface led to the “lift-off” type process rather than evaporation of the top ITO layer when the 355 nm radiation was applied. All laser scribes did not indicate any material melting or other thermal damage caused by laser irradiation. Ultra-short picosecond pulses ensured the high energy input rate into absorbing material therefore peeling of the layers had no influence on the remaining material.

  16. Light trapping in thin film solar cells using photonic engineering device concepts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mutitu, James Gichuhi

    In this era of uncertainty concerning future energy solutions, strong reservations have arisen over the continued use and pursuit of fossil fuels and other conventional sources of energy. Moreover, there is currently a strong and global push for the implementation of stringent measures, in order to reduce the amount of green house gases emitted by every nation. As a consequence, there has emerged a sudden and frantic rush for new renewable energy solutions. In this world of renewable energy technologies is where we find photovoltaic (PV) technology today. However, as is, there are still many issues that need to be addressed before solar energy technologies become economically viable and available to all people, in every part of the world. This renewed interest in the development of solar electricity, has led to the advancement of new avenues that address the issues of cost and efficiency associated with PV. To this end, one of the prominent approaches being explored is thin film solar cell (TFSC) technology, which offers prospects of lower material costs and enables larger units of manufacture than conventional wafer based technology. However, TFSC technologies suffer from one major problem; they have lower efficiencies than conventional wafer based solar cell technologies. This lesser efficiency is based on a number of reasons, one of which is that with less material, there is less volume for the absorption of incident photons. This shortcoming leads to the need for optical light trapping; which is concerned with admitting the maximum amount of light into the solar cell and keeping the light within the structure for as long as possible. In this thesis, I present the fundamental scientific ideas, practice and methodology behind the application of photonic engineering device concepts to increase the light trapping capacity of thin film solar cells. In the introductory chapters, I develop the basic ideas behind light trapping in a sequential manner, where the effects

  17. Individual identification of free hole and electron dynamics in CuIn{sub 1−x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2} thin films by simultaneous monitoring of two optical transitions

    SciTech Connect

    Okano, Makoto; Hagiya, Hideki; Sakurai, Takeaki; Akimoto, Katsuhiro; Shibata, Hajime; Niki, Shigeru; Kanemitsu, Yoshihiko

    2015-05-04

    The photocarrier dynamics of CuIn{sub 1−x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2} (CIGS) thin films were studied using white-light transient absorption (TA) measurements, as an understanding of this behavior is essential for improving the performance of solar cells composed of CIGS thin films. A characteristic double-peak structure due to the splitting of the valence bands in the CIGS was observed in the TA spectra under near-band-gap resonant excitation. From a comparison of the TA decay dynamics monitored at these two peaks, it was found that the slow-decay components of the electron and hole relaxation are on the nanosecond timescale. This finding is clear evidence of the long lifetimes of free photocarriers in polycrystalline CIGS thin films.

  18. Identification and Analysis of Distinct Features in Imaging Thin-Film Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Zaunbrecher, K. N.; Johnston, S. W.; Sites, J. R.

    2012-06-01

    Electroluminescence and photoluminescence (EL and PL) are two imaging techniques employed at NREL that are used to qualitatively evaluate solar cells. In this work, imaging lab-scale CdTe and CIGS devices provides information about small-area PV response, which will aid in determining the effects of non-uniformities on cell performance. EL, PL, and dark lock-in thermography signatures are first catalogued. Their responses to varying conditions are then studied. Further analysis includes acquiring spectral data, making microscopy measurements, and correlating luminescence to device performance. The goal of this work is to quantitatively determine non-uniformity effects on cell performance using rapid imaging techniques.

  19. Light Trapping in Thin Film Silicon Solar Cells on Plastic Substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Jong, M. M.

    2013-01-01

    In the search for sustainable energy sources, solar energy can fulfil a large part of the growing demand. The biggest threshold for large-scale solar energy harvesting is the solar panel price. For drastic cost reductions, roll-to-roll fabrication of thin film silicon solar cells using plastic substrates can be a solution. In this thesis, we investigate the possibilities of depositing thin film solar cells directly onto cheap plastic substrates. Micro-textured glass and sheets, which have a wide range of applications, such as in green house, lighting etc, are applied in these solar cells for light trapping. Thin silicon films can be produced by decomposing silane gas, using a plasma process. In these types of processes, the temperature of the growing surface has a large influence on the quality of the grown films. Because plastic substrates limit the maximum tolerable substrate temperature, new methods have to be developed to produce device-grade silicon layers. At low temperature, polysilanes can form in the plasma, eventually forming dust particles, which can deteriorate device performance. By studying the spatially resolved optical emission from the plasma between the electrodes, we can identify whether we have a dusty plasma. Furthermore, we found an explanation for the temperature dependence of dust formation; Monitoring the formation of polysilanes as a function of temperature using a mass-spectrometer, we observed that the polymerization rate is indeed influenced by the substrate temperature. For solar cell substrate material, our choice was polycarbonate (PC), because of its low cost, its excellent transparency and its relatively high glass transition temperature of 130-140°C. At 130°C we searched for deposition recipes for device quality silicon, using a very high frequency plasma enhanced chemical deposition process. By diluting the feedstock silane with hydrogen gas, the silicon quality can be improved for amorphous silicon (a-Si), until we reach the

  20. Plasmonic and photonic designs for light trapping in thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Liming

    Thin film solar cells are promising to realize cheap solar energy. Compared to conventional wafer cells, they can reduce the use of semiconductor material by 90%. The efficiency of thin film solar cells, however, is limited due to insufficient light absorption. Sufficient light absorption at the bandgap of semiconductor requires a light path more than 10x the thickness of the semiconductor. Advanced designs for light trapping are necessary for solar cells to absorb sufficient light within a limited volume of semiconductor. The goal is to convert the incident light into a trapped mode in the semiconductor layer. In this dissertation, a critical review of currently used methods for light trapping in solar cells is presented. The disadvantage of each design is pointed out including insufficient enhancement, undesired optical loss and undesired loss in carrier transport. The focus of the dissertation is light trapping by plasmonic and photonic structures in thin film Si solar cells. The performance of light trapping by plasmonic structures is dependent on the efficiency of photon radiation from plasmonic structures. The theory of antenna radiation is used to study the radiation by plasmonic structures. In order to achieve efficient photon radiation at a plasmonic resonance, a proper distribution of surface charges is necessary. The planar fishnet structure is proposed as a substitution for plasmonic particles. Large particles are required in order to resonate at the bandgap of semiconductor material. Hence, the resulting overall thickness of solar cells with large particles is large. Instead, the resonance of fishnet structure can be tuned without affecting the overall cell thickness. Numerical simulation shows that the enhancement of light absorption in the active layer is over 10x compared to the same cell without fishnet. Photons radiated from the resonating fishnet structure travel in multiple directions within the semiconductor layer. There is enhanced field

  1. Substrate temperature optimization for Cu(In, Ga)Se2 solar cells on flexible stainless steels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, X.; Zhu, H.; Chen, J.; Zhou, D.; Zhang, C.; Guo, Y.; Niu, X.; Li, Z.; Mai, Y.

    2016-04-01

    Cu(In, Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin films are deposited on flexible stainless steel (SS) substrates using the so called 3-stage co-evaporation process at different substrate temperatures ranging from 440 °C to 640 °C during the 2nd stage and the 3rd stage (TS2). The effects of TS2 on the properties of CIGS thin films are systematically investigated. It is found by secondary ion mass spectrometry measurement that CIGS thin films deposited at different TS2 show different Ga/(Ga + In) ratio (GGI) profiles along the growth direction. High TS2 facilitates the grain growth and leads to larger grain size. However, high TS2 worsens the spectral response of CIGS solar cells in the long wavelength range, which is partly attributed to the too much iron atom diffusion from the SS substrates into the CIGS thin films. All CIGS thin films show (112) preferred orientations with a shift to higher angle due to variation of compositions. A shoulder-like two-peak structure of (112) and (220/204) peaks appears for CIGS thin films deposited at lower TS2. Conversion efficiency of 11.3% is obtained for CIGS thin film solar cells deposited at the TS2 of 500 °C.

  2. Thin film polycrystalline silicon solar cells. Second technical progress report, July 16, 1980-October 15, 1980

    SciTech Connect

    1980-10-01

    The objectives of this contract are to fabricate large area thin film silicon solar cells with AM1 efficiency of 10% or greater with good reproducibility and good yield and to assess the feasibility of implementing this process for manufacturing solar cells at a cost of $300/kWe. Efforts have been directed to the purification of metallurgical silicon, the preparation and characterization of substrates and epitaxial silicon layers, and the fabrication and characterization of solar cells. The partial purification of metallurgical silicon by extraction with aqua regia has been further investigated in detail, and the resulting silicon was analyzed by the atomic absorption technique. The unidirectional solidification of aqua regia-extracted metallurgical silicon on graphite was used for the preparation of substrates, and the impurity distribution in the substrate was determined and compared with the impurity content in metallurgical silicon. The effects of heat treatment on the impurity distribution in the substrate and in the epitaxial layer have also been investigated. Large area (30 to 60 cm/sup 2/) solar cells have been prepared from aqua regia-extracted metallurgical silicon substrates by depositing a p-n junction structure using the thermal reduction of trichlorosilane containing appropriate dopants. The AM1 efficiencies are about 9% for cells of 30 to 35 cm/sup 2/ area. Larger area, 60 cm/sup 2/, thin film solar cells have been fabricated for the first time, and their AM1 efficiencies are slightly higher than 8%. The spectral response, minority carrier diffusion length, and I/sub sc/-V/sub oc/ relation in a number of solr cells have been measured.

  3. Preparation of Cu2Te Thin Films and Back-Contact Formation of CdTe Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lv, Bin; Di, Xia; Li, Wei; Feng, Lianghuan; Lei, Zhi; Zhang, Jingquan; Wu, Lili; Cai, Yaping; Li, Bing; Sun, Zhen

    2009-08-01

    Cu2Te thin films were prepared by a coevaporation method. The structural, optical, and electronic properties of Cu2Te thin films were investigated using X-ray diffraction, UV-visible-IR transmittance and reflectance spectra, and Hall measurements. The results show that single-phase Cu2Te thin films can be obtained after annealing at 170 °C, and that annealing temperatures higher than 200 °C induce the Cu2Te coexisting phase. Subsequently, CdTe solar cells with a Cu2Te layer were fabricated and annealed at various temperatures. CdTe solar cells with a single-phase hexagonal Cu2Te layer annealed at a temperature of 180 °C show a good ohmic-contact behavior.

  4. Post-growth process for flexible CdS/CdTe thin film solar cells with high specific power.

    PubMed

    Cho, Eunwoo; Kang, Yoonmook; Kim, Donghwan; Kim, Jihyun

    2016-05-16

    We demonstrated a flexible CdS/CdTe thin film solar cell with high specific power of approximately 254 W/kg. A flexible and ultra-light weight CdS/CdTe cell treated with pre-NP etch process exhibited high conversion efficiency of 13.56% in superstrate configuration. Morphological, structural and optical changes of CdS/CdTe thin films were characterized when pre-NP etch step was incorporated to the conventional post-deposition process. Improvement of photovoltaic parameters can be attributed to the removal of the oxide and the formation of Te-rich layer, which benefit the activation process. Pre-NP etched cell maintained their flexibility and performance under the repeated tensile strain of 0.13%. Our method can pave a way for manufacturing flexible CdS/CdTe thin film solar cells with high specific power for mobile and aerospace applications. PMID:27409952

  5. Interfacial quality improvement of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin film solar cells by Cu-depletion layer formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishimura, Takahito; Toki, Soma; Sugiura, Hiroki; Nakada, Kazuyoshi; Yamada, Akira

    2016-09-01

    Se irradiation with time, t Se, was introduced after the second stage of a three-stage process to control the Cu2Se layer during Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) deposition. Open circuit voltage and fill factor of CIGS solar cells could be improved by introducing Se irradiation. We concluded that the control of the Cu2Se layer led to the formation of a Cu-depletion CIGS layer (CDL), which improved conversion efficiency owing to suppression of interfacial recombination by a valence band offset formed between CIGS and the CDL. Finally, highest efficiency of 19.8% was achieved with t Se of 5 min. This very simple and new technique is promising for the improvement of photovoltaic performance.

  6. A non-resonant dielectric metamaterial for the enhancement of thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Omelyanovich, M.; Ovchinnikov, V.; Simovski, C.

    2015-02-01

    Recently, we have suggested a dielectric metamaterial composed of an array of submicron dielectric spheres located on top of an amorphous thin-film solar cell. We have theoretically shown that this metamaterial can decrease the reflection and simultaneously suppress the transmission through the photovoltaic layer because it transforms the incident plane wave into a set of focused light beams. This theoretical concept has been strongly developed and experimentally confirmed in the present paper. Here we consider the metamaterial for oblique angle illumination, redesign the solar cell and present a detailed experimental study of the whole structure. In contrast to our previous theoretical study we show that our omnidirectional light-trapping structure may operate better than the optimized flat coating obtained by plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition.

  7. Enhanced photon management in silicon thin film solar cells with different front and back interface texture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tamang, Asman; Hongsingthong, Aswin; Jovanov, Vladislav; Sichanugrist, Porponth; Khan, Bakhtiar A.; Dewan, Rahul; Konagai, Makoto; Knipp, Dietmar

    2016-08-01

    Light trapping and photon management of silicon thin film solar cells can be improved by a separate optimization of the front and back contact textures. A separate optimization of the front and back contact textures is investigated by optical simulations taking realistic device geometries into consideration. The optical simulations are confirmed by experimentally realized 1 μm thick microcrystalline silicon solar cells. The different front and back contact textures lead to an enhancement of the short circuit current by 1.2 mA/cm2 resulting in a total short circuit current of 23.65 mA/cm2 and an energy conversion efficiency of 8.35%.

  8. Enhanced photon management in silicon thin film solar cells with different front and back interface texture

    PubMed Central

    Tamang, Asman; Hongsingthong, Aswin; Jovanov, Vladislav; Sichanugrist, Porponth; Khan, Bakhtiar A.; Dewan, Rahul; Konagai, Makoto; Knipp, Dietmar

    2016-01-01

    Light trapping and photon management of silicon thin film solar cells can be improved by a separate optimization of the front and back contact textures. A separate optimization of the front and back contact textures is investigated by optical simulations taking realistic device geometries into consideration. The optical simulations are confirmed by experimentally realized 1 μm thick microcrystalline silicon solar cells. The different front and back contact textures lead to an enhancement of the short circuit current by 1.2 mA/cm2 resulting in a total short circuit current of 23.65 mA/cm2 and an energy conversion efficiency of 8.35%. PMID:27481226

  9. Enhanced photon management in silicon thin film solar cells with different front and back interface texture.

    PubMed

    Tamang, Asman; Hongsingthong, Aswin; Jovanov, Vladislav; Sichanugrist, Porponth; Khan, Bakhtiar A; Dewan, Rahul; Konagai, Makoto; Knipp, Dietmar

    2016-01-01

    Light trapping and photon management of silicon thin film solar cells can be improved by a separate optimization of the front and back contact textures. A separate optimization of the front and back contact textures is investigated by optical simulations taking realistic device geometries into consideration. The optical simulations are confirmed by experimentally realized 1 μm thick microcrystalline silicon solar cells. The different front and back contact textures lead to an enhancement of the short circuit current by 1.2 mA/cm(2) resulting in a total short circuit current of 23.65 mA/cm(2) and an energy conversion efficiency of 8.35%. PMID:27481226

  10. Temperature dependent electrical characterization of thin film Cu2ZnSnSe4 solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kask, E.; Krustok, J.; Giraldo, S.; Neuschitzer, M.; López-Marino, S.; Saucedo, E.

    2016-03-01

    Impedance spectroscopy (IS) and current-voltage characteristics measurements were applied to study properties of a Cu2ZnSnSe4 (CZTSe) thin film solar cell. IS measurements were done in the frequency range 20 Hz to 10 MHz. The measurement temperature was varied from 10 K to 325 K with a step ▵T  =  5 K. Temperature dependence of V oc revealed an activation energy of 962 meV, which is in the vicinity of the band gap energy of CZTSe and hence the dominating recombination mechanism in this solar cell is bulk recombination. Different temperature ranges, where electrical properties change, were found. Interface states at grain boundaries with different properties were revealed to play an important role in impedance measurements. These states can be described by introducing a constant phase element in the equivalent circuit.

  11. Asymmetric intermediate reflector for tandem micromorph thin film silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Söderström, T.; Haug, F.-J.; Niquille, X.; Terrazzoni, V.; Ballif, C.

    2009-02-01

    The micromorph solar cell (stack of amorphous and microcrystalline cells) concept is the key for achieving high efficiency stabilized thin film silicon solar cells. We introduce a device structure that allows a better control of the light in-coupling into the two subcell components. It is based on an asymmetric intermediate reflector, which increases the effective thickness of the a-Si:H by a factor of more than three. Hence, the a-Si:H thickness reduction diminishes the light induced degradation, and micromorph tandem cells with 11.2% initial and 9.8% stabilized efficiencies (1000 h, 50 °C, and 100 mW/cm2) are made on plastic substrates with Tg<180 °C.

  12. The role of front and back electrodes in parasitic absorption in thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boccard, Mathieu; Cuony, Peter; Hänni, Simon; Stuckelberger, Michael; Haug, Franz-Josef; Meillaud, Fanny; Despeisse, Matthieu; Ballif, Christophe

    2014-07-01

    When it comes to parasitic absorption in thin-film silicon solar cells, most studies focus on one electrode only, most of the time the substrate (in n-i-p configuration) or superstrate (in p-i-n configuration). We investigate here simultaneously the influence of the absorption in both front and back electrodes on the current density of tandem micromorph solar cells in p-i-n configuration. We compare four possible combinations of front and back electrodes with two different doping levels, but identical sheet resistance and identical light-scattering properties. In the infrared part of the spectrum, parasitic absorption in the front or back electrode is shown to have a similar effect on the current generation in the cell, which is confirmed by modeling. By combining highly transparent front and back ZnO electrodes and high-quality silicon layers, a micromorph device with a stabilized efficiency of 11.75% is obtained.

  13. Geometrical shape design of nanophotonic surfaces for thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Nam, W I; Yoo, Y J; Song, Y M

    2016-07-11

    We present the effect of geometrical parameters, particularly shape, on optical absorption enhancement for thin film solar cells based on crystalline silicon (c-Si) and gallium arsenide (GaAs) using a rigorous coupled wave analysis (RCWA) method. It is discovered that the "sweet spot" that maximizes efficiency of solar cells exists for the design of nanophotonic surfaces. For the case of ultrathin, rod array is practical due to the effective optical resonances resulted from the optimum geometry whereas parabola array is viable for relatively thicker cells owing to the effective graded index profile. A specific value of thickness, which is the median value of other two devices tailored by rod and paraboloid, is optimized by truncated shape structure. It is therefore worth scanning the optimum shape of nanostructures in a given thickness in order to achieve high performance. PMID:27410892

  14. A study of shape optimization on the metallic nanoparticles for thin-film solar cells

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The shape of metallic nanoparticles used to enhance the performance of thin-film solar cells is described by Gielis' superformula and optimized by an evolutionary algorithm. As a result, we have found a lens-like nanoparticle capable of improving the short circuit current density to 19.93 mA/cm2. Compared with a two-scale nanospherical configuration recently reported to synthesize the merits of large and small spheres into a single structure, the optimized nanoparticle enables the solar cell to achieve a further 7.75% improvement in the current density and is much more fabrication friendly due to its simple shape and tolerance to geometrical distortions. PMID:24168131

  15. Epitaxial thin film GaAs solar cells using OM-CVD techniques. [Organometallics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stirn, R. J.; Wang, K. L.; Yeh, Y. C. M.

    1981-01-01

    A new approach has been initiated at JPL to fabricate thin-film, high efficiency GaAs solar cells on low-cost, single-crystal Si substrates having a thin CVD interlayer of Ge to minimize the lattice and thermal expansion mismatch. For initial experiments, n(+)/p GaAs cells were grown by OM-CVD on single-crystal GaAs and Ge wafers. Details of the growths and performance results will be presented. Subsequently, a combined epitaxial structure of OM-CVD GaAs on a strongly adherent Ge interlayer on (100) Si was grown. This is the first report of the successful growth of this composite structure. Low module costs projected by JPL SAMICS methodology calculations and the potential for 400-600W/kg space solar arrays will be discussed.

  16. Kelvin Probe Measurements on Solar Cells and Other Thin Film Devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Delk, John; Dils, D. W.; Lush, G. B.; Mackey, Willie R. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The Kelvin Probe (KP) has been used for years to measure the surface potential of metals and semiconductors. The KP is an elegantly simple but powerful tool invented by Lord Kelvin around the turn of the century. Using changes in surface potentials as a result of changing the intensity and wavelength of illumination, the KP returns data on material parameters such as band gap energies and the energy levels of interface states. We have employed the KP in the study of CdTe-based solar cells and quantum dot-based solar cells, as well as other thin-film devices. We hope eventually that the KP will be used as an in-line testing station for a fabrication process so that unfinished devices that will not meet requirements can be thrown out before the processing is completed, thus saving resources. Results of these studies will be presented.

  17. Concepts for thin-film GaAs concentrator cells. [for solar photovoltaic space power systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spitzer, M. B.; Gale, R. P.; Mcclelland, R.; King, B.; Dingle, J.

    1989-01-01

    The development of advanced GaAs concentrator solar cells, and in particular, the use of CLEFT (cleavage of lateral epitaxial films for transfer) processes for formation of thin-film structures is reported. The use of CLEFT has made possible processing of the back, and cells with back surface grids are discussed. Data on patterned junction development are presented; such junctions are expected to be useful in back surface applications requiring point contacts, grating structures, and interdigitated back contacts. CLEFT concentrator solar cells with grids on the front and back surfaces are reported here; these cells are 4 microns thick and are bonded to glass covers for support. Air mass zero efficiency of 18.8 percent has been obtained for a CLEFT concentrator operating at 18.5 suns.

  18. Luminescent down shifting effect of Ce-doped yttrium aluminum garnet thin films on solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Shao, Guojian; Lou, Chaogang; Kang, Jian; Zhang, Hao

    2015-12-21

    Ce-doped yttrium aluminum garnet (YAG:Ce) thin films as luminescent down shifting (LDS) materials are introduced into the module of crystalline silicon solar cells. The films are deposited by RF magnetron sputtering on the lower surface of the quartz glass. They convert ultraviolet and blue light into yellow light. Experiments show that the introduction of YAG:Ce films improves the conversion efficiency from 18.45% of the cells to 19.27% of the module. The increasing efficiency is attributed to LDS effect of YAG:Ce films and the reduced reflection of short wavelength photons. Two intentionally selected samples with similar reflectivities are used to evaluate roughly the effect of LDS alone on the solar cells, which leads to a relative increase by 2.68% in the conversion efficiency.

  19. Basella alba rubra spinach pigment-sensitized TiO2 thin film-based solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gokilamani, N.; Muthukumarasamy, N.; Thambidurai, M.; Ranjitha, A.; Velauthapillai, Dhayalan

    2015-03-01

    Nanocrystalline TiO2 thin films have been prepared by sol-gel dip coating method. The X-ray diffraction results showed that TiO2 thin films annealed at 400, 450 and 500 °C are of anatase phase and the peak corresponding to the (101) plane is present in all the samples. The grain size of TiO2 thin films was found to increase with increasing annealing temperature. The grain size is found to be 20, 25 and 33 nm for the films annealed at 400, 450 and 500 °C. The structure of the TiO2 nanocrystalline thin films have been examined by high-resolution transmission electron microscope, Raman spectroscopy and FTIR spectroscopy. TiO2 thin films were sensitized by natural dyes extracted from basella alba rubra spinach. It was found that the absorption peak of basella alba rubra extract is at about 665 nm. The dye-sensitized TiO2-based solar cell sensitized using basella alba rubra exhibited a J sc of 4.35 mA cm-2, V oc of 0.48 V, FF of 0.35 and efficiency of 0.70 %. Natural dyes as sensitizers for dye-sensitized solar cells are promising because of their environmental friendliness, low-cost production and fully biodegradable.

  20. All-Nonvacuum-Processed CIGS Solar Cells Using Scalable Ag NWs/AZO-Based Transparent Electrodes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Mingqing; Choy, Kwang-Leong

    2016-07-01

    With record cell efficiency of 21.7%, CIGS solar cells have demonstrated to be a very promising photovoltaic (PV) technology. However, their market penetration has been limited due to the inherent high cost of the cells. In this work, to lower the cost of CIGS solar cells, all nonvacuum-processed CIGS solar cells were designed and developed. CIGS absorber was prepared by the annealing of electrodeposited metallic layers in a chalcogen atmosphere. Nonvacuum-deposited Ag nanowires (NWs)/AZO transparent electrodes (TEs) with good transmittance (92.0% at 550 nm) and high conductivity (sheet resistance of 20 Ω/□) were used to replace the vacuum-sputtered window layer. Additional thermal treatment after device preparation was conducted at 220 °C for a few of minutes to improve both the value and the uniformity of the efficiency of CIGS pixel cell on 5 × 5 cm substrate. The best performance of the all-nonvacuum-fabricated CIGS solar cells showed an efficiency of 14.05% with Jsc of 34.82 mA/cm(2), Voc of 0.58 V, and FF of 69.60%, respectively, which is comparable with the efficiency of 14.45% of a reference cell using a sputtered window layer. PMID:27299854

  1. Three dimensionally structured interdigitated back contact thin film heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hangarter, C. M.; Hamadani, B. H.; Guyer, J. E.; Xu, H.; Need, R.; Josell, D.

    2011-04-01

    Three dimensionally structured thin film photovoltaic devices based on interdigitated arrays of microscale electrodes are examined by external quantum efficiency simulations, indicating considerable JSC enhancement is possible through elimination of the front contact and window layer required in planar geometry devices. Electrode parameters including, pitch, width, height, and material are modeled and experimentally probed, demonstrating experimentally and capturing in models dependence on intrinsic material properties and electrode dimensions. In contrast to analogous silicon wafer back contact solar cells where the electrodes are placed on the silicon absorber at the end of processing, in this design the semiconductor is deposited on the electrodes, taking advantage of the thin film processing already required. Electrodeposited CdS/CdTe heterojunction devices approach 1% efficiencies with simulations as well as optical measurements indicating significant potential for improvement. Suboptimal performance is attributed to unintended materials reactions that preclude annealing at the temperatures required for absorber optimization as well as the Schottky barrier formation on the nonoptimal electrode materials. The test bed structures and absorber synthesis processes are amenable to an array of deposition techniques for fabrication and measurements of three dimensionally structured semiconductors, contact materials, and photovoltaic devices subject to processing feasibility and materials compatibility.

  2. Electron and hole drift mobility measurements on thin film CdTe solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Long, Qi; Dinca, Steluta A.; Schiff, E. A.; Yu, Ming; Theil, Jeremy

    2014-07-28

    We report electron and hole drift mobilities in thin film polycrystalline CdTe solar cells based on photocarrier time-of-flight measurements. For a deposition process similar to that used for high-efficiency cells, the electron drift mobilities are in the range of 10{sup −1}–10{sup 0} cm{sup 2}/V s, and holes are in the range of 10{sup 0}–10{sup 1} cm{sup 2}/V s. The electron drift mobilities are about a thousand times smaller than those measured in single crystal CdTe with time-of-flight; the hole mobilities are about ten times smaller. Cells were examined before and after a vapor phase treatment with CdCl{sub 2}; treatment had little effect on the hole drift mobility, but decreased the electron mobility. We are able to exclude bandtail trapping and dispersion as a mechanism for the small drift mobilities in thin film CdTe, but the actual mechanism reducing the mobilities from the single crystal values is not known.

  3. Peel-and-Stick: Fabricating Thin Film Solar Cell on Universal Substrates

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Chi Hwan; Kim, Dong Rip; Cho, In Sun; William, Nemeth; Wang, Qi; Zheng, Xiaolin

    2012-01-01

    Fabrication of thin-film solar cells (TFSCs) on substrates other than Si and glass has been challenging because these nonconventional substrates are not suitable for the current TFSC fabrication processes due to poor surface flatness and low tolerance to high temperature and chemical processing. Here, we report a new peel-and-stick process that circumvents these fabrication challenges by peeling off the fully fabricated TFSCs from the original Si wafer and attaching TFSCs to virtually any substrates regardless of materials, flatness and rigidness. With the peel-and-stick process, we integrated hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) TFSCs on paper, plastics, cell phone and building windows while maintaining the original 7.5% efficiency. The new peel-and-stick process enables further reduction of the cost and weight for TFSCs and endows TFSCs with flexibility and attachability for broader application areas. We believe that the peel-and-stick process can be applied to thin film electronics as well. PMID:23277871

  4. Peel-and-stick: fabricating thin film solar cell on universal substrates.

    PubMed

    Lee, Chi Hwan; Kim, Dong Rip; Cho, In Sun; William, Nemeth; Wang, Qi; Zheng, Xiaolin

    2012-01-01

    Fabrication of thin-film solar cells (TFSCs) on substrates other than Si and glass has been challenging because these nonconventional substrates are not suitable for the current TFSC fabrication processes due to poor surface flatness and low tolerance to high temperature and chemical processing. Here, we report a new peel-and-stick process that circumvents these fabrication challenges by peeling off the fully fabricated TFSCs from the original Si wafer and attaching TFSCs to virtually any substrates regardless of materials, flatness and rigidness. With the peel-and-stick process, we integrated hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) TFSCs on paper, plastics, cell phone and building windows while maintaining the original 7.5% efficiency. The new peel-and-stick process enables further reduction of the cost and weight for TFSCs and endows TFSCs with flexibility and attachability for broader application areas. We believe that the peel-and-stick process can be applied to thin film electronics as well. PMID:23277871

  5. Interfacial alkali diffusion control in chalcopyrite thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Ishizuka, Shogo; Yamada, Akimasa; Fons, Paul J; Shibata, Hajime; Niki, Shigeru

    2014-08-27

    Alkali elements, specifically sodium (Na), are key materials to enhance the energy conversion efficiencies of chalcopyrite and related thin-film photovoltaic solar cells. Recently, the effect of potassium (K) has also attracted attention because elemental K has unique effects different from Na as well as a similar beneficial effect in improving device performance. In this study, the control of selective alkali K and Na diffusion into chalcopyrite thin-films from soda-lime glass substrates, which serve as the monolithic alkali source material and contain both K and Na, is demonstrated using ternary CuGaSe2. Elemental K is found to be incorporated in the several ten nanometer thick Cu-deficient region, which is formed on the CuGaSe2 film surface, while Na is ejected, although both K and Na diffuse from the substrate to the CuGaSe2 film surface during growth. The alkali [K]/[Na] concentration ratio in the surface region of CuGaSe2 films strongly depends on the film structure and can be controlled by growth parameters under the same substrate temperature conditions. The results we present here offer new concepts necessary to explore and develop emerging new chalcopyrite and related materials and optimize their applications. PMID:25004458

  6. Indium phosphide/cadmium sulfide thin-film solar cells. Quarterly report, July-October 1980

    SciTech Connect

    Zanio, K.

    1981-01-01

    InP thin films were deposited by planar reactive deposition on recrystallized CdS (RXCdS) and semi-insulating (100) InP substrates and evaluated as potential layers for an all-thin-film solar cell. One objective of this period was to grow InP on RXCdS at a substrate temperature which is high enough to permit the growth of p-type material but yet low enough to permit the epitaxial growth of large grains. Films prepared on RXCdS at approximately 330/sup 0/C contained a mixture of grains having both large and submicron lateral dimensions. Be-doped epitaxial films, deposited on semi-insulating InP at 330/sup 0/C, showed both n- and p-type behavior. Films prepared at higher temperatures with a freshly Be-charged indium source were p-type. However, at these temperatures, layers prepared after several runs with the same source were n-type. Analyses of the indium source and films were initiated to determine the cause of the transient doping.

  7. An optimized efficient dual junction InGaN/CIGS solar cell: A numerical simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farhadi, Bita; Naseri, Mosayeb

    2016-08-01

    The photovoltaic performance of an efficient double junction InGaN/CIGS solar cell including a CdS antireflector top cover layer is studied using Silvaco ATLAS software. In this study, to gain a desired structure, the different design parameters, including the CIGS various band gaps, the doping concentration and the thickness of CdS layer are optimized. The simulation indicates that under current matching condition, an optimum efficiency of 40.42% is achieved.

  8. Thin-Film Solar Cells on Polymer Substrates for Space Power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hepps, A. F.; McNatt, Jeremiah; Morel, D. L.; Ferckides, C. S.; Jin, M. H.; Orbey, N.; Cushman, M.; Birkmire, R. W.; Shafarman, W. N.; Newton, R.

