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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. Sputtered molybdenum thin films and the application in CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-01-01

    Molybdenum (Mo) thin films are prepared by magnetron sputtering with different discharge powers and working pressures for the application in Cu(In, Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin film solar cells as back electrodes. Properties of these Mo thin films are systematically investigated. It is found that the dynamic deposition rate increases with the increasing discharge power while decreases with the increasing working pressure. The highest dynamic deposition rate of 15.1 nm m/min is achieved for the Mo thin film deposited at the discharge power of 1200 W and at the working pressure of 0.15 Pa. The achieved lowest resistivity of 3.7 × 10-5 Ω cm is attributed to the large grains in the compact thin film. The discharge power and working pressure have great influence on the sputtered Mo thin films. High efficiency of 12.5% was achieved for the Cu(In, Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin film solar cells with Mo electrodes prepared at 1200 W and low working pressures. By further optimizing material and device properties, the conversion efficiency has reached to 15.2%.

  4. 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

  5. Selective ablation of thin films in latest generation CIGS solar cells with picosecond pulses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burn, Andreas; Romano, Valerio; Muralt, Martin; Witte, Reiner; Frei, Bruno; Bücheler, Stephan; Nishiwaki, Shiro

    2012-03-01

    Recent developments in Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin film photovoltaics enabled the manufacturers to produce highly efficient solar modules. Nevertheless, the production process still lacks a competitive process for module patterning. Today, the industry standard for the serial interconnection of cells is still based on mechanical scribing for the P2 and P3 process. A reduction of the non-productive "dead zone" between the P1 and P3 scribes is crucial for further increasing module efficiency. Compact and affordable picosecond pulsed laser sources are promising tools towards all-laser scribing of CIGS solar modules. We conducted an extensive parameter study comprising picosecond laser sources from 355 to 1064 nm wavelength and 10 to 50 ps pulse duration. Scribing results were analyzed by laser scanning microscope, scanning electron microscope and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. We developed stable and reliable processes for the P1, P2 and P3 scribe. The best parameter sets were then used for the production of functional mini-modules. For comparison, the same was done for a selection of nanosecond pulsed lasers. Standardized analysis of the modules has shown superior electrical performance of the interconnections and confirmed the feasibility of a dead zone width of less than 200 ìm on an entire mini module.

  6. 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.

  7. One-pot electrodeposition, characterization and photoactivity of stoichiometric copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) thin films for solar cells.

    PubMed

    Harati, Mohammad; Jia, Jia; Giffard, Kévin; Pellarin, Kyle; Hewson, Carly; Love, David A; Lau, Woon Ming; Ding, Zhifeng

    2010-12-14

    Herein we report the one-pot electrodeposition of copper indium gallium diselenide, CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se(2) (CIGS), thin films as the p-type semiconductor in an ionic liquid medium consisting of choline chloride/urea eutectic mixture known as Reline. The thin films were characterized by scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive X-ray analysis, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Raman microspectroscopy, and UV-visible spectroscopy. Based on the results of the characterizations, the electrochemical bath recipe was optimized to obtain stoichiometric CIGS films with x between 0.2 and 0.4. The chemical activity and photoreactivity of the optimized CIGS films were found to be uniform using scanning electrochemical microscopy and scanning photoelectrochemical microscopy. Low-cost stoichiometric CIGS thin films in one-pot were successfully fabricated. PMID:20835485

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. CIS(CIGS) thin films prepared for solar cells by one-step electrodeposition in alcohol solution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Long, Fei; Wang, Weiming; Du, Jingjing; Zou, Zhengguang

    2009-03-01

    The precursors of CIS and CIGS thin films were prepared by one-step electrodeposition in alcohol solution and then annealed in Ar atmosphere at 550°C for 30min. The influences of deposition potentials and salt concentrations on the morphology and composition of the thin films were studied in details. The films were characterized by X-ray diffraction(XRD), scanning electron microscopy(SEM), and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy(EDS). The results show that annealed films have pure CIS or CIGS phases with good crystallization and the morphology of the films are very uniform and dense. The high quality precursor films were obtained using optimized deposition parameters. Moreover the electrodeposition mechanism of CIS thin films was briefly discussed.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Lab to Large Scale Transition for Non-Vacuum Thin Film CIGS Solar Cells: Phase II--Annual Technical Report, August 2003-July 2004

    SciTech Connect

    Kapur, V. K.; Bansal, A.; Asenio, O. I.; Shigeoka, M. K.; Le, P.; Gergen, B.; Rasmussen, M.; Zuniga, R.

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this subcontract, as part of the R&D Partners category is to: (i) identify the challenges that International Solar Electric Technology, Inc. (ISET) may face in the process of making a ''Lab to Large Scale'' transition for its ink-based non-vacuum process in production of thin-film CIGS solar cells and modules, and (ii) develop workable solutions for these challenges such that they can readily be implemented in a large-scale processing line for CIGS modules. The primary objective of this research is to streamline ISET's ink-based non-vacuum process for fabricating efficient CIGS modules to lower the cost of module production << $1.0/watt. To achieve this objective, ISET has focused R&D efforts on investigating topics that directly impact the ultimate cost of processing CIGS modules. These topics of concern include (i) module output, and therefore, the solar cell and the module efficiency, (ii) overall process yield which requires developing a process that offers a very high degree of repeatability for every manufacturing step, and (iii) a process approach that maximizes the utilization of the materials used. In accordance with the above, this report will cover activity during Phase II in the investigation of methods for low-cost manufacturing and process development. Specific tasks cover four broad areas: (1) solar cell efficiency, (2) process control, (3) module integration, and (4) enhanced material utilization by reduction of waste stream.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Improvement of CIGS thin-film solar cell performance by optimization of Zn(O,S) buffer layer parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharbati, Samaneh; Keshmiri, Sayyed Hossein; McGoffin, J. Tyler; Geisthardt, Russell

    2015-03-01

    The effects of Zn(O,S) buffer layer parameters on CuInGaSe (CIGS) cell performance are investigated using a physically based solar cell model. The key issue for CIGS solar cells is to remove destructive effects like pinholes due to thinning buffer layer. Choosing Zn(O,S) instead of CdS as the buffer layer provides the benefit of more transmission. The current difference between cells with CdS and Zn(O,S) buffer layers is more obvious in thicker films. Three main properties were investigated: buffer layer thickness, doping density, and oxygen content. The cell performance is investigated as multiple parameters are varied simultaneously. The effects of all physical parameters of Zn(O,S) are dependent on each other, so that by increasing Zn(O,S) carrier concentration from 1018 to 1020 cm-3, the optimum oxygen content range to have maximum efficiency will be expanded from 50-75 to 30-90 %.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Fabrication of nanostructured CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Hongwang; Wang, Fang; Parry, James; Perera, Samanthe; Zeng, Hao

    2012-02-01

    We present the work on Cu(In,Ga)(Se,S)2 based nanostructured solar cells based on nanowire arrays. CIGS as the light absorber for thin-film solar cells has been widely studied recently, due to its high absorption coefficient, long-term stability, and low-cost of fabrication. Recently, solution phase processed CIGS thin film solar cells attracted great attention due to their extremely low fabrication cost. However, the performance is lower than vacuum based thin films possibly due to higher density of defects and lower carrier mobility. On the other hand, one dimensional ordered nanostructures such as nanowires and nanorods can be used to make redial junction solar cells, where the orthogonality between light absorption and charge carrier separation can lead to enhanced PV performance. Since the charge carriers only need to traverse a short distance in the radial direction before they are separated at the heterojunction interface, the radial junction scheme can be more defect tolerant than their planar junction scheme. In this work, a wide band gap nanowire or nanotube array such as TiO2 is used as a scaffold where CIGS is conformally coated using solution phase to obtain a radial heterojunction solar cell. Their performance is compared that of the planar thin film solar cells fabricated with the same materials.