    2004-01-01

    Photovoltaic arrays have played a key role in power generation in space. The current technology will continue to evolve but is limited in the important mass specific power metric (MSP or power/weight ratio) because it is based on bulk crystal technology. Solar cells based on thin-film materials offer the promise of much higher MSP and much lower cost. However, for many space applications, a 20% or greater AM0 efficiency (eta) may be required. The leading thin-film materials, amorphous Si, CuInSe, and CdTe have seen significant advances in efficiency over the last decade but will not achieve the required efficiency in the near future. Several new technologies are herein described to maximize both device eta and MSP. We will discuss these technologies in the context of space exploration and commercialization. One novel approach involves the use of very lightweight polyimide substrates. We describe efforts to enable this advance including materials processing and device fabrication and characterization. Another approach involves stacking two cells on top of each other. These tandem devices more effectively utilize solar radiation by passing through non-absorbed longer wavelength light to a narrow-bandgap bottom cell material. Modeling of current devices in tandem format indicates that AM0 efficiencies near 20% can be achieved with potential for 25% in the near future. Several important technical issues need to be resolved to realize the benefits of lightweight technologies for solar arrays, such as: monolithic interconnects, lightweight array structures, and new ultra-light support and deployment mechanisms. Recent advances will be stressed.

  9. Enhancing light trapping properties of thin film solar cells by plasmonic effect of silver nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Jung, Junhee; Ha, Kyungyeon; Cho, Jaehyun; Ahn, Shihyun; Park, Hyeongsik; Hussain, Shahzada Qamar; Choi, Mansoo; Yi, Junsin

    2013-12-01

    The preparation of thin film silicon solar cells containing Ag nanoparticles is reported in this article. Ag nanoparticles were deposited on fluorine doped tin oxide coated glass substrates by the evaporation and condensation method. a-Si:H solar cells were deposited on these substrates by cluster type plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition. We discuss the double textured surface effect with respect to both the surface morphology of the substrate and the plasmonic effect of the Ag nanoparticles. Ag nanoparticles of various sizes from 10 to 100 nm were deposited. The haze values of the Ag embedded samples increased with increasing particle size whereas the optical transmittance decreased at the same conditions. The solar cell with the 30 nm size Ag nanoparticles showed a short circuit current density of 12.97 mA/cm2, which is 0.53 mA/cm2 higher than that of the reference solar cell without Ag nanoparticles, and the highest quantum efficiency for wavelengths from 550 to 800 nm. When 30 nm size nanoparticles were employed, the conversion efficiency of the solar cell was increased from 6.195% to 6.696%. This study reports the application of the scattering effect of Ag nanoparticles for the improvement of the conversion efficiency of amorphous silicon solar cells. PMID:24266153

  10. Hydrogenated amorphous silicon thin film solar cell with buffer layer of DNA-CTMA biopolymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Son, Won-Ho; Reddy, M. Siva Pratap; Choi, Sie-Young

    2014-05-01

    The characteristics of nip-type a-Si:H thin film solar cells based on DNA-CTMA biopolymer was investigated. The DNA-CTMA was used as the buffer layer in nip-type a-Si:H solar cell. The Eopt of the DNA-CTMA biopolymer was measured with UV-VIS spectrometer. The Eopt of DNA-CTMA was determined as 3.96 eV by the plot of (Ahν)2 versus hν. All films of amorphous materials were deposited by PECVD method. The solar cell with a simple structure of glass/ITO/n-a-Si:H/i-a-Si:H/p-a-Si:H/DNA-CTMA/Al was fabricated. The various values of Voc, Jsc, FF, and conversion efficiency η were measured under 100 mW/cm2 (AM 1.5) solar simulator irradiation. Consequently, the resulting in solar cell showed an enhancement in conversion efficiency η compared to conventional nip-type a-Si:H solar cell without buffer layer of DNA-CTMA biopolymer.

  11. New Electrodeposition Technique for Controlling Depth Profile of CuInSe2 Thin Films for Solar Cell Application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, Sigeyuki

    2005-04-01

    It is known that the efficiency of CuInSe2 (CIS)-based solar cells can be improved using a CIS layer with a composition that can be modulated to be In-rich near the pn junction interface. In this work, a new electrodeposition technique for preparing CIS thin films with a controlled composition depth profile was developed. CIS thin films having a bilayer structure, that is, with the Cu-rich and In-rich layers, were successfully deposited from one electrolyte only by changing the substrate potential during electrodeposition.

  12. Synthesis of nanostructured CuInS2 thin films and their application in dye-sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Yu; Luo, Fazhi; Zhuang, Mixue; Liu, Zhen; Wei, Aixiang; Liu, Jun

    2016-03-01

    CuInS2 (CIS) nanostructure thin films were successfully synthesized on FTO conductive glass substrates by solvothermal method. It is found that the surface morphology and microstructure of CIS thin films can be tailored by simply adjusting the concentration of oxalic acid. CIS nanostructure films with texture of "nanosheet array" and "flower-like microsphere" were obtained and used as Pt-free counter electrode for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The nanosheet array CIS was found to have a better electrocatalytic activity than the flower-like microsphere one. DSSCs based on nanosheet array CIS thin film counter electrode show conversion efficiency of 3.33 %, which is comparable to the Pt-catalyzed DSSCs. The easy synthesis, low cost, morphology tunable and excellent electrocatalytic property may make the CuInS2 nanostructure competitive as counter electrode in DSSCs.

  13. Indium doped zinc oxide nanowire thin films for antireflection and solar absorber coating applications

    SciTech Connect

    Shaik, Ummar Pasha; Krishna, M. Ghanashyam

    2014-04-24

    Indium doped ZnO nanowire thin films were prepared by thermal oxidation of Zn-In metal bilayer films at 500°C. The ZnO:In nanowires are 20-100 nm in diameter and several tens of microns long. X-ray diffraction patterns confirm the formation of oxide and indicate that the films are polycrystalline, both in the as deposited and annealed states. The transmission which is <2% for the as deposited Zn-In films increases to >90% for the ZnO:In nanowire films. Significantly, the reflectance for the as deposited films is < 10% in the region between 200 to 1500 nm and < 2% for the nanowire films. Thus, the as deposited films can be used solar absorber coatings while the nanowire films are useful for antireflection applications. The growth of nanowires by this technique is attractive since it does not involve very high temperatures and the use of catalysts.

  14. Defects of a-Si Thin-Film Solar Cells Detected by Transmission Photothermal Radiometric Imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Laijun; Gao, Chunming; Zhao, Binxing; Sun, Qiming; Liu, Lixian; Huan, Huiting

    2015-06-01

    The photothermal radiometry (PTR) technique is an effective non-destructive testing technique for detecting defects in materials. In this paper, a piece of commercial amorphous silicon (a-Si) thin-film solar cells with some artificial mechanical defects has been investigated by the transmission PTR imaging system. Firstly, a simplified analytical expression of a normalized transmission PTR signal was employed to characterize defects. Secondly, the corresponding experimental system has been set-up for obtaining several thermal images of the sample. Thirdly, different kinds of defects have been analyzed and identified by the thermal images. The results show that not only the artificial mechanical defects on the sample can be detected, but also some defects occurring in the manufacturing process can be detected by the transmission PTR imaging system.

  15. Influence of Ligands on the Formation of Kesterite Thin Films for Solar Cells: A Comparative Study.

    PubMed

    Huang, Tang Jiao; Yin, Xuesong; Tang, Chunhua; Qi, Guojun; Gong, Hao

    2016-05-10

    The preparation of solar-cell-grade Cu2 ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin films from ligand-capped small-grained CZTS particles remains hindered by problems of phase segregation, composition non-uniformity, and in particular carbon-layer formation. Herein, through a systematic comparative study of annealed films of CZTS nanocrystals prepared using conventional oleylamine and those prepared using formamide, these problems are found to be mainly attributable to the influence of the ligands, and mechanisms are proposed. Importantly, the origin of the carbon layer in oleylamine-capped CZTS films is revealed to be the reaction between oleylamine and sulfur. This carbon layer has a very poor electrical conductivity, which can be the reason for the limited performance of such films. Fortunately, these problems can almost all be avoided by replacing oleylamine with formamide to form CZTS films. PMID:27059551

  16. Dip coated nanocrystalline CdZnS thin films for solar cell application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dongre, J. K.; Chaturvedi, Mahim; Patil, Yuvraj; Sharma, Sandhya; Jain, U. K.

    2015-07-01

    Nanocrystalline cadmium sulfide (CdS) and zinc cadmium sulfide (ZnCdS) thin films have been grown via simple and low cost dip coating technique. The prepared films are characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), atomic force microscopic (AFM) and UV-VIS spectrophotometer techniques to reveal their structural, morphological and optical properties. XRD shows that both samples grown have zinc blende structure. The grain size is calculated as 6.2 and 8 nm using Scherrer's formula. The band gap value of CdS and CdZnS film is estimated to be 2.58 and 2.69 eV respectively by UV-vis spectroscopy. Photoelectrochemical (PEC) investigations are carried out using cell configuration as n-CdZnS/(1M NaOH + 1M Na2S + 1M S)/C. The photovoltaic output characteristic is used to calculate fill-factor (FF) and solar conversion efficiency (η).

  17. Nanoimprint lithography for high-efficiency thin-film silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Battaglia, Corsin; Escarré, Jordi; Söderström, Karin; Erni, Lukas; Ding, Laura; Bugnon, Grégory; Billet, Adrian; Boccard, Mathieu; Barraud, Loris; De Wolf, Stefaan; Haug, Franz-Josef; Despeisse, Matthieu; Ballif, Christophe

    2011-02-01

    We demonstrate high-efficiency thin-film silicon solar cells with transparent nanotextured front electrodes fabricated via ultraviolet nanoimprint lithography on glass substrates. By replicating the morphology of state-of-the-art nanotextured zinc oxide front electrodes known for their exceptional light trapping properties, conversion efficiencies of up to 12.0% are achieved for micromorph tandem junction cells. Excellent light incoupling results in a remarkable summed short-circuit current density of 25.9 mA/cm(2) for amorphous top cell and microcrystalline bottom cell thicknesses of only 250 and 1100 nm, respectively. As efforts to maximize light harvesting continue, our study validates nanoimprinting as a versatile tool to investigate nanophotonic effects of a large variety of nanostructures directly on device performance. PMID:21302973

  18. In situ silicon oxide based intermediate reflector for thin-film silicon micromorph solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buehlmann, P.; Bailat, J.; Dominé, D.; Billet, A.; Meillaud, F.; Feltrin, A.; Ballif, C.

    2007-10-01

    We show that SiO-based intermediate reflectors (SOIRs) can be fabricated in the same reactor and with the same process gases as used for thin-film silicon solar cells. By varying input gas ratios, SOIR layers with a wide range of optical and electrical properties are obtained. The influence of the SOIR thickness in the micromorph cell is studied and current gain and losses are discussed. Initial micromorph cell efficiency of 12.2% (Voc=1.40V, fill factor=71.9%, and Jsc=12.1mA/cm2) is achieved with top cell, SOIR, and bottom cell thicknesses of 270, 95, and 1800nm, respectively.

  19. Flattened light-scattering substrate in thin film silicon solar cells for improved infrared response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sai, Hitoshi; Kanamori, Yoshiaki; Kondo, Michio

    2011-03-01

    Surface texturing is a technique commonly used to enhance light absorption in thin film silicon solar cells; it should be noted that highly textured substrates often induce structural defects in the active layer, which deteriorates the photovoltaic performance. In this paper, we propose a flattened light-scattering substrate (FLiSS) with a large refractive index contrast in plane as an approach to overcome this trade-off. A FLiSS composed of a two-dimensional ZnO grating and a Ag reflector is applied to μc-Si:H cells, in order to improve the spectral response in the infrared region while maintaining a high VOC and FF.

  20. Formation of thin films of organic-inorganic perovskites for high-efficiency solar cells.

    PubMed

    Stranks, Samuel D; Nayak, Pabitra K; Zhang, Wei; Stergiopoulos, Thomas; Snaith, Henry J

    2015-03-01

    Organic-inorganic perovskites are currently one of the hottest topics in photovoltaic (PV) research, with power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of cells on a laboratory scale already competing with those of established thin-film PV technologies. Most enhancements have been achieved by improving the quality of the perovskite films, suggesting that the optimization of film formation and crystallization is of paramount importance for further advances. Here, we review the various techniques for film formation and the role of the solvents and precursors in the processes. We address the role chloride ions play in film formation of mixed-halide perovskites, which is an outstanding question in the field. We highlight the material properties that are essential for high-efficiency operation of solar cells, and identify how further improved morphologies might be achieved. PMID:25663077

  1. Photonic crystal enhanced light-trapping in thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, D.; Biswas, R.

    2008-03-01

    We utilize photonic crystals to simulate enhanced light-trapping in a-Si:H thin film solar cells. A one dimensional photonic crystal or distributed Bragg reflector with alternating dielectric layers acts as low loss backreflector. A two dimensional photonic crystal between the absorber layer and the Bragg reflector diffracts light at oblique angles within the absorber. The photonic crystal geometry is optimized to obtain maximum absorption. The photonic crystal provides lossless diffraction of photons, increasing the photon path length within the absorber layer. The simulation predicts significantly enhanced photon harvesting between 600 and 775?nm below the band edge, and an absorption increase by more than a factor of 10 near the band edge. The optical path length ratio can exceed the classical limit predicted for randomly roughened scattering surfaces at most wavelengths near the band edge. The optical modeling is performed with a rigorous scattering matrix approach where Maxwell's equations are solved in Fourier space.

  2. Enhanced light absorption in thin-film solar cells with light propagation direction conversion.

    PubMed

    Suemune, Ikuo

    2013-05-01

    Enhancement of optical absorption in thin-film solar cells (TF-SCs) has been the long-lasting issue to achieve high efficiencies. Grating couplers have been studied for the conversion of incident light into guided modes propagating along TF-SCs to extend optical path for higher optical absorption. However the wavelength band for the efficient conversion remained relatively narrow and the overall improvement of TF-SC efficiencies has been limited. This paper demonstrates that the grating height design as well as the phase matching condition is important for the enhancement of optical absorption in TF-SCs with the calculation of short-circuit currents as a figure of merit for optimization. The influence of the light absorption coefficients and grating coupling strengths on the light absorption bandwidth is also discussed. PMID:24104442

  3. Perovskite solar cells based on nanocolumnar plasma-deposited ZnO thin films.

    PubMed

    Ramos, F Javier; López-Santos, Maria C; Guillén, Elena; Nazeeruddin, Mohammad Khaja; Grätzel, Michael; Gonzalez-Elipe, Agustin R; Ahmad, Shahzada

    2014-04-14

    ZnO thin films having a nanocolumnar microstructure are grown by plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition at 423 K on pre-treated fluorine-doped tin oxide (FTO) substrates. The films consist of c-axis-oriented wurtzite ZnO nanocolumns with well-defined microstructure and crystallinity. By sensitizing CH3NH3PbI3 on these photoanodes a power conversion of 4.8% is obtained for solid-state solar cells. Poly(triarylamine) is found to be less effective when used as the hole-transport material, compared to 2,2',7,7'-tetrakis(N,N-di-p-methoxyphenylamine)-9,9'-spirobifluorene (spiro-OMeTAD), while the higher annealing temperature of the perovskite leads to a better infiltration in the nanocolumnar structure and an enhancement of the cell efficiency. PMID:24643984

  4. Commercial-scale process design for thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russell, T. W. F.; Baron, B. N.; Rocheleau, R. E.

    Process and manufacturing costs for commercial-scale production of thin-film solar cells are examined from the viewpoint of the chemical process industry, with emphasis on CdS/Cu2S cells. The cells comprise opaque contact, collector/converter, absorber/generator, transparent contact, and encapsulation/antireflective coating layers. Each layer is deposited as a separate unit operation, through either continuous or batch processing methods. The scale-up of laboratory-verified cell manufacturing steps to commercial processing is detailed from the choice of a Zn-plated copper foil substrate to the bonding of a 1/16 in. tempered glass protective layer with polyvinyl butyral. The total product cost is calculated as a sum of raw materials, utilities, labor, and capital investment costs, using a cost/W for a 1 GW plant. Continuous processing results in a $0.50/W cell with raw materials accounting for 38% of the total product cost.

  5. Joint Development of Coated Conductor and Low Cost Thin Film Solar Cells: Cooperative Research and Development Final Report, CRADA Number CRD-007-213

    SciTech Connect

    Bhattacharya, R.

    2011-02-01

    UES plans on developing CIGS thin films by using Metal Organic Deposition (MOD) technique as it is a low-cost, non-vacuum method for scale-up to large area PV modules. NREL will support UES, Inc. through expert processing, characterization and device fabrication. NREL scientists will also help develop a processing phase diagram which includes composition, film thickness, annealing temperature and ambient conditions. Routine measurements of devices and materials will be done under NREL's core support project.

  6. Wurtzite CZTS nanocrystals and phase evolution to kesterite thin film for solar energy harvesting.

    PubMed

    Ghorpade, Uma V; Suryawanshi, Mahesh P; Shin, Seung Wook; Hong, Chang Woo; Kim, Inyoung; Moon, Jong H; Yun, Jae Ho; Kim, Jin Hyeok; Kolekar, Sanjay S

    2015-08-14

    A quaternary indium- and gallium-free kesterite (KS)-based compound, copper zinc tin sulfide (Cu2ZnSnS4, CZTS), has received significant attention for its potential applications in low cost and sustainable solar cells. It is well known that the reaction time, reactivity of the precursors, and types of capping ligands used during the synthesis of colloidal nanocrystals (NCs) strongly influence the crystallographic phase of the NCs. In this research, a non-toxic and green synthetic strategy for both the synthesis of CZTS NCs and the fabrication of a highly efficient CZTS absorber layers using an ink formulation without a toxic solvent, which meets the comprehensive framework for green chemistry that covers major aspects of the environmental strain, is demonstrated. In particular, pure metastable wurtzite (WZ) CZTS NCs are synthesized using the environmentally harmless, polyol mediated hot-injection (HI) technique at a low reaction temperature. The influence of the reaction time on the properties of the CZTS NCs is investigated in detail. Based on detailed reaction time dependent phase evolution, a possible growth and formation mechanism is proposed. Furthermore, a scalable, low cost, binder free ink formulation process without ligand exchange is developed using ethanol as the dispersal solvent. The as-prepared WZ-derived CZTS NC thin films are observed to undergo a phase transformation to KS during annealing in a sulfur vapor atmosphere via rapid thermal annealing above 500 °C, and surprisingly, this process results in fully sintered, compact and uniform CZTS thin films with large sized grains. The best solar cell device fabricated using a CZTS absorber that was sulfurized at an optimized temperature exhibits a power conversion efficiency of 2.44%, which is the highest efficiency obtained using the polyol-based HI route. PMID:26153341

  7. Thin film polycrystalline silicon solar cells: first technical progress report, April 15, 1980-July 15, 1980

    SciTech Connect

    1980-07-01

    The objectives of this contract are to fabricate large area thin film silicon solar cells with AM1 efficiency of 10% or greater with good reproducibility and good yield and to assess the feasibility of implementing this process for manufacturing solar cells at a cost of $300/kWe. Efforts during the past quarter have been directed to the purification of metallurgical silicon, the preparation of substrates, and the fabrication and characterization of solar cells. The partial purification of metallurgical silicon by extraction with aqua regia has been investigated in detail, and the resulting silicon was analyzed by the atomic absorption technique. The unidirectional solidification of aqua regia-extracted metallurgical silicon on graphite was used for the preparation of substrates, and the impurity distribution in the substrate was also determined. Large area (> 30 cm/sup 2/) solar cells have been prepared from aqua regia-extracted metallurgical silicon substrates by the thermal reduction of trichlorosilane containing appropriate dopants. Chemically deposited tin-dioxide films were used as antireflection coatings. Solar cells with AM1 efficiencies of about 8.5% have been obtained. Their spectral response, minority carrier diffusion length, and I/sub sc/-V/sub oc/ relation have been measured.

  8. Study on epitaxial silicon thin film solar cells on low cost silicon ribbon substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ai, Bin; Shen, Hui; Ban, Qun; Liang, Zongcun; Li, Xudong; Xu, Ying; Liao, Xianbo

    2005-03-01

    Heavily B-doped silicon ribbons were prepared by modified silicon sheets from powder (SSP) technique using 9 N purity electronic-grade silicon powder. Utilizing the SSP ribbons as substrates, crystalline silicon thin film (CSiTF) solar cells have been fabricated by direct epitaxy method. As-prepared CSiTF solar cells were characterized by illuminated and dark I- V characteristic measurement, Suns- Voc measurement, quantum efficiency (QE) and reflectance measurement. The results show that the CSiTF solar cells have poor performance with typical efficiency η only about 4.25%, and nearly all the characteristic parameters are far away from the ideal values. By detailed analysis and discussion on the measured results, it was found that grain boundary (GB) recombination in the active layers and electrical leakage at the edge of the PN junctions play a major role in deteriorating the performance of the CSiTF solar cells, which lead to higher dark saturation current Is and lower parallel resistance Rsh, respectively. By improving the preparation process, such as optimization of the epitaxy process, use of remote plasma hydrogen passivation (RPHP), optimization of the metallization and use of double layer anti-reflection (DLAR) coatings, etc., all the characteristic parameters of the CSiTF solar cells have been greatly improved, and the best efficiency value increased to 8.02%.

  9. Epitaxially grown polycrystalline silicon thin-film solar cells on solid-phase crystallised seed layers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Wei; Varlamov, Sergey; Xue, Chaowei

    2014-09-01

    This paper presents the fabrication of poly-Si thin film solar cells on glass substrates using seed layer approach. The solid-phase crystallised P-doped seed layer is not only used as the crystalline template for the epitaxial growth but also as the emitter for the solar cell structure. This paper investigates two important factors, surface cleaning and intragrain defects elimination for the seed layer, which can greatly influence the epitaxial grown solar cell performance. Shorter incubation and crystallisation time is observed using a simplified RCA cleaning than the other two wet chemical cleaning methods, indicating a cleaner seed layer surface is achieved. Cross sectional transmission microscope images confirm a crystallographic transferal of information from the simplified RCA cleaned seed layer into the epi-layer. RTA for the SPC seed layer can effectively eliminate the intragrain defects in the seed layer and improve structural quality of both of the seed layer and the epi-layer. Consequently, epitaxial grown poly-Si solar cell on the RTA treated seed layer shows better solar cell efficiency, Voc and Jsc than the one on the seed layer without RTA treatment.

  10. Two-dimensional high efficiency thin-film silicon solar cells with a lateral light trapping architecture

    PubMed Central

    Fang, Jia; Liu, Bofei; Zhao, Ying; Zhang, Xiaodan

    2014-01-01

    Introducing light trapping structures into thin-film solar cells has the potential to enhance their solar energy harvesting as well as the performance of the cells; however, current strategies have been focused mainly on harvesting photons without considering the light re-escaping from cells in two-dimensional scales. The lateral out-coupled solar energy loss from the marginal areas of cells has reduced the electrical yield indeed. We therefore herein propose a lateral light trapping structure (LLTS) as a means of improving the light-harvesting capacity and performance of cells, achieving a 13.07% initial efficiency and greatly improved current output of a-Si:H single-junction solar cell based on this architecture. Given the unique transparency characteristics of thin-film solar cells, this proposed architecture has great potential for integration into the windows of buildings, microelectronics and other applications requiring transparent components. PMID:25145774

  11. Two-dimensional high efficiency thin-film silicon solar cells with a lateral light trapping architecture.

    PubMed

    Fang, Jia; Liu, Bofei; Zhao, Ying; Zhang, Xiaodan

    2014-01-01

    Introducing light trapping structures into thin-film solar cells has the potential to enhance their solar energy harvesting as well as the performance of the cells; however, current strategies have been focused mainly on harvesting photons without considering the light re-escaping from cells in two-dimensional scales. The lateral out-coupled solar energy loss from the marginal areas of cells has reduced the electrical yield indeed. We therefore herein propose a lateral light trapping structure (LLTS) as a means of improving the light-harvesting capacity and performance of cells, achieving a 13.07% initial efficiency and greatly improved current output of a-Si:H single-junction solar cell based on this architecture. Given the unique transparency characteristics of thin-film solar cells, this proposed architecture has great potential for integration into the windows of buildings, microelectronics and other applications requiring transparent components. PMID:25145774

  12. Nd:YAG laser ablation characteristics of thin CIGS solar cell films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, S. H.; Kim, C. K.; In, J. H.; Kim, D. S.; Ham, H. J.; Jeong, S. H.

    2013-12-01

    This work reports that the ablation characteristics of thin CuIn1- x Ga x Se2 (CIGS) solar cell film differ significantly with elemental composition and laser pulse energy. From in situ shadowgraphs measured during Nd:YAG laser (1,064 nm) irradiation of CIGS films and crater morphologies, it was found that strong surface evaporation is dominant for low Ga concentration films of which band gap is well below the photon energy. As the band gap of CIGS film becomes close to or over the laser photon energy due to increased Ga content, surface absorption diminishes and at low laser energy, laser heating of the film plays an important role. It is demonstrated that for the CIGS films with Ga/(Ga + In) ratio being approximately over 0.2, the laser irradiation leads to solid phase removal of the film due to thermomechanical fracture at low laser energy but to ablative evaporation at elevated energy.

  13. Amorphous Indium Selenide Thin Films Prepared by RF Sputtering: Thickness-Induced Characteristics.

    PubMed

    Han, Myoung Yoo; Park, Yong Seob; Kim, Nam-Hoon

    2016-05-01

    The influence of indium composition, controlled by changing the film thickness, on the optical and electrical properties of amorphous indium selenide thin films was studied for the application of these materials as Cd-free buffer layers in CI(G)S solar cells. Indium selenide thin films were prepared using RF magnetron sputtering method. The indium composition of the amorphous indium selenide thin films was varied from 94.56 to 49.72 at% by increasing the film thickness from 30 to 70 nm. With a decrease in film thickness, the optical transmittance increased from 87.63% to 96.03% and Eg decreased from 3.048 to 2.875 eV. Carrier concentration and resistivity showed excellent values of ≥1015 cm(-3) and ≤ 10(4) Ω x cm, respectively. The conductivity type of the amorphous indium selenide thin films could be controlled by changing the film-thickness-induced amount of In. These results indicate the possibility of tuning the properties of amorphous indium selenide thin films by changing their composition for use as an alternate buffer layer material in CI(G)S solar cells. PMID:27483886

  14. Development of High Band Gap Absorber and Buffer Materials for Thin Film Solar Cell Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwyer, Dan

    2011-12-01

    CuInGaSe2 (CIGS) device efficiencies are the highest of the thin film absorber materials (vs. CdTe, alpha-Si, CuInSe2). However, the band gap of the highest efficiency CIGS cells deviates from the expected ideal value predicted by models [1]. Widening the band gap to the theoretically ideal value is one way to increase cell efficiencies. Widening the band gap can be accomplished in two ways; by finding a solution to the Ga-related defects which limit the open circuit voltage at high Ga ratios, or by utilizing different elemental combinations to form an alternative high band gap photoactive Cu-chalcopyrite (which includes any combination of the cations Cu, Al, Ga, and In along with the anions S, Se, and Te). This thesis focuses on the second option, substituting aluminum for gallium in the chalcopyrite lattice to form a CuInAlSe2 (CIAS) film using a sputtering and selenization approach. Both sequential and co-sputtering of metal precursors is performed. Indium was found to be very mobile during both sputtering processes, with a tendency to diffuse to the film surface even when deposited as the base layer in a sequential sputtering process. Elemental diffusion was controlled to a degree using thicker Cu top layer in co-sputtering. The greater thermal conductivity of stainless steel foil (16 W/mK) vs. glass (0.9-1.3 W/mK) can also be used to limit indium diffusion, by keeping the substrate cooler during sputtering. In both sputtering methods aluminum is deposited oxygen-free by capping the film with a Cu capping layer in combination with controlling the indium diffusion. Selenization of metal precursor films is completed using two different techniques. The first is a thermal evaporation approach from a heated box source (method 1 -- reactive thermal evaporation (RTE-Se)). The second is batch selenization using a heated tube furnace (method 2 -- batch selenization). Some batch selenized precursors were capped with ˜ 1mum of selenium. In both selenization methods

  15. Management of light absorption in extraordinary optical transmission based ultra-thin-film tandem solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mashooq, Kishwar; Talukder, Muhammad Anisuzzaman

    2016-05-01

    Although ultra-thin-film solar cells can be attractive in reducing the cost, they suffer from low absorption as the thickness of the active layer is usually much smaller than the wavelength of incident light. Different nano-photonic techniques, including plasmonic structures, are being explored to increase the light absorption in ultra-thin-film solar cells. More than one layer of active materials with different energy bandgaps can be used in tandem to increase the light absorption as well. However, due to different amount of light absorption in different active layers, photo-generated currents in different active layers will not be the same. The current mismatch between the tandem layers makes them ineffective in increasing the efficiency. In this work, we investigate the light absorption properties of tandem solar cells with two ultra-thin active layers working as two subcells and a metal layer with periodically perforated holes in-between the two subcells. While the metal layer helps to overcome the current mismatch, the periodic holes increase the absorption of incident light by helping extraordinary optical transmission of the incident light from the top to the bottom subcell, and by coupling the incident light to plasmonic and photonic modes within ultra-thin active layers. We extensively study the effects of the geometry of holes in the intermediate metal layer on the light absorption properties of tandem solar cells with ultra-thin active layers. We also study how different metals in the intermediate layer affect the light absorption; how the geometry of holes in the intermediate layer affects the absorption when the active layer materials are changed; and how the intermediate metal layer affects the collection of photo-generated electron-hole pairs at the terminals. We find that in a solar cell with 6,6-phenyl C61-butyric acid methyl ester top subcell and copper indium gallium selenide bottom subcell, if the periodic holes in the metal layer are square or

  16. Dye sensitized solar cells based on nanowire sculptured thin film titanium dioxide photoanodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pursel, Sean M.

    Energy harvested from the sun using photovoltaics (PVs) is a renewable resource in high demand. Photovoltaics convert photons into electron-hole pairs which are then separated and used for electrical power. 75 TW of energy arrives from the sun every year onto US soil. Harvesting it all would provide enough energy to power the entire world for more than five years. It is this abundance of energy that makes PVs an attractive alternative to fossil fuels. PVs currently produce 0.15% of the energy consumed in the US. Production needs to grow as the worldwide demand for energy is projected to almost double by 2050. Fundamental and device based PV research have made steady efficiency gains in silicon based devices and thin film devices have started to become commercially viable. However, less expensive devices with suitable efficiency have not been fully developed. Dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) are one such device which has been optimized using standard components. However, device efficiency has not increased significantly since DSSCs were first conceived in 1991. Interestingly, none of the standard components are optimized, but act in a synergistic way in the most efficient devices. This research, along with other parallel research, attempts to optimize a single component of DSSCs with the goal of combining efforts to produce a device with increased efficiency. This research attempts to optimize the TiO2 photoanode used in DSSCs in terms of electron collection, dye coverage, light harvesting, and novel electrolyte infiltration by replacing the standard colloidal structure with nanowires deposited using physical vapor deposition at an oblique angle to form sculptured thin films. The results are quantified through standard photovoltaic testing, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, UV-Vis-NIR spectroscopy, and general materials characterization techniques. The nanowire photoanodes are engineered during deposition using reactive evaporation, substrate heating

  17. Flexible thin-film black gold membranes with ultrabroadband plasmonic nanofocusing for efficient solar vapour generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bae, Kyuyoung; Kang, Gumin; Cho, Suehyun K.; Park, Wounjhang; Kim, Kyoungsik; Padilla, Willie J.

    2015-12-01

    Solar steam generation has been achieved by surface plasmon heating with metallic nanoshells or nanoparticles, which have inherently narrow absorption bandwidth. For efficient light-to-heat conversion from a wider solar spectrum, we employ adiabatic plasmonic nanofocusing to attain both polarization-independent ultrabroadband light absorption and high plasmon dissipation loss. Here we demonstrate large area, flexible thin-film black gold membranes, which have multiscale structures of varying metallic nanoscale gaps (0-200 nm) as well as microscale funnel structures. The adiabatic nanofocusing of self-aggregated metallic nanowire bundle arrays produces average absorption of 91% at 400-2,500 nm and the microscale funnel structures lead to average reflection of 7% at 2.5-17 μm. This membrane allows heat localization within the few micrometre-thick layer and continuous water provision through micropores. We efficiently generate water vapour with solar thermal conversion efficiency up to 57% at 20 kW m-2. This new structure has a variety of applications in solar energy harvesting, thermoplasmonics and related technologies.

  18. CIGSS Thin Film Solar Cells: Final Subcontract Report, 10 October 2001-30 June 2005

    SciTech Connect

    Dhere, N. G.