  5. XPS Investigation of Surface Secondary Phase Segregation in CIGS Thin Film

    SciTech Connect

    Al-Thani, H. A.; Abdullah, M. M.; Hasoon, F. S.

    2011-01-01

    Cu(In, Ga)Se{sub 2} (CIGS) thin films were deposited on Molybdenum (Mo) coated soda lime glass (SLG/Mo) substrates, using physical vapor deposition (PVD) 3-stage process. The Mo thin films were sputtered on SLG substrates using DC planar magnetron sputtering at a working gas (Ar) pressure that varies from 0.8 mT to 12 mT with a sputtering power density of 1.2 W/cm{sub 2}. The sputtering pressure of Mo thin films was varied in order to induce variations in the sputtered films morphology and porosity; as well as to subsequently induce variations in the Na out-diffusion from SLG substrate. The surface chemistry of CIGS thin films was investigated by X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS). The XPS surface surveys (top 30A) and depth profiling survey (top 100A) for the elements, their chemical states, and their relative concentration were analyzed for CIGS thin films. The XPS surface analysis and composition of CIGS thin films were correlated to the bulk composition and Na out-diffusion in the CIGS films from SLG substrates.

  6. 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.'

  7. In-situ growth of a CdS window layer by vacuum thermal evaporation for CIGS thin film solar cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao, Min; Men, Chuan-Ling; Zhu, De-Ming; Tian, Zi-Ao; An, Zheng-Hua

    2013-10-01

    Highly crystalline and transparent CdS films are grown by utilizing the vacuum thermal evaporation (VTE) method. The structural, surface morphological, and optical properties of the films are studied and compared with those prepared by chemical bath deposition (CBD). It is found that the films deposited at a high substrate temperature (200 °C) have a preferential orientation along (002) which is consistent with CBD-grown films. Absorption spectra reveal that the films are highly transparent and the optical band gap values are found to be in a range of 2.44 eV-2.56 eV. CuIn1-xGaxSe2 (CIGS) solar cells with in-situ VTE-grown CdS films exhibit higher values of Voc together with smaller values of Jsc than those from CBD. Eventually the conversion efficiency and fill factor become slightly better than those from the CBD method. Our work suggests that the in-situ thermal evaporation method can be a competitive alternative to the CBD method, particularly in the physical- and vacuum-based CIGS technology.

  8. Modeling of polycrystalline thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fahrenbruch, Alan L.

    1999-03-01

    This paper describes modeling polycrystalline thin-film solar cells using the program AMPS-1D1 to visualize the relationships between the many variables involved. These simulations are steps toward two dimensional modeling the effects of grain boundaries in polycrystalline cells. Although this paper describes results for the CdS/CdTe cell, the ideas presented here are applicable to copper-indium-gallium selenide (CIGS) cells as well as other types of cells. Results of these one-dimensional simulations are presented: (a) the duplication of experimentally observed cell parameters, (b) the effects of back-contact potential barrier height and its relation to stressing the cell, (c) the effects of the depletion layer width in the CdTe layer on cell parameters, and (d) the effects of CdS layer thickness on the cell parameters. Experience using the software is also described.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Laser Patterning of CIGS thin Films with 1550 nm Nanosecond Laser Pulses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehrhardt, Martin; Lorenz, Pierre; Bayer, Lukas; Zagoranskiy, Igor; Zimmer, Klaus

    The results of laser scribing experiments of CIGS thin films deposited on Mo-coated stainless steel sheets, using laser pulses with a wavelength of 1550 nm and a pulse duration of 6 ns, are presented in this study. It is shown that a removal of the CIGS from the Mo film is possible without edge melting of the CIGS or damaging of the Mo. The critical parameter for inducing the delamination lift-off process of the CIGS from the Mo was identified to be the scribing speed of the laser. In dependence on the laser parameters two different material removal processes were found. For a low pulse overlap the laser pulse penetrates the CIGS film and is absorbed in the interface between the CIGS and the Mo causing a lift-off process of the CIGS from the Mo back contact. For a high pulse overlap an ablation process starting from the top side of the CIGS film was found. The composition and morphology of the sample material after the laser patterning were analysed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), and micro-Raman spectroscopy.

  16. Solution-deposited CIGS thin films for ultra-low-cost photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eldada, Louay A.; Hersh, Peter; Stanbery, Billy J.

    2010-09-01

    We describe the production of photovoltaic modules with high-quality large-grain copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) thin films obtained with the unique combination of low-cost ink-based precursors and a reactive transfer printing method. The proprietary metal-organic inks contain a variety of soluble Cu-, In- and Ga- multinary selenide materials; they are called metal-organic decomposition (MOD) precursors, as they are designed to decompose into the desired precursors. Reactive transfer is a two-stage process that produces CIGS through the chemical reaction between two separate precursor films, one deposited on the substrate and the other on a printing plate in the first stage. In the second stage, these precursors are rapidly reacted together under pressure in the presence of heat. 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. In a few minutes, the process produces high quality CIGS films, with large grains on the order of several microns, and preferred crystallographic orientation, as confirmed by compositional and structural analysis by XRF, SIMS, SEM and XRD. Cell efficiencies of 14% and module efficiencies of 12% were achieved using this method. The atmospheric deposition processes include slot die extrusion coating, ultrasonic atomization spraying, pneumatic atomization spraying, inkjet printing, direct writing, and screen printing, and provide low capital equipment cost, low thermal budget, and high throughput.

  17. 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.

  18. Insect thin films as solar collectors.

    PubMed

    Heilman, B D; Miaoulis, L N

    1994-10-01

    A numerical method for simulation of microscale radiation effects in insect thin-film structures is described. Accounting for solar beam and diffuse radiation, the model calculates the reflectivity and emissivity of such structures. A case study examines microscale radiation effects in butterfuly wings, and results reveal a new function of these multilayer thin films: thermal regulation. For film thicknesses of the order of 0.10 µm, solar absorption levels vary by as much as 25% with small changes in film thickness; for certain existing structures, absorption levels reach 96%., This is attributed to the spectral distribution of the reflected radiation, which consists of a singular reflectance peak within the solar spectrum.

  19. 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.

  20. Structuring of thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eberhardt, Gabriele; Banse, Henrik; Wagner, Uwe; Peschel, Thomas

    2010-02-01

    Laser structuring of different types of thin film layers is a state of the art process in the photovoltaic industry. TCO layers and molybdenum are structured with e.g. 1064 nm lasers. Amorphous silicon, microcrystalline silicon or cadmium telluride are ablated with 515/532 nm lasers. Typical pulse durations of the lasers in use for these material ablation processes are in the nanosecond range. Up to now the common process for CIS/CIGS cells is needle structuring. Hard metal needles scribe lines with a width of 30 to 60 μm into the semiconductor material. A laser technology would have some advantages compared to mechanical scribing. The precision of the lines would be higher (no chipping effects), the laser has no wear out. The dead area (distance from P1 structuring line to P3 structuring line) can be significantly smaller with the laser technology. So we investigate the structuring of CIS/CIGS materials with ultra short pulse lasers of different wavelengths. The ablation rates and the structuring speeds versus the repetition rates have been established. For the different layer thicknesses and line widths we determined the necessary energy densities. After all tests we can calculate the possible reduction of the dead area on the thin film module. The new technology will result in an increase in the efficiency per module of up to 4 %.

  1. Effects of selenization conditions on densification of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin films prepared by spray deposition of CIGS nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahn, SeJin; Kim, Ki Hyun; Yun, Jae Ho; Yoon, Kyung Hoon

    2009-06-01

    Spray deposited porous CIGS nanoparticle-derived thin films were selenized in a two zone rapid thermal annealing furnace and effects of various selenization parameters including Se evaporation temperature, flow rate of carrier gas, and substrate temperature on densification of the CIGS layers were investigated. It was found that higher Se supply to CIGS nanoparticles either by increasing Se evaporation temperature or by increasing the flow rate of carrier gas resulted in larger CIGS grains with higher degree of crystallinity, while it also induced formation of a thicker MoSe2 layer in-between CIGS and Mo which resulted in partial detachment of CIGS/MoSe2/Mo layers from the glass substrate. Densification of CIGS layer by growth of nanoparticles and formation of thick MoSe2 were explained by a liquid Se assisted reaction rather than by a vapor phase Se assisted reaction.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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%.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Thin film CIGS photovoltaic modules: monolithic integration and advanced packaging for high performance, high reliability and low cost

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eldada, Louay

    2011-01-01

    In recent years, thin-film photovoltaic companies started realizing their low manufacturing cost potential, and have been grabbing an increasingly larger market share. Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) is the most promising thin-film PV material, having demonstrated the highest energy conversion efficiency in both cells and modules. However, most CIGS manufacturers still face the challenge of delivering a reliable and rapid manufacturing process that can scale effectively and deliver on the promise of this material system. HelioVolt has developed a reactive transfer process for CIGS absorber formation that has the benefits of good compositional control, and a fast high-quality CIGS reaction. The reactive transfer process is a two stage CIGS fabrication method. Precursor films are deposited onto substrates and reusable cover plates in the first stage, while in the second stage the CIGS layer is formed by rapid heating with Se confinement. HelioVolt also developed best-in-class packaging technologies that provide unparalleled environmental stability. High quality CIGS films with large grains were fabricated on the production line, and high-performance highreliability monolithic modules with a form factor of 120 cm × 60 cm are being produced at high yield and low cost. With conversion efficiency levels around 14% for cells and 12% for modules, HelioVolt is commercializing the process on its first production line with 20 MW capacity, and is planning its next GW-scale factory.

  8. Calculation of Current Density—Voltage Curve for Thin-Film Cu(In,Ga)Se2 Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, K.-S.; Cho, D. H.; Chung, Y. D.; Park, N. M.; Han, W. S.; Kim, J.; Oh, S. Y.

    2011-12-01

    We have developed a theoretical model for thin-film Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) solar cells with distributed series resistances and non-negligible internal reflection. The current density—voltage (J-V) curve of high-efficiency solar cells does not change significantly for various distribution of series resistance, if its mean value is fixed. On the other hand, the influence of internal reflection on the J-V curve is not negligible for a CIGS solar cell which has a submicron-thick CIGS absorber with a small recombination velocity at the rear of the absorber.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Non-selenization method using sputtering deposition with a CuSe2 target for CIGS thin film

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Nam-Hoon; Oh, Seongha; Lee, Woo-Sun

    2012-10-01

    A novel method is proposed to prepare polycrystalline Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin films by using a non-selenization method and a sputtering process with In, Ga and CuSe2 alloy targets. An annealing process in a furnace and rapid thermal annealing (RTA) at 400 °C without any selenium-/sulfurcontaining gas formed CIGS chalcopyrite (112), (220)/(204), and (312)/(116) phases. The major electrical and optical properties of the annealed thin films were superior to the required or reported values with 2.33 × 103 S/cm conductivity, 4.43 × 1020 cm-3 carrier concentration, 34.30 cm2/Vs hole mobility, and 2.41 × 106 cm-1 absorption coefficient.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. IR-imaging and non-destructive loss analysis on thin film solar modules and cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adams, Jens; Fecher, Frank W.; Hoga, Felix; Vetter, Andreas; Buerhop, Claudia; Brabec, Christoph J.

    2014-10-01

    CIGS thin film solar modules, despite their high efficiency, may contain three different kinds of macroscopic defects referred to as bulk defects, interface defects and interconnect defects. These occur due to the film's sensitivity to inhomogeneities during the manufacturing process and decreasing the electrical power output from a cell or module. In this study, we present infrared (IR) imaging and contactless loss analyses of defects contained in commercially manufactured thin film solar modules. We investigated different relations between the emitted IR-signal (using illuminated lock-in thermography ILIT) and the respective open circuit cell voltage (Voc) as well as the maximum power point (Pmpp). A simulation study, using the 2D finite element method (FEM), provides a deeper understanding as to the impact on electrical performance when defects are present on the cell or module.

  19. 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.

  20. Performance and Loss Analyses of High-Efficiency Chemical Bath Deposition (CBD)-ZnS/Cu(In1-xGax)Se2 Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pudov, Alexei; Sites, James; Nakada, Tokio

    2002-06-01

    Chemically deposited ZnS has been investigated as a buffer layer alternative to cadmium sulfide (CdS) in polycrystalline thin-film Cu(In1-xGax)Se2 (CIGS) solar cells. Cells with efficiency of up to 18.1% based on chemical bath deposition (CBD)-ZnS{\\slash}CIGS heterostructures have been fabricated. This paper presents the performance and loss analyses of these cells based on the current-voltage (J-V) and spectral response curves, as well as comparisons with high efficiency CBD-CdS/CIGS and crystalline silicon counterparts. The CBD-ZnS/CIGS devices have effectively reached the efficiency of the current record CBD-CdS/CIGS cell. The effects of the superior current of the CBD-ZnS/CIGS cell and the superior junction quality of the CBD-CdS/CIGS cell on overall performance nearly cancel each other.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  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. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Insect thin films as sun blocks, not solar collectors.