    2006-02-01

    This report describes the I-III-VI2 compounds that are developing into a promising material to meet the energy requirement of the world. CuInSe2 (CIS) and its alloy with Ga and S have shown long-term stability and highest conversion efficiency of 19.5%. Among the various ways of preparing CuIn1-xGaxSe2-ySy (CIGSS)/CdS thin-film solar cells, co-evaporation and sputtering techniques are the most promising. Sputtering is an established process for very high-throughput manufacturing. ARCO Solar, now Shell Solar, pioneered the work in CIS using the sputtering technique. The two-stage process developed by ARCO Solar involved sputtering of a copper and indium layer on molybdenum-coated glass as the first step. In the second step, the copper-indium layers were exposed to a selenium-bearing gas such as hydrogen selenide (H2Se) mixed with argon. The hydrogen selenide breaks down and leaves selenium, which reacts and mixes with the copper and indium in such a way to produce very high-quality CIS absorber layer. Sputtering technology has the added advantage of being easily scaled up and promotes roll-to-roll production on flexible substrates. Preliminary experiments were carried out. ZnO/ZnO:Al deposition by RF magnetron sputtering and CdS deposition by chemical-bath deposition are being carried out on a routine basis.

  19. Flexible thin-film black gold membranes with ultrabroadband plasmonic nanofocusing for efficient solar vapour generation.

    PubMed

    Bae, Kyuyoung; Kang, Gumin; Cho, Suehyun K; Park, Wounjhang; Kim, Kyoungsik; Padilla, Willie J

    2015-01-01

    Solar steam generation has been achieved by surface plasmon heating with metallic nanoshells or nanoparticles, which have inherently narrow absorption bandwidth. For efficient light-to-heat conversion from a wider solar spectrum, we employ adiabatic plasmonic nanofocusing to attain both polarization-independent ultrabroadband light absorption and high plasmon dissipation loss. Here we demonstrate large area, flexible thin-film black gold membranes, which have multiscale structures of varying metallic nanoscale gaps (0-200 nm) as well as microscale funnel structures. The adiabatic nanofocusing of self-aggregated metallic nanowire bundle arrays produces average absorption of 91% at 400-2,500 nm and the microscale funnel structures lead to average reflection of 7% at 2.5-17 μm. This membrane allows heat localization within the few micrometre-thick layer and continuous water provision through micropores. We efficiently generate water vapour with solar thermal conversion efficiency up to 57% at 20 kW m(-2). This new structure has a variety of applications in solar energy harvesting, thermoplasmonics and related technologies. PMID:26657535

  20. Flexible thin-film black gold membranes with ultrabroadband plasmonic nanofocusing for efficient solar vapour generation

    PubMed Central

    Bae, Kyuyoung; Kang, Gumin; Cho, Suehyun K.; Park, Wounjhang; Kim, Kyoungsik; Padilla, Willie J.

    2015-01-01

    Solar steam generation has been achieved by surface plasmon heating with metallic nanoshells or nanoparticles, which have inherently narrow absorption bandwidth. For efficient light-to-heat conversion from a wider solar spectrum, we employ adiabatic plasmonic nanofocusing to attain both polarization-independent ultrabroadband light absorption and high plasmon dissipation loss. Here we demonstrate large area, flexible thin-film black gold membranes, which have multiscale structures of varying metallic nanoscale gaps (0–200 nm) as well as microscale funnel structures. The adiabatic nanofocusing of self-aggregated metallic nanowire bundle arrays produces average absorption of 91% at 400–2,500 nm and the microscale funnel structures lead to average reflection of 7% at 2.5–17 μm. This membrane allows heat localization within the few micrometre-thick layer and continuous water provision through micropores. We efficiently generate water vapour with solar thermal conversion efficiency up to 57% at 20 kW m−2. This new structure has a variety of applications in solar energy harvesting, thermoplasmonics and related technologies. PMID:26657535

  1. CIGS absorber layer with double grading Ga profile for highly efficient solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saadat, M.; Moradi, M.; Zahedifar, M.

    2016-04-01

    It is well-known that the band gap grading in CIGS solar cells is crucial for achieving highly efficient solar cells. We stimulate a CIGS solar cell and investigate the effects of the band gap grading on performance of the CIGS solar cell, where Ga/(Ga + In) ratio (GGI) at back (Cb) and front (Cf) of the absorber layer are considered constant. Our simulations show that by increasing the GGI at middle of CIGS absorber layer (Cm), the JSC decreases and VOC increases independent of the distance of the Cm from the back contact (Xm). For Cm lower than Cf, JSC increases and VOC decreases when the Xm shifts to the front of the CIGS layer. The behavior of JSC and VOC became reverse for the case of Cm greater than Cf. Almost in all of the structures, efficiency and FF have same behaviors. Our simulations show that the highest efficiency is obtained at Cm = 0.8 and Xm = 200 nm.

  2. Organic solar cells based on liquid crystalline and polycrystalline thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoo, Seunghyup

    This dissertation describes the study of organic thin-film solar cells in pursuit of affordable, renewable, and environmentally-friendly energy sources. Particular emphasis is given to the molecular ordering found in liquid crystalline or polycrystalline films as a way to leverage the efficiencies of these types of cells. Maximum efficiencies estimated based on excitonic character of organic solar cells show power conversion efficiencies larger than 10% are possible in principle. However, their performance is often limited due to small exciton diffusion lengths and poor transport properties which may be attributed to the amorphous nature of most organic semiconductors. Discotic liquid crystal (DLC) copper phthalocyanine was investigated as an easily processible building block for solar cells in which ordered molecular arrangements are enabled by a self-organization in its mesophases. An increase in photocurrent and a reduction in series resistance have been observed in a cell which underwent an annealing process. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) measurements suggest that structural and morphological changes induced after the annealing process are related to these improvements. In an alternative approach, p-type pentacene thin films prepared by physical vapor deposition were incorporated into heterojunction solar cells with C60 as n-type layers. Power conversion efficiencies of 2.7% under broadband illumination (350--900 nm) with a peak external quantum efficiency of 58% have been achieved with the broad spectral coverage across the visible spectrum. Analysis using an exciton diffusion model shows this efficient carrier generation is mainly due to the large exciton diffusion length of pentacene films. Joint XRD and AFM studies reveal that the highly crystalline nature of pentacene films can account for the observed large exciton diffusion length. In addition, the electrical characteristics are studied as a function of light intensity using

  3. Indium phosphide/cadmium sulfide thin-film solar cells. Semiannual report, July 1980-December 1980

    SciTech Connect

    Zanio, K.

    1981-03-01

    InP thin films were deposited by planar reactive deposition on recyrstallized CdS (RXCdS) and semi-insulating (100) InP substrates and evaluated as potential layers for an all-thin-film solar cell. Films prepared on RXCdS at approximately 330/sup 0/C contained a mixture of grains having both large and submicron lateral dimensions. SIMS analysis showed the interdiffusion profiles to be well behaved and, within the resolution of the analysis, no significant difference in the profiles between structures prepared at 330/sup 0/C and 380/sup 0/C. Be-doped epitaxial films, deposited on semi-insulating InP at 330/sup 0/C, showed both n- and p-type behavior. Films prepared at higher and lower temperatures with a freshly Be-charged In source were p-type and n-type, respectively; the n-type behavior is associated with an excess of n-type native defects. SIMS analyses confirmed the presence of Be in all Be-doped films. Growth with deviation from stoichiometry was initiated at 330/sup 0/C to reduce the concentration of native defects. Growth of Be-doped films at higher substrate temperature with the same Be-doped source after several runs eventually resulted in n-type films. Analyses of the In source and films were initiated to determine the cause of the transient doping. As an alternative to Be doping, p-type Zn-doped InP films were prepared on InP semi-insulating substrates with room-temperature carrier concentration and mobilities of 6 x 10/sup 16/ cm/sup -3/, and 80 cm/sup 2//Vsec, respectively.

  4. Fabrication of CZTS-based thin film solar cells using all-solution processing and pulsed light crystallization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munn, Carson; Haran, Shivan; Seok, Ilwoo

    2013-04-01

    Solar cells can be produced using thin film based photovoltaic materials; these are highly efficient with respect to their optical properties and manufacturing cost. The prospective thin film solar cells are composed of Copper, Zinc, Tin, and Sulfide, or `CZTS', this contains chemicals, which are both earth-abundant and non-toxic. The all-solution based process is investigated which is on a single-step electro-chemistry deposition that provides all constituents from the same electrolyte. This investigation was successful in our research group with a high degree of success and a photo-thermal energy driven sintering process that forms a CZTS material from the as-deposited chemicals was added. This enables the as-deposited chemicals to be covalently bonded and crystallized without using a costly vacuum process. In post-heat treatment, a homemade intense pulsed lighting (IPL) system was utilized for rapid thermal annealing. The successful deposition of the CZTS thin film was then evaluated and analyzed using cyclic voltammetry (CV), SEM/EDAX, and XRD. It has been concluded that photovoltaic thin film fabrication is truly comparable to the conventional deposition and annealing methods in terms of photovoltaic efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

  5. Indium tin oxide with titanium doping for transparent conductive film application on CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Wei-Sheng; Cheng, Huai-Ming; Hu, Hung-Chun; Li, Ying-Tse; Huang, Shi-Da; Yu, Hau-Wei; Pu, Nen-Wen; Liang, Shih-Chang

    2015-11-01

    In this study, Ti-doped indium tin oxide (ITO:Ti) thin films were fabricated using a DC-magnetron sputtering deposition method. The thin films were grown without introducing oxygen or heating the substrate, and no post-growth annealing was performed after fabrication. The thickness of the ITO:Ti thin films (350 nm) was controlled while increasing the sputtering power from 50 to 150 W. According to the results, the optimal optoelectronic properties were observed in ITO:Ti thin films grown at a sputtering power of 100 W, yielding a reduced resistivity of 3.2 × 10-4 Ω-cm and a mean high transmittance of 83% at wavelengths ranging from 400 to 800 nm. The optimal ITO:Ti thin films were used to fabricate a Cu(In,Ga)Se2 solar cell that exhibited a photoelectric conversion efficiency of 11.3%, a short-circuit current density of 33.1 mA/cm2, an open-circuit voltage of 0.54 V, and a fill factor of 0.64.

  6. Nanostructured p-type CZTS thin films prepared by a facile solution process for 3D p-n junction solar cells.

    PubMed

    Park, Si-Nae; Sung, Shi-Joon; Sim, Jun-Hyoung; Yang, Kee-Jeong; Hwang, Dae-Kue; Kim, JunHo; Kim, Gee Yeong; Jo, William; Kim, Dae-Hwan; Kang, Jin-Kyu

    2015-07-01

    Nanoporous p-type semiconductor thin films prepared by a simple solution-based process with appropriate thermal treatment and three-dimensional (3D) p-n junction solar cells fabricated by depositing n-type semiconductor layers onto the nanoporous p-type thin films show considerable photovoltaic performance compared with conventional thin film p-n junction solar cells. Spin-coated p-type Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin films prepared using metal chlorides and thiourea show unique nanoporous thin film morphology, which is composed of a cluster of CZTS nanograins of 50-500 nm, and the obvious 3D p-n junction structure is fabricated by the deposition of n-type CdS on the nanoporous CZTS thin films by chemical bath deposition. The photovoltaic properties of 3D p-n junction CZTS solar cells are predominantly affected by the scale of CZTS nanograins, which is easily controlled by the sulfurization temperature of CZTS precursor films. The scale of CZTS nanograins determines the minority carrier transportation within the 3D p-n junction between CZTS and CdS, which are closely related with the photocurrent of series resistance of 3D p-n junction solar cells. 3D p-n junction CZTS solar cells with nanograins below 100 nm show power conversion efficiency of 5.02%, which is comparable with conventional CZTS thin film solar cells. PMID:26061271

  7. Characteristics of in-substituted CZTS thin film and bifacial solar cell.

    PubMed

    Ge, Jie; Chu, Junhao; Jiang, Jinchun; Yan, Yanfa; Yang, Pingxiong

    2014-12-10

    Implementing bifacial photovoltaic devices based on transparent conducting oxides (TCO) as the front and back contacts is highly appealing to improve the efficiency of kesterite solar cells. The p-type In substituted Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTIS) thin-film solar cell absorber has been fabricated on ITO glass by sulfurizing coelectroplated Cu-Zn-Sn-S precursors in H2S (5 vol %) atmosphere at 520 °C for 30 min. Experimental proof, including X-ray diffraction, Raman spectroscopy, UV-vis-NIR transmission/reflection spectra, PL spectra, and electron microscopies, is presented for the interfacial reaction between the ITO back contact and CZTS absorber. This aggressive reaction due to thermal processing contributes to substitutional diffusion of In into CZTS, formation of secondary phases and electrically conductive degradation of ITO back contact. The structural, lattice vibrational, optical absorption, and defective properties of the CZTIS alloy absorber layer have been analyzed and discussed. The new dopant In is desirably capable of improving the open circuit voltage deficit of kesterite device. However, the nonohmic back contact in the bifacial device negatively limits the open circuit voltage and fill factor, evidencing by illumination-/temperature-dependent J-V and frequency-dependent capacitance-voltage (C-V-f) measurements. A 3.4% efficient solar cell is demonstrated under simultaneously bifacial illumination from both sides of TCO front and back contacts. PMID:25340540

  8. Plasmonic rear reflectors for thin-film solar cells: design principles from electromagnetic modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Disney, Claire E. R.; Pillai, Supriya; Johnson, Craig M.; Xu, Qi; Green, Martin A.

    2014-10-01

    The use of plasmonic structures to enhance light trapping in solar cells has recently been the focus of significant research, but these structures can be sensitive to various design parameters or require complicated fabrication processes. Nanosphere lithography can produce regular arrays of nanoscale features which could enhance absorption of light into thin films such as those used in novel solar cell designs. Finite-difference-time-domain simulations are used to model a variety of structures producible by this technique and compare them against the use of mirrors as rear reflectors. Through analysis of these simulations, sensitivity of device performance to parameters has been investigated. Variables considered include the feature size and array period, as well as metal and absorber materials selection and thickness. Improvements in idealized photocurrent density are calculated relative to the use of rear mirrors that are a standard for solar cells. The maximum simulated increase to photocurrent density was 3.58mA/cm2 or 21.61% for a 2μm thick Si cell relative to the case where a silver mirror is used as a rear reflector. From this, an initial set of design principles for such structures are developed and some avenues for further investigation are identified.

  9. Efficient, Ordered Bulk Heterojunction Nanocyrstalline Solar Cells by Annealing of Ultrathin Squaraine Thin Films

    SciTech Connect

    Wei, Guodan; Lunt, Richard R; Sun, Kai; Wang, Siyi; Thompson, Mark E.; Forrest, Stephen R.

    2010-09-08

    Spin-cast 2,4-bis[4-(N,N-diisobutylamino)-2,6-dihydroxyphenyl]squaraine (SQ) thin films only 62 Å thick are converted from amorphous to polycrystalline via postannealing at elevated temperatures. The surface roughness of the SQ films increases by a factor of 2, while selected area electron diffraction spectra indicate an increase in the extent of postannealed film crystallinity. Dichloromethane solvent annealing is also demonstrated to increase the exciton diffusion length of SQ by a factor of 3 over thermally annealed SQ films as a result of further enhancement in crystalline order. We find that the roughened surface features have a length scale on the order of the exciton diffusion length. Hence, coating the donor SQ with the acceptor, C{sub 60}, results in a nearly optimum controlled bulk heterojunction solar cell structure. Optimized SQ/C{sub 60} photovoltaic cells have a power conversion efficiency of η{sub p} = 4.6 ± 0.1% (correcting for solar mismatch) at 1 sun (AM1.5G) simulated solar intensity, and a corresponding peak external quantum efficiency of EQE = 43 ± 1% even for the very thin SQ layers employed.

  10. Light trapping in thin-film solar cells measured by Raman spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Ledinský, M.; Moulin, E.; Bugnon, G.; Meillaud, F.; Ballif, C.; Ganzerová, K.; Vetushka, A.; Fejfar, A.

    2014-09-15

    In this study, Raman spectroscopy is used as a tool to determine the light-trapping capability of textured ZnO front electrodes implemented in microcrystalline silicon (μc-Si:H) solar cells. Microcrystalline silicon films deposited on superstrates of various roughnesses are characterized by Raman micro-spectroscopy at excitation wavelengths of 442 nm, 514 nm, 633 nm, and 785 nm, respectively. The way to measure quantitatively and with a high level of reproducibility the Raman intensity is described in details. By varying the superstrate texture and with it the light trapping in the μc-Si:H absorber layer, we find significant differences in the absolute Raman intensity measured in the near infrared wavelength region (where light trapping is relevant). A good agreement between the absolute Raman intensity and the external quantum efficiency of the μc-Si:H solar cells is obtained, demonstrating the validity of the introduced method. Applications to thin-film solar cells, in general, and other optoelectronic devices are discussed.

  11. Efficient light scattering in plasmonic light trapping designs for thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Liming; Varadan, Vasundara V.

    2015-04-01

    Plasmonic structures have been proposed for enhancing light absorption in thin film solar cells, for which insufficient light absorption is a limiting factor for further improvement of efficiency. The optical path of light in the absorber layer of a solar cell is increased due to the enhanced light scattering by plasmonic structures at resonance. This process involves two steps of energy conversion: light-electron and then electron-light. The first step couples optical energy into the kinetic energy of collective electron motions in plasmonic structures, forming oscillating current. This step is easy to implement as long as plasmonic structures are at resonance. The second step releases the energy from electrons to photons. An efficient release of photon energy is a must for solar cell applications and it is dependent on the two competing effects: light scattering and field localization that results in heat loss. Theoretical discussions and simulation work are provided in the paper. The scattering of light by a plasmonic structure is analyzed based on the antenna radiation theory. Three factors are found to be important for the efficiency of a plasmonic light trapping design: the radiation of each unit structure, the array factor and the energy feeding of the structure. An efficient plasmonic light trapping design requires proper considerations of all the three factors.

  12. Electron Backscatter Diffraction: An Important Tool for Analyses of Structure-Property Relationships in Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abou-Ras, D.; Kavalakkatt, J.; Nichterwitz, M.; Schäfer, N.; Harndt, S.; Wilkinson, A. J.; Tsyrulin, K.; Schulz, H.; Bauer, F.

    2013-09-01

    The present work gives an overview of the application of electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) in the field of thin-film solar cells, which consist of stacks of polycrystalline layers on various rigid or flexible substrates. EBSD provides access to grain-size and local-orientation distributions, film textures, and grain-boundary types. By evaluation of the EBSD patterns within individual grains of the polycrystalline solar cell layers, microstrain distributions also can be obtained. These microstructural properties are of considerable interest for research and development of thin-film solar cells. Moreover, EBSD may be performed three-dimensionally, by alternating slicing of cross sections in a focused ion-beam machine and EBSD acquisition. To relate the microstructural properties to the electrical properties of individual layers as well as to the device performances of corresponding solar cells, EBSD can be combined with electron-beam-induced current and cathodoluminescence measurements and with various scanning-probe microscopy methods such as Kelvin-probe force, scanning spreading resistance, or scanning capacitance microscopy on identical specimen positions. Together with standard device characterization of thin-film solar cells, these scanning microscopy measurements provide the means for extensive analysis of structure-property relationships in solar-cell stacks with polycrystalline layers.

  13. Electro deposition of cuprous oxide for thin film solar cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahrestani, Seyed Mohammad

    electro-deposition of Cu2O n-type were identified consistently for the first time. The electro-deposition electrolyte is based 0.01M acetate copper and 0.1 M sodium acetate: it has a pH between 6.3 and 4, a potential of from 0 to -0.25 V vs. Ag / AgCl and a temperature of 60oC. The optimum annealing temperature of the n-type Cu2O layers is between 120-150oC for the annealing time of 30 to 120 minutes. Resistivity of the n-type films varies between 5 x 103 and 5 x 104 at pH 4 to pH 6.4. We have shown for the first time that bubbling nitrogen gas in the electroplating cell improves significantly the spectral response of the electro-deposited n-type thin film. A two steps electro-deposition process was implemented to make the p-n homojunction cuprous oxide. Indium tin oxide (ITO) was used as a transparent conductive oxide substrate. A p-Cu2O was electrodeposited on ITO. After heat treatment a thin film layer of n-Cu 2O was electrodeposited on top of previous layer. The performance of a p-n homojunction photovoltaic solar cell of Cu2O was determined. The short-circuit current and the open circuit voltage were respectively determined to be as 0.35 volts and 235 muA/cm2. The fill factor (FF) and conversion efficiency of light into electricity were respectively measured to be 0.305 and 0.082%.

  14. Hybrid ZnO nanowire/a-Si:H thin-film radial junction solar cells using nanoparticle front contacts

    SciTech Connect

    Pathirane, M. Iheanacho, B.; Lee, C.-H.; Wong, W. S.; Tamang, A.; Knipp, D.; Lujan, R.

    2015-10-05

    Hydrothermally synthesized disordered ZnO nanowires were conformally coated with a-Si:H thin-films to fabricate three dimensional hybrid nanowire/thin-film structures. The a-Si:H layer formed a radial junction p-i-n diode solar cell around the ZnO nanowire. The cylindrical hybrid solar cells enhanced light scattering throughout the UV-visible-NIR spectrum (300 nm–800 nm) resulting in a 22% increase in short-circuit current density compared to the reference planar p-i-n device. A fill factor of 69% and a total power conversion efficiency of 6.5% were achieved with the hybrid nanowire solar cells using a spin-on indium tin oxide nanoparticle suspension as the top contact.

  15. Preparation and Properties of Evaporated CdTe and All Thin Film CdTe/CdS Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahzad, Naseem

    1991-05-01

    Cadmium telluride thin films were prepared by vacuum evaporation of CdTe powder in an attempt to fabricate all thin film solar cells of the type CdTe/CdS. Characterization of CdTe has shown it to have a band gap of 1.522 eV and a resistivity of 22Ω-cm. As prepared, solar cells exhibited low values of output parameters. Given quantity of copper was then deposited on top of the CdTe/CdS solar cells and the whole system was annealed at 350° C. This copper doping changed the output parameters favorably with a maximum efficiency of 1.9%.

  16. The investigation of optimal Silicon/Silicon(1-x)Germanium(x) thin-film solar cells with quantitative analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehsan, Md Amimul

    Thin-film solar cells are emerging from the research laboratory to become commercially available devices for low cost electrical power generation applications. Silicon which is a cheap, abundant and non-toxic elemental semiconductor is an attractive candidate for these solar cells. Advanced modeling and simulation of Si thin-film solar cells has been performed to make this technology more cost effective without compromising the performance and efficiency. In this study, we focus on the design and optimization of Si/Si1-xGex heterostructures, and microcrystalline and nanocrystalline Si thin-film solar cells. Layer by layer optimization of these structures was performed by using advanced bandgap engineering followed by numerical analysis for their structural, electrical and optical characterizations. Special care has been introduced for the selection of material layers which can help to improve the light absorption properties of these structures for harvesting the solar spectrum. Various strategies such as the optimization of the doping concentrations, Ge contents in Si1-xGex buffer layer, incorporation of the absorber layers and surface texturing have been in used to improve overall conversion efficiencies of the solar cells. To be more specific, the observed improvement in the conversion efficiency of these solar cells has been calculated by tailoring the thickness of the buffer, absorber, and emitter layers. In brief, an approach relying on the phenomena of improved absorption of the buffer and absorber layer which leads to a corresponding gain in the open circuit voltage and short circuit current is explored. For numerical analysis, a PC1D simulator is employed that uses finite element analysis technique for solving semiconductor transport equations. A comparative study of the Si/Si1-xGex and Ge/Si1-xGex is also performed. We found that due to the higher lattice mismatch of Ge to Si, thin-film solar cells based on Si/Si1-xGex heterostructures performed much

  17. The complex interface chemistry of thin-film silicon/zinc oxide solar cell structures.

    PubMed

    Gerlach, D; Wimmer, M; Wilks, R G; Félix, R; Kronast, F; Ruske, F; Bär, M

    2014-12-21

    The interface between solid-phase crystallized phosphorous-doped polycrystalline silicon (poly-Si(n(+))) and aluminum-doped zinc oxide (ZnO:Al) was investigated using spatially resolved photoelectron emission microscopy. We find the accumulation of aluminum in the proximity of the interface. Based on a detailed photoemission line analysis, we also suggest the formation of an interface species. Silicon suboxide and/or dehydrated hemimorphite have been identified as likely candidates. For each scenario a detailed chemical reaction pathway is suggested. The chemical instability of the poly-Si(n(+))/ZnO:Al interface is explained by the fact that SiO2 is more stable than ZnO and/or that H2 is released from the initially deposited a-Si:H during the crystallization process. As a result, Zn (a deep acceptor in silicon) is "liberated" close to the silicon/zinc oxide interface presenting the inherent risk of forming deep defects in the silicon absorber. These could act as recombination centers and thus limit the performance of silicon/zinc oxide based solar cells. Based on this insight some recommendations with respect to solar cell design, material selection, and process parameters are given for further knowledge-based thin-film silicon device optimization. PMID:25363298

  18. InGaN-based thin film solar cells: Epitaxy, structural design, and photovoltaic properties

    SciTech Connect

    Sang, Liwen; Liao, Meiyong; Koide, Yasuo; Sumiya, Masatomo

    2015-03-14

    In{sub x}Ga{sub 1−x}N, with the tunable direct bandgaps from ultraviolet to near infrared region, offers a promising candidate for the high-efficiency next-generation thin-film photovoltaic applications. Although the adoption of thick InGaN film as the active region is desirable to obtain efficient light absorption and carrier collection compared to InGaN/GaN quantum wells structure, the understanding on the effect from structural design is still unclear due to the poor-quality InGaN films with thickness and difficulty of p-type doping. In this paper, we comprehensively investigate the effects from film epitaxy, doping, and device structural design on the performances of the InGaN-based solar cells. The high-quality InGaN thick film is obtained on AlN/sapphire template, and p-In{sub 0.08}Ga{sub 0.92}N is achieved with a high hole concentration of more than 10{sup 18 }cm{sup −3}. The dependence of the photovoltaic performances on different structures, such as active regions and p-type regions is analyzed with respect to the carrier transport mechanism in the dark and under illumination. The strategy of improving the p-i interface by using a super-thin AlN interlayer is provided, which successfully enhances the performance of the solar cells.

  19. Thin Dielectric Films Containing Tb{sup 3+} Ions For Application In Thin Film Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Sendova-Vassileva, M.; Angelov, O.; Dimova-Malmovska, D.; Baumgartner, K.; Carius, R.; Hollaender, B.

    2010-01-21

    Thin transparent dielectric films containing Tb{sup 3+} are developed for application as spectral converters of the solar spectrum in thin film silicon solar cells. The results on the deposition and characterization of thin SiO{sub 2} and Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} films containing Tb{sup 3+} ions are presented. The films are prepared by RF magnetron co-sputtering, a well established technique for large area coatings. Photoluminescence (PL) is measured at room temperature, using the 488 nm line of an Ar laser and a nitrogen-cooled CCD camera attached to a monochromator. The dependence of the PL intensity on the concentration of Tb in the film is studied. It is found that the intensity exhibits a maximum at about 1 at.%. Annealing studies are performed on SiO{sub 2}:Tb with two different methods to improve the PL intensity. In both regimes of annealing, the best results for thin SiO{sub 2}:Tb films are obtained in the temperature range of 650-700 deg. C. After treatment at this temperature the Tb PL increases 2.5-3 times.

  20. Diode laser crystallization processes of Si thin-film solar cells on glass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yun, Jae Sung; Ahn, Cha Ho; Jung, Miga; Huang, Jialiang; Kim, Kyung Hun; Varlamov, Sergey; Green, Martin A.

    2014-07-01

    The crystallization of Si thin-film on glass using continuous-wave diode laser is performed. The effect of various processing parameters including laser power density and scanning speed is investigated in respect to microstructure and crystallographic orientation. Optimal laser power as per scanning speed is required in order to completely melt the entire Si film. When scan speed of 15-100 cm/min is used, large linear grains are formed along the laser scan direction. Laser scan speed over 100 cm/min forms relatively smaller grains that are titled away from the scan direction. Two diode model fitting of Suns-Voc results have shown that solar cells crystallized with scan speed over 100 cm/min are limited by grain boundary recombination (n = 2). EBSD micrograph shows that the most dominant misorientation angle is 60°. Also, there were regions containing high density of twin boundaries up to ~1.2 × 10-8/cm2. SiOx capping layer is found to be effective for reducing the required laser power density, as well as changing preferred orientation of the film from ⟨ 110 ⟩ to ⟨ 100 ⟩ in surface normal direction. Cracks are always formed during the crystallization process and found to be reducing solar cell performance significantly.

  1. Synthesis of FeS2 Nano Crystals for ink based thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhakal, Tara; Ganta, Lakshmi; Westgate, Charles

    2012-02-01

    With a band gap of 0.95 eV and high absorption coefficient (?10^5 cm-1), FeS2 is ideal for use as a p-type hetero-junction partner in a solar cell. Although pyrite is abundant in nature, getting the right phase for thin films is difficult due to the various phases of iron sulfides. We propose an ink based process for attaining the pyrite phase. Our experimental process involves use of low cost non-toxic chemicals for synthesis. The process involves reacting iron (II) chloride, 1, 2-hexadecanediol with 70% Oleylamine at 100 C for 1 hour followed by introduction of sulfur and reacting for 2 hours at 220 C. The reaction provides perfect nano crystals dispersed in a carbon based solution which is later subjected to centrifugation to separate the crystals. After multiple cleaning cycles, the crystals were dispersed in chloroform for uniform suspension. SEM image the film formed by drop casting followed by argon-annealing revealed that the nano-crystals were hexagonal with sizes ranging from 100-500nm with perfect symmetry. EDAX analysis showed the iron to sulfur atomic percentage ratio 1:1. The argon annealed film was then sulfurized using an organic sulfur source at 400 C, which gave a desired pyrite cubic phase. We will present the growth process and the efficiency data for this ink based FeS2 solar cell.

  2. Quantitative determination of element distributions in silicon based thin film solar cells using SNMS.

    PubMed

    Gastel, M; Breuer, U; Holzbrecher, H; Becker, J S; Dietze, H J; Kubon, M; Wagner, H

    1995-10-01

    The determination of elemental distributions in thin film solar cells based on amorphous silicon using electron beam SNMS is possible by quantifying the measured ion intensities. The relative sensitivity factors (RSFs) for all elements measured have to be known. The RSFs have been determined experimentally using implantation and bulk standards with known concentrations of the interesting elements. The measured RSFs have been compared with calculated RSFs. The model used for the calculation of the RSFs takes into account the probability for electron impact ionization and the dwell time of the neutrals inside the postionization region. The comparison between measured and calculated RSF shows, that this model is capable to explain the RSFs for most elements. Differences between calculated and measured values can be explained by the formation of hydride and fluoride molecules (in case of H and F) and influences of the angular distribution of the sputtered neutrals in case of Al. The experimentally determined RSFs have been used for a quantification of depth profiles of the i-, buffer-, p- and front contact layers of a-Si solar cells. PMID:15048522

  3. Thin Dielectric Films Containing Tb3+ Ions For Application In Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sendova-Vassileva, M.; Baumgartner, K.; Angelov, O.; Holländer, B.; Dimova-Malmovska, D.; Carius, R.

    2010-01-01

    Thin transparent dielectric films containing Tb3+ are developed for application as spectral converters of the solar spectrum in thin film silicon solar cells. The results on the deposition and characterization of thin SiO2 and Al2O3 films containing Tb3+ ions are presented. The films are prepared by RF magnetron co-sputtering, a well established technique for large area coatings. Photoluminescence (PL) is measured at room temperature, using the 488 nm line of an Ar laser and a nitrogen-cooled CCD camera attached to a monochromator. The dependence of the PL intensity on the concentration of Tb in the film is studied. It is found that the intensity exhibits a maximum at about 1 at.%. Annealing studies are performed on SiO2:Tb with two different methods to improve the PL intensity. In both regimes of annealing, the best results for thin SiO2:Tb films are obtained in the temperature range of 650-700° C. After treatment at this temperature the Tb PL increases 2.5-3 times.

  4. A thin-film polycrystalline photoelectrochemical cell with 8% solar conversion efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hodes, G.

    1980-05-01

    A thin-film polycrystalline CdSe(0.65)Te(0.35)/polysulfide-based photoelectrochemical solar cell with an energy conversion efficiency of up to 8% is presented. Cell electrodes were prepared by painting a slurry of sintered CdSe(0.65)Te(0.35) powder onto a Ti substrate and then annealing in an inert atmosphere and etching by various means. Solar efficiencies of the electrodes immersed in an aqueous electrolyte 1 M in KOH, Na2S and S with a counter electrode of sulfide brass gauze of up to 5% were obtained following a HCl:HNO3 etch, up to 5.5% following etching in dilute aqueous CrO3 and up to 8.0% following photoetching and K2CrO4 treatment. The spectral response of the anode in polysulfide solution exhibits a short-wavelength cutoff due to electrolyte absorption, a flat plateau region, and a fairly sharp long-wavelength cut-off indicating an effective band gap of about 1.45 eV, similar to that of CdTe. Output stability has been found to decrease with increasing output current, remaining stable for more than 21 h at a current of 20 mA/sq cm.