    PubMed

    Koon, D W; Crawford, A B

    2000-05-20

    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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Thin-film absorber for a solar collector

    SciTech Connect

    Wilhelm, W.G.

    1982-02-09

    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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Ternary compound thin film solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kazmerski, L. L.

    1975-01-01

    A group of ternary compound semiconductor (I-III-VI2) thin films for future applications in photovoltaic devices is proposed. The consideration of these materials (CuInSe2, CuInTe2 and especially CuInS2) for long range device development is emphasized. Much of the activity to date has been concerned with the growth and properties of CuInX2 films. X-ray and electron diffraction analyses, Hall mobility and coefficient, resistivity and carrier concentration variations with substrate and film temperature as well as grain size data have been determined. Both p- and n-type films of CuInS2 and CuInSe2 have been produced. Single and double source deposition techniques have been utilized. Some data have been recorded for annealed films.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Polycrystalline silicon on glass for thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Green, Martin A.

    2009-07-01

    Although most solar cell modules to date have been based on crystalline or polycrystalline wafers, these may be too material intensive and hence always too expensive to reach the very low costs required for large-scale impact of photovoltaics on the energy scene. Polycrystalline silicon on glass (CSG) solar cell technology was developed to address this difficulty as well as perceived fundamental difficulties with other thin-film technologies. The aim was to combine the advantages of standard silicon wafer-based technology, namely ruggedness, durability, good electronic properties and environmental soundness with the advantages of thin-films, specifically low material use, large monolithic construction and a desirable glass superstrate configuration. The challenge has been to match the different preferred processing temperatures of silicon and glass and to obtain strong solar absorption in notoriously weakly-absorbing silicon of only 1-2 micron thickness. A rugged, durable silicon thin-film technology has been developed with amongst the lowest manufacturing cost of these contenders and confirmed efficiency for small pilot line modules already in the 10-11% energy conversion efficiency range, on the path to 12-13%.

  8. 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.

  9. Modeling of optical losses in graphene contacted CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Houshmand, Mohammad; Zandi, M. Hossein

    2016-09-01

    For the first time, an optical model is applied to superstrate configuration of CdS/CIGS thin film solar cells with graphene front/back contact (FC/BC) to simulate the loss in current density and efficiency. Graphene shows to be a great candidate to replace with the metallic BC transparent conductive oxides as the front electrode. Our model is based on the refractive index and extinction coefficient and takes into account the reflection and absorption in interfaces and layer’s thickness, respectively. CIGS cells with graphene as front electrode have a lower current density and efficiency than the one with graphene BC. However, the bifacial configuration shows a higher current density and efficiency, mostly because of a higher transmission rate. The interference effect was observed in simulation of transmission rate of hybrid cells representing that graphene can cause multiple reflection. We simulated the device parameters versus the ZnO layer’s thickness, which is essential for high quality interfaces. However, the simulation results are also consistent when CdS thickness is replaced with inorganic ZnO.

  10. High efficiency thin film cadmium telluride solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, T. L.; Chu, Shirley S.; Britt, J.; Chen, G.; Ferekides, C.; Schultz, N.; Wang, C.; Wu, C. Q.

    1992-12-01

    Cadmium sulfide (CdS), grown from an aqueous solution, and zinc oxide (ZnO), cadmium zinc sulfide (Cd1-xZnxS), and zinc selenide (ZnSe), deposited by metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD), have been used as the window for thin film cadmium telluride (CdTe) solar cells. Thin film solar cells were prepared by the successive deposition of the window and p-CdTe (by MOCVD and close-spaced sublimation, CSS) on SnO2:F/glass substrates. CdS/CdTe(CSS) solar cells show considerably better characteristics than CdS/CdTe(MOCVD) solar cells because of the better microstructure of CSS CdTe films. Total area conversion efficiency of 14.6%, verified by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, has been achieved for solar cells of about 1 cm2 area. Solar cell prepared by using ZnO, ZnSe, or Cd1-xZnxS as window have significantly lower photovoltage than CdS/CdTe solar cells.

  11. 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

  12. Transparent conductive oxides for thin-film silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Löffler, J.

    2005-04-01

    This thesis describes research on thin-film silicon solar cells with focus on the transparent conductive oxide (TCO) for such devices. In addition to the formation of a transparent and electrically conductive front electrode for the solar cell allowing photocurrent collection with low ohmic losses, the front TCO plays an important role for the light enhancement of thin-film silicon pin type solar cells. If the TCO is rough, light scattering at rough interfaces in the solar cell in combination with a highly reflective back contact leads to an increase in optical path length of the light. Multiple (total) internal reflectance leads to virtual 'trapping' of the light in the solar cell structure, allowing a further decrease in absorber thickness and thus thin-film silicon solar cell devices with higher and more stable efficiency. Here, the optical mechanisms involved in the light trapping in thin-film silicon solar cells have been studied, and two types of front TCO materials have been investigated with respect to their suitability as front TCO in thin-film silicon pin type solar cells. Undoped and aluminum doped zinc oxide layers have been fabricated for the first time by the expanding thermal plasma chemical vapour deposition (ETP CVD) technique at substrate temperatures between 150 º C and 350 º C, and successfully implemented as a front electrode material for amorphous silicon pin superstrate type solar cells. Solar cells with efficiencies comparable to cells on Asahi U-type reference TCO have been reproducibly obtained. A higher haze is needed for the ZnO samples studied here than for Asahi U-type TCO in order to achieve comparable long wavelength response of the solar cells. This is attributed to the different angular distribution of the scattered light, showing higher scattering intensities at large angles for the Asahi U-type TCO. A barrier at the TCO/p interface and minor collection problems may explain the slightly lower fill factors obtained for the cells

  13. Diode laser processed crystalline silicon thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varlamov, S.; Eggleston, B.; Dore, J.; Evans, R.; Ong, D.; Kunz, O.; Huang, J.; Schubert, U.; Kim, K. H.; Egan, R.; Green, M.

    2013-03-01

    Line-focus diode laser is applied to advance crystalline silicon thin-film solar cell technology. Three new processes have been developed: 1) defect annealing/dopant activation; 2) dopant diffusion; 3) liquid phase crystallisation of thin films. The former two processes are applied to either create a solar cell device from pre-crystallised films or improve its performance while reducing the maximum temperature experienced by substrate. The later process is applied to amorphous silicon films to obtain high crystal and electronic quality material for thin-film solar cells with higher efficiency potential. Defect annealing/dopant activation and dopant diffusion in a few micron thick poly-Si films are achieved by scanning with line-focus 808 nm diode laser beam at 15-24 kW/cm2 laser power and 2~6 ms exposure. Temperature profile in the film during the treatment is independent from laser power and exposure but determined by beam shape. Solar cell open-circuit voltages of about 500 mV after such laser treatments is similar or even higher than voltages after standard rapid-thermal treatments while the highest temperature experienced by glass is 300C lower. Amorphous silicon films can be melted and subsequently liquid-phase crystallised by a single scan of line laser beam at about 20 kW/cm2 power and 10-15 ms exposure. Solar cells made of laser-crystallised material achieve 557 mV opencircuit voltage and 8.4% efficiency. Electronic quality of such cells is consistent with efficiencies exceeding 13% and it is currently limited by research-level simplified cell metallisation.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.)