  5. Electrophoretic deposited TiO2 pigment-based back reflectors for thin film solar cells

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Bills, Braden; Morris, Nathan; Dubey, Mukul; Wang, Qi; Fan, Qi Hua

    2015-01-16

    Highly reflective coatings with strong light scattering effect have many applications in optical components and optoelectronic devices. This paper reports titanium dioxide (TiO2) pigment-based reflectors that have 2.5 times higher broadband diffuse reflection than commercially produced aluminum or silver based reflectors and result in efficiency enhancements of a single-junction amorphous Si solar cell. Electrophoretic deposition is used to produce pigment-based back reflectors with high pigment density, controllable film thickness and site-specific deposition. Electrical conductivity of the pigment-based back reflectors is improved by creating electrical vias throughout the pigment-based back reflector by making holes using an electrical discharge / dielectric breakdownmore » approach followed by a second electrophoretic deposition of conductive nanoparticles into the holes. While previous studies have demonstrated the use of pigment-based back reflectors, for example white paint, on glass superstrate configured thin film Si solar cells, this work presents a scheme for producing pigment-based reflectors on complex shape and flexible substrates. Finally, mechanical durability and scalability are demonstrated on a continuous electrophoretic deposition roll-to-roll system which has flexible metal substrate capability of 4 inch wide and 300 feet long.« less

  6. Influence of thickness on physical properties of vacuum evaporated polycrystalline CdTe thin films for solar cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chander, Subhash; Dhaka, M. S.

    2016-02-01

    This paper presents the influence of thickness on physical properties of polycrystalline CdTe thin films. The thin films of thickness 450 nm, 650 nm and 850 nm were deposited employing thermal vacuum evaporation technique on glass and indium tin oxide (ITO) coated glass substrates. The physical properties of these as-grown thin films were investigated employing the X-ray diffraction (XRD), source meter, UV-Vis spectrophotometer, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) coupled with energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS). The structural analysis reveals that the films have zinc-blende cubic structure and polycrystalline in nature with preferred orientation (111). The structural parameters like lattice constant, interplanar spacing, grain size, strain, dislocation density and number of crystallites per unit area are calculated. The average grain size and optical band gap are found in the range 15.16-21.22 nm and 1.44-1.63 eV respectively and observed to decrease with thickness. The current-voltage characteristics show that the electrical conductivity is observed to decrease with thickness. The surface morphology shows that films are free from crystal defects like pin holes and voids as well as homogeneous and uniform. The EDS patterns show the presence of cadmium and tellurium elements in the as grown films. The experimental results reveal that the film thickness plays significant role on the physical properties of as-grown CdTe thin films and higher thickness may be used as absorber layer to solar cells applications.

  7. Impact of thermal annealing on physical properties of vacuum evaporated polycrystalline CdTe thin films for solar cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chander, Subhash; Dhaka, M. S.

    2016-06-01

    A study on impact of post-deposition thermal annealing on the physical properties of CdTe thin films is undertaken in this paper. The thin films of thickness 500 nm were grown on ITO and glass substrates employing thermal vacuum evaporation followed by post-deposition thermal annealing in air atmosphere within low temperature range 150-350 °C. These films were subjected to the XRD, UV-Vis NIR spectrophotometer, source meter, SEM coupled with EDS and AFM for structural, optical, electrical and surface topographical analysis respectively. The diffraction patterns reveal that the films are having zinc-blende cubic structure with preferred orientation along (111) and polycrystalline in nature. The crystallographic parameters are calculated and discussed in detail. The optical band gap is found in the range 1.48-1.64 eV and observed to decrease with thermal annealing. The current-voltage characteristics show that the CdTe films exhibit linear ohmic behavior. The SEM studies show that the as-grown films are homogeneous, uniform and free from defects. The AFM studies reveal that the surface roughness of films is observed to increase with annealing. The experimental results reveal that the thermal annealing has significant impact on the physical properties of CdTe thin films and may be used as absorber layer to the CdTe/CdS thin films solar cells.

  8. Mimicry of sputtered i-ZnO thin films using chemical bath deposition for solution-processed solar cells.

    PubMed

    Della Gaspera, Enrico; van Embden, Joel; Chesman, Anthony S R; Duffy, Noel W; Jasieniak, Jacek J

    2014-12-24

    Solution processing provides a versatile and inexpensive means to prepare functional materials with specifically designed properties. The current challenge is to mimic the structural, optical, and/or chemical properties of thin films fabricated by vacuum-based techniques using solution-based approaches. In this work we focus on ZnO to show that thin films grown using a simple, aqueous-based, chemical bath deposition (CBD) method can mimic the properties of sputtered coatings, provided that the kinetic and thermodynamic reaction parameters are carefully tuned. The role of these parameters toward growing highly oriented and dense ZnO thin films is fully elucidated through detailed microscopic and spectroscopic investigations. The prepared samples exhibit bulk-like optical properties, are intrinsic in their electronic characteristics, and possess negligible organic contaminants, especially when compared to ZnO layers deposited by sol-gel or from nanocrystal inks. The efficacy of our CBD-grown ZnO thin films is demonstrated through the effective replacement of sputtered ZnO buffer layers within high efficiency solution processed Cu2ZnSnS4xSe4(1-x) solar cells. PMID:25506738

  9. Investigation of Some Transparent Metal Oxides as Damp Heat Protective Coating for CIGS Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Pern, F. J.; Yan, F.; Zaaunbrecher, B.; To, B.; Perkins, J.; Noufi, R.

    2012-10-01

    We investigated the protective effectiveness of some transparent metal oxides (TMO) on CIGS solar cell coupons against damp heat (DH) exposure at 85oC and 85% relative humidity (RH). Sputter-deposited bilayer ZnO (BZO) with up to 0.5-um Al-doped ZnO (AZO) layer and 0.2-um bilayer InZnO were used as 'inherent' part of device structure on CdS/CIGS/Mo/SLG. Sputter-deposited 0.2-um ZnSnO and atomic layer deposited (ALD) 0.1-um Al2O3 were used as overcoat on typical BZO/CdS/CIGS/Mo/SLG solar cells. The results were all negative -- all TMO-coated CIGS cells exhibited substantial degradation in DH. Combining the optical photographs, PL and EL imaging, SEM surface micro-morphology, coupled with XRD, I-V and QE measurements, the causes of the device degradations are attributed to hydrolytic corrosion, flaking, micro-cracking, and delamination induced by the DH moisture. Mechanical stress and decrease in crystallinity (grain size effect) could be additional degrading factors for thicker AZO grown on CdS/CIGS.

  10. Sodium-Doped Molybdenum Targets for Controllable Sodium Incorporation in CIGS Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Mansfield, L. M.; Repins, I. L.; Glynn, S.; Carducci, M. D.; Honecker, D. M.; Pankow, J.; Young, M.; DeHart, C.; Sundaramoorthy, R.; Beall, C. L.; To, B.

    2011-07-01

    The efficiency of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) solar cells is enhanced when Na is incorporated in the CIGS absorber layer. This work examines Na incorporation in CIGS utilizing Na-doped Mo sputtered from targets made with sodium molybdate-doped (MONA) powder. Mo:Na films with varying thicknesses were sputtered onto Mo-coated borosilicate glass (BSG) or stainless steel substrates for CIGS solar cells. By use of this technique, the Na content of CIGS can be varied from near-zero to higher than that obtained from a soda-lime glass (SLG) substrate. Targets and deposition conditions are described. The doped Mo films are analyzed, and the resulting devices are compared to devices fabricated on Mo-coated SLG as well as Mo-coated BSG with NaF. Completed devices utilizing MONA exceeded 15.7% efficiency without anti-reflective coating, which was consistently higher than devices prepared with the NaF precursor. Strategies for minimizing adhesion difficulties are presented.

  11. Approaches to Encapsulation of Flexible CIGS Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Olsen, Larry C.; Gross, Mark E.; Graff, Gordon L.; Kundu, Sambhu N.; Chu, Xi; Lin, Steve

    2008-07-16

    Thin-film solar cells based on CIGS are being considered for large scale power plants as well as building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) applications. Past studies indicate that CIGS cells degrade rapidly when exposed to moisture. As a result, an effective approach to encapsulation is required for CIGS cells to satisfy the international standard IEC 61646. CIGS modules fabricated for use in large power plants can be encapsulated with glass sheets on the top and bottom surfaces and can be effectively sealed around the edges. In the case of BIPV applications, however, it is desirable to utilize CIGS cells grown on flexible substrates, both for purposes of achieving reduced weight and for cases involving non-flat surfaces. For these cases, approaches to encapsulation must be compatible with the flexible substrate requirement. Even in the case of large power plants, the glass-to-glass approach to encapsulation may eventually be considered too costly. We are investigating encapsulation of flexible CIGS cells by lamination. Sheets of PET or PEN coated with multilayer barrier coatings are used to laminate the flexible cells. Results are discussed for laminated cells from two CIGS manufacturers. In both cases, the cell efficiency decreases less than 10% after 1000 hours of exposure to an environment of 85C/85%RH. This paper discusses these two approaches, reviews results achieved with cells and mini-modules fabricated by the former Shell Solar, Industries (SSI) stressed at 60C/90%RH (60/90), and recent studies of encapsulated IEC cells subjected to an environment of 85ºC/85%RH (85/85).

  12. New strategy to promote conversion efficiency using high-index nanostructures in thin-film solar cells

    PubMed Central

    Wang, DongLin; Su, Gang

    2014-01-01

    Nano-scaled metallic or dielectric structures may provide various ways to trap light into thin-film solar cells for improving the conversion efficiency. In most schemes, the textured active layers are involved into light trapping structures that can provide perfect optical benefits but also bring undesirable degradation of electrical performance. Here we propose a novel approach to design high-performance thin-film solar cells. In our strategy, a flat active layer is adopted for avoiding electrical degradation, and an optimization algorithm is applied to seek for an optimized light trapping structure for the best optical benefit. As an example, we show that the efficiency of a flat a-Si:H thin-film solar cell can be promoted close to the certified highest value. It is also pointed out that, by choosing appropriate dielectric materials with high refractive index (>3) and high transmissivity in wavelength region of 350 nm–800 nm, the conversion efficiency of solar cells can be further enhanced. PMID:25418477

  13. Electroluminescence of thin-film CdTe solar cells and modules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raguse, John Michael

    Thin-film photovoltaics has the potential to be a major source of world electricity. Mitigation of non-uniformities in thin-film solar cells and modules may help improve photovoltaic conversion efficiencies. In this manuscript, a measurement technique is discussed in detail which has the capability of detecting such non-uniformities in a form useful for analysis. Thin-film solar cells emit radiation while operating at forward electrical bias, analogous to an LED, a phenomena known as electroluminescence (EL). This process relatively is inefficient for polycrystalline CdTe devices, on the order of 10-4%, as most of the energy is converted into heat, but still strong enough for many valuable measurements. A EL system was built at the Colorado State University Photovoltaics Laboratory to measure EL from CdTe cells and modules. EL intensity normalized to exposure time and injection current density has been found to correlate very well with the difference between ideal and measured open-circuit voltage from devices that include a GaAs cell, an AlGaAs LED, and several CdTe cells with variations in manufacturing. Furthermore, these data points were found to be in good agreement when overlaid with calibrated data from two additional sources. The magnitude of the inverse slope of the fit is in agreement with the thermal voltage and the intercept was found to have a value near unity, in agreement with theory. The expanded data set consists of devices made from one of seven different band gaps and spans eight decades of EQELED efficiencies. As expected, cells which exhibit major failure of light-dark J-V superposition did not follow trend of well-behaved cells. EL images of selected defects from CdTe cells and modules are discussed and images are shown to be highly sensitive to defects in devices, since the intensity depends exponentially on the cells' voltages. The EL technique has proven to be a useful high-throughput tool for screening of cells. In addition to EL images

  14. A study of the applicability of ZnO thin-films as anti-reflection coating on Cu{sub 2}ZnSnS{sub 4} thin-films solar cell

    SciTech Connect

    Ray, Abhijit; Patel, Malkeshkumar; Tripathi, Brijesh; Kumar, Manoj

    2012-06-25

    Transparent ZnO thin-films are prepared using the RF magnetron sputtering and spray pyrolysis techniques on the glass substrates. Reflectance spectra and thin films heights are measured using spectrophotometer and stylus surface profiler, respectively. Measured optical data is used for investigating the effect of the ZnO prepared by above two processes on the performance of Cu{sub 2}ZnSnS{sub 4} (CZTS) thin films solar cell (TFSC). One dimensional simulation approach is considered using the simulation program, SCAPS. External quantum efficiency and J-V characteristics of CZTS TFSC is simulated on the basis of optical reflectance data of ZnO films with and without ZnO thin-films as antireflection coating (ARC). Study shows that ARC coated CZTS TFSC provides a better fill factor (FF) as compared to other ARC material such as MgF{sub 2}. Sprayed ZnO thin-films as ARC show comparable performance with the sputtered samples.

  15. Processing and modeling issues for thin-film solar cell devices. Annual subcontract report, January 16, 1993--January 15, 1994

    SciTech Connect

    Birkmire, R.W.; Phillips, J.E.; Buchanan, W.A.; Hegedus, S.S.; McCandless, B.E.; Shafarman, W.N.; Yokimcus, T.A.

    1994-09-01

    The overall objective of the research presented in this report is to advance the development and acceptance of thin-film photovoltaic modules by increasing the understanding of film growth and processing and its relationship to materials properties and solar cell performance. The specific means toward meeting this larger goal include: (1) investigating scalable, cost-effective deposition processes; (2) preparing thin-film materials and device layers and completed cell structures; (3) performing detailed material and device analysis; and (4) participating in collaborative research efforts that address the needs of PV-manufacturers. These objectives are being pursued with CuInSe{sub 2}, CdTe and a-Si based solar cells.

  16. Preparation of monolithic cu(In0.7Ga0.3)Se2 nanopowders and subsequent fabrication of sintered CIGS films.

    PubMed

    Song, Bong-Geun; Jung, Jae Hee; Bae, Gwi-Nam; Park, Hyung-Ho; Park, Jong-Ku; Cho, So-Hye

    2013-09-01

    Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) is a compound semiconductor and is one of the most attractive light-absorbing materials for use in thin film solar cells. Among the various approaches to prepare CIGS thin films, the powder process offers an extremely simple and materials-efficient method. Here, we report the mechano-chemical preparation of CIGS compound powders suitable for fabrication of CIGS films by a powder process. We found that the CIGS phase was formed from the elemental powders of Cu, In, and Se and liquid Ga using high energy milling process with a milling time as short as 40 min at 200 rpm due to a self-accelerating exothermic reaction. The morphology and size of the CIGS powders changed with a function of the milling speed (100-300 rpm), leading to an optimal condition of milling at 200 rpm for 120 min. We also found that it was difficult to obtain a monolithic phase of the CIGS powders without severe particle aggregation by mechano-chemical milling alone. Therefore, in combination with the milling, subsequent heat-treatment at 300 degrees C was performed, which successfully provided monolithic CIGS nanopowders suitable for powder process. When a thin film was fabricated from the monolithic CIGS nanopowders, a highly dense film with large crystalline grains was obtained. The CIGS film preserved its chemical composition of CuIn0.7Ga0.3Se2 after sintering as evidenced by Raman spectroscopy, EDS and SAED pattern of transmission electron microscopy. The film was also found suitable for a light absorbing layer of CIGS solar cells with its band gap energy of 1.14 eV evaluated by transmittance spectroscopy. PMID:24205596

  17. Very low cost thin film CdS-Cu2S solar cell development using chemical spraying

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Samara, G. A.; Jordan, J. F.

    1975-01-01

    A chemical spray process for the production of thin film CdS-Cu2S solar cells is discussed that is projected to cost less than $60/kW in very large scale production. The average efficiency of these cells has been improved from less than 0.3% in 1971 about 4.5% at present. Further developments for the process are considered to raise the efficiency, and to attain long life stability.

  18. High-Performance and Omnidirectional Thin-Film Amorphous Silicon Solar Cell Modules Achieved by 3D Geometry Design.

    PubMed

    Yu, Dongliang; Yin, Min; Lu, Linfeng; Zhang, Hanzhong; Chen, Xiaoyuan; Zhu, Xufei; Che, Jianfei; Li, Dongdong

    2015-11-01

    High-performance thin-film hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells are achieved by combining macroscale 3D tubular substrates and nanoscaled 3D cone-like antireflective films. The tubular geometry delivers a series of advantages for large-scale deployment of photovoltaics, such as omnidirectional performance, easier encapsulation, decreased wind resistance, and easy integration with a second device inside the glass tube. PMID:26418573

  19. Chemical and Electronic Surface Structure of 20%-Efficient Cu(in,Ga)Se2 Thin Film Solar Cell Absorbers

    SciTech Connect

    Bar, M.; Repins, I.; Contreras, M. A.; Weinhardt, L.; Noufi, R.; Heske, C.

    2009-01-01

    The chemical and electronic surface structure of 20%-efficient Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} thin film solar cell absorbers was investigated as a function of deposition process termination (i.e., ending the growth process in absence of either Ga or In). In addition to the expected In (Ga) enrichment, direct and inverse photoemission reveal a decreased Cu surface content and a larger surface band gap for the 'In-terminated' absorber.

  20. Thin-film monocrystalline-silicon solar cells based on a seed layer approach with 11% efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, I.; Qiu, Y.; Van Gestel, D.; Poortmans, J.

    2010-09-01

    Solar modules made from thin-film crystalline-silicon layers of high quality on glass substrates could lower the price of photovoltaic electricity substantially. Almost half of the price of wafer-based silicon solar modules is currently due to the cost of the silicon wafers themselves. Using crystalline-silicon thin-film as the active material would substantially reduce the silicon consumption while still ensuring a high cell-efficiency potential and a stable cell performance. One way to create a crystalline-silicon thin film on glass is by using a seed layer approach in which a thin crystalline-silicon layer is first created on a non-silicon substrate, followed by epitaxial thickening of this layer. In this paper, we present new solar cell results obtained on 10-micron thick monocrystalline-silicon layers, made by epitaxial thickening of thin seed layers on transparent glass-ceramic substrates. We used thin (001)-oriented silicon single-crystal seed layers on glass-ceramic substrates provided by Corning Inc. that are made by a process based on anodic bonding and implant-induced separation. Epitaxial thickening of these seed layers was realized in an atmospheric-pressure chemical vapor deposition system. Simple solar cell structures in substrate configuration were made from the epitaxial mono-silicon layers. The Si surface was plasma-textured to reduce the front-side reflection. No other light trapping features were incorporated. Efficiencies of up to 11% were reached with Voc values above 600 mV indicating the good electronic quality of the material. We believe that by further optimizing the material quality and by integrating an efficient light trapping scheme, the efficiency potential of these single-crystal silicon thin films on glass-ceramics should be higher than 15%.

  1. Preparations for low-cost silica substrate of CIGS solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hsu, Ming-Seng; Chang, Chung Chih; Cheng, Hsiang Hshi; Ouyang, Yueh; Der Sheu, Shinn

    2008-08-01

    The production of CuInGaSe2 (CIGS) solar cell is based on vacuum processes, which requires a high manufacturing temperature and high cost. Our result show a simple method has been developed to prepare the silica substrates of CIGS solar cell. It's synthesized by sol-gel process from tetraethylorthosilicate (TEOS), methanol (CH3OH) and pure water (both ion-exchange and distillation) in the presence of ammonia as catalyst. The preparation procedure was elaborated as the flexible sequence to control chemical composition and properties of the particles in sol-gel-derived silica substrate. The morphology, particle size, and size distribution of CIGS substrate were characterized with dynamic light scattering (DLS) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). The results of AFM morphology and statistic evidence we find an easy way, non-vacuum and low temperature processes, to successfully prepare the CIGS solar cell substrates with surface roughness below 3 nm. It is powerful the advance study in low cost solar cell.

  2. Platinum containing amorphous hydrogenated carbon (a-C:H/Pt) thin films as selective solar absorbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lan, Yung-Hsiang; Brahma, Sanjaya; Tzeng, Y. H.; Ting, Jyh-Ming

    2014-10-01

    We have investigated a double-cermet structured thin film in which an a-C:H thin film was used as an anti-reflective (AR) layer and two platinum-containing amorphous hydrogenated carbon (a-C:H/Pt) thin films were used as the double cermet layers. A reactive co-sputter deposition method was used to prepare both the anti-reflective and cermet layers. Effects of the target power and heat treatment were studied. The obtained films were characterized using X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. The optical absorptance and emittance of the as deposited and annealed films were determined using UV-vis-NIR spectroscopy. We show that the optical absorptance of the resulting double-cermet structured thin film is as high as 96% and remains to be 91% after heat treatment at 400 °C, indicating the thermal stability of the film.

  3. Nanophotonic light trapping in polycrystalline silicon thin-film solar cells using periodically nanoimprint-structured glass substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becker, Christiane; Xavier, Jolly; Preidel, Veit; Wyss, Philippe; Sontheimer, Tobias; Rech, Bernd; Probst, Jürgen; Hülsen, Christoph; Löchel, Bernd; Erko, Alexei; Burger, Sven; Schmidt, Frank; Back, Franziska; Rudigier-Voigt, Eveline

    2013-09-01

    A smart light trapping scheme is essential to tap the full potential of polycrystalline silicon (poly-Si) thin-film solar cells. Periodic nanophotonic structures are of particular interest as they allow to substantially surpass the Lambertian limit from ray optics in selected spectral ranges. We use nanoimprint-lithography for the periodic patterning of sol-gel coated glass substrates, ensuring a cost-effective, large-area production of thin-film solar cell devices. Periodic crystalline silicon nanoarchitectures are prepared on these textured substrates by high-rate silicon film evaporation, solid phase crystallization and chemical etching. Poly-Si microhole arrays in square lattice geometry with an effective thickness of about 2μm and with comparatively large pitch (2 μm) exhibit a large absorption enhancement (A900nm = 52%) compared to a planar film (A900nm ~ 7%). For the optimization of light trapping in the desired spectral region, the geometry of the nanophotonic structures with varying pitch from 600 nm to 800 nm is tailored and investigated for the cases of poly-Si nanopillar arrays of hexagonal lattice geometry, exhibiting an increase in absorption in comparison to planar film attributed to nanophotonic wave optic effects. These structures inspire the design of prospective applications such as highly-efficient nanostructured poly-Si thin-film solar cells and large-area photonic crystals.

  4. Cu-doped CdS and its application in CdTe thin film solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Yi; Yang, Jun; Yang, Ruilong; Shen, Kai; Wang, Dezhao; Wang, Deliang

    2016-01-01

    Cu is widely used in the back contact formation of CdTe thin film solar cells. However, Cu is easily to diffuse from the back contact into the CdTe absorber layer and even to the cell junction interface CdS/CdTe. This phenomenon is generally believed to be the main factor affecting the CdTe solar cell stability. In this study Cu was intentionally doped in CdS thin film to study its effect on the microstructural, optical and electrical properties of the CdS material. Upon Cu doping, the VCd- and the surface-state-related photoluminescence emissions were dramatically decreased/quenched. The presence of Cu atom hindered the recrystallization/coalescence of the nano-sized grains in the as-deposited CdS film during the air and the CdCl2 annealing. CdTe thin film solar cell fabricated with Cu-doped CdS window layers demonstrated much decreased fill factor, which was induced by the increased space-charge recombination near the p-n junction and the worsened junction crystalline quality. Temperature dependent current-voltage curve measurement indicated that the doped Cu in the CdS window layer was not stable at both room and higher temperatures.

  5. Absorption enhancement in thin film a-Si solar cells with double-sided SiO2 particle layers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Le; Wang, Qing-Kang; Shen, Xiang-Qian; Chen, Wen; Huang, Kun; Liu, Dai-Ming

    2015-10-01

    Light absorption enhancement is very important for improving the power conversion efficiency of a thin film a-Si solar cell. In this paper, a thin-film a-Si solar cell model with double-sided SiO2 particle layers is designed, and then the underlying mechanism of absorption enhancement is investigated by finite difference time domain (FDTD) simulation; finally the feasible experimental scheme for preparing the SiO2 particle layer is discussed. It is found that the top and bottom SiO2 particle layers play an important role in anti-reflection and light trapping, respectively. The light absorption of the cell with double-sided SiO2 layers greatly increases in a wavelength range of 300 nm-800 nm, and the ultimate efficiency increases more than 22% compared with that of the flat device. The cell model with double-sided SiO2 particle layers reported here can be used in varieties of thin film solar cells to further improve their performances. Project supported by the National High-Tech Research and Development Program of China (Grant No. 2011AA050518), the University Research Program of Guangxi Education Department, China (Grant No. LX2014288), and the Natural Science Foundation of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China (Grant No. 2013GXNSBA019014).

  6. Broadband light trapping in thin film solar cells with self-organized plasmonic nano-colloids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mendes, Manuel J.; Morawiec, Seweryn; Mateus, Tiago; Lyubchyk, Andriy; Águas, Hugo; Ferreira, Isabel; Fortunato, Elvira; Martins, Rodrigo; Priolo, Francesco; Crupi, Isodiana

    2015-03-01

    The intense light scattered from metal nanoparticles sustaining surface plasmons makes them attractive for light trapping in photovoltaic applications. However, a strong resonant response from nanoparticle ensembles can only be obtained if the particles have monodisperse physical properties. Presently, the chemical synthesis of colloidal nanoparticles is the method that produces the highest monodispersion in geometry and material quality, with the added benefits of being low-temperature, low-cost, easily scalable and of allowing control of the surface coverage of the deposited particles. In this paper, novel plasmonic back-reflector structures were developed using spherical gold colloids with appropriate dimensions for pronounced far-field scattering. The plasmonic back reflectors are incorporated in the rear contact of thin film n-i-p nanocrystalline silicon solar cells to boost their photocurrent generation via optical path length enhancement inside the silicon layer. The quantum efficiency spectra of the devices revealed a remarkable broadband enhancement, resulting from both light scattering from the metal nanoparticles and improved light incoupling caused by the hemispherical corrugations at the cells’ front surface formed from the deposition of material over the spherically shaped colloids.

  7. Light trapping and electrical transport in thin-film solar cells with randomly rough textures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kowalczewski, Piotr; Bozzola, Angelo; Liscidini, Marco; Claudio Andreani, Lucio

    2014-05-01

    Using rigorous electro-optical calculations, we predict a significant efficiency enhancement in thin-film crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells with rough interfaces. We show that an optimized rough texture allows one to reach the Lambertian limit of absorption in a wide absorber thickness range from 1 to 100 μm. The improvement of efficiency due to the roughness is particularly substantial for thin cells, for which light trapping is crucial. We consider Auger, Shockley-Read-Hall (SRH), and surface recombination, quantifying the importance of specific loss mechanisms. When the cell performance is limited by intrinsic Auger recombination, the efficiency of 24.4% corresponding to the wafer-based PERL cell can be achieved even if the absorber thickness is reduced from 260 to 10 μm. For cells with material imperfections, defect-based SRH recombination contributes to the opposite trends of short-circuit current and open-circuit voltage as a function of the absorber thickness. By investigating a wide range of SRH parameters, we determine an optimal absorber thickness as a function of material quality. Finally, we show that the efficiency enhancement in textured cells persists also in the presence of surface recombination. Indeed, in our design the efficiency is limited by recombination at the rear (silicon absorber/back reflector) interface, and therefore it is possible to engineer the front surface to a large extent without compromising on efficiency.

  8. Methods for forming thin-film heterojunction solar cells from I-III-VI.sub. 2

    DOEpatents

    Mickelsen, Reid A [Bellevue, WA; Chen, Wen S [Seattle, WA

    1985-08-13

    An improved thin-film, large area solar cell, and methods for forming the same, having a relatively high light-to-electrical energy conversion efficiency and characterized in that the cell comprises a p-n type heterojunction formed of: (i) a first semiconductor layer comprising a photovoltaic active material selected from the class of I-III-VI.sub.2 chalcopyrite ternary materials which is vacuum deposited in a thin "composition-graded" layer ranging from on the order ot about 2.5 microns to about 5.0 microns (.congruent.2.5 .mu.m to .congruent.5.0 .mu.m) and wherein the lower region of the photovoltaic active material preferably comprises a low resistivity region of p-type semiconductor material having a superimposed region of relatively high resistivity, transient n-type semiconductor material defining a transient p-n homojunction; and (ii), a second semiconductor layer comprising a low resistivity n-type semiconductor material; wherein interdiffusion (a) between the elemental constituents of the two discrete juxtaposed regions of the first semiconductor layer defining a transient p-n homojunction layer, and (b) between the transient n-type material in the first semiconductor layer and the second n-type semiconductor layer, causes the The Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. EG-77-C-01-4042, Subcontract No. XJ-9-8021-1 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy.

  9. Methods for forming thin-film heterojunction solar cells from I-III-VI[sub 2

    DOEpatents

    Mickelsen, R.A.; Chen, W.S.

    1982-06-15

    An improved thin-film, large area solar cell, and methods for forming the same are disclosed, having a relatively high light-to-electrical energy conversion efficiency and characterized in that the cell comprises a p-n type heterojunction formed of: (1) a first semiconductor layer comprising a photovoltaic active material selected from the class of I-III-VI[sub 2] chalcopyrite ternary materials which is vacuum deposited in a thin composition-graded'' layer ranging from on the order of about 2.5 microns to about 5.0 microns ([approx equal]2.5[mu]m to [approx equal]5.0[mu]m) and wherein the lower region of the photovoltaic active material preferably comprises a low resistivity region of p-type semiconductor material having a superimposed region of relatively high resistivity, transient n-type semiconductor material defining a transient p-n homojunction; and (2), a second semiconductor layer comprising a low resistivity n-type semiconductor material; wherein interdiffusion (a) between the elemental constituents of the two discrete juxtaposed regions of the first semiconductor layer defining a transient p-n homojunction layer, and (b) between the transient n-type material in the first semiconductor layer and the second n-type semiconductor layer, is allowed.

  10. Methods for forming thin-film heterojunction solar cells from I-III-VI.sub. 2

    DOEpatents

    Mickelsen, Reid A.; Chen, Wen S.

    1982-01-01

    An improved thin-film, large area solar cell, and methods for forming the same, having a relatively high light-to-electrical energy conversion efficiency and characterized in that the cell comprises a p-n type heterojunction formed of: (i) a first semiconductor layer comprising a photovoltaic active material selected from the class of I-III-VI.sub.2 chalcopyrite ternary materials which is vacuum deposited in a thin "composition-graded" layer ranging from on the order of about 2.5 microns to about 5.0 microns (.congruent.2.5.mu.m to .congruent.5.0.mu.m) and wherein the lower region of the photovoltaic active material preferably comprises a low resistivity region of p-type semiconductor material having a superimposed region of relatively high resistivity, transient n-type semiconductor material defining a transient p-n homojunction; and (ii), a second semiconductor layer comprising a low resistivity n-type semiconductor material; wherein interdiffusion (a) between the elemental constituents of the two discrete juxtaposed regions of the first semiconductor layer defining a transient p-n homojunction layer, and (b) between the transient n-type material in the first semiconductor layer and the second n-type semiconductor layer, causes the transient n-type material in The Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. EG-77-C-01-4042, Subcontract No. XJ-9-8021-1 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy.

  11. Thin Film Silicon Nanowire/PEDOT:PSS Hybrid Solar Cells with Surface Treatment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Hao; Wang, Jianxiong; Hong, Lei; Tan, Yew Heng; Tan, Chuan Seng; Rusli

    2016-06-01

    SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells are fabricated on 10.6-μm-thick crystalline Si thin films. Cells with Si nanowires (SiNWs) of different lengths fabricated using the metal-catalyzed electroless etching (MCEE) technique have been investigated. A surface treatment process using oxygen plasma has been applied to improve the surface quality of the SiNWs, and the optimized cell with 0.7-μm-long SiNWs achieved a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 7.83 %. The surface treatment process is found to remove surface defects and passivate the SiNWs and substantially improve the average open circuit voltage from 0.461 to 0.562 V for the optimized cell. The light harvesting capability of the SiNWs has also been investigated theoretically using optical simulation. It is found that the inherent randomness of the MCEE SiNWs, in terms of their diameter and spacing, accounts for the excellent light harvesting capability. In comparison, periodic SiNWs of comparable dimensions have been shown to exhibit much poorer trapping and absorption of light.

  12. Thin Film Silicon Nanowire/PEDOT:PSS Hybrid Solar Cells with Surface Treatment.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hao; Wang, Jianxiong; Hong, Lei; Tan, Yew Heng; Tan, Chuan Seng; Rusli

    2016-12-01

    SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells are fabricated on 10.6-μm-thick crystalline Si thin films. Cells with Si nanowires (SiNWs) of different lengths fabricated using the metal-catalyzed electroless etching (MCEE) technique have been investigated. A surface treatment process using oxygen plasma has been applied to improve the surface quality of the SiNWs, and the optimized cell with 0.7-μm-long SiNWs achieved a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 7.83 %. The surface treatment process is found to remove surface defects and passivate the SiNWs and substantially improve the average open circuit voltage from 0.461 to 0.562 V for the optimized cell. The light harvesting capability of the SiNWs has also been investigated theoretically using optical simulation. It is found that the inherent randomness of the MCEE SiNWs, in terms of their diameter and spacing, accounts for the excellent light harvesting capability. In comparison, periodic SiNWs of comparable dimensions have been shown to exhibit much poorer trapping and absorption of light. PMID:27356558

  13. Methods for forming thin-film heterojunction solar cells from I-III-VI{sub 2}

    DOEpatents

    Mickelsen, R.A.; Chen, W.S.

    1985-08-13

    An improved thin-film, large area solar cell, and methods for forming the same are disclosed, having a relatively high light-to-electrical energy conversion efficiency and characterized in that the cell comprises a p-n type heterojunction formed of: (i) a first semiconductor layer comprising a photovoltaic active material selected from the class of I-III-VI{sub 2} chalcopyrite ternary materials which is vacuum deposited in a thin ``composition-graded`` layer ranging from on the order of about 2.5 microns to about 5.0 microns ({approx_equal}2.5 {mu}m to {approx_equal}5.0 {mu}m) and wherein the lower region of the photovoltaic active material preferably comprises a low resistivity region of p-type semiconductor material having a superimposed region of relatively high resistivity, transient n-type semiconductor material defining a transient p-n homojunction; and (ii) a second semiconductor layer comprising a low resistivity n-type semiconductor material; wherein interdiffusion occurs (a) between the elemental constituents of the two discrete juxtaposed regions of the first semiconductor layer defining a transient p-n homojunction layer, and (b) between the transient n-type material in the first semiconductor layer and the second n-type semiconductor layer. 16 figs.

  14. Dip coated nanocrystalline CdZnS thin films for solar cell application

    SciTech Connect

    Dongre, J. K. Chaturvedi, Mahim; Patil, Yuvraj; Sharma, Sandhya; Jain, U. K.

    2015-07-31

    Nanocrystalline cadmium sulfide (CdS) and zinc cadmium sulfide (ZnCdS) thin films have been grown via simple and low cost dip coating technique. The prepared films are characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), atomic force microscopic (AFM) and UV-VIS spectrophotometer techniques to reveal their structural, morphological and optical properties. XRD shows that both samples grown have zinc blende structure. The grain size is calculated as 6.2 and 8 nm using Scherrer’s formula. The band gap value of CdS and CdZnS film is estimated to be 2.58 and 2.69 eV respectively by UV-vis spectroscopy. Photoelectrochemical (PEC) investigations are carried out using cell configuration as n-CdZnS/(1M NaOH + 1M Na2S + 1M S)/C. The photovoltaic output characteristic is used to calculate fill-factor (FF) and solar conversion efficiency (η)

  15. Individual losses in thin-film CdTe solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tavakolian, Hossein; Sites, James R.

    Thin-film polycrystalline CdTe solar cells have been analyzed using current-voltage, reflection, quantum efficiency, and capacitance measurements. The objective is to quantify the individual current and voltage losses in recent cells from different sources. Compared to an optimum photocurrent density of 30.5 mA/sq cm, they typically lose 2 mA/sq cm to reflection, 2-3 to uncollected CdTe carriers, and 2-6 to window-layer absorption. Voltage loss at maximum power is on the order of 200 mV because of the polycrystallinity, 100 mV due to light-dark differences in forward current, and 50 mV resulting from series resistance. Individual voltage loss values vary considerably among samples. The capacitance measurement implies that a significant fraction of the CdTe is a highly compensated i-layer and that the extraneous bandgap state density is above 10 to the 11th e/V/sq cm under operating conditions.

  16. Characterization of Highly Efficient CdTe Thin Film Solar Cells by Low-Temperature Photoluminescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okamoto, Tamotsu; Matsuzaki, Yuichi; Amin, Nowshad; Yamada, Akira; Konagai, Makoto

    1998-07-01

    Highly efficient CdTe thin film solar cells prepared by close-spaced sublimation (CSS) method with a glass/ITO/CdS/CdTe/Cu-doped carbon/Ag structure were characterized by low-temperature photoluminescence (PL) measurement. A broad 1.42 eV band probably due to VCd Cl defect complexes appeared as a result of CdCl2 treatment. CdS/CdTe junction PL revealed that a CdSxTe1-x mixed crystal layer was formed at the CdS/CdTe interface region during the deposition of CdTe by CSS and that CdCl2 treatment promoted the formation of the mixed crystal layer. Furthermore, in the PL spectra of the heat-treated CdTe after screen printing of the Cu-doped carbon electrode, a neutral-acceptor bound exciton (ACu0, X) line at 1.590 eV was observed, suggesting that Cu atoms were incorporated into CdTe as effective acceptors after the heat treatment.

  17. Native Defect Control of CdTe Thin Film Solar Cells by Close-Spaced Sublimation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okamoto, Tamotsu; Kitamoto, Shinji; Yamada, Akira; Konagai, Makoto

    2001-05-01

    The control of native defects in the CdTe thin film solar cells was investigated using a novel source for close-spaced sublimation (CSS) process which was prepared by vacuum evaporation with elemental Cd and Te (evaporated source). The evaporated sources were prepared on glass substrates at room temperature, and the Cd/Te ratio was controlled by varying the Cd and Te beam equivalent pressures. In the cells using the Te-rich source, the conversion efficiency was less than 0.2% because of the extremely low shunt resistance. On the other hand, a conversion efficiency above 15% was obtained by using the Cd-rich source. Capacitance-voltage (C-V) characteristics revealed that the acceptor concentration in the CdTe layer increased with increasing Cd/Te ratio of the evaporated source. Furthermore, photoluminescence spectra implied that the formation of the Cd vacancies in the CdTe layer was suppressed using the Cd-rich source.

  18. Damp-Heat Induced Degradation of Transparent Conducting Oxides for Thin-Film Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Pern, F. J.; Noufi, R.; Li, X.; DeHart, C.; To, B.

    2008-05-01

    The stability of intrinsic and Al-doped single- and bi-layer ZnO for thin-film CuInGaSe2 solar cells, along with Al-doped Zn1-xMgxO alloy and Sn-doped In2O3 (ITO) and F-doped SnO2, was evaluated by direct exposure to damp heat (DH) at 85oC and 85% relative humidity. The results show that the DH-induced degradation rates followed the order of Al-doped ZnO and Zn1-xMgxO >> ITO > F:SnO2. The degradation rates of Al:ZnO were slower for films of higher thickness, higher substrate temperature in sputter-deposition, and with dry-out intervals. As inferred from the optical micro-imaging showing the initiation and propagation of degrading patterns and regions, the degradation behavior appears similar for all TCOs, despite the obvious difference in the degradation rate. A degradation mechanism is proposed to explain the temporal process involving thermal hydrolysis.

  19. Relationship Between Absorber Layer Properties and Device Operation Modes For High Efficiency Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravichandran, Ram; Kokenyesi, Robert; Wager, John; Keszler, Douglas; CenterInverse Design Team

    2014-03-01

    A thin film solar cell (TFSC) can be differentiated into two distinct operation modes based on the transport mechanism. Current TFSCs predominantly exploit diffusion to extract photogenerated minority carriers. For efficient extraction, the absorber layer requires high carrier mobilities and long minority carrier lifetimes. Materials exhibiting a strong optical absorption onset near the fundamental band gap allows reduction of the absorber layer thickness to significantly less than 1 μm. In such a TFSC, a strong intrinsic electric field drives minority carrier extraction, resulting in drift-based transport. The basic device configuration utilized in this simulation study is a heterojunction TFSC with a p-type absorber layer. The diffusion/drift device operation modes are simulated by varying the thickness and carrier concentration of the absorber layer, and device performance between the two modes is compared. In addition, the relationship between device operation mode and transport properties, including carrier mobility and minority carrier lifetime are explored. Finally, candidate absorber materials that enable the advantages of a drift-based TFSC developed within the Center for Inverse Design are presented. School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

  20. A blazed grating for light trapping in a-Si thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, L.; Varadan, V. V.

    2012-09-01

    A blazed grating has been studied to improve light absorption in thin-film solar cells (TFSCs). The grating is a periodic arrangement of wedges made of aluminum zinc oxide (AZO) that also serves as the back spacer. The absorber layer of the photovoltaic (PV) device can be made of inorganic or organic semiconductor material. Here we study hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) and nano-crystalline Si (nc-Si). Full wave, finite element simulations were performed to optimize the design for the highest short circuit current (Jsc). The Jsc of the optimized 1D grating design was 16.05 mA cm-2 for TE polarization and 15.18 mA cm-2 for TM polarization, with an effective a-Si:H layer thickness of only 277 nm. As compared to a planar cell with the same volume of a-Si:H, the enhancement of Jsc by the 1D grating design was 27.6% for TE polarization and 20.7% for TM polarization. We extended this design to a 2D grating structure that was less sensitive to polarization as compared to the 1D grating design. With an equivalent a-Si:H layer thickness of 322 nm, the optimized design yielded a Jsc of 17.16 mA cm-2. The blazed grating surface can be fabricated using the glancing angle deposition method.

  1. Comparison of silicon oxide and silicon carbide absorber materials in silicon thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walder, Cordula; Kellermann, Martin; Wendler, Elke; Rensberg, Jura; von Maydell, Karsten; Agert, Carsten

    2015-02-01

    Since solar energy conversion by photovoltaics is most efficient for photon energies at the bandgap of the absorbing material the idea of combining absorber layers with different bandgaps in a multijunction cell has become popular. In silicon thin-film photovoltaics a multijunction stack with more than two subcells requires a high bandgap amorphous silicon alloy top cell absorber to achieve an optimal bandgap combination. We address the question whether amorphous silicon carbide (a-SiC:H) or amorphous silicon oxide (a-SiO:H) is more suited for this type of top cell absorber. Our single cell results show a better performance of amorphous silicon carbide with respect to fill factor and especially open circuit voltage at equivalent Tauc bandgaps. The microstructure factor of single layers indicates less void structure in amorphous silicon carbide than in amorphous silicon oxide. Yet photoconductivity of silicon oxide films seems to be higher which could be explained by the material being not truly intrinsic. On the other hand better cell performance of amorphous silicon carbide absorber layers might be connected to better hole transport in the cell.

  2. FTIR spectroscopy of silicon carbide thin films prepared by PECVD technology for solar cell application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleinová, Angela; Huran, Jozef; Sasinková, Vlasta; Perný, Milan; Å ály, Vladimír.; Packa, Juraj

    2015-09-01

    The plasma CVD reactor with parallel plate electrodes was used for plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) of two type's silicon carbide thin films on Si substrates. The concentration of elements in the films was determined by RBS and ERD analytical method simultaneously. The chemical compositions of the samples were analyzed by FTIR method. RBS and ERD results showed that the films contain silicon, carbon, hydrogen and small amount of oxygen. FTIR results confirmed the presence of Si-C, Si-H, C-H, and Si-O bonds. From the FTIR spectra the main following vibration frequencies were determined: the band from 2800 to 3000 cm-1 is attributed to stretching vibration of the CHn group in both the sp2 (2880 cm-1) and sp3 (2920 cm-1) configurations. The band at 2100 cm-1 is due to SiHm stretching vibrations. The band at 780 cm-1 can be assigned to Si-C stretching vibration. Main features of FTIR spectra were Gaussian fitted and detailed analyses of chemical bonding in SiC films were performed. Differences between two types of SiC films were discussed with the aim to using these films in the heterojunction solar cell technology.

  3. Directly patterned TiO2 nanostructures for efficient light harvesting in thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ram, Sanjay K.; Rizzoli, Rita; Desta, Derese; Jeppesen, Bjarke R.; Bellettato, Michele; Samatov, Ivan; Tsao, Yao-Chung; Johannsen, Sabrina R.; Neuvonen, Pekka T.; Pedersen, Thomas Garm; Pereira, Rui N.; Pedersen, Kjeld; Balling, Peter; Nylandsted Larsen, Arne

    2015-09-01

    A novel, scalable, and low-cost strategy for fabricating sub-wavelength scale hierarchical nanostructures by direct patterning of TiO2 nanoparticles on glass substrates is reported. Two nanostructural designs of light-trapping back-surface reflectors (BSR) have been fabricated for increasing the photon-harvesting properties of thin-film solar cells: a quasi-periodic nano-crater design and a random nano-bump design. The efficient light-scattering properties of the nano-crater design over a broad wavelength range are demonstrated by the measured haze factor being larger than 40% at wavelengths (~700 nm) near the band edge of amorphous silicon (a-Si:H). The a-Si:H-based n-i-p solar cell fabricated with an only ~200 nm thick absorber layer on the nano-crater BSR shows a short-circuit current density (J sc) of ~16.1 mA cm-2 representing a 28% enhancement compared to the cell deposited on a non-textured flat substrate. Measurements of the external quantum efficiency of the cell fabricated on the quasi-periodic nano-crater surface at long wavelengths, λ  >  700 nm, demonstrate an increase of a factor of 5 relative to that of a flat reference solar cell. The theoretical modeling results of optical absorption corroborate well with the experimental findings and are used to identify the volumes of strong optical absorption in the a-Si:H active layer of the textured BSR devices.

  4. Crystalline Indium Sulphide thin film by photo accelerated deposition technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhanya, A. C.; Preetha, K. C.; Deepa, K.; Remadevi, T. L.

    2015-02-01

    Indium sulfide thin films deserve special attention because of its potential application as buffer layers in CIGS based solar cells. Highly transparent indium sulfide (InS) thin films were prepared using a novel method called photo accelerated chemical deposition (PCD). Ultraviolet source of 150 W was used to irradiate the solution. Compared to all other chemical methods, PCD scores its advantage for its low cost, flexible substrate and capable of large area of deposition. Reports on deposition of high quality InS thin films at room temperature are very rare in literature. The precursor solution was initially heated to 90°C for ten minutes and then deposition was carried out at room temperature for two hours. The appearance of the film changed from lemon yellow to bright yellow as the deposition time increased. The sample was characterized for its structural and optical properties. XRD profile showed the polycrystalline behavior of the film with mixed phases having crystallite size of 17 nm. The surface morphology of the films exhibited uniformly distributed honey comb like structures. The film appeared to be smooth and the value of extinction coefficient was negligible. Optical measurements showed that the film has more than 80% transmission in the visible region. The direct band gap energy was 2.47eV. This method is highly suitable for the synthesis of crystalline and transparent indium sulfide thin films and can be used for various photo voltaic applications.

  5. Co-electroplated Kesterite Bifacial Thin-Film Solar Cells: A Study of Sulfurization Temperature.

    PubMed

    Ge, Jie; Chu, Junhao; Yan, Yanfa; Jiang, Jinchun; Yang, Pingxiong

    2015-05-20

    Earth-abundant material, kesterite Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS), demonstrates the tremendous potential to serve as the absorber layer for the bifacial thin-film solar cell. The exploration of appropriate sulfurization conditions including annealing temperature is significant to gain insight into the growth mechanism based on the substrates using transparent conductive oxides (TCO) and improve device performance. The kesterite solar absorbers were fabricated on ITO substrates by sulfurizing co-electroplated Cu-Zn-Sn-S precursors in argon diluted H2S atmosphere at different temperatures (475-550 °C) for 30 min. Experimental proof, including cross-section scanning electron microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, UV-vis-NIR transmission spectrum, and Raman and far-infrared spectroscopy, is presented for the crystallization of CZTS on an ITO substrate and the interfacial reaction between the ITO back contact and CZTS absorber. The complete conversion of precursor into CZTS requires at least 500 °C sulfurization temperature. The aggressive interfacial reaction leading to the out-diffusion of In into CZTS to a considerable extent, formation of tin sulfides, and electrically conductive degradation of ITO back contact occurs at the sulfurization temperatures higher than 500 °C. The bifacial devices obtained by 520 °C sulfurization exhibit the best conversion efficiencies and open circuit voltages. However, the presence of non-ohmic back contact (secondary diode), the short minority lifetime, and the high interfacial recombination rates negatively limit the open circuit voltage, fill factor, and efficiency, evidenced by illumination/temperature-dependent J-V, frequency-dependent capacitance-voltage (C-V-f), time-resolved PL (TRPL), and bias-dependent external quantum efficiency (EQE) measurements. PMID:25871647

  6. Chemically deposited thin films of sulfides and selenides of antimony and bismuth as solar energy materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nair, M. T.; Nair, Padmanabhan K.; Garcia, V. M.; Pena, Y.; Arenas, O. L.; Garcia, J. C.; Gomez-Daza, O.

    1997-10-01

    Chemical bath deposition techniques for bismuth sulfide, bismuth selenide, antimony sulfide, and antimony selenide thin films of about 0.20 - 0.25 micrometer thickness are reported. All these materials may be considered as solar absorber films: strong optical absorption edges, with absorption coefficient, (alpha) , greater than 104 cm-1, are located at 1.31 eV for Bi2Se3, 1.33 eV for Bi2S3, 1.8 eV for Sb2S3, and 1.35 eV for Sb2Se3. As deposited, all the films are nearly amorphous. However, well defined crystalline peaks matching bismuthinite (JCPDS 17- 0320), paraguanajuatite (JCPDS 33-0214), and stibnite (JCPDS 6-0474) and antimony selenide (JCPDS 15-0861) for Bi2S3, Bi2Se3, Sb2S3 and Sb2Se3 respectively, are observed when the films are annealed in nitrogen at 300 degrees Celsius. This is accompanied by a substantial modification of the electrical conductivity in the films: from 10-7 (Omega) -1 cm-1 (in as prepared films) to 10 (Omega) -1 cm-1 in the case of bismuth sulfide and selenide films, and enhancement of photosensitivity in the case of antimony sulfide films. The chemical deposition of a CuS/CuxSe film on these Vx- VIy films and subsequent annealing at 300 degrees Celsius for 1 h at 1 torr of nitrogen leads to the formation of p-type films (conductivity of 1 - 100 (Omega) -1 cm-1) of multinary composition. Among these, the formation of Cu3BiS3 (JCPDS 9-0488) and Cu3SbS4 (JCPDS 35- 0581), CuSbS2 (JCPDS 35-0413) have been clearly detected. Solar energy applications of these films are suggested.

  7. Processing and modeling issues for thin-film solar cell devices: Annual subcontract report, January 16, 1995 -- January 15, 1996

    SciTech Connect

    Birkmire, R W; Phillips, J E; Buchanan, W A; Eser, E; Hegedus, S S; McCandless, B E; Meyers, P V; Shafarman, W N

    1996-08-01

    The overall mission of the Institute of Energy Conversion is the development of thin film photovoltaic cells, modules, and related manufacturing technology and the education of students and professionals in photovoltaic technology. The objectives of this four-year NREL subcontract are to advance the state of the art and the acceptance of thin film PV modules in the areas of improved technology for thin film deposition, device fabrication, and material and device characterization and modeling, relating to solar cells based on CuInSe{sub 2} and its alloys, on a-Si and its alloys, and on CdTe. In the area of CuInSe{sub 2} and its alloys, EEC researchers have produced CuIn{sub 1-x}GaxSe{sub 2} films by selenization of elemental and alloyed films with H{sub 2}Se and Se vapor and by a wide variety of process variations employing co-evaporation of the elements. Careful design, execution and analysis of these experiments has led to an improved understanding of the reaction chemistry involved, including estimations of the reaction rate constants. Investigation of device fabrication has also included studies of the processing of the Mo, US and ZnO deposition parameters and their influence on device properties. An indication of the success of these procedures was the fabrication of a 15% efficiency CuIn{sub 1-x}GaxSe{sub 2} solar cell.

  8. Novel R2R Manufacturable Photonic-Enhanced Thin Film Solar Cells; January 28, 2010 -- January 31, 2011

    SciTech Connect

    Slafer, D.; Dalal, V.

    2012-03-01

    Final subcontract report for PV Incubator project 'Novel R2R Manufacturable Photonic-Enhanced Thin Film Solar Cells.' The goal of this program was to produce tandem Si cells using photonic bandgap enhancement technology developed at ISU and Lightwave Power that would have an NREL-verified efficiency of 7.5% on 0.25 cm{sup 2} area tandem junction cell on plastic substrates. This goal was met and exceeded within the timeframe and budget of the program. On smaller area cells, the efficiency was even higher, {approx}9.5% (not verified by NREL). Appropriate polymers were developed to fabricate photonic and plasmonic devices on stainless steel, Kapton and PEN substrates. A novel photonic-plasmon structure was developed which shows a promise of improving light absorption in thin film cells, a better light absorption than by any other scheme.

  9. Impact of thermal annealing on optical properties of vacuum evaporated CdTe thin films for solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chander, Subhash; Purohit, A.; Lal, C.; Nehra, S. P.; Dhaka, M. S.

    2016-05-01

    In this paper, the impact of thermal annealing on optical properties of cadmium telluride (CdTe) thin films is investigated. The films of thickness 650 nm were deposited on thoroughly cleaned glass substrate employing vacuum evaporation followed by thermal annealing in the temperature range 250-450 °C. The as-deposited and annealed films were characterized using UV-Vis spectrophotometer. The optical band gap is found to be decreased from 1.88 eV to 1.48 eV with thermal annealing. The refractive index is found to be in the range 2.73-2.92 and observed to increase with annealing treatment. The experimental results reveal that the thermal annealing plays an important role to enhance the optical properties of CdTe thin films and annealed films may be used as absorber layer in CdTe/CdS solar cells.

  10. Development of Commercial Technology for Thin Film Silicon Solar Cells on Glass: Cooperative Research and Development Final Report, CRADA Number CRD-07-209

    SciTech Connect

    Sopori, B.

    2013-03-01

    NREL has conducted basic research relating to high efficiency, low cost, thin film silicon solar cell design and the method of making solar cells. Two patents have been issued to NREL in the above field. In addition, specific process and metrology tools have been developed by NREL. Applied Optical Sciences Corp. (AOS) has expertise in the manufacture of solar cells and has developed its own unique concentrator technology. AOS wants to complement its solar cell expertise and its concentrator technology by manufacturing flat panel thin film silicon solar cell panels. AOS wants to take NREL's research to the next level, using it to develop commercially viable flat pane, thin film silicon solar cell panels. Such a development in equipment, process, and metrology will likely produce the lowest cost solar cell technology for both commercial and residential use. NREL's fundamental research capability and AOS's technology and industrial background are complementary to achieve this product development.

  11. Synthesis and characterization of DC magnetron sputtered nano structured molybdenum thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rondiya, S. R.; Rokade, A. V.; Jadhavar, A. A.; Pandharkar, S. M.; Kulkarni, R. R.; Karpe, S. D.; Diwate, K. D.; Jadkar, S. R.

    2016-04-01

    Molybdenum (Mo) thin films were deposited on corning glass (#7059) substrates using DC magnetron sputtering system. The effect of substrate temperature on the structural, morphology and topological properties have been investigated. Films were characterized by variety of techniques such as low angle x-ray diffraction (low angle XRD), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM). The low angle XRD analysis revealed that the synthesized Mo films are nanocrystalline having cubic crystal structure with (110) preferential orientation. The microstructure of the deposited Mo thin films observed with FE-SEM images indicated that films are homogeneous and uniform with randomly oriented leaf shape morphology. The AFM analysis shows that with increase in substrate temperature the rms roughness of Mo films increases. The obtained results suggest that the synthesized nanostructured Mo thin films have potential application as a back contact material for high efficiency solar cells like CdTe, CIGS, CZTS etc.

  12. Solution-Processed Cu2ZnSn(S,Se) 4 Thin-Film Solar Cells Using Elemental Cu, Zn, Sn, S, and Se Powders as Source.

    PubMed

    Guo, Jing; Pei, Yingli; Zhou, Zhengji; Zhou, Wenhui; Kou, Dongxing; Wu, Sixin

    2015-12-01

    Solution-processed approach for the deposition of Cu2ZnSn (S,Se)4 (CZTSSe) absorbing layer offers a route for fabricating thin film solar cell that is appealing because of simplified and low-cost manufacturing, large-area coverage, and better compatibility with flexible substrates. In this work, we present a simple solution-based approach for simultaneously dissolving the low-cost elemental Cu, Zn, Sn, S, and Se powder, forming a homogeneous CZTSSe precursor solution in a short time. Dense and compact kesterite CZTSSe thin film with high crystallinity and uniform composition was obtained by selenizing the low-temperature annealed spin-coated precursor film. Standard CZTSSe thin film solar cell based on the selenized CZTSSe thin film was fabricated and an efficiency of 6.4 % was achieved. PMID:26293494

  13. Solution-Processed Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 Thin-Film Solar Cells Using Elemental Cu, Zn, Sn, S, and Se Powders as Source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Jing; Pei, Yingli; Zhou, Zhengji; Zhou, Wenhui; Kou, Dongxing; Wu, Sixin

    2015-08-01

    Solution-processed approach for the deposition of Cu2ZnSn (S,Se)4 (CZTSSe) absorbing layer offers a route for fabricating thin film solar cell that is appealing because of simplified and low-cost manufacturing, large-area coverage, and better compatibility with flexible substrates. In this work, we present a simple solution-based approach for simultaneously dissolving the low-cost elemental Cu, Zn, Sn, S, and Se powder, forming a homogeneous CZTSSe precursor solution in a short time. Dense and compact kesterite CZTSSe thin film with high crystallinity and uniform composition was obtained by selenizing the low-temperature annealed spin-coated precursor film. Standard CZTSSe thin film solar cell based on the selenized CZTSSe thin film was fabricated and an efficiency of 6.4 % was achieved.

  14. Small molecular weight organic thin-film photodetectors and solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peumans, Peter; Yakimov, Aharon; Forrest, Stephen R.

    2003-04-01

    In this review, we discuss the physics underlying the operation of single and multiple heterojunction, vacuum-deposited organic solar cells based on small molecular weight thin films. For single heterojunction cells, we find that the need for direct contact between the deposited electrode and the active organics leads to quenching of excitons. An improved device architecture, the double heterojunction, is shown to confine excitons within the active layers, allowing substantially higher internal efficiencies to be achieved. A full optical and electrical analysis of the double heterostructure architecture leads to optimal cell design as a function of the optical properties and exciton diffusion lengths of the photoactive materials. Combining the double heterostructure with novel light trapping schemes, devices with external efficiencies approaching their internal efficiency are obtained. When applied to an organic photovoltaic cell with a power conversion efficiency of 1.0%±0.1% under 1 sun AM1.5 illumination, devices with external power conversion efficiencies of 2.4%±0.3% are reported. In addition, we show that by using materials with extended exciton diffusion lengths LD, highly efficient double heterojunction photovoltaic cells are obtained, even in the absence of a light trapping geometry. Using C60 as an acceptor material, double heterostructure external power conversion efficiencies of 3.6%±0.4% under 1 sun AM1.5 illumination are obtained. Stacking of single heterojunction devices leads to thin film multiple heterojunction photovoltaic and photodetector structures. Thin bilayer photovoltaic cells can be stacked with ultrathin (˜5 Å), discontinuous Ag layers between adjacent cells serving as efficient recombination sites for electrons and holes generated in the neighboring cells. Such stacked cells have open circuit voltages that are n times the open circuit voltage of a single cell, where n is the number of cells in the stack. In optimized structures, the

  15. Development of copper sulfide/cadmium sulfide thin-film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Szedon, J. R.; Biter, W. J.; Dickey, H. C.

    1982-03-08

    The most important accomplishments during this period were to demonstrate and to elucidate further the complex effects that occur during the aging of Cu/sub 2/S/CdS thin-film solar cells in flowing wet oxygen. There are two distinct effects. At constant illumination, the short-circuit current of cells aged at room temperature consistently decreases with time. The second effect, related to diode opposing current, is more involved and may result from several competing mechanisms. Over the short term (approx. 4 to 5 hours), the magnitude of diode opposing current decreases. After approx. 20 hours of aging, opposing current generally returns to the level achieved after hydrogen annealing which immediately preceded the aging sequence. Optical measurements of the spectral transmission of the Cu/sub 2/S layers in a cell content have been made using a silicon detector epoxied to the back of a CdS cell after the copper foil substrate was removed. There is no significant change in Cu/sub 2/S transmission behavior for wavelengths ranging from 525 to 1000 nm during wet-oxygen aging for periods of 2 to 36 hours. This suggests that the decrease in J/sub SC/ at constant illumination, for the aging experiments in a flowing wet-oxygen ambient, arises because of changes in minority-carrier transport properties of the Cu/sub 2/S. Before developing a method for using an epoxied silicon detector to measure optical behavior of the Cu/sub 2/S layer, we explored the possibility of using a junction-containing wafer of silicon as a substrate for deposited CdS films. Some monolithic structures were successfully fabricated. Comparisons were made of CdS grain structure details in the junction detector area and in an adjacent metallized area.

  16. Selective structuring of multi-layer functional thin films using a laser-induced shockwave delamination process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehrhardt, M.; Lorenz, P.; Bayer, L.; Molpeceres, C.; Ramirez, C. Antonio Herrera; Zimmer, K.

    2016-03-01

    The laser assisted micro structuring of thin films especially for electronic applications without influence the functionality of the multi-layer system e.g. due to melting products is a challenge for the laser micro machining techniques. The P2 scribing of copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) solar cells on stainless steel carrier foil was studied using shockwave- induced film delamination (SWIFD) patterning. The delamination process is induced by a shock wave generated by the laser ablation of the rear side of the carrier foil. In the present study UV nanosecond laser pulses provided by a KrF excimer laser were used to induce the SWIFD process. The morphology and size of the achieved thin-film structures were studied in dependence on various laser irradiation parameters by optical and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Furthermore, the materials composition after the laser patterning was analyzed by energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX). The temporal sequences of processes involved in the SWIFD process were analyzed with high speed shadowgraph experiments. The results of the present study shows that in dependence on the laser parameter used a large process window exist in which the CIGS thin film can be removed from the substrate without visible thermal modification of the CIGS thin film.

  17. Colloidal transfer printing method for periodically textured thin films in flexible media with greatly enhanced solar energy harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Xi; Sheng, Jiang; Wu, Sudong; Chen, Dong; Zhou, Jun; Zhou, Suqiong; He, Jian; Gao, Pingqi; Ye, Jichun

    2015-10-01

    The successful fabrication of high-performance flexible thin film solar cells (TFSCs) directly on diverse substrates is intrinsically limited by the processing temperature and substrate property. In this work, a colloidal transfer-printing (CTP) method is developed to fabricate large-area flexible thin-film absorbers with an antireflection coating and periodic configurations. Compared with a planar film, such structures exhibit much lower reflectance due to the antireflection introduced by the textured polydimethylsiloxane and the enhanced scattering introduced by the periodic back-scattering reflector. Optical simulation using the finite-element method indicates the structural periodicity for maximum light absorption is of 300 nm for an ultrathin amorphous silicon (a-Si) film with a thickness of 160 nm. The patterned a-Si film yields an overall absorption of 64.8%, which is much larger than the planar counterpart of 38.5%. This new approach to thin-film transfer can be readily extended to other material systems and device structures, opening up an effective alternative to traditional fabrication of the low-cost and high-performance optoelectronic devices.

  18. SnS Thin Film Prepared by Pyrolytic Synthesis as an Efficient Counter Electrode in Quantum Dot Sensitized Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Dai, Xiaoyan; Shi, Chengwu; Zhang, Yanru; Liu, Feng; Fang, Xiaqin; Zhu, Jun

    2015-09-01

    The SnS thin films were successfully prepared by pyrolysis procedure for the counter electrodes in quantum dot sensitized solar cells (QDSCs) using the methanol solution containing stannous chloride dihydrate (0.40 mol x L(-1)) and thiourea (0.40 mol x L(-1)) as precursor solution at 300 degrees C in the air atmosphere. The electrochemical catalytic activity of the SnS thin films prepared by pyrolytic synthesis for the redox couple of S(2-)/S(2-) was investigated by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. The result revealed that the charge transfer resistance of the as-prepared SnS thin film with the dipping-heating cycles of 5 was 106.4 Ω and the corresponded QDSCs gave a short circuit photocurrent density of 8.69 mA x cm(-2), open circuit voltage of 0.42 V, and fill factor of 0.43, yielding the photoelectric conversion efficiency of 1.57%, under the illumination of simulated AM 1.5 sunlight (100 mWx cm(-2)). PMID:26716249

  19. The effect of dopant concentration on properties of transparent conducting Al-doped ZnO thin films for efficient Cu2ZnSnS4 thin-film solar cells prepared by electrodeposition method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mkawi, E. M.; Ibrahim, K.; Ali, M. K. M.; Farrukh, M. A.; Mohamed, A. S.