  16. Enhanced quantum efficiency of amorphous silicon thin film solar cells with the inclusion of a rear-reflector thin film

    SciTech Connect

    Park, Seungil; Yong Ji, Hyung; Jun Kim, Myeong; Hyeon Peck, Jong; Kim, Keunjoo

    2014-02-17

    We investigated the growth mechanism of amorphous silicon thin films by implementing hot-wire chemical vapor deposition and fabricated thin film solar cell devices. The fabricated cells showed efficiencies of 7.5 and 8.6% for the samples without and with the rear-reflector decomposed by sputtering, respectively. The rear-reflector enhances the quantum efficiency in the infrared spectral region from 550 to 750 nm. The more stable quantum efficiency of the sample with the inclusion of a rear-reflector than the sample without the rear-reflector due to the bias effect is related to the enhancement of the short circuit current.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Sputter-Deposited AlTiO Thin Films for Semi-Transparent Silicon Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Seung-Yun; Bang, Ki Su; Lim, Jung Wook

    2014-09-01

    This paper reports on sputter-deposited AlTiO (ATO) thin films and their effects on the performance of semi-transparent silicon thin film solar cells. The electrical resistivity and the transparency of the ATO films depend significantly on the flow ratio of oxygen to argon during the reactive sputtering process. With highly transparent ATO films, transmittances of over 80% were obtained by increasing this flow ratio. When the ATO films were used on silicon substrates, they exhibited an anti-reflection property, where the minimum reflectance at visible light wavelength was decreased to 1.2%. The introduction of ATO thin film layers into solar cells resulted in a 24% increase in transmittance at wavelengths of around 700 nm, due to the film's anti-reflection characteristic. In addition, the color of the cells changed from green to bright red as the ATO layers were adopted. These beneficial effects of the sputter-deposited ATO films suggest an effective pathway towards the semi-transparent silicon thin film solar cells for building-integrated photovoltaic system applications.

  2. High efficiency nanostructured thin film solar cells for energy harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welser, Roger E.; Sood, Ashok K.; Lewis, Jay S.; Dhar, Nibir K.; Wijewarnasuriya, Priyalal S.

    2016-05-01

    Thin-film III-V materials are an attractive candidate material for solar energy harvesting devices capable of supplying portable and mobile power in both terrestrial and space environments. Nanostructured quantum well and quantum dot solar cells are being widely investigated as a means of extending infrared absorption and enhancing photovoltaic device performance. In this paper, we will review recent progress on realizing high-voltage InGaAs/GaAs quantum well solar cells that operate at or near the radiative limit of performance. These high-voltage nanostructured device designs provide a pathway to enhance the performance of existing device technologies, and can also be leveraged for next-generation solar cells.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Non-ionizing energy loss calculations for modeling electron-induced degradation of Cu(In, Ga)Se2 thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Ming; Xu, Jing; Huang, Jian-Wei

    2016-09-01

    The lowest energies which make Cu, In, Ga, and Se atoms composing Cu(In, Ga)Se2 (CIGS) material displaced from their lattice sites are evaluated, respectively. The non-ionizing energy loss (NIEL) for electron in CIGS material is calculated analytically using the Mott differential cross section. The relation of the introduction rate (k) of the recombination centers to NIEL is modified, then the values of k at different electron energies are calculated. Degradation modeling of CIGS thin-film solar cells irradiated with various-energy electrons is performed according to the characterization of solar cells and the recombination centers. The validity of the modeling approach is verified by comparison with the experimental data. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 11547151).

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

    DOEpatents

    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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Universality of non-Ohmic shunt leakage in thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dongaonkar, S.; Servaites, J. D.; Ford, G. M.; Loser, S.; Moore, J.; Gelfand, R. M.; Mohseni, H.; Hillhouse, H. W.; Agrawal, R.; Ratner, M. A.; Marks, T. J.; Lundstrom, M. S.; Alam, M. A.

    2010-12-01

    We compare the dark current-voltage (IV) characteristics of three different thin-film solar cell types: hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) p-i-n cells, organic bulk heterojunction (BHJ) cells, and Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) cells. All three device types exhibit a significant shunt leakage current at low forward bias (V <˜0.4) and reverse bias, which cannot be explained by the classical solar cell diode model. This parasitic shunt current exhibits non-Ohmic behavior, as opposed to the traditional constant shunt resistance model for photovoltaics. We show here that this shunt leakage (Ish), across all three solar cell types considered, is characterized by the following common phenomenological features: (a) voltage symmetry about V =0, (b) nonlinear (power law) voltage dependence, and (c) extremely weak temperature dependence. Based on this analysis, we provide a simple method of subtracting this shunt current component from the measured data and discuss its implications on dark IV parameter extraction. We propose a space charge limited (SCL) current model for capturing all these features of the shunt leakage in a consistent framework and discuss possible physical origin of the parasitic paths responsible for this shunt current mechanism.

  12. Universality of Non-Ohmic Shunt Leakage in Thin-Film Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Dongaonkar, S.; Servaites, J.D.; Ford, G.M.; Loser, Stephen; Moore, J.; Gelfand, R.M.; Mohseni, H.W.; Agrawal, R.; Ratner, Mark A.; Marks, Tobin J.; Lundstrom, M.S.; Alam, M.A.

    2010-01-01

    We compare the dark current-voltage (IV) characteristics of three different thin-film solar cell types: hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) p-i-n cells, organic bulk heterojunction (BHJ) cells, and Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) cells. All three device types exhibit a significant shunt leakage current at low forward bias (V<~0.4) and reverse bias, which cannot be explained by the classical solar cell diode model. This parasitic shunt current exhibits non-Ohmic behavior, as opposed to the traditional constant shunt resistance model for photovoltaics. We show here that this shunt leakage (Ish) , across all three solar cell types considered, is characterized by the following common phenomenological features: (a) voltage symmetry about V=0 , (b) nonlinear (power law) voltage dependence, and (c) extremely weak temperature dependence. Based on this analysis, we provide a simple method of subtracting this shunt current component from the measured data and discuss its implications on dark IV parameter extraction. We propose a space charge limited (SCL) current model for capturing all these features of the shunt leakage in a consistent framework and discuss possible physical origin of the parasitic paths responsible for this shunt current mechanism.

  13. 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.