    2015-11-01

    Al-doped ZnO (AZO) thin films were potentiostatically deposited on indium tin oxide substrates. The influence of the doping level of the ZnO:Al films was investigated. The results of the X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy analysis revealed that the structural properties of the AZO films were found polycrystalline with a hexagonal wurtzite-type structure along the (002) plane. The grain size of the AZO films was observed as approximately 3 μm in the film doping with 4 mol% ZnO:Al concentration. The thin films also exhibited an optical transmittance as high as 90 % in the wavelength range of 100-1,000 nm. The optical band gap increased from 3.33 to 3.45 eV. Based on the Hall studies, the lowest resistivity (4.78 × 10-3 Ω cm) was observed in the film doping with 3 mol% ZnO:Al concentration. The sheet resistant, carrier concentration and Hall mobility values were found as 10.78 Ω/ square, 9.03 × 1018 cm-3 and 22.01 cm2/v s, respectively, which showed improvements in the properties of AZO thin films. The ZnO:Al thin films were used as a buffer layer in thin-film solar cells with the structure of soda-lime glass/Mo/Cu2ZnSnS4/ZnS/ZnO/Al grid. The best solar cell efficiency was 2.3 % with V OC of 0.430 V, J SC of 8.24 mA cm-2 and FF of 68.1 %.

  20. Carbon-Nanotube Conductive Layers for Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2005-01-01

    Thin, transparent layers comprising mats of carbon nanotubes have been proposed for providing lateral (that is, inplane) electrical conductivities for collecting electric currents from the front surfaces of the emitter layers of thin-film solar photovoltaic cells. Traditionally, thin, semitransparent films of other electrically conductive materials (usually, indium tin oxide, zinc oxide, or cadmium sulfide) have been used for this purpose. As in the cases of the traditional semitransparent conductive films, the currents collected by the nanotube layers would, in turn, be further collected by front metal contact stripes. Depending on details of a specific solar-cell design, the layer of carbon nanotubes would be deposited in addition to, or instead of, a semitransparent layer of one of these traditional conductive materials (see figure). The proposal is expected to afford the following advantages: The electrical conductivity of the carbon- nanotube layer would exceed that of the corresponding semitransparent layer of traditional electrically conductive material. The greater electrical conductivity of the carbon-nanotube layer would make it possible to retain adequate lateral electrical conductivity while reducing the thickness of, or eliminating entirely, the traditional semitransparent conductive layer. As a consequence of thinning or elimination of the traditional semitransparent conductive layer, less light would be absorbed, so that more of the incident light would be available for photovoltaic conversion. The greater electrical conductivity of the carbon-nanotube layer would make it possible to increase the distance between front metal contact stripes, in addition to (or instead of) thinning or eliminating the layer of traditional semitransparent conductive material. Consequently, the fraction of solar-cell area shadowed by front metal contact stripes would be reduced again, making more of the incident light available for photovoltaic conversion. The electrical

  1. Nanostructured p-type CZTS thin films prepared by a facile solution process for 3D p-n junction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Si-Nae; Sung, Shi-Joon; Sim, Jun-Hyoung; Yang, Kee-Jeong; Hwang, Dae-Kue; Kim, Junho; Kim, Gee Yeong; Jo, William; Kim, Dae-Hwan; Kang, Jin-Kyu

    2015-06-01

    Nanoporous p-type semiconductor thin films prepared by a simple solution-based process with appropriate thermal treatment and three-dimensional (3D) p-n junction solar cells fabricated by depositing n-type semiconductor layers onto the nanoporous p-type thin films show considerable photovoltaic performance compared with conventional thin film p-n junction solar cells. Spin-coated p-type Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin films prepared using metal chlorides and thiourea show unique nanoporous thin film morphology, which is composed of a cluster of CZTS nanograins of 50-500 nm, and the obvious 3D p-n junction structure is fabricated by the deposition of n-type CdS on the nanoporous CZTS thin films by chemical bath deposition. The photovoltaic properties of 3D p-n junction CZTS solar cells are predominantly affected by the scale of CZTS nanograins, which is easily controlled by the sulfurization temperature of CZTS precursor films. The scale of CZTS nanograins determines the minority carrier transportation within the 3D p-n junction between CZTS and CdS, which are closely related with the photocurrent of series resistance of 3D p-n junction solar cells. 3D p-n junction CZTS solar cells with nanograins below 100 nm show power conversion efficiency of 5.02%, which is comparable with conventional CZTS thin film solar cells.Nanoporous p-type semiconductor thin films prepared by a simple solution-based process with appropriate thermal treatment and three-dimensional (3D) p-n junction solar cells fabricated by depositing n-type semiconductor layers onto the nanoporous p-type thin films show considerable photovoltaic performance compared with conventional thin film p-n junction solar cells. Spin-coated p-type Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin films prepared using metal chlorides and thiourea show unique nanoporous thin film morphology, which is composed of a cluster of CZTS nanograins of 50-500 nm, and the obvious 3D p-n junction structure is fabricated by the deposition of n-type CdS on the

  2. Boron Doped Nanocrystalline Film with Improved Work Function as a Buffer Layer in Thin Film Silicon Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Park, Jinjoo; Shin, Chonghoon; Park, Hyeongsik; Jung, Junhee; Lee, Youn-Jung; Bong, Sungjae; Dao, Vinh Ai; Balaji, Nagarajan; Yi, Junsin

    2015-03-01

    We investigated thin film silicon solar cells with boron doped hydrogenated nanocrystalline silicon/ hydrogenated amorphous silicon oxide [p-type nc-Si:H/a-SiOx:H] layer. First, we researched the bandgap engineering of diborane (B2H6) doped wide bandgap hydrogenated nanocryslline silicon (p-type nc-Si:H) films, which have excellent electrical properties of high dark conductivity, and low activation energy. The films prepared with lower doping ratio and higher hydrogen dilution ratio had higher optical gap (Eg), with higher dark conductivity (σ(d)), and lower activation energy (Ea). We controlled Eg from 2.10 eV to 1.75 eV, with σ(d) from 1.1 S/cm to 7.59 x 10(-3) S/cm, and Ea from 0.040 eV to 0.128 eV. Next, we focused on the fabrication of thin film silicon solar cells. By inserting p-type nc-Si:H film into the thin film silicon solar cells, we achieved a remarkable increase in the built-in potential from 0.803 eV to 0.901 eV. By forming p-type nc-Si:H film between SnO2:F/ZnO:Al (30 nm) and p-type a-SiOx:H layer, the solar cell properties of open circuit voltage (Voc), short circuit current density (Jsc), and efficiency (η) were improved by 3.7%, 9.2%, and 9.8%, respectively. PMID:26413646

  3. Low work function, stable thin films

    DOEpatents

    Dinh, Long N.; McLean, II, William; Balooch, Mehdi; Fehring, Jr., Edward J.; Schildbach, Marcus A.

    2000-01-01

    Generation of low work function, stable compound thin films by laser ablation. Compound thin films with low work function can be synthesized by simultaneously laser ablating silicon, for example, and thermal evaporating an alkali metal into an oxygen environment. For example, the compound thin film may be composed of Si/Cs/O. The work functions of the thin films can be varied by changing the silicon/alkali metal/oxygen ratio. Low work functions of the compound thin films deposited on silicon substrates were confirmed by ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy (UPS). The compound thin films are stable up to 500.degree. C. as measured by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). Tests have established that for certain chemical compositions and annealing temperatures of the compound thin films, negative electron affinity (NEA) was detected. The low work function, stable compound thin films can be utilized in solar cells, field emission flat panel displays, electron guns, and cold cathode electron guns.

  4. Accelerated stress testing of thin film solar cells: Development of test methods and preliminary results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lathrop, J. W.

    1985-01-01

    If thin film cells are to be considered a viable option for terrestrial power generation their reliability attributes will need to be explored and confidence in their stability obtained through accelerated testing. Development of a thin film accelerated test program will be more difficult than was the case for crystalline cells because of the monolithic construction nature of the cells. Specially constructed test samples will need to be fabricated, requiring committment to the concept of accelerated testing by the manufacturers. A new test schedule appropriate to thin film cells will need to be developed which will be different from that used in connection with crystalline cells. Preliminary work has been started to seek thin film schedule variations to two of the simplest tests: unbiased temperature and unbiased temperature humidity. Still to be examined are tests which involve the passage of current during temperature and/or humidity stress, either by biasing in the forward (or reverse) directions or by the application of light during stress. Investigation of these current (voltage) accelerated tests will involve development of methods of reliably contacting the thin conductive films during stress.

  5. Thin Film?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kariper, İ. Afşin

    2014-09-01

    This study focuses on the critical surface tension of lead sulfite (PbSO3) crystalline thin film produced with chemical bath deposition on substrates (commercial glass).The PbSO3 thin films were deposited at room temperature at different deposition times. The structural properties of the films were defined and examined according to X-ray diffraction (XRD) and the XRD results such as dislocation density, average grain size, and no. of crystallites per unit area. Atomic force microscopy was used to measure the film thickness and the surface properties. The critical surface tension of the PbSO3 thin films was measured with an optical tensiometer instrument and calculated using the Zisman method. The results indicated that the critical surface tension of films changed in accordance with the average grain size and film thickness. The film thickness increased with deposition time and was inversely correlated with surface tension. The average grain size increased according to deposition time and was inversely correlated with surface tension.

  6. Thin-film gallium arsenide solar-cell research. Annual project report, March 1, 1980-February 28, 1981

    SciTech Connect

    Chu, S.S.

    1981-03-01

    The optimization of the deposition of gallium arsenide films of 10 ..mu..m thickness or less has been carried out with the objective of obtaining gallium arsenide films with uniform microstructure and good electrical properties. Gallium arsenide films of 10 ..mu..m or less thickness deposited on tungsten/graphite substrates exhibit, in most cases, pronounced shunting effects in large area MOS solar cells due to grain boundaries. The effective passivation of grain boundaries is necessary to produce solar cells with good conversion efficiency. Different grain boundary passivation techniques have been investigated to determine their effectiveness for large area solar cells from the deposited gallium arsenide films. The combination of ruthenium treatment and thermal oxidation has been shown to be the most effective passivation technique for large area MOS solar cells. MOS solar cells have been fabricated from gallium arsenide films of 10 ..mu..m thickness. The gallium arsenide films were treated with ruthenium ion and followed by thermal oxidation. The solar cells are of the configuration TiO/sub 2//Ag(grid contact)/Au/oxide/n-GaAs/n/sup +/-GaAs/W/graphite. MOS solar cells of 9 cm/sup 2/ area with an AM1 efficiency of up to 8.5% have been prepared reproducibly. The fabrication and characterization of thin film gallium arsenide homojunction solar cells have been initiated. The p/sup +/-n junction was formed in-situ by depositing the Zn-doped p/sup +/-layer immediately after the deposition of n/n/sup +/-layers. Without any surface passivation treatment, solar cells of 8 cm/sup 2/ area with an AM1 efficiency of about 7% have been prepared. With proper optimization in the fabrication processes, the conversion efficiency should be greatly improved. Therefore homojunction structure is a promising approach for the fabrication of thin film gallium arsenide solar cells.

  7. Characterization of Sulfur Bonding in CdS:O Buffer Layers for CdTe-based Thin-Film Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Douglas A; Kephart, Jason M; Horsley, Kimberly; Blum, Monika; Mezher, Michelle; Weinhardt, Lothar; Häming, Marc; Wilks, Regan G; Hofmann, Timo; Yang, Wanli; Bär, Marcus; Sampath, Walajabad S; Heske, Clemens

    2015-08-01

    On the basis of a combination of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and synchrotron-based X-ray emission spectroscopy, we present a detailed characterization of the chemical structure of CdS:O thin films that can be employed as a substitute for CdS layers in thin-film solar cells. It is possible to analyze the local chemical environment of the probed elements, in particular sulfur, hence allowing insights into the species-specific composition of the films and their surfaces. A detailed quantification of the observed sulfur environments (i.e., sulfide, sulfate, and an intermediate oxide) as a function of oxygen content is presented, allowing a deliberate optimization of CdS:O thin films for their use as alternative buffer layers in thin-film photovoltaic devices. PMID:26200260

  8. Modification of opto-electronic properties of ZnO by incorporating metallic tin for buffer layer in thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Deepu, D. R.; Jubimol, J.; Kartha, C. Sudha; Louis, Godfrey; Vijayakumar, K. P.; Kumar, K. Rajeev

    2015-06-24

    In this report, the effect of incorporation of metallic tin (Sn) on opto-electronic properties of ZnO thin films is presented. ZnO thin films were deposited through ‘automated chemical spray pyrolysis’ (CSP) technique; later different quantities of ‘Sn’ were evaporated on it and subsequently annealed. Vacuum annealing showed a positive effect on crystallinity of films. Creation of sub band gap levels due to ‘Sn’ diffusion was evident from the absorption and PL spectra. The tin incorporated films showed good photo response in visible region. Tin incorporated ZnO thin films seem to satisfy the desirable criteria for buffer layer in thin film solar cells.

  9. Scattering matrix analysis for evaluating the photocurrent in hydrogenated-amorphous-silicon-based thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Shin, Myunghun; Lee, Seong Hyun; Lim, Jung Wook; Yun, Sun Jin

    2014-11-01

    A scattering matrix (S-matrix) analysis method was developed for evaluating hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H)-based thin film solar cells. In this approach, light wave vectors A and B represent the incoming and outgoing behaviors of the incident solar light, respectively, in terms of coherent wave and incoherent intensity components. The S-matrix determines the relation between A and B according to optical effects such as reflection and transmission, as described by the Fresnel equations, scattering at the boundary surfaces, or scattering within the propagation medium, as described by the Beer-Lambert law and the change in the phase of the propagating light wave. This matrix can be used to evaluate the behavior of angle-incident coherent and incoherent light simultaneously, and takes into account not only the light scattering process at material boundaries (haze effects) but also nonlinear optical processes within the material. The optical parameters in the S-matrix were determined by modeling both a 2%-gallium-doped zinc oxide transparent conducting oxide and germanium-compounded a-Si:H (a-SiGe:H). Using the S-matrix equations, the photocurrent for an a-Si:H/a-SiGe:H tandem cell and the optical loss in semitransparent a-Si:H solar cells for use in building-integrated photovoltaic applications were analyzed. The developed S-matrix method can also be used as a general analysis tool for various thin film solar cells. PMID:25958519

  10. Enhanced photovoltaic performances of graphene/Si solar cells by insertion of a MoS2 thin film

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsuboi, Yuka; Wang, Feijiu; Kozawa, Daichi; Funahashi, Kazuma; Mouri, Shinichiro; Miyauchi, Yuhei; Takenobu, Taishi; Matsuda, Kazunari

    2015-08-01

    Transition-metal dichalcogenides exhibit great potential as active materials in optoelectronic devices because of their characteristic band structure. Here, we demonstrated that the photovoltaic performances of graphene/Si Schottky junction solar cells were significantly improved by inserting a chemical vapor deposition (CVD)-grown, large MoS2 thin-film layer. This layer functions as an effective electron-blocking/hole-transporting layer. We also demonstrated that the photovoltaic properties are enhanced with the increasing number of graphene layers and the decreasing thickness of the MoS2 layer. A high photovoltaic conversion efficiency of 11.1% was achieved with the optimized trilayer-graphene/MoS2/n-Si solar cell.Transition-metal dichalcogenides exhibit great potential as active materials in optoelectronic devices because of their characteristic band structure. Here, we demonstrated that the photovoltaic performances of graphene/Si Schottky junction solar cells were significantly improved by inserting a chemical vapor deposition (CVD)-grown, large MoS2 thin-film layer. This layer functions as an effective electron-blocking/hole-transporting layer. We also demonstrated that the photovoltaic properties are enhanced with the increasing number of graphene layers and the decreasing thickness of the MoS2 layer. A high photovoltaic conversion efficiency of 11.1% was achieved with the optimized trilayer-graphene/MoS2/n-Si solar cell. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c5nr03046c

  11. β-Ga2O3 thin films on sapphire pre-seeded by homo-self-templated buffer layer for solar-blind UV photodetector

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, X. Z.; Guo, P.; Sheng, T.; Qian, L. X.; Zhang, W. L.; Li, Y. R.

    2016-01-01

    Gallium oxide thin films were grown on c-plane sapphire substrate by molecular beam epitaxy. The homo-self-templated buffer layer was introduced for the gallium oxide thin film growth, and accordingly the FWHM of the on-axis (2 bar 0 1) β-Ga2O3 diffraction peak of the X-ray diffraction rocking curve was reduced from 1.9° to 0.9°, proving an improvement in the crystalline quality of β-Ga2O3 thin film. In addition, the planar-geometry metal-semiconductor-metal photoconductive detectors (PDs) were manufactured by using the 100 nm β-Ga2O3 thin films. Accordingly, the PDs based on the β-Ga2O3 thin films with homo-self-templated buffer layer performed obviously improved device properties, such as small dark current of 0.04 nA, high photo- to dark- current ratio in the order of 104, large photoresponsivity of 259 A/W, high external quantum efficiency of 7.9 × 104%, weak persistent photoconductivity, and excellent solar-blind UV responsivity. Hence, it is reasonable to believe that the β-Ga2O3 thin film grown with homo-self-templated buffer layer is a promising candidate for the application in solar-blind UV camera.

  12. Synthesis and characterization of Zn(O,OH)S and AgInS2 layers to be used in thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vallejo, W.; Arredondo, C. A.; Gordillo, G.

    2010-11-01

    In this paper AgInS2 and Zn(O,OH)S thin films were synthesized and characterized. AgInS2 layers were grown by co-evaporation from metal precursors in a two-step process, and, Zn(O,OH)S thin films were deposited from chemical bath containing thiourea, zinc acetate, sodium citrate and ammonia. X-ray diffraction measurements indicated that AgInS2 thin films grown with chalcopyrite structure, and the as-grown Zn(O,OH)S thin films were polycrystalline. It was also found that the AgInS2 films presented p-type conductivity, a high absorption coefficient (greater than 104 cm-1) and energy band-gap Eg of about 1.95 eV, Zn(O,OH),S thin films presented Eg of about 3.89 eV. Morphological analysis showed that under this synthesis conditions Zn(O,OH),S thin films coated uniformly the absorber layer. Additionally, the Zn(O,OH)S kinetic growth on AgInS2 layer was studied also. Finally, the results suggest that these layers possibly could be used in one-junction solar cells and/or as top cell in a tandem solar cell.

  13. Effective Light Trapping in Thin Film Silicon Solar Cells with Nano- and Microscale Structures on Glass Substrate.

    PubMed

    Bong, Sungjae; Ahn, Shihyun; Anh, Le Huy Tuan; Kim, Sunbo; Park, Hyeongsik; Shin, Chonghoon; Park, Jinjoo; Lee, Younjung; Yi, Junsin

    2016-05-01

    For thin film silicon-based solar cells, effective light trapping at a broad range of wavelengths (400-1100 nm) is necessary. Normally, etching is only carried out with TCOs, such as SnO2:F and impurity doped ZnO, to form nano-sized craters in the surface morphology to confer a light trapping effect. However, in this study, prior to ZnO:Al etching, periodic structures on the glass substrates were made by photolithography and wet etching to increase the light scattering and internal reflection. The use of periodic structures on the glass substrate resulted in higher haze ratios in the range from 550 nm to 1100 nm, which is the optical absorption wavelength region for thin film silicon solar cells, than obtained by simple ZnO:Al etching. The periodically textured glass with micro-sized structures compensates for the low haze ratio at the middle and long wavelengths of wet etched ZnO:Al. ZnO:Al was deposited on the periodically textured glass, after which the ZnO:Al surface was also etched randomly using a mixed acid solution to form nano-sized craters. The thin film silicon solar cells with 350-nm-thick amorphous silicon absorber layer deposited on the periodic structured glass and etched ZnO:Al generated up to 10.68% more photocurrent, with 11.2% increase of the conversion efficiency compared to the cell deposited on flat glass and etched ZnO:Al. PMID:27483855

  14. Characterization of Highly Efficient CdTe Thin Film Solar Cells by the Capacitance-Voltage Profiling Technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okamoto, Tamotsu; Yamada, Akira; Konagai, Makoto

    2000-05-01

    The electrical properties of highly efficient CdTe thin film solar cells prepared by close-spaced sublimation (CSS) were investigated by capacitance-voltage (C-V) measurement. According to the dependence of the cell performance on the substrate temperature in the CSS process, the open-circuit voltage (Voc) increased with increasing the substrate temperature below 630°C@. The carrier concentration profiles revealed that the net acceptor concentration exponentially increased from the CdS/CdTe interface to the rear and that the acceptor concentration increased with increasing substrate temperature. This result suggests that Voc is improved as a result of the increase in the acceptor concentration.

  15. Characterization of CdS/CdTe and CdS/CuInSe2 thin film solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheng, L. J.; Nguyen, T. T.; Shyu, C. M.; Basol, B. M.; Yoo, H. I.

    1984-01-01

    A study on low cost polycrystalline thin film CdS/CdTe and CdS/CuInSe2 solar cells using measurements of spectral response and capacitance-voltage-frequency relationships was performed. Because of high concentrations of localized levels in the energy gap existing in materials and at interfaces, the redistribution of charge among the levels due to illumination plays an important role in the collection of light-generated current in these cells. The results illustrate some related phenomena observed in these cells.

  16. Absorber processing issues in high-efficiency, thin-film Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2}-based solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Tuttle, J.R.; Gabor, A.M.; Contreras, M.A.; Tennant, A.L.; Ramanathan, K.R.; Franz, A.; Matson, R.; Noufi, R.

    1996-01-01

    Three approaches to thin-film Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} absorber fabrication are considered. They are generically described in terms of the sequential or concurrent nature of source material delivery, selenium delivery, and compound formation. A two-stage evaporation process successfully produced the absorber component of a world-record, 17.1{percent} efficient solar cell. Alternative approaches that reduce the requirements for high substrate temperatures are considered. The relationship between absorber process parameters, band gap profile, and device performance are examined. Engineering the [Ga]/([Ga]+[In]) profile in the absorber has led to the reported advances. {copyright} {ital 1996 American Institute of Physics.}

  17. Effect of Sulfurization Temperature on Solution-Processed Cu2ZnSnS4 Thin Films.

    PubMed

    Park, Si-Nae; Sung, Shi-Joon; Son, Dae-Ho; Kim, Dae-Hwan; Sim, Jun-Hyoung; Kang, Jin-Kyu

    2015-03-01

    Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) solar cells are attracting significant attention as an alternative to CIGS (Culn1-xGa(x)S2) solar cells because of the non-toxic and inexpensive constituent elements of CZTS. Recently, solution-based deposition methods are being developed because they have advantages such as suitability for use in large-area deposition, high-throughput manufacturing, and a very short energy payback time with drastically lower manufacturing costs. In this work, we fabricated solution-based CZTS thin films and investigated them in order to observe the effects of sulfurization temperature on CZTS thin films. We confirmed the grain size, morphology, chemical composition, crystallinity, and electrical properties of CZTS thin films depending on various sulfurization temperatures. PMID:26413693

  18. Solution-processed highly efficient Cu2ZnSnSe4 thin film solar cells by dissolution of elemental Cu, Zn, Sn, and Se powders.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yanchun; Wang, Gang; Zhao, Wangen; Tian, Qingwen; Huang, Lijian; Pan, Daocheng

    2015-01-14

    Solution deposition approaches play an important role in reducing the manufacturing cost of Cu2ZnSnSe4 (CZTSe) thin film solar cells. Here, we present a novel precursor-based solution approach to fabricate highly efficient CZTSe solar cells. In this approach, low-cost elemental Cu, Zn, Sn, and Se powders were simultaneously dissolved in the solution of thioglycolic acid and ethanolamine, forming a homogeneous CZTSe precursor solution to deposit CZTSe nanocrystal thin films. Based on high-quality CZTSe absorber layer, pure selenide CZTSe solar cell with a photoelectric conversion efficiency of 8.02% has been achieved without antireflection coating. PMID:25494493

  19. Research on high-efficiency, single-junction, monolithic, thin-film amorphous silicon solar cells. Semiannual subcontract progress report, 1 December 1984-31 May 1985

    SciTech Connect

    Ashton, G.R.; Aspen, F.E.; Jacobson, R.L.; Jeffrey, F.R.; Tran, N.T.

    1986-01-01

    This report presents interim results of research in high-efficiency, single-junction, monolithic thin-film amorphous silicon solar cells, which consists of five research tasks: (1) amorphous silicon materials research, (2) nonsemiconductor materials research, (3) solar cell research, (4) monolithic, intraconnected cells/submodule research, and (5) multichamber deposition system research. The subcontracted work reported here advances the state of the art in thin-film amorphous silicon solar cell development through work on flexible substrates. A multichamber deposition system for depositing a-Si onto polyimide flexible web is essentially complete.

  20. A light-trapping strategy for nanocrystalline silicon thin-film solar cells using three-dimensionally assembled nanoparticle structures.

    PubMed

    Ha, Kyungyeon; Jang, Eunseok; Jang, Segeun; Lee, Jong-Kwon; Jang, Min Seok; Choi, Hoseop; Cho, Jun-Sik; Choi, Mansoo

    2016-02-01

    We report three-dimensionally assembled nanoparticle structures inducing multiple plasmon resonances for broadband light harvesting in nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si:H) thin-film solar cells. A three-dimensional multiscale (3DM) assembly of nanoparticles generated using a multi-pin spark discharge method has been accomplished over a large area under atmospheric conditions via ion-assisted aerosol lithography. The multiscale features of the sophisticated 3DM structures exhibit surface plasmon resonances at multiple frequencies, which increase light scattering and absorption efficiency over a wide spectral range from 350-1100 nm. The multiple plasmon resonances, together with the antireflection functionality arising from the conformally deposited top surface of the 3D solar cell, lead to a 22% and an 11% improvement in power conversion efficiency of the nc-Si:H thin-film solar cells compared to flat cells and cells employing nanoparticle clusters, respectively. Finite-difference time-domain simulations were also carried out to confirm that the improved device performance mainly originates from the multiple plasmon resonances generated from three-dimensionally assembled nanoparticle structures. PMID:26751935

  1. A light-trapping strategy for nanocrystalline silicon thin-film solar cells using three-dimensionally assembled nanoparticle structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ha, Kyungyeon; Jang, Eunseok; Jang, Segeun; Lee, Jong-Kwon; Jang, Min Seok; Choi, Hoseop; Cho, Jun-Sik; Choi, Mansoo

    2016-02-01

    We report three-dimensionally assembled nanoparticle structures inducing multiple plasmon resonances for broadband light harvesting in nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si:H) thin-film solar cells. A three-dimensional multiscale (3DM) assembly of nanoparticles generated using a multi-pin spark discharge method has been accomplished over a large area under atmospheric conditions via ion-assisted aerosol lithography. The multiscale features of the sophisticated 3DM structures exhibit surface plasmon resonances at multiple frequencies, which increase light scattering and absorption efficiency over a wide spectral range from 350-1100 nm. The multiple plasmon resonances, together with the antireflection functionality arising from the conformally deposited top surface of the 3D solar cell, lead to a 22% and an 11% improvement in power conversion efficiency of the nc-Si:H thin-film solar cells compared to flat cells and cells employing nanoparticle clusters, respectively. Finite-difference time-domain simulations were also carried out to confirm that the improved device performance mainly originates from the multiple plasmon resonances generated from three-dimensionally assembled nanoparticle structures.

  2. High-efficiency, thin-film solar cells. Annual subcontractor report, 1 July 1991--30 June 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Gale, R.P.

    1994-01-01

    This report describes work on a 3-year research program to investigate thin-film GaAs/GaInP cells using the cleavage of lateral epitaxial film for transfer (CLEFT) technique, and to determine the process to enable overgrowth of GaAs films using organometallic chemistry. Application of the CLEFT thin-film technique to GaInP/GaAs solar cells and organometallic overgrowth was investigated. A problem of alloy contamination was identified and controlled, leading to higher quality layers. Solar cell structures were grown and fabricated using previously determined growth parameters for GaAs and GaInP. With the improved materials developed significant improvements were made in solar cell performance. Conditions for in-situ overgrowth by organometallic chemical vapor deposition (OMCVD) were determined and continuous GaAs layers were grown over a separation mask layer. The layers were successfully separated from their substrate using the CLEFT process, demonstrating the application of overgrowth using OM chemistry with HCl.

  3. Quadruple-junction thin-film silicon-based solar cells with high open-circuit voltage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Si, Fai Tong; Kim, Do Yun; Santbergen, Rudi; Tan, Hairen; van Swaaij, René A. C. M. M.; Smets, Arno H. M.; Isabella, Olindo; Zeman, Miro

    2014-08-01

    We have fabricated a-SiOx:H/a-Si:H/nc-Si:H/nc-Si:H quadruple-junction thin-film silicon-based solar cells (4J TFSSCs) to obtain high spectral utilization and high voltages. By processing the solar cells on micro-textured superstrates, extremely high open-circuit voltages for photovoltaic technology based on thin-film silicon alloys up to 2.91 V have been achieved. Optical simulations of quadruple-junction solar cells using an advanced in-house model are a crucial tool to effectively tackle the challenging task of current matching among the individual sub-cells in such devices. After optimizing the optical design of the device and the absorber thicknesses, an energy conversion efficiency of 11.4% has been achieved. The open-circuit voltage, short-circuit current density, and fill factor were 2.82 V, 5.49 mA/cm2, and 73.9%, respectively. Based on this demonstration, strategies for further development of highly efficient 4J TFSSCs are proposed.

  4. Radio Frequency Magnetron Sputtering Deposition of TiO2 Thin Films and Their Perovskite Solar Cell Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Cong; Cheng, Yu; Dai, Qilin; Song, Hongwei

    2015-12-01

    In this work, we report a physical deposition based, compact (cp) layer synthesis for planar heterojunction perovskite solar cells. Typical solution-based synthesis of cp layer for perovskite solar cells involves low-quality of thin films, high-temperature annealing, non-flexible devices, limitation of large-scale production and that the effects of the cp layer on carrier transport have not been fully understood. In this research, using radio frequency magnetron sputtering (RFMS), TiO2 cp layers were fabricated and the thickness could be controlled by deposition time; CH3NH3PbI3 films were prepared by evaporation & immersion (E & I) method, in which PbI2 films made by thermal evaporation technique were immersed in CH3NH3I solution. The devices exhibit power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 12.1% and the photovoltaic performance can maintain 77% of its initial PCE after 1440 h. The method developed in this study has the capability of fabricating large active area devices (40 × 40 mm2) showing a promising PCE of 4.8%. Low temperature and flexible devices were realized and a PCE of 8.9% was obtained on the PET/ITO substrates. These approaches could be used in thin film based solar cells which require high-quality films leading to reduced fabrication cost and improved device performance.

  5. New strategies in laser processing of TCOs for light management improvement in thin-film silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lauzurica, S.; Lluscà, M.; Canteli, D.; Sánchez-Aniorte, M. I.; López-Vidrier, J.; Hernández, S.; Bertomeu, J.; Molpeceres, C.

    2014-10-01

    Light confinement strategies play a crucial role in the performance of thin-film (TF) silicon solar cells. One way to reduce the optical losses is the texturing of the transparent conductive oxide (TCO) that acts as the front contact. Other losses arise from the mismatch between the incident light spectrum and the spectral properties of the absorbent material that imply that low energy photons (below the bandgap value) are not absorbed, and therefore can not generate photocurrent. Up-conversion techniques, in which two sub-bandgap photons are combined to give one photon with a better matching with the bandgap, were proposed to overcome this problem. In particular, this work studies two strategies to improve light management in thin film silicon solar cells using laser technology. The first one addresses the problem of TCO surface texturing using fully commercial fast and ultrafast solid state laser sources. Aluminum doped Zinc Oxide (AZO) samples were laser processed and the results were optically evaluated by measuring the haze factor of the treated samples. As a second strategy, laser annealing experiments of TCOs doped with rare earth ions are presented as a potential process to produce layers with up-conversion properties, opening the possibility of its potential use in high efficiency solar cells.

  6. A comparative study on the performance of Kesterite based thin film solar cells using SCAPS simulation program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simya, O. K.; Mahaboobbatcha, A.; Balachander, K.

    2015-06-01

    A comparative study of thin film solar cells based on CZTS, CZTSe, and CZTSSe (Copper Zinc Tin Sulphur Selenium) absorbers layers were simulated with Cadmium Sulphide (CdS) as buffer layer and Zinc Oxide (ZnO) as window layer using a solar cell capacitance simulator (SCAPS). The influences of series resistance, band to band recombination, defects and interfaces, thickness of (CZTS|CZTSe|CZTSSe) absorber layer, (CdS) buffer layer and transparent conductive oxide layer (ZnO) on the photovoltaic cell parameters were studied in detail. Improvements in efficiency were achieved by changing the back contact metal work function (BMWF) and choosing the flat band option in SCAPS software. Based on the best possible optimisation, an efficiency (η) of 12.03%, 13.16% and 15.77% were obtained for CZTS, CZTSe, and CZTSSe respectively. The performance of thin film photovoltaic devices (TFPV), for Mo back contact before optimisation and the SCAPS simulated values (flat band) after optimisation were described in detail to have in-depth understanding for better design of experiments (DOE) to obtain high efficiency solar cells.