  14. Structures, optical absorption and electrical properties of pulsed-laser-deposited CuIn0.8Ga0.2Se2 thin films and their use in CIGS/PCBM photovoltaic structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Yu; Wu, JiaDa; Xu, Ning

    2016-10-01

    Polycrystalline CuIn0.8Ga0.2Se2 (CIGS) thin films are deposited on ITO-glass substrates at different substrate temperatures by pulsed laser deposition using a Nd:YAG laser. The crystallinity of the as-deposited CIGS films significantly improved as the substrate temperature increased. The experimental results indicate that the ordered defect compound model is also applicable to the CIGS films deposited in these experiments. All the as-deposited CIGS thin films show absorption coefficients of 105 cm‑1 magnitude in a wavelength range of 400–900 nm. The CIGS thin films deposited at substrate temperatures lower than 400 °C exhibit n-type conductivity while those deposited at a substrate temperature of 500 °C display p-type conductivity. The CIGS/phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) photovoltaic structure, with a CIGS layer as the only absorber, demonstrates an apparent photovoltaic response with a short circuit current density of 0.389 mA cm‑2 and an open circuit voltage of 0.327 V.

  15. Quantum efficiency as a device-physics interpretation tool for thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagle, Timothy J.

    2007-12-01

    Thin-film solar cells made from CdTe and CIGS p-type absorbers are promising candidates for generating pollution-free electricity. The challenge faced by the thin-film photovoltaics (PV) community is to improve the electrical properties of devices, without straying from low-cost, industry-friendly techniques. This dissertation will focus on the use of quantum-efficiency (QE) measurements to deduce the device physics of thin-film devices, in the hope of improving electrical properties and efficiencies of PV materials. Photons which are absorbed, but not converted into electrical energy can modify the energy bands in the solar cell. Under illumination, photoconductivity in the CdS window layer can result in bands different from those in the dark. QE data presented here was taken under a variety of light-bias conditions. These results suggest that 0.10 sun of white-light bias incident on the CdS layer is usually sufficient to achieve accurate QE results. QE results are described by models based on carrier collection by drift and diffusion, and photon absorption. These models are sensitive to parameters such as carrier mobility and lifetime. Comparing calculated QE curves with experiments, it was determined that electron lifetimes in CdTe are less than 0.1 ns. Lifetime determinations also suggest that copper serves as a recombination center in CdTe. The spatial uniformity of QE results has been investigated with the LBIC apparatus, and several experiments are described which investigate cell uniformity. Electrical variations that occur in solar cells often occur in a nonuniform fashion, and can be detected with the LBIC apparatus. Studies discussed here include investigation of patterned deposition of Cu in back-contacts, the use of high-resistivity TCO layers to mitigate nonuniformity, optical effects, and local shunts. CdTe devices with transparent back contacts were also studied with LBIC, including those that received a strong bromine/dichrol/hydrazine (BDH) etch

  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. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-20

    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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Transparent Conductors and Barrier Layers for Thin Film Solar Cells:

    SciTech Connect

    Gordon, R. G.; Broomhall-Dillard, R.; Liu, X.; Pang, D.; Barton, J.

    2001-12-01

    This report describes the research undertaken to increase the efficiency of thin-film solar cells based on amorphous silicon in the so-called''superstrate structure'' (glass front surface/transparent electrically conductive oxide (TCO)/pin amorphous silicon/metal back electrode). The TCO layer must meet many requirements: high optical transparency in the wavelength region from about 350 to 900 nm, low electrical sheet resistance, stability during handling and deposition of the subsequent layers and during use, a textured (rough) surface to enhance optical absorption of red and near-infrared light, and low-resistance electrical contact to the amorphous silicon p-layer. Fluorine-doped tin oxide has been the TCO used in most commercial superstrate amorphous silicon cells. Fluorine-doped zinc oxide (ZnO:F) was later shown to be even more transparent than fluorine-doped tin oxide, as well as being more resistant to the strongly reducing conditions encountered during the deposition of amorphous silicon. Solar cells based on ZnO:F showed the expected higher currents, but the fill factors were lower than standard cells grown on tin oxide, resulting in no consistent improvement in efficiency. This problem was recently mitigated by using a new proprietary p/buffer layer combination developed at BP Solar.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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%.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Thin-film cadmium telluride and zinc phosphide solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, T. L.

    1981-06-01

    Major efforts during this quarter were directed to the deposition and characterization of zinc phosphide and cadmium telluride films and solar cells. The deposition of zinc phosphide films by the reaction of zinc and phosphine in a hydrogen atmosphere was continued and the composition of deposited films was determined. For more efficient utilization of phosphine, a 8500 C zone was added to the deposition. The in-situ annealing of zinc phosphide in phosphine was carried out. Attempts to prepare solar cell structures by depositing a thin film of zinc phosphide on an annealed film were made; however, the results are inconclusive. The deposition of cadmium telluride films by the direct combination of the elements under reduced pressure and under atmospheric pressure was carried out. Films deposited under reduced pressure exhibited more compact grain structures, however, they showed poor photoresponse. The composition of the films deposited under atmospheric pressure were analyzed and the dependence of short circuit density on the reactant composition was investigated.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Optimized laser patterning for high performance Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin-film solar modules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burn, Andreas; Muralt, Martin; Witte, Reiner; Buecheler, Stephan; Nishiwaki, Shiro; Krainer, Lukas; Spuehler, Gabriel J.; Romano, Valerio

    2014-03-01

    The thin-film solar cell market has seen a period of consolidation during the last years and many involved companies were forced to stop production due to increasing price pressure from competing cell technologies. Today, thin-film solar industry is gaining momentum again. Especially Cu(In,Ga)Se2 technology evolves at high pace fired by recently achieved record efficiencies of 20.4 percent on flexible polyimide substrate [1] and 20.8 percent on glass substrate [2]. Fresh companies are preparing market entry with matured products and manufacturing technology suitable for high-volume and high-throughput production. Among these key-enabling technologies is laser patterning for cell-to-cell interconnects. Several research groups worked on efficient and reliable laser processes that are now ready for the industrial assessment. Here we present a set of work-horse processes for P1, P2 and P3 scribing of CIGS cells on glass substrate. Optimized parameters are presented for 532 nm and 1064 nm using 50 ps pulses from an all-in-fiber laser system. We further demonstrate the successful realization of functional 8-cell modules with a reduced "dead-zone" width of 70±5 μm and high efficiencies. The certified efficiency of 16.6 percent for our low-dead-zone champion module confirms the observation that shrinking of interconnects has no adverse effects on their electrical quality.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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).

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Role of surface recombination in affecting the efficiency of nanostructured thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Da, Yun; Xuan, Yimin

    2013-11-01

    Nanostructured light trapping is a promising way to improve the efficiency in thin-film solar cells recently. In this work, both the optical and electrical properties of thin-film solar cells with 1D periodic grating structure are investigated by using photoelectric coupling model. It is found that surface recombination plays a key role in determining the performance of nanostructured thin-film solar cells. Once the recombination effect is considered, the higher optical absorption does not mean the higher conversion efficiency as most existing publications claimed. Both the surface recombination velocity and geometric parameters of structure have great impact on the efficiency of thin-film solar cells. Our simulation results indicate that nanostructured light trapping will not only improve optical absorption but also boost the surface recombination simultaneously. Therefore, we must get the tradeoffs between optical absorption and surface recombination to obtain the maximum conversion efficiency. Our work makes it clear that both the optical absorption and electrical recombination response should be taken into account simultaneously in designing the nanostructured thin-film solar cells.

  14. Optimization of CdS Buffer Layer for High Efficiency CIGS Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Donguk; Jang, Yong-Jun; Jung, Ho-Sung; Kim, Minha; Baek, Dohyun; Yi, Junsin; Lee, Jaehyeong; Choi, Youngkwan

    2016-05-01

    In present work, effects of the thickness on the structural and optical properties of chemically deposited CdS thin films were investigated. In addition, we fabricated Cu(In, Ga)Se2 solar cells with various thicknesses of CdS buffer layer and optimized the thickness for a high efficiency. When the CdS thin films were thicker, the crystallinity improved but the transmittance decreased. The short-circuit current density (J(sc)) and the fill factor are the major efficiency limiting factors for the CIGS solar cells. As the thickness of the CdS buffer layer, the open-circuit voltage (V(oc)) and the fill factor increased, whereas the J(sc) slightly decreased. The improvement of the fill factor and thus efficiency resulted from larger shunt resistance. For the solar cells without a high resistive intrinsic ZnO layer, the highest efficiency was acquired at the thickness of 89 nm. With further increasing the thickness, the J(sc) decreased significantly, resulting in poor efficiency. PMID:27483874

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

    2016-11-01

    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.

  18. 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.

  19. Understanding Light Harvesting in Radial Junction Amorphous Silicon Thin Film Solar Cells

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Linwei; Misra, Soumyadeep; Wang, Junzhuan; Qian, Shengyi; Foldyna, Martin; Xu, Jun; Shi, Yi; Johnson, Erik; Cabarrocas, Pere Roca i

    2014-01-01

    The radial junction (RJ) architecture has proven beneficial for the design of a new generation of high performance thin film photovoltaics. We herein carry out a comprehensive modeling of the light in-coupling, propagation and absorption profile within RJ thin film cells based on an accurate set of material properties extracted from spectroscopic ellipsometry measurements. This has enabled us to understand and evaluate the impact of varying several key parameters on the light harvesting in radially formed thin film solar cells. We found that the resonance mode absorption and antenna-like light in-coupling behavior in the RJ cell cavity can lead to a unique absorption distribution in the absorber that is very different from the situation expected in a planar thin film cell, and that has to be taken into account in the design of high performance RJ thin film solar cells. When compared to the experimental EQE response of real RJ solar cells, this modeling also provides an insightful and powerful tool to resolve the wavelength-dependent contributions arising from individual RJ units and/or from strong light trapping due to the presence of the RJ cell array. PMID:24619197

  20. Understanding light harvesting in radial junction amorphous silicon thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Yu, Linwei; Misra, Soumyadeep; Wang, Junzhuan; Qian, Shengyi; Foldyna, Martin; Xu, Jun; Shi, Yi; Johnson, Erik; Cabarrocas, Pere Roca I

    2014-03-12

    The radial junction (RJ) architecture has proven beneficial for the design of a new generation of high performance thin film photovoltaics. We herein carry out a comprehensive modeling of the light in-coupling, propagation and absorption profile within RJ thin film cells based on an accurate set of material properties extracted from spectroscopic ellipsometry measurements. This has enabled us to understand and evaluate the impact of varying several key parameters on the light harvesting in radially formed thin film solar cells. We found that the resonance mode absorption and antenna-like light in-coupling behavior in the RJ cell cavity can lead to a unique absorption distribution in the absorber that is very different from the situation expected in a planar thin film cell, and that has to be taken into account in the design of high performance RJ thin film solar cells. When compared to the experimental EQE response of real RJ solar cells, this modeling also provides an insightful and powerful tool to resolve the wavelength-dependent contributions arising from individual RJ units and/or from strong light trapping due to the presence of the RJ cell array.

  1. 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%.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. Absorption efficiency enhancement in inorganic and organic thin film solar cells via plasmonic honeycomb nanoantenna arrays.

    PubMed

    Tok, Rüştü Umut; Sendur, Kürşat

    2013-08-15

    We demonstrate theoretically that by embedding plasmonic honeycomb nanoantenna arrays into the active layers of inorganic (c-Si) and organic (P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS) thin film solar cells, absorption efficiency can be improved. To obtain the solar cell absorption spectrum that conforms to the solar radiation, spectral broadening is achieved by breaking the symmetry within the Wigner-Seitz unit cell on a uniform hexagonal grid. For optimized honeycomb designs, absorption efficiency enhancements of 106.2% and 20.8% are achieved for c-Si and P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS thin film solar cells, respectively. We have demonstrated that the transverse modes are responsible for the enhancement in c-Si solar cells, whereas both the longitudinal and transverse modes, albeit weaker, are the main enhancement mechanisms for P3HT:PCBM/PEDOT:PSS solar cells. For both inorganic and organic solar cells, the absorption enhancement is independent of polarization.

  6. 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

  7. 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%.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Impurity-doped ZnO Thin Films Prepared by Physical Deposition Methods Appropriate for Transparent Electrode Applications in Thin-film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minami, Tadatsugu; Miyata, Toshihiro; Nomoto, Jun-ichi

    2012-04-01

    This paper describes the development of transparent conducting impurity-doped ZnO thin films that would be appropriate for applications as transparent electrodes in thin-film solar cells. Transparent conducting Al-, B- and Ga-doped ZnO (AZO, BZO and GZO) thin films were prepared in a thickness range from 500 to 2000 nm on glass substrates at 200°C using various physical deposition methods: BZO films with vacuum arc plasma evaporation, AZO and GZO films with different types of magnetron sputtering depositions (MSDs) and all films with pulsed laser deposition (PLD). The suitability and stability of the electrical properties and, in addition, the suitability of the light scattering characteristics and surface texture formation were investigated in the prepared thin films. In particular, the suitability and stability evaluation was focused on the use of AZO, BZO and GZO thin films prepared by doping each impurity at an appropriate content to attain the lowest resistivity. The higher Hall mobility obtained in impurity-doped ZnO thin films with a resistivity on the order of 10-4 Ωcm was related more to the content, i.e., the obtained carrier concentration, rather than the kind of impurity doped into the films. The stability of resistivity of the BZO thin films in long-term moisture-resistance tests (in air at 85% relative humidity and 85°C) was found to be lower than that of the AZO and GZO thin films. The surface texture formation was carried out by wet-chemical etching (in a 0.1% HCl solution at 25°C) conducted either before or after being heat-treated either with rapid thermal annealing (RTA) or without RTA. The suitability of the light scattering characteristics and the surface texture formation obtainable by wet-chemical etching (for use in transparent electrode applications) was considerably dependent on the deposition method used as well as whether the wet-chemical etching was conducted with or without RTA. A significant improvement of both transmittance and

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Correlating the Polymorphism of Titanyl Phthalocyanine Thin Films with Solar Cell Performance.