  7. Radio Frequency Magnetron Sputtering Deposition of TiO2 Thin Films and Their Perovskite Solar Cell Applications

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Cong; Cheng, Yu; Dai, Qilin; Song, Hongwei

    2015-01-01

    In this work, we report a physical deposition based, compact (cp) layer synthesis for planar heterojunction perovskite solar cells. Typical solution-based synthesis of cp layer for perovskite solar cells involves low-quality of thin films, high-temperature annealing, non-flexible devices, limitation of large-scale production and that the effects of the cp layer on carrier transport have not been fully understood. In this research, using radio frequency magnetron sputtering (RFMS), TiO2 cp layers were fabricated and the thickness could be controlled by deposition time; CH3NH3PbI3 films were prepared by evaporation & immersion (E & I) method, in which PbI2 films made by thermal evaporation technique were immersed in CH3NH3I solution. The devices exhibit power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 12.1% and the photovoltaic performance can maintain 77% of its initial PCE after 1440 h. The method developed in this study has the capability of fabricating large active area devices (40 × 40 mm2) showing a promising PCE of 4.8%. Low temperature and flexible devices were realized and a PCE of 8.9% was obtained on the PET/ITO substrates. These approaches could be used in thin film based solar cells which require high-quality films leading to reduced fabrication cost and improved device performance. PMID:26631493

  8. Radio Frequency Magnetron Sputtering Deposition of TiO2 Thin Films and Their Perovskite Solar Cell Applications.

    PubMed

    Chen, Cong; Cheng, Yu; Dai, Qilin; Song, Hongwei

    2015-01-01

    In this work, we report a physical deposition based, compact (cp) layer synthesis for planar heterojunction perovskite solar cells. Typical solution-based synthesis of cp layer for perovskite solar cells involves low-quality of thin films, high-temperature annealing, non-flexible devices, limitation of large-scale production and that the effects of the cp layer on carrier transport have not been fully understood. In this research, using radio frequency magnetron sputtering (RFMS), TiO2 cp layers were fabricated and the thickness could be controlled by deposition time; CH3NH3PbI3 films were prepared by evaporation &immersion (E &I) method, in which PbI2 films made by thermal evaporation technique were immersed in CH3NH3I solution. The devices exhibit power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 12.1% and the photovoltaic performance can maintain 77% of its initial PCE after 1440 h. The method developed in this study has the capability of fabricating large active area devices (40 × 40 mm(2)) showing a promising PCE of 4.8%. Low temperature and flexible devices were realized and a PCE of 8.9% was obtained on the PET/ITO substrates. These approaches could be used in thin film based solar cells which require high-quality films leading to reduced fabrication cost and improved device performance. PMID:26631493

  9. Polycrystalline Silicon Thin-film Solar cells with Plasmonic-enhanced Light-trapping

    PubMed Central

    Varlamov, Sergey; Rao, Jing; Soderstrom, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    nearly ideal light-trapping condition (Animation 2: Plasmons on NP). The resonance can be tuned to the wavelength region, which is most important for a particular cell material and design, by varying the nanoparticle average size, surface coverage and local dielectric environment 6,7. Theoretical design principles of plasmonic nanoparticle solar cells have been suggested 8. In practice, Ag nanoparticle array is an ideal light-trapping partner for poly-Si thin-film solar cells because most of these design principle are naturally met. The simplest way of forming nanoparticles by thermal annealing of a thin precursor Ag film results in a random array with a relatively wide size and shape distribution, which is particularly suitable for light-trapping because such an array has a wide resonance peak, covering the wavelength range of 700-900 nm, important for poly-Si solar cell performance. The nanoparticle array can only be located on the rear poly-Si cell surface thus avoiding destructive interference between incident and scattered light which occurs for front-located nanoparticles 9. Moreover, poly-Si thin-film cells do not requires a passivating layer and the flat base-shaped nanoparticles (that naturally result from thermal annealing of a metal film) can be directly placed on silicon further increases plasmonic scattering efficiency due to surface plasmon-polariton resonance 10. The cell with the plasmonic nanoparticle array as described above can have a photocurrent about 28% higher than the original cell. However, the array still transmits a significant amount of light which escapes through the rear of the cell and does not contribute into the current. This loss can be mitigated by adding a rear reflector to allow catching transmitted light and re-directing it back to the cell. Providing sufficient distance between the reflector and the nanoparticles (a few hundred nanometers) the reflected light will then experience one more plasmonic scattering event while passing

  10. CRADA with United Solar Technologies and Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL-021): Thin film materialsfor low-cost high performance solar concentrators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, P. M.; Affinito, J. D.; Gross, M. E.; Bennett, W. D.

    1995-03-01

    The objectives of this project were to develop and evaluate promising low-cost dielectric and polymer-protected thin-film reflective metal coatings to be applied to preformed continuously-curved solar reflector panels to enhance their solar reflectance, and to demonstrate protected solar reflective coatings on preformed solar concentrator panels. The opportunity for this project arose from a search by United Solar Technologies (UST) for organizations and facilities capable of applying reflective coatings to large preformed panels. PNL was identified as being uniquely qualified to participate in this collaborative project.

  11. Atomic layer deposition grown MO{sub x} thin films for solar water splitting: Prospects and challenges

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, Trilok; Lehnen, Thomas; Leuning, Tessa; Mathur, Sanjay

    2015-01-15

    The magnitude of energy challenge not only calls for efficient devices but also for abundant, inexpensive, and stable photoactive materials that can enable efficient light harvesting, charge separation and collection, as well as chemical transformations. Photoelectrochemical systems based on semiconductor materials have the possibility to transform solar energy directly into chemical energy the so-called “solar hydrogen.” The current challenge lies in the harvesting of a larger fraction of electromagnetic spectrum by enhancing the absorbance of electrode materials. In this context, atomically precise thin films of metal oxide semiconductors and their multilayered junctions are promising candidates to integrate high surface areas with well-defined electrode–substrate interface. Given its self-limited growth mechanism, the atomic layer deposition (ALD) technique offers a wide range of capabilities to deposit and modify materials at the nanoscale. In addition, it opens new frontiers for developing precursor chemistry that is inevitable to design new processes. Herein, the authors review the properties and potential of metal oxide thin films deposited by ALD for their application in photoelectrochemical water splitting application. The first part of the review covers the basics of ALD processes followed by a brief discussion on the electrochemistry of water splitting reaction. The second part focuses on different MO{sub x} films deposited by atomic layer deposition for water splitting applications; in this section, The authors discuss the most explored MO{sub x} semiconductors, namely, Fe{sub 2}O{sub 3}, TiO{sub 2}, WO{sub 3}, and ZnO, as active materials and refer to their application as protective coatings, conductive scaffolds, or in heterojunctions. The third part deals with the current challenges and future prospects of ALD processed MO{sub x} thin films for water splitting reactions.

  12. Controllable thin film crystal growth of a novel squaraine molecule in organic solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conrad, Brad; Spencer, Susan; Bougher, Cortney; Brown, Jesse; Kelley, Kyle; Heaphy, Patrick; Murcia, Victor; Gallivan, Cameron; Monfette, Amber; Andersen, John; Cody, Jeremy; Coffey, Tonya; Collison, Christopher

    2014-03-01

    We will discuss the formation, structures, and properties of squarine and squarine-PCBM blend thin-films using Atomic Force Microscopy, electrical characterization, UV-VIS-NIR, and Thin-film Xray Diffraction. Film properties are inferred from spectroscopic measurements and are correlated with crystallinity as determined by TFXRD and AFM. A comprehensive explanation of DiPSQ(OH)2 structures is provided and related to measured efficiencies up to 4.3. By controlling the blend ratio and other fabrication conditions, crystalline regions of higher mobility can be developed so as to make significant gains in power conversion efficiency, necessary to achieve long term goals for commercially viable NIR-active OPV devices. AppState Office of Student Research; Synthesis by Cody group. BRC thanks ORAU Junior Faculty Enhancement Award. SDS, CPG and AM thank DOE Award number DE-FG36-08GO88110. CJC and JAC thank NSF award number CBET-1236372.

  13. Improving the efficiency of copper indium gallium (Di-)selenide (CIGS) solar cells through integration of a moth-eye textured resist with a refractive index similar to aluminum doped zinc oxide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burghoorn, M.; Kniknie, B.; van Deelen, J.; Xu, M.; Vroon, Z.; van Ee, R.; van de Belt, R.; Buskens, P.

    2014-12-01

    Textured transparent conductors are widely used in thin-film silicon solar cells. They lower the reflectivity at interfaces between different layers in the cell and/or cause an increase in the path length of photons in the Si absorber layer, which both result in an increase in the number of absorbed photons and, consequently, an increase in short-circuit current density (Jsc) and cell efficiency. Through optical simulations, we recently obtained strong indications that texturing of the transparent conductor in copper indium gallium (di-)selenide (CIGS) solar cells is also optically advantageous. Here, we experimentally demonstrate that the Jsc and efficiency of CIGS solar cells with an absorber layer thickness (dCIGS) of 0.85 μm, 1.00 μm and 2.00 μm increase through application of a moth-eye textured resist with a refractive index that is sufficiently similar to AZO (nresist = 1.792 vs. nAZO = 1.913 at 633 nm) to avoid large optical losses at the resist-AZO interface. On average, Jsc increases by 7.2%, which matches the average reduction in reflection of 7.0%. The average relative increase in efficiency is slightly lower (6.0%). No trend towards a larger relative increase in Jsc with decreasing dCIGS was observed. Ergo, the increase in Jsc can be fully explained by the reduction in reflection, and we did not observe any increase in Jsc based on an increased photon path length.

  14. Improving the efficiency of copper indium gallium (Di-)selenide (CIGS) solar cells through integration of a moth-eye textured resist with a refractive index similar to aluminum doped zinc oxide

    SciTech Connect

    Burghoorn, M.; Kniknie, B.; Deelen, J. van; Ee, R. van; Xu, M.; Vroon, Z.; Belt, R. van de; Buskens, P. E-mail: buskens@dwi.rwth-aachen.de

    2014-12-15

    Textured transparent conductors are widely used in thin-film silicon solar cells. They lower the reflectivity at interfaces between different layers in the cell and/or cause an increase in the path length of photons in the Si absorber layer, which both result in an increase in the number of absorbed photons and, consequently, an increase in short-circuit current density (J{sub sc}) and cell efficiency. Through optical simulations, we recently obtained strong indications that texturing of the transparent conductor in copper indium gallium (di-)selenide (CIGS) solar cells is also optically advantageous. Here, we experimentally demonstrate that the J{sub sc} and efficiency of CIGS solar cells with an absorber layer thickness (d{sub CIGS}) of 0.85 μm, 1.00 μm and 2.00 μm increase through application of a moth-eye textured resist with a refractive index that is sufficiently similar to AZO (n{sub resist} = 1.792 vs. n{sub AZO} = 1.913 at 633 nm) to avoid large optical losses at the resist-AZO interface. On average, J{sub sc} increases by 7.2%, which matches the average reduction in reflection of 7.0%. The average relative increase in efficiency is slightly lower (6.0%). No trend towards a larger relative increase in J{sub sc} with decreasing d{sub CIGS} was observed. Ergo, the increase in J{sub sc} can be fully explained by the reduction in reflection, and we did not observe any increase in J{sub sc} based on an increased photon path length.

  15. Oxygen glow treating of ZnO electrode for thin film silicon solar cell

    SciTech Connect

    Elias, E.; Knapp, K.E.

    1989-10-10

    This patent describes an improvement in a process for production of a photoconductive device wherein a first conductive layer comprising ZnO is applied to a substrate, and a thin film silicon hydrogen alloy is applied to the first conductive layer. The improvement comprising: after applying the first conductive layer comprising ZnO to the substrate, treating the first conductive layer with a glow discharge in a gas containing a source of oxygen.

  16. High-Efficiency Cu2O-Based Heterojunction Solar Cells Fabricated Using a Ga2O3 Thin Film as N-Type Layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minami, Tadatsugu; Nishi, Yuki; Miyata, Toshihiro

    2013-04-01

    High-efficiency heterojunction solar cells consisting of a nondoped Ga2O3 thin film as an n-type semiconductor layer and a p-type Cu2O sheet as the active layer as well as the substrate, prepared by thermally oxidizing a Cu sheet, are demonstrated. The use of an n-type Ga2O3 thin film can greatly improve the performance of n-Ga2O3/p-Cu2O heterojunction solar cells. The highest efficiency of 5.38% was obtained in an Al-doped ZnO/Ga2O3/Cu2O heterojunction solar cell fabricated with an n-Ga2O3 thin-film layer prepared at room temperature with a thickness of 75 nm by a pulsed laser deposition method.

  17. Enhanced performance of flexible nanocrystalline silicon thin-film solar cells using seed layers with high hydrogen dilution.

    PubMed

    Lee, Ji-Eun; Kim, Donghwan; Yoon, Kyung Hoon; Cho, Jun-Sik

    2013-12-01

    Flexible hydrogenated nanocrystalline (nc-Si:H) thin-film solar cells were prepared by very high frequency plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (VHF-PECVD), and the effect of highly crystalline intrinsic Si seed layers at the initial growth stage of i nc-Si:H absorbers on their structural and electrical properties and on the performance of solar cells was investigated. The crystallization of i nc-Si:H absorbers was significantly enforced by the introduction of highly crystalline seed layers, resulting in the reduction of defect-dense a-Si:H grain boundary and incubation layer thickness. The open circuit voltage of the nc-Si:H solar cells with the seed layers was improved by the decrease of charged defect density in the defect-rich amorphous region. PMID:24266159

  18. Light-scattering effectiveness of two-dimensional disordered surface textures in thin-film silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Yeh, Pinghui S; Chen, Chien-Wei; Yang, Bing-Ru; Hong, Lu-Sheng

    2014-05-01

    To compare the light-scattering effectiveness of surface-textured solar cells of various design parameters such as density, diameter, refractive index, and location, this study used a new parameter, optical path length gain (OPLG), that is more sensitive than Haze. By modeling two-dimensional disordered textures as a structure that comprises many randomly distributed, small, spherical scatterers, ray-tracing simulations of surface-textured thin-film silicon solar cells were performed. The simulation results suggest that: (1) the optimal scatterer diameter for hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cells is ~50 nm, producing an average OPLG of 3.5; and (2) the optimal scatterer diameter for a-Si:H/μc-Si:H (hydrogenated microcrystalline silicon) tandem cells is ~75 nm, producing an average OPLG of 3.4 and an increase in the bandwidth of the absorption spectrum of 14.5%. PMID:24921870

  19. Nanoimprinted backside reflectors for a-Si:H thin-film solar cells: critical role of absorber front textures.

    PubMed

    Tsao, Yao-Chung; Fisker, Christian; Pedersen, Thomas Garm

    2014-05-01

    The development of optimal backside reflectors (BSRs) is crucial for future low cost and high efficiency silicon (Si) thin-film solar cells. In this work, nanostructured polymer substrates with aluminum coatings intended as BSRs were produced by positive and negative nanoimprint lithography (NIL) techniques, and hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) was deposited hereon as absorbing layers. The relationship between optical properties and geometry of front textures was studied by combining experimental reflectance spectra and theoretical simulations. It was found that a significant height variation on front textures plays a critical role for light-trapping enhancement in solar cell applications. As a part of sample preparation, a transfer NIL process was developed to overcome the problem of low heat deflection temperature of polymer substrates during solar cell fabrication. PMID:24922373

  20. Severe test of a dangling bond only model of thin film silicon p-i-n solar cell degradation

    SciTech Connect

    Willett, D.R.

    1987-06-25

    This paper uses a model that links previous research into the metastable defects found in undoped thin film Si:H or a-Si:H (TFS) films to the light-induced degradation of TFS solar cells. The fill factor changes of two experimental studies are modeled. The first series is a group of 704, 4-cm/sup 2/ p-i-n solar cells with eleven different i-layer thicknesses ranging from 1,000A to 200,000A. The second series is a group of 144, 4-cm/sup 2/ p-i-n solar cells all made in the same deposition and then exposed under different illumination levels and temperatures. The dangling bond model is shown to be an incomplete explanation of the fill factor changes due to light soaking. Data for the short time region and long time region cannot both be fit with the same parameters

  1. Fabrication of polycrystalline CdTe thin-film solar cells using carbon electrodes with carbon nanotubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okamoto, Tamotsu; Hayashi, Ryoji; Ogawa, Yohei; Hosono, Aikyo; Doi, Makoto

    2015-04-01

    The effects of adding carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to carbon back electrodes in polycrystalline CdTe thin-film solar cells were investigated. The CNTs were prepared by arc discharge under atmospheric pressure. The conductivity of the obtained CNT film with a density of 1.65 g/cm3 was approximately 2.6 × 103 S/cm. In the CdTe solar cells using carbon back electrodes with CNTs, the fill factor (FF) was improved as a result of adding CNTs with a concentration of 1 to 5 wt %. The improvement of FF was mainly due to the decrease in the series resistance of the CdTe solar cell. Furthermore, the open-circuit voltage (VOC) was improved by the CNT addition. The improvement of VOC was probably due to the reduction of the back barrier at the back contact.

  2. Characterizing the effects of silver alloying in chalcopyrite CIGS solar cells with junction capacitance methods

    SciTech Connect

    Erslev, Peter T.; Hanket, Gregory M.; Shafarman, William N.; Cohen, J. David

    2009-04-01

    A variety of junction capacitance-based characterization methods were used to investigate alloys of Ag into Cu(In1-xGax)Se2 photovoltaic solar cells over a broad range of compositions. These alloys show encouraging trends of increasing VOC with increasing Ag content, opening the possibility of wide-gap cells for use in tandem device applications. Drive level capacitance profiling (DLCP) has shown very low free carrier concentrations for all Ag-alloyed devices, in some cases less than 1014 cm-3, which is roughly an order of magnitude lower than that of CIGS devices. Transient photocapacitance spectroscopy has revealed very steep Urbach edges, with energies between 10 meV and 20 meV, in the Ag-alloyed samples. This is in general lower than the Urbach edges measured for standard CIGS samples and suggests a significantly lower degree of structural disorder.

  3. Defect engineering in solar cell manufacturing and thin film solar cell development

    SciTech Connect

    Sopori, B.L.

    1995-08-01

    During the last few years many defect engineering concepts were successfully applied to fabricate high efficiency silicon solar cells on low-cost substrates. Some of the research advances are described.

  4. Easily accessible polymer additives for tuning the crystal-growth of perovskite thin-films for highly efficient solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Qingqing; Wang, Zhaowei; Zhang, Kaicheng; Yu, Hao; Huang, Peng; Liu, Xiaodong; Zhou, Yi; Chen, Ning; Song, Bo

    2016-03-01

    For perovskite solar cells (Pero-SCs), one of the key issues with respect to the power conversion efficiency (PCE) is the morphology control of the perovskite thin-films. In this study, an easily-accessible additive polyethylenimine (PEI) is utilized to tune the morphology of CH3NH3PbI3-xClx. With addition of 1.00 wt% of PEI, the smoothness and crystallinity of the perovskite were greatly improved, which were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). A summit PCE of 14.07% was achieved for the p-i-n type Pero-SC, indicating a 26% increase compared to those of the devices without the additive. Both photoluminescence (PL) and alternating current impedance spectroscopy (ACIS) analyses confirm the efficiency results after the addition of PEI. This study provides a low-cost polymer additive candidate for tuning the morphology of perovskite thin-films, and might be a new clue for the mass production of Pero-SCs.For perovskite solar cells (Pero-SCs), one of the key issues with respect to the power conversion efficiency (PCE) is the morphology control of the perovskite thin-films. In this study, an easily-accessible additive polyethylenimine (PEI) is utilized to tune the morphology of CH3NH3PbI3-xClx. With addition of 1.00 wt% of PEI, the smoothness and crystallinity of the perovskite were greatly improved, which were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). A summit PCE of 14.07% was achieved for the p-i-n type Pero-SC, indicating a 26% increase compared to those of the devices without the additive. Both photoluminescence (PL) and alternating current impedance spectroscopy (ACIS) analyses confirm the efficiency results after the addition of PEI. This study provides a low-cost polymer additive candidate for tuning the morphology of perovskite thin-films, and might be a new clue for the mass production of Pero-SCs. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: J-V curves & characteristics

  5. Fabrication of Cu2SnS3 thin-film solar cells with power conversion efficiency of over 4%

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanai, Ayaka; Toyonaga, Kotoba; Chino, Kotaro; Katagiri, Hironori; Araki, Hideaki

    2015-08-01

    Cu2SnS3 (CTS) thin films were produced by the co-evaporation of Cu, Sn, and cracked sulfur, followed by annealing. The as-deposited films were then annealed at 570 °C for 5 min in the presence of 100 mg of sulfur lumps in a rapid thermal processing furnace filled with N2 gas at atmospheric pressure. Solar cells were then fabricated using the CTS films as absorber layers, and their efficiency was evaluated for different Cu/Sn compositional ratios. The largest grain size was found for films with a slightly Sn-rich composition. The highest performance was obtained for solar cells containing a CTS thin film with a Cu/Sn ratio of about 1.9. A cell with a Cu/Sn ratio of 1.87 exhibited an open-circuit voltage of 258 mV, a short-circuit current density of 35.6 mA/cm2, a fill factor of 0.467, and a power conversion efficiency of 4.29%.

  6. Evaluation of electrical and optical characteristics of ZnO/CdS/CIS thin film solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hadi, Zarei; Rasoul, Malekfar

    2016-02-01

    In this study, device modeling and simulation are conducted to explain the effects of each layer thickness and temperature on the performance of ZnO/CdS/CIS thin film solar cells. Also, the thicknesses of the CIS and CdS absorber layers are considered in this work theoretically and experimentally. The calculations of solar cell performances are based on the solutions of the well-known three coupling equations: the continuity equation for holes and electrons and the Poisson equation. Our simulated results show that the efficiency increases by reducing the CdS thickness. Increasing the CIS thickness can increase the efficiency but it needs more materials. The efficiency is more than 19% for a CIS layer with a thickness of 2 μm. CIS nanoparticles are prepared via the polyol route and purified through centrifugation and precipitation processes. Then nanoparticles are dispersed to obtain stable inks that could be directly used for thin-film deposition via spin coating. We also obtain x-ray diffraction (XRD) peak intensities and absorption spectra for CIS experimentally. Finally, absorption spectra for the CdS window layer in several deposition times are investigated experimentally.

  7. Characterization of CdS Thin-Film in High Efficient CdS/CdTe Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsuji, Miwa; Aramoto, Tetsuya; Ohyama, Hideaki; Hibino, Takeshi; Omura, Kuniyoshi

    2000-07-01

    Cadmium sulfide (CdS) thin films are the most commonly used window materials for high efficient cadmium telluride (CdTe) and chalcopyrite polycrystalline thin-film photovoltaic devices. High efficient CdS/CdTe solar cells with thin CdS films have been developed using ultrathin CdS films with a thickness of less than 0.1 μm. CdS films were deposited on transparent conductive oxide (TCO)/glass substrates by the metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) technique. CdTe films were subsequently deposited by the close-spaced sublimation (CSS) technique. The screen printing and sintering method fabricated carbon and silver electrodes. Cell performance depends primarily on the electrical and optical properties of CdS films. Therefore we started to develop higher-quality CdS films and found clear differences between high- and low-quality CdS films from the analyses of scanning electron microscope (SEM), atomic force microscope (AFM), secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS), thermal desorption spectrometry (TDS) and Fourier transforms-infrared spectrometry (FT-IR) measurements. As a result of controlling the quality of CdS films, a photovoltaic conversion efficiency of 10.5% has been achieved for size of 1376 cm2 of the solar cells under the Air Mass (AM) 1.5 conditions of the Japan Quality Assurance Organization.

  8. Characterization of CdS thin film in high efficient CdS/CdTe solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsuji, Miwa; Aramoto, Tetsuya; Ohyama, Hideaki; Hibino, Takeshi; Omura, Kuniyoshi

    2000-06-01

    Cadmium sulfide (CdS) thin film is the most commonly used window material for high-efficient cadmium telluride (CdTe) thin-film photovoltaic devices. High-efficient CdS/CdTe solar cells have been developed using ultra-thin CdS films having a thickness of below 0.1 μm. CdS film is deposited on transparent conductive oxide (TCO) film coated glass substrates by the metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) technique, CdTe film is subsequently deposited by the close-spaced sublimation (CSS) technique. Finally, carbon and Ag-In electrodes are fabricated by the screen printing and sintering method. Cell performance depends primarily on the electrical and optical properties of CdS film, and hence we started to develop higher quality CdS film and found out clear differences between high- and low-quality CdS films from various analyses: SEM, AFM, SIMS, TDS and FT-IR. As a result of controlling qualities of CdS films, photovoltaic conversion efficiency of 10.5% has been achieved for a size of 1376 cm 2 of the solar module under air mass (AM) 1.5 conditions by the Japan Quality Assurance Organization (JQA).

  9. Growth and characterization of α-phase Ga2‑x Sn x O3 thin films for solar-blind ultraviolet applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Xiaolong; Wu, Zhenping; Guo, Daoyou; Cui, Wei; Li, Peigang; An, Yuehua; Li, Linghong; Tang, Weihua

    2016-06-01

    Ga2‑x Sn x O3 thin films on m-plane (300) sapphire substrates were deposited by laser molecular beam epitaxy technology. Corundum-structured α-phase Ga2‑x Sn x O3 thin films with different Sn content were obtained at 850 °C in vacuum pressure of 5 × 10‑5 Pa. The band-gap energy of the α-phase Ga2‑x Sn x O3 thin films, determined from the absorption spectrum, decreases linearly with increasing Sn content. A metal–semiconductor–metal structured solar-blind photodetector based α-phase Ga2‑x Sn x O3 thin films was fabricated, and excellent solar-blind ultraviolet characteristics were demonstrated. The ratio of I 254/I dark was up to 1.40 × 102 and the responsivity increased to 9.55 × 10‑2 A W‑1. The results suggest that α-phase Ga2‑x Sn x O3 thin films are promising candidates for use in solar-blind photodetectors.

  10. Study on the thickness effect of wide-bandgap CuGaSe2 thin films for applications with tandem solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Jang Hun; Kim, Kihwan; Ahn, Seung-Kyu; Cho, Ara; Cho, Jun-Sik; Yun, Jae-Ho; Yoo, Jinsu; Kong, Seong Ho

    2016-07-01

    For application on the top cell of a tandem structure, chalcopyrite CuGaSe2 (CGS) thin films were prepared on as-deposited 200-nm-thick indium-tin-oxide (ITO) thin films grown by using radiofrequency (RF) magnetron sputtering. CGS thin films with a wide bandgap of 1.63 eV for use in high open-circuit-voltage solar cells were deposited by using a three-stage co-evaporation process with Cu, Ga, and Se elemental sources with compositional ratios of Cu/Ga = 0.88 and Se/(Cu + Ga) = 0.98. In this study, we examined the effect of the thickness of the top-cell CGS thin films on the tandem cell performance, which is a key factor for improving the cell's efficiency for optimum light absorption. The film thickness was varied from 0.5 μm to 2 μm in intervals of 0.5 μm by controlling the process time to confirm the optical and the electrical properties of solar cells. Based on our experimental results as a function of the CGS film's thickness, we achieved a solar cell efficiency of 5.77% with a 1.5-μm-thick CGS thin film in the cell structure fabricated as Al/ZnO: Al/i-ZnO/CdS/CGS/ITO/SLG.

  11. Thin Films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khorshidi, Zahra; Bahari, Ali; Gholipur, Reza

    2014-11-01

    Effect of annealing temperature on the characteristics of sol-gel-driven Ta ax La(1- a) x O y thin film spin-coated on Si substrate as a high- k gate dielectric was studied. Ta ax La(1- a) x O y thin films with different amounts of a were prepared (as-prepared samples). X-ray diffraction measurements of the as-prepared samples indicated that Ta0.3 x La0.7 x Oy film had an amorphous structure. Therefore, Ta0.3 x La0.7 x O y film was chosen to continue the present studies. The morphology of Ta0.3 x La0.7 x O y films was studied using scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy techniques. The obtained results showed that the size of grain boundaries on Ta0.3 x La0.7 x O y film surfaces was increased with increasing annealing temperature. Electrical and optical characterizations of the as-prepared and annealed films were investigated as a function of annealing temperature using capacitance-voltage ( C- V) and current density-voltage ( J- V) measurements and the Tauc method. The obtained results demonstrated that Ta0.3 x La0.7 x O y films had high dielectric constant (≈27), wide band gap (≈4.5 eV), and low leakage current density (≈10-6 A/cm2 at 1 V).

  12. Thin Films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naffouti, Wafa; Nasr, Tarek Ben; Mehdi, Ahmed; Kamoun-Turki, Najoua

    2014-11-01

    Titanium dioxide (TiO2) thin films were synthesized on glass substrates by spray pyrolysis. The effect of solution flow rate on the physical properties of the films was investigated by use of x-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy (AFM), and spectrophotometry techniques. XRD analysis revealed the tetragonal anatase phase of TiO2 with highly preferred (101) orientation. AFM images showed that grain size on top of TiO2 thin films depended on solution flow rate. An indirect band gap energy of 3.46 eV was determined by means of transmission and reflection measurements. The envelope method, based on the optical transmission spectrum, was used to determine film thickness and optical constants, for example real and imaginary parts of the dielectric constant, refractive index, and extinction coefficient. Ultraviolet and visible photoluminescence emission peaks were observed at room temperature. These peaks were attributed to the intrinsic emission and to the surface defect states, respectively.

  13. Combinatorial Reactive Sputtering of In2S3 as an Alternative Contact Layer for Thin Film Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Siol, Sebastian; Dhakal, Tara P; Gudavalli, Ganesh S; Rajbhandari, Pravakar P; DeHart, Clay; Baranowski, Lauryn L; Zakutayev, Andriy

    2016-06-01

    High-throughput computational and experimental techniques have been used in the past to accelerate the discovery of new promising solar cell materials. An important part of the development of novel thin film solar cell technologies, that is still considered a bottleneck for both theory and experiment, is the search for alternative interfacial contact (buffer) layers. The research and development of contact materials is difficult due to the inherent complexity that arises from its interactions at the interface with the absorber. A promising alternative to the commonly used CdS buffer layer in thin film solar cells that contain absorbers with lower electron affinity can be found in β-In2S3. However, the synthesis conditions for the sputter deposition of this material are not well-established. Here, In2S3 is investigated as a solar cell contact material utilizing a high-throughput combinatorial screening of the temperature-flux parameter space, followed by a number of spatially resolved characterization techniques. It is demonstrated that, by tuning the sulfur partial pressure, phase pure β-In2S3 could be deposited using a broad range of substrate temperatures between 500 °C and ambient temperature. Combinatorial photovoltaic device libraries with Al/ZnO/In2S3/Cu2ZnSnS4/Mo/SiO2 structure were built at optimal processing conditions to investigate the feasibility of the sputtered In2S3 buffer layers and of an accelerated optimization of the device structure. The performance of the resulting In2S3/Cu2ZnSnS4 photovoltaic devices is on par with CdS/Cu2ZnSnS4 reference solar cells with similar values for short circuit currents and open circuit voltages, despite the overall quite low efficiency of the devices (∼2%). Overall, these results demonstrate how a high-throughput experimental approach can be used to accelerate the development of contact materials and facilitate the optimization of thin film solar cell devices. PMID:27173477

  14. On-Orbit Demonstration Of Thin-Film Multi-Junction Solar Cells And Lithium-Ion Capacitors As Bus Components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kukita, Akio; Takahashi, Masato; Shimazaki, Kazunori; Toyota, Hiroyuki; Imaizumi, Mitsuru; Kobayashi, Yuki; Takamoto, Tatsuya; Uno, Masatoshi; Shimada, Takanobu

    2011-10-01

    This paper describes an on-orbit demonstration plan for a lightweight solar panel using thin-film multi-junction (MJ) solar cells and aluminum-laminated lithium-ion capacitors (LICs). Thin-film MJ solar cells such as inverted metamorphic InGaP/GaAs/InGaAs 3J cells have flexibility as well as conversion efficiencies superior to conventional rigid 3J solar cells. A substantial reduction of satellite mass is achieved by the combination of thin-film MJ solar cells and light flexible paddles. An LIC is a hybrid-type capacitor that uses activated carbon as the cathode and carbon material pre-doped with lithium ion as the anode. LICs can be rapidly charged and discharged, and can operate in a wide temperature range for long periods. LICs are therefore suitable for long-term missions such as planetary explorations. Although these devices are very promising, so far there has been no opportunity to demonstrate their use in orbit. A lightweight thin solar panel with thin-film MJ solar cells will be installed on the Small Scientific Satellite Platform for Rapid Investigation and Test-A (SPRINT-A) satellite, which will be launched on the Epsilon launch vehicle in 2013. Utilizing the capacitor-like voltage behavior of LICs, we will employ a simple constant-power charging circuit without feedback control.

  15. Solution Processing of Cadmium Sulfide Buffer Layer and Aluminum-Doped Zinc Oxide Window Layer for Thin Films Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alam, Mahboob; Islam, Mohammad; Achour, Amine; Hayat, Ansar; Ahsan, Bilal; Rasheed, Haroon; Salam, Shahzad; Mujahid, Mohammad

    2014-07-01

    Cadmium sulfide (CdS) and aluminum-doped zinc oxide (Al:ZnO) thin films are used as buffer layer and front window layer, respectively, in thin film solar cells. CdS and Al:ZnO thin films were produced using chemical bath deposition (CBD) and sol-gel technique, respectively. For CBD CdS, the effect of bath composition and temperature, dipping time and annealing temperature on film properties was investigated. The CdS films are found to be polycrystalline with metastable cubic crystal structure, dense, crack-free surface morphology and the crystallite size of either few nanometers or 12-17 nm depending on bath composition. In case of CdS films produced with 1:2 ratio of Cd and S precursors, spectrophotometer studies indicate quantum confinement effect, owing to extremely small crystallite size, with an increase in Eg value from 2.42 eV (for bulk CdS) to 3.76 eV along with a shift in the absorption edge toward 330 nm wavelength. The optimum annealing temperature is 400°C beyond which film properties deteriorate through S evaporation and CdO formation. On the other hand, Al:ZnO films prepared via spin coating of precursor sols containing 0.90-1.10 at.% Al show that, with an increase in Al concentration, the average grain size increases from 28 nm to 131 nm with an associated decrease in root-mean-square roughness. The minimum value of electrical resistivity, measured for the films prepared using 0.95 at.% Al in the precursor sol, is 2.7 × 10-4 Ω ṡ cm. The electrical resistivity value rises upon further increase in Al doping level due to introduction of lattice defects and Al segregation to the grain boundary area, thus limiting electron transport through it.

  16. Polycrystalline thin film photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zweibel, K.; Ullal, H. S.; Mitchell, R. L.

    Significant progress has recently been made towards improving the efficiencies of polycrystalline thin-film solar cells and modules using CuInSe2 and CdTe. The history of using CuInSe2 and CdTe for solar cells is reviewed. Initial outdoor stability tests of modules are encouraging. Progress in semiconductor deposition techniques has also been substantial. Both CuInSe2 and CdTe are positioned for commercialization during the 1990s. The major participants in developing these materials are described. The US DOE/SERI (Solar Energy Research Institute) program recognizes the rapid progress and important potential of polycrystalline thin films to meet ambitious cost and performance goals. US DOE/SERI is in the process of funding an initiative in this area with the goal of ensuring US leadership in the development of these technologies. The polycrystalline thin-film module development initiative, the modeling and stability of the devices, and health and safety issues are discussed.

  17. Influence of intermediate layers on the surface condition of laser crystallized silicon thin films and solar cell performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Höger, Ingmar; Himmerlich, Marcel; Gawlik, Annett; Brückner, Uwe; Krischok, Stefan; Andrä, Gudrun

    2016-01-01

    The intermediate layer (IL) between glass substrate and silicon plays a significant role in the optimization of multicrystalline liquid phase crystallized silicon thin film solar cells on glass. This study deals with the influence of the IL on the surface condition and the required chemical surface treatment of the crystallized silicon (mc-Si), which is of particular interest for a-Si:H heterojunction thin film solar cells. Two types of IL were investigated: sputtered silicon nitride (SiN) and a layer stack consisting of silicon nitride and silicon oxide (SiN/SiO). X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy measurements revealed the formation of silicon oxynitride (SiOxNy) or silicon oxide (SiO2) layers at the surface of the mc-Si after liquid phase crystallization on SiN or SiN/SiO, respectively. We propose that SiOxNy formation is governed by dissolving nitrogen from the SiN layer in the silicon melt, which segregates at the crystallization front during crystallization. This process is successfully hindered, when additional SiO layers are introduced into the IL. In order to achieve solar cell open circuit voltages above 500 mV, a removal of the formed SiOxNy top layer is required using sophisticated cleaning of the crystallized silicon prior to a-Si:H deposition. However, solar cells crystallized on SiN/SiO yield high open circuit voltage even when a simple wet chemical surface treatment is applied. The implementation of SiN/SiO intermediate layers facilitates the production of mesa type solar cells with open circuit voltages above 600 mV and a power conversion efficiency of 10%.

  18. Cu(In,Ga)Se 2 thin-film solar cells grown with cracked selenium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawamura, Masahiro; Fujita, Toshiyuki; Yamada, Akira; Konagai, Makoto

    2009-01-01

    Cu(In 1-xGa x)Se 2 (CIGS) films have been grown by using cracked selenium. In conventional evaporation system, the Se atoms were supplied as large clusters (Se x, x>5). However, the size of clusters can be reduced by the thermal cracking. The film qualities grown with small clusters (Se x, x<4) would be improved, since the smaller size molecules easily react with elemental metals, resulting in the reduction of selenium vacancies and the enhancement of surface migration. The CIGS films were deposited by the three-stage method with cracked selenium, and the films were evaluated by SEM, XRD, EDX, C- V measurement and admittance spectroscopy. It was found from the C- V characteristics that the carrier concentrations of the CIGS films grown with cracked selenium were increased with increasing the cracking temperature. The result clearly showed that the use of cracked selenium was effective for reduction of selenium vacancies. The conversion efficiency of 15.4% was obtained by using cracked selenium at a cracking temperature of 500 °C.

  19. Light-soaking and power measurements of thin film modules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weiss, Karl-Anders; Kratochwill, Simon; Wirth, Jochen; Koehl, Michael

    2009-08-01

    Stabilized electrical performance data are necessary to compare different types of modules in the emerging thin-film-PV market and as basic information for energy yield calculations. The problems with accurate power measurements of thin film modules are well known. The module test-standard IEC 61646 ed. 2 tries to take this into account by demanding light-soaking and repeated STC-measurements which leads to time analysed procedures. The stabilisation behaviour over time of short circuit current, open-circuit voltage, efficiency and filling-factor is compared under the influence of different illumination conditions for various types of CdTe, CI(G)S and a-Si modules. Therefore, I-V-curves are measured with high frequency during outdoor exposition and indoor exposition to 1000 W/m2 irradiation from a class B solar simulator in a climatic cabinet under temperature-controlled conditions. The different modules are held in MPP conditions between the measurements. The results are compared with STC measurements according to IEC 61646 procedures. To describe the development of the performance of the different types of thin film modules, suitable mathematical approaches are taken to describe the different developments during the process of light soaking. It turns out that the different module types behave very differently and some types need very long times until a stabilised state is reached.

  20. Non-destructive Evaluation of Compound Semiconductor Thin-Film Solar Cells by Photothermal Beam Deflection Technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Warrier, Anita R.; Sebastian, Tina; Kartha, C. Sudha; Vijayakumar, K. P.

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, it is demonstrated that the photothermal beam deflection technique can be used for measuring the series resistance, optimum load resistance, and conversion efficiency of thin-film solar cells. This technique is also used for determining the carrier transport properties of an absorber and window layer of -based solar cells during different stages of cell fabrication. Transport properties such as the carrier mobility, lifetime, and surface recombination velocity of the individual absorber and window layer are shown to influence the open-circuit voltage and short-circuit current of the final photovoltaic device. The cell parameters measured using the photothermal technique agree well with the electrical measurements. The principle of the technique is explained on the basis of the "mirage effect" and maximum power transfer theorem.

  1. Atomic-scale distribution of impurities in CuInSe2-based thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Cojocaru-Mirédin, O; Choi, P; Wuerz, R; Raabe, D

    2011-05-01

    Atom Probe Tomography was employed to investigate the distribution of impurities, in particular sodium and oxygen, in a CuInSe(2)-based thin-film solar cell. It could be shown that sodium, oxygen, and silicon diffuse from the soda lime glass substrate into the CuInSe(2) film and accumulate at the grain boundaries. Highly dilute concentrations of sodium and oxygen were measured in the bulk. Selenium was found to be depleted at the grain boundaries. These observations could be confirmed by complementary energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy studies. Our results support the model proposed by Kronik et al. (1998) [1], which explains the enhanced photovoltaic efficiency of sodium containing CuInSe(2) solar cells by the passivation of selenium vacancies at grain boundaries. PMID:21288643

  2. Evaluation of back contact in spray deposited SnS thin film solar cells by impedance analysis.

    PubMed

    Patel, Malkeshkumar; Ray, Abhijit

    2014-07-01

    The role of back metal (M) contact in sprayed SnS thin film solar cells with a configuration Glass/F:SnO2/In2S3/SnS/M (M = Graphite, Cu, Mo, and Ni) was analyzed and discussed in the present study. Impedance spectroscopy was employed by incorporating constant phase elements (CPE) in the equivalent circuit to investigate the degree of inhomogeneity associated with the heterojunction and M/SnS interfaces. A best fit to Nyquist plot revealed a CPE exponent close to unity for thermally evaporated Cu, making it an ideal back contact. The Bode phase plot also exhibited a higher degree of disorders associated with other M/SnS interfaces. The evaluation scheme is useful for other emerging solar cells developed from low cost processing schemes like spray deposition, spin coating, slurry casting, electrodeposition, etc. PMID:24882468

  3. Numerical Analysis of Efficiency Enhancement in Plasmonic Thin-Film Solar Cells by Using the SILVACO TCAD Simulator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Un-Chol; Jiang, Xiao-Qing

    2012-06-01

    A physical model for simulating plasmonic solar cells (SCs) using the SILVACO TCAD simulator is established and the effects of some factors on the efficiency enhancement of the amorphous silicon thin film SCs are simulated. Through this simulation, it is demonstrated that our method can successfully simulate the optical and electrical properties of plasmonic solar cells without the overestimation of the characteristics and without the neglect of parameter change in the device operation process. It is shown that not only the size and kind of metal nanoparticles but also other factors, such as the surrounding medium, the distance from the bottom of particles to the device surface, and the light incident angle, play important roles in the optical and electrical properties of plasmonic SCs.

  4. Host thin films incorporating nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qureshi, Uzma

    The focus of this research project was the investigation of the functional properties of thin films that incorporate a secondary nanoparticulate phase. In particular to assess if the secondary nanoparticulate material enhanced a functional property of the coating on glass. In order to achieve this, new thin film deposition methods were developed, namely use of nanopowder precursors, an aerosol assisted transport technique and an aerosol into atmospheric pressure chemical vapour deposition system. Aerosol assisted chemical vapour deposition (AACVD) was used to deposit 8 series of thin films on glass. Five different nanoparticles silver, gold, ceria, tungsten oxide and zinc oxide were tested and shown to successfully deposit thin films incorporating nanoparticles within a host matrix. Silver nanoparticles were synthesised and doped within a titania film by AACVD. This improved solar control properties. A unique aerosol assisted chemical vapour deposition (AACVD) into atmospheric pressure chemical vapour deposition (APCVD) system was used to deposit films of Au nanoparticles and thin films of gold nanoparticles incorporated within a host titania matrix. Incorporation of high refractive index contrast metal oxide particles within a host film altered the film colour. The key goal was to test the potential of nanopowder forms and transfer the suspended nanopowder via an aerosol to a substrate in order to deposit a thin film. Discrete tungsten oxide nanoparticles or ceria nanoparticles within a titanium dioxide thin film enhanced the self-cleaning and photo-induced super-hydrophilicity. The nanopowder precursor study was extended by deposition of zinc oxide thin films incorporating Au nanoparticles and also ZnO films deposited from a ZnO nanopowder precursor. Incorporation of Au nanoparticles within a VO: host matrix improved the thermochromic response, optical and colour properties. Composite VC/TiC and Au nanoparticle/V02/Ti02 thin films displayed three useful

  5. Nanostructuring on zinc phthalocyanine thin films for single-junction organic solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chaudhary, Dhirendra K.; Kumar, Lokendra

    2016-05-01

    Vertically aligned and random oriented crystalline molecular nanorods of organic semiconducting Zinc Phthalocyanine (ZnPc) have been grown on ITO coated glass substrate using solvent volatilization method. Interesting changes in surface morphology were observed under different solvent treatment. Vertically aligned nanorods of ZnPc thin film were observed in the films treated with acetone, where as the random oriented nanorods were observed in the films treated with chloroform. The X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM) have been used for characterization of nanostructures. The optical properties of the nanorods have been investigated by UV-Vis. absorption spectroscopy.

  6. Absorptive carbon nanotube electrodes: Consequences of optical interference loss in thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tait, Jeffrey G.; de Volder, Michaël F. L.; Cheyns, David; Heremans, Paul; Rand, Barry P.

    2015-04-01

    A current bottleneck in the thin film photovoltaic field is the fabrication of low cost electrodes. We demonstrate ultrasonically spray coated multiwalled carbon nanotube (CNT) layers as opaque and absorptive metal-free electrodes deposited at low temperatures and free of post-deposition treatment. The electrodes show sheet resistance as low as 3.4 Ω □-1, comparable to evaporated metallic contacts deposited in vacuum. Organic photovoltaic devices were optically simulated, showing comparable photocurrent generation between reflective metal and absorptive CNT electrodes for photoactive layer thickness larger than 600 nm when using archetypal poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) : (6,6)-phenyl C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) cells. Fabricated devices clearly show that the absorptive CNT electrodes display comparable performance to solution processed and spray coated Ag nanoparticle devices. Additionally, other candidate absorber materials for thin film photovoltaics were simulated with absorptive contacts, elucidating device design in the absence of optical interference and reflection.A current bottleneck in the thin film photovoltaic field is the fabrication of low cost electrodes. We demonstrate ultrasonically spray coated multiwalled carbon nanotube (CNT) layers as opaque and absorptive metal-free electrodes deposited at low temperatures and free of post-deposition treatment. The electrodes show sheet resistance as low as 3.4 Ω □-1, comparable to evaporated metallic contacts deposited in vacuum. Organic photovoltaic devices were optically simulated, showing comparable photocurrent generation between reflective metal and absorptive CNT electrodes for photoactive layer thickness larger than 600 nm when using archetypal poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) : (6,6)-phenyl C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) cells. Fabricated devices clearly show that the absorptive CNT electrodes display comparable performance to solution processed and spray coated Ag nanoparticle

  7. Solar-light photoamperometric and photocatalytic properties of quasi-transparent TiO2 nanoporous thin films.

    PubMed

    Ji, Yajun; Lin, Keng-Chu; Zheng, Hegen; Liu, Chung-Chiun; Dudik, Laurie; Zhu, Junjie; Burda, Clemens

    2010-11-01

    Transparent photocatalytic surfaces are of ever increasing importance for many applications on self-cleaning windows and tiles in everyday applications. Here, we report the formation and photocatalytic testing of a quasi-transparent thin and nanoporous titania films deposited on glass plates. Sputtered Ti thin films were anodized in fluoride-ion-containing neutral electrolytes to form optically semitransparent nanoporous films, which transformed to be completely transparent after thermal annealing. The nanoporous films were studied at different stages, such as before and after anodization, as well as after thermal annealing using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and UV-vis and Raman spectroscopy. It was observed that anodization at 20 V of high-temperature deposited titanium films resulted in regular nanopore films with pore diameters of 30 nm. Structural investigations on the transparent nanopore arrays reveal the presence of anatase phase TiO(2) even after annealing at 500 °C, which was confirmed by XRD and Raman spectroscopy measurements. The solar-light induced photocatalytic decomposition of stearic acid and photoconductivity characteristics of these nanoporous thin films are also presented. PMID:20973502

  8. Photovoltaic properties of Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} thin film solar cell fabricated by coevaporation process

    SciTech Connect

    Nishitani, M.; Negami, T.; Ikeda, M.; Kohara, N.; Terauchi, M.; Wada, T.; Hirao, T.

    1994-12-31

    Thin film solar cells based on Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} films were fabricated, and their junction and photovoltaic properties were investigated. Ga in CuInSe{sub 2} thin films formed by so-called bilayer process was incorporated homogeneously. The fabricated cell structure was glass/Mo/Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2}/CdS/ZnO/ITO(/MgF{sub 2}). The incorporations of Ga into CuInSe{sub 2} films up to about 20 mol% improved the photovoltaic performance. From the study of photoluminescence, capacitance-voltage and current-voltage characteristics, it was clarified that the incorporation of Ga not only widened the bandgap energy, but also played an important role in the effect which yield hole concentration. The best cell with an AR-coating (MgF{sub 2}) exhibited an efficiency of 15.2%; Jsc = 33.9 mA/cm{sup 2}, Voc = 0.616 V, FF = 0.730. The device performance can be improved by the development of the film with higher hole concentration, keeping the crystalline quality.

  9. Effect of fluorine plasma treatment with chemically reduced graphene oxide thin films as hole transport layer in organic solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Youn-Yeol; Kang, Byung Hyun; Lee, Yang Doo; Lee, Sang Bin; Ju, Byeong-Kwon

    2013-12-01

    The inorganic materials such as V2O5, MoO3 and WO3 were investigated to replace PEDOT:PSS as hole transport layer (HTL) in organic electronic devices such as organic solar cells (OSCs) and organic lighting emission diodes. However, these methods require vacuum techniques that are long time process and complex. Here, we report about plasma treatment with SF6 and CF4 using reactive ion etching on reduced graphene oxide (rGO) thin films that are obtained using an eco-friendly method with vitamin C. The plasma treated rGO thin films have dipoles since they consist of covalent bonds with fluorine on the surface of rGO. This means it is possible to increase the electrostatic potential energy than bare rGO. Increased potential energy on the surface of rGO films is worth applying organic electronic devices as HTL such as OSCs. Consequently, the power conversion efficiency of OSCs increased more than the rGO films without plasma treatment.

  10. Manipulating Crystallization of Organolead Mixed-Halide Thin Films in Antisolvent Baths for Wide-Bandgap Perovskite Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yuanyuan; Yang, Mengjin; Game, Onkar S; Wu, Wenwen; Kwun, Joonsuh; Strauss, Martin A; Yan, Yanfa; Huang, Jinsong; Zhu, Kai; Padture, Nitin P

    2016-01-27

    Wide-bandgap perovskite solar cells (PSCs) based on organolead (I, Br)-mixed halide perovskites (e.g., MAPbI2Br and MAPbIBr2 perovskite with bandgaps of 1.77 and 2.05 eV, respectively) are considered as promising low-cost alternatives for application in tandem or multijunction photovoltaics (PVs). Here, we demonstrate that manipulating the crystallization behavior of (I, Br)-mixed halide perovskites in antisolvent bath is critical for the formation of smooth, dense thin films of these perovskites. Since the growth of perovskite grains from a precursor solution tends to be more rapid with increasing Br content, further enhancement in the nucleation rate becomes necessary for the effective decoupling of the nucleation and the crystal-growth stages in Br-rich perovskites. This is enabled by introducing simple stirring during antisolvent-bathing, which induces enhanced advection transport of the extracted precursor-solvent into the bath environment. Consequently, wide-bandgap planar PSCs fabricated using these high quality mixed-halide perovskite thin films, Br-rich MAPbIBr2, in particular, show enhanced PV performance. PMID:26726763

  11. Optimization of processing and modeling issues for thin film solar cell devices: Final report, February 3, 1997--September 1, 1998

    SciTech Connect

    Birkmire, R. W.; Phillips, J. E.; Shafarman, W. N.; Hegedus, S. S.; McCandless, B. E.

    2000-02-28

    This final report describes results achieved under a 20-month NREL subcontract to develop and understand thin-film solar cell technology associated to CuInSe{sub 2} and related alloys, a-Si and its alloys, and CdTe. Modules based on all these thin films are promising candidates to meet DOE's long-range efficiency, reliability and manufacturing cost goals. The critical issues being addressed under this program are intended to provide the science and engineering basis for the development of viable commercial processes and to improve module performance. The generic research issues addressed are: (1) quantitative analysis of processing steps to provide information for efficient commercial-scale equipment design and operation; (2) device characterization relating the device performance to materials properties and process conditions; (3) development of alloy materials with different bandgaps to allow improved device structures for stability and compatibility with module design; (4) development and improved window/heterojunction layers and contacts to improve device performance and reliability; and (5) evaluation of cell stability with respect to device structure and module encapsulation.

  12. The Preparation and Properties of Al-Doped ZnO Thin Films as Transparent Electrodes for Solar Cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, J. N.; Tan, C. B.; Yuan, N. Y.; Feng, X. W.; Chang, X. Y.; Ye, F.

    Transparent conductive oxides based on ZnO are promising materials for application in thin-film solar photovoltaic cells. Al-doped ZnO thin films with a large area of 1 m × 1.5 m were prepared by magnetic sputtering on glass substrate using a ceramic target (98 wt. % ZnO, 2 wt. % Al2O3) in different Ar+H2 ambient at different substrate temperature. SiO2 layer with a thickness of 20 nm was deposited as a resistant layer. To investigate the influence of H2-flow on the properties of AZO films, H2-flow rate was changed during the growth process with a fixed Ar-flow rate. The effect of the substrate temperature and the H2-flow rate on the structure, electrical and optical properties was studied. In order to enhance light scattering and absorption inside the cell, suitable surface texture is needed. The influence of wet chemical etching on surface roughness and haze of AZO were also investigated.

  13. Preparation and characterization of hydrogenated amorphous silicon thin films and thin film solar cells produced by ion plating techniques. Final report, 1 January 1979-31 May 1980

    SciTech Connect

    1980-05-01

    Ion plating techniques for the preparation of hydrogenated amorphous silicon thin films have been successfully developed. The technique involves essentially the evaporation of elemental silicon through a d.c. produced hydrogen plasma. In this way hydrogen has been successfully incorporated into amorphous silicon films in concentrations as high as 30 atomic percent. Infrared spectroscopy indicates the usual SiH/sub x/ stretching mode at approximately 2000 cm/sup -1/. Further evidence for the bonding of hydrogen was obtained from ESR measurement of hydrogenated and unhydrogenated samples. The measured unpaired spin density was a factor of 25 less in the hydrogenated sample. The optical absorption edges of the hydrogenated films fell in the usual range between 1.7 and 1.9 eV. Electrical conductivity measurements indicated a substantial reduction in the density of defect states in the gap as expected. It was also shown that hydrogenated amorphous silicon prepared by ion-plating could be doped by co-evaporation of the dopant element during film deposition. Both co-evaporated phosphorous and co-evaporated bismuth have been found to substantially increase the dark conductivity of a-Si:H while shifting the Fermi level towards the conduction band edge. An x-ray method for estimating the density and hydrogen content of a-Si:H has been developed. The measurement of strain in a-Si:H thin films is discussed. (WHK)

  14. A novel method to make boron-doped microcrystalline silicon thin films with optimal crystalline volume fraction for thin films solar cell applications.

    PubMed

    Shin, Chonghoon; Park, Jinjoo; Kim, Sangho; Park, Hyeongsik; Jung, Junhee; Bong, Sungjae; Lee, Youn-Jung; Yi, Junsin

    2014-12-01

    Highly conducting boron-doped microcrystalline silicon (p-type μc-Si:H) thin films have been prepared by radio frequency plasma-enhanced chemical-vapor deposition (RF-PECVD). In this work, the effects of hydrogen dilution, doping ratio, plasma power, deposition pressure and substrate temperature on the growth and the properties of boron-doped microcrystalline silicon (p-type μc-Si:H) thin films are investigated. The electrical, chemical and structural properties are improved with increasing crystallite, which depends on the plasma conditions. For various plasma parameters, the crystalline volume fraction (X(c)), dark conductivity (σ(d)), activation energy (E(a)), hydrogen content (C(H)), surface roughness (S(r)), and micro void fraction (R*) were measured, and they were 0-72%, 4.17-10(-4) S/cm-1.1 S/cm, 0.041-0.113 eV, 3.8-11.5 at.%, 3.2 nm-12.2 nm, and 0.47-0.80, respectively. The film with R* of 0.47 and C(H) of about 5 at.% belonged to a region of low disorder, and acted as a good passivation layer. PMID:25971071

  15. A facile chemical-mechanical polishing lift-off transfer process toward large scale Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin-film solar cells on arbitrary substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tseng, Kuan-Chun; Yen, Yu-Ting; Thomas, Stuart R.; Tsai, Hung-Wei; Hsu, Cheng-Hung; Tsai, Wen-Chi; Shen, Chang-Hong; Shieh, Jia-Min; Wang, Zhiming M.; Chueh, Yu-Lun

    2016-02-01

    The fabrication of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) solar cells on flexible substrates is a non-trivial task due to thermal and ion diffusion related issues. In order to circumvent these issues, we have developed a chemical-mechanical polishing lift-off (CMPL) transfer process, enabling the direct transfer of CIGS solar cells from conventional soda-lime glass (SLG) onto arbitrary flexible substrates up to 4 cm2 in size. The structural and compositional nature of the pre- and post-transferred films is examined using electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction analysis, Raman and photoluminescence spectroscopy. We demonstrate the fabrication of solar cells on a range of flexible substrates while being able to maintain 75% cell efficiency (η) when compared to pre-transferred solar cells. The results obtained in this work suggest that our transfer process offers a highly promising approach toward large scale fabrication of CIGS-based solar cells on a wide variety of flexible substrates, suitable for use in the large scale CIGS photovoltaic industry.The fabrication of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) solar cells on flexible substrates is a non-trivial task due to thermal and ion diffusion related issues. In order to circumvent these issues, we have developed a chemical-mechanical polishing lift-off (CMPL) transfer process, enabling the direct transfer of CIGS solar cells from conventional soda-lime glass (SLG) onto arbitrary flexible substrates up to 4 cm2 in size. The structural and compositional nature of the pre- and post-transferred films is examined using electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction analysis, Raman and photoluminescence spectroscopy. We demonstrate the fabrication of solar cells on a range of flexible substrates while being able to maintain 75% cell efficiency (η) when compared to pre-transferred solar cells. The results obtained in this work suggest that our transfer process offers a highly promising approach toward large scale fabrication of CIGS-based solar cells on a wide

  16. Ultra-Lightweight Hybrid Thin-Film Solar Cells: A Survey of Enabling Technologies for Space Power Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hepp, Aloysius F.; McNatt, Jeremiah S.; Bailey, Sheila G.; Dickman, John E.; Raffaelle, Ryne P.; Landi, Brian J.; Anctil, Annick; DiLeo, Roberta; Jin, Michael H.-C.; Lee, Chung-Young; Friske, Theresa J.; Sun, Sam-S.; Zhang, Cheng; Choi, S.; Ledbetter, Abram; Seo, Kang; Bonner, Carl E.; Banger, Kulbinder K.; Castro, Stephanie L.; Rauh, David

    2007-01-01

    The development of hybrid inorganic/organic thin-film solar cells on flexible, lightweight, space-qualified, durable substrates provides an attractive solution for fabricating solar arrays with high mass specific power (W/kg). Next generation thin-film technologies may well involve a revolutionary change in materials to organic-based devices. The high-volume, low-cost fabrication potential of organic cells will allow for square miles of solar cell production at one-tenth the cost of conventional inorganic materials. Plastic solar cells take a minimum of storage space and can be inflated or unrolled for deployment. We will explore a cross-section of in-house and sponsored research efforts that aim to provide new hybrid technologies that include both inorganic and polymer materials as active and substrate materials. Research at University of Texas at Arlington focuses on the fabrication and use of poly(isothianaphthene-3,6-diyl) in solar cells. We describe efforts at Norfolk State University to design, synthesize and characterize block copolymers. A collaborative team between EIC Laboratories, Inc. and the University of Florida is investigating multijunction polymer solar cells to more effectively utilize solar radiation. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)/Ohio Aerospace Institute (OAI) group has undertaken a thermal analysis of potential metallized substrates as well as production of nanoparticles of CuInS2 and CuInSe2 in good yield at moderate temperatures via decomposition of single-source precursors. Finally, preliminary work at the Rochester Institute of Technology (R.I.T.) to assess the impact on performance of solar cells of temperature and carbon nanotubes is reported. Technologies that must be developed to enable ultra-lightweight solar arrays include: monolithic interconnects, lightweight array structures, and new ultra-light support and deployment mechanisms. For NASA applications, any solar cell or array technology must not only meet

  17. Spectroscopic Ellipsometry Studies of Thin Film a-Si:H Solar Cell Fabrication by Multichamber Deposition in the n-i-p Substrate Configuration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahal, Lila Raj

    Real time spectroscopic ellipsometry (RTSE), and ex-situ mapping spectroscopic ellipsometry (SE) are powerful characterization techniques capable of performance optimization and scale-up evaluation of thin film solar cells used in various photovoltaics technologies. These non-invasive optical probes employ multichannel spectral detection for high speed and provide high precision parameters that describe (i) thin film structure, such as layer thicknesses, and (ii) thin film optical properties, such as oscillator variables in analytical expressions for the complex dielectric function. These parameters are critical for evaluating the electronic performance of materials in thin film solar cells and also can be used as inputs for simulating their multilayer optical performance. In this Thesis, the component layers of thin film hydrogenated silicon (Si:H) solar cells in the n-i-p or substrate configuration on rigid and flexible substrate materials have been studied by RTSE and ex-situ mapping SE. Depositions were performed by magnetron sputtering for the metal and transparent conducting oxide contacts and by plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) for the semiconductor doped contacts and intrinsic absorber layers. The motivations are first to optimize the thin film Si:H solar cell in n-i-p substrate configuration for single-junction small-area dot cells and ultimately to scale-up the optimized process to larger areas with minimum loss in device performance. Deposition phase diagrams for both i- and p -layers on 2" x 2" rigid borosilicate glass substrate were developed as functions of the hydrogen-to-silane flow ratio in PECVD. These phase diagrams were correlated with the performance parameters of the corresponding solar cells, fabricated in the Cr/Ag/ZnO/n/i/ p/ITO structure. In both cases, optimization was achieved when the layers were deposited in the protocrystalline phase. Identical solar cell structures were fabricated on 6" x 6" borosilicate glass with

  18. Multi-junction Thin-film Solar Cells on Flexible Substrates for Space Power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hepp, Aloysius F.; Smith, Mark; Scofield, John H.; Dickman, John E.; Lush, Gregory B.; Morel, Donald L.; Ferekides, Christos; Dhere, Neelkanth G.

    2002-01-01

    The ultimate objective of the thin-film program at NASA GRC is development of a 20 percent AM0 thin-film device technology with high power/weight ratio. Several approaches are outlined to improve overall device efficiency and power/weight ratio. One approach involves the use of very lightweight flexible substrates such as polyimides (i.e., Kapton(Trademark)) or metal foil. Also, a compound semiconductor tandem device structure that can meet this objective is proposed and simulated using Analysis of Microelectronic and Photonic Structures (AMPS). AMPS modeling of current devices in tandem format indicate that AM0 efficiencies near 20 percent can be achieved. And with improvements in materials, efficiencies approaching 25 percent are achievable. Several important technical issues need to be resolved to realize these complex devices: development of a wide bandgap material with good electronic properties, development of transparent contacts, and targeting a 2-terminal device structure (with more complicated processing and tunnel junction) or 4-terminal device. Recent progress in the NASA GRC program is outlined.

  19. High-Throughput Thin Film Approach for Screening of Temperature-Pressure-Composition Phase Space

    SciTech Connect

    Zakutayev, A.; Subramaniyan, A.; Caskey, C. M.; Ndione, P. F.; Richards, R. M.; O'Hayre, R.; Ginley, D. S.

    2013-01-01

    Many solar energy technologies, for example CIGS and CdTe photovoltaics, utilize materials in thin film form. The equilibrium phase diagrams for these and other more novel solar energy materials are not known or are irrelevant because of the non-equilibrium character of the thin film growth processes. We demonstrate a high-throughput thin film approach for screening of temperature-pressure-composition phase diagrams and phase spaces. The examples in focus are novel solar absorbers Cu-N, Cu-O and p-type transparent conductors in the Cr2O3-MnO system. The composition axis of the Cr2O3-MnO phase diagram was screened using a composition spread method. The temperature axis of the Mn-O phase diagram was screened using a temperature spread method. The pressure axes of the Cu-N and Cu-O phase diagrams were screened using rate spread method with the aid of non-equilibrium growth phenomena. Overall these three methods constitute an approach to high-throughput screening of inorganic thin film phase diagrams. This research is supported by U.S. Department of Energy as a part of two NextGen Sunshot projects and an Energy Frontier Research Center.

  20. Semi-transparent perovskite solar cells for tandems with silicon and CIGS

    SciTech Connect

    Bailie, Colin D.; Christoforo, M. Greyson; Mailoa, Jonathan P.; Bowring, Andrea R.; Unger, Eva L.; Nguyen, William H.; Burschka, Julian; Pellet, Norman; Lee, Jungwoo Z.; Grätzel, Michael; Noufi, Rommel; Buonassisi, Tonio; Salleo, Alberto; McGehee, Michael D.

    2014-12-23

    A promising approach for upgrading the performance of an established low-bandgap solar technology without adding much cost is to deposit a high bandgap polycrystalline semiconductor on top to make a tandem solar cell. We use a transparent silver nanowire electrode on perovskite solar cells to achieve a semi-transparent device. We place the semi-transparent cell in a mechanically-stacked tandem configuration onto copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) and low-quality multicrystalline silicon (Si) to achieve solid-state polycrystalline tandem solar cells with a net improvement in efficiency over the bottom cell alone. Furthermore, this work paves the way for integrating perovskites into a low-cost and high-efficiency (>25%) tandem cell.