    PubMed

    Vasseur, Karolien; Rand, Barry P; Cheyns, David; Temst, Kristiaan; Froyen, Ludo; Heremans, Paul

    2012-09-01

    The structure of titanyl phthalocyanine (TiOPc) thin films is correlated with photovoltaic properties of planar heterojunction solar cells by pairing different TiOPc polymorph donor layers with C60 as an acceptor. Solvent annealing and the insertion of two different templating layers, namely 1H,1H,2H,2H-perfluorodecyltrichlorosilane (FDTS) and CuI, prove to be effective methods to control the TiOPc thin film structure. The crystal phase of TiOPc thin films was identified by combining X-ray reflectivity (XRR) measurements with spectroscopic techniques, including absorption and micro-Raman measurements. Implementation of a donor layer with an absorption spectrum extending into the near-infrared (NIR) led to solar cells with external quantum efficiencies (EQEs) above 27% from λ = 600 - 890 nm, with the best device yielding a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 2.6%. Our results highlight the need to understand the relationship between processing parameters and thin film structure, as these have important consequences on device performance.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Polymorphous silicon thin films produced in dusty plasmas: application to solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cabarrocas, Pere Roca i.; Chaâbane, N.; Kharchenko, A. V.; Tchakarov, S.

    2004-12-01

    We summarize our current understanding of the optimization of PIN solar cells produced by plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposition from silane hydrogen mixtures. To increase the deposition rate, the discharge is operated under plasma conditions close to powder formation, where silicon nanocrystals contribute to the deposition of so-called polymorphous silicon thin films. We show that the increase in deposition rate can be achieved via an accurate control of the plasma parameters. However, this also results in a highly defective interface in the solar cells due to the bombardment of the P-layer by positively charged nanocrystals during the deposition of the I-layer. We show that decreasing the ion energy by increasing the total pressure or by using silane helium mixtures allows us to increase both the deposition rate and the solar cells efficiency, as required for cost effective thin film photovoltaics.

  12. 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).

  13. 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).

  14. Design optimization of thin-film/wafer-based tandem junction solar cells using analytical modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davidson, Lauren; Toor, Fatima

    2016-03-01

    Several research groups are developing solar cells of varying designs and materials that are high efficiency as well as cost competitive with the single junction silicon (Si) solar cells commercially produced today. One of these solar cell designs is a tandem junction solar cell comprised of perovskite (CH3NH3PbI3) and silicon (Si). Loper et al.1 was able to create a 13.4% efficient tandem cell using a perovskite top cell and a Si bottom cell, and researchers are confident that the perovskite/Si tandem cell can be optimized in order to reach higher efficiencies without introducing expensive manufacturing processes. However, there are currently no commercially available software capable of modeling a tandem cell that is based on a thin-film based bottom cell and a wafer-based top cell. While PC1D2 and SCAPS3 are able to model tandem cells comprised solely of thin-film absorbers or solely of wafer-based absorbers, they result in convergence errors if a thin-film/wafer-based tandem cell, such as the perovskite/ Si cell, is modeled. The Matlab-based analytical model presented in this work is capable of modeling a thin-film/wafer-based tandem solar cell. The model allows a user to adjust the top and bottom cell parameters, such as reflectivity, material bandgaps, donor and acceptor densities, and material thicknesses, in order to optimize the short circuit current, open circuit voltage, and quantum efficiency of the tandem solar cell. Using the Matlab-based analytical model, we were able optimize a perovskite/Si tandem cell with an efficiency greater than 30%.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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).

  18. Organometallic halide perovskite/barium di-silicide thin-film double-junction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vismara, R.; Isabella, O.; Zeman, M.

    2016-04-01

    Barium di-silicide (BaSi2) is an abundant and inexpensive semiconductor with appealing opto-electrical properties. In this work we show that a 2-μm thick BaSi2-based thin-film solar cell can exhibit an implied photo-current density equal to 41.1 mA/cm2, which is higher than that of a state-of-the-art wafer-based c-Si hetero-junction solar cell. This performance makes BaSi2 an attractive absorber for high-performing thin-film and multi-junction solar cells. In particular, to assess the potential of barium di-silicide, we propose a thin-film double-junction solar cell based on organometallic halide perovskite (CH3NH3PbI3) as top absorber and BaSi2 as bottom absorber. The resulting modelled ultra-thin double-junction CH3NH3PbI3 / BaSi2 (< 2 μm) exhibits an implied total photo-current density equal to 38.65 mA/cm2 (19.84 mA/cm2 top cell, 18.81 mA/cm2 bottom cell) and conversion efficiencies up to 28%.

  19. Dual gratings for enhanced light trapping in thin-film solar cells by a layer-transfer technique.

    PubMed

    Schuster, Christian S; Kowalczewski, Piotr; Martins, Emiliano R; Patrini, Maddalena; Scullion, Mark G; Liscidini, Marco; Lewis, Liam; Reardon, Christopher; Andreani, Lucio C; Krauss, Thomas F

    2013-05-01

    Thin film solar cells benefit significantly from the enhanced light trapping offered by photonic nanostructures. The thin film is typically patterned on one side only due to technological constraints. The ability to independently pattern both sides of the thin film increases the degrees of freedom available to the designer, as different functions can be combined, such as the reduction of surface reflection and the excitation of quasiguided modes for enhanced light absorption. Here, we demonstrate a technique based on simple layer transfer that allows us to independently pattern both sides of the thin film leading to enhanced light trapping. We used a 400 nm thin film of amorphous hydrogenated silicon and two simple 2D gratings for this proof-of-principle demonstration. Since the technique imposes no restrictions on the design parameters, any type of structure can be made.

  20. Relationships between Lead Halide Perovskite Thin-Film Fabrication, Morphology, and Performance in Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Sharenko, Alexander; Toney, Michael F

    2016-01-20

    Solution-processed lead halide perovskite thin-film solar cells have achieved power conversion efficiencies comparable to those obtained with several commercial photovoltaic technologies in a remarkably short period of time. This rapid rise in device efficiency is largely the result of the development of fabrication protocols capable of producing continuous, smooth perovskite films with micrometer-sized grains. Further developments in film fabrication and morphological control are necessary, however, in order for perovskite solar cells to reliably and reproducibly approach their thermodynamic efficiency limit. This Perspective discusses the fabrication of lead halide perovskite thin films, while highlighting the processing-property-performance relationships that have emerged from the literature, and from this knowledge, suggests future research directions.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Design guideline of high efficiency crystalline Si thin film solar cell with nanohole array textured surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Fei; Yu, Hongyu; Li, Junshuai; Wong, Shemein; Sun, Xiao Wei; Wang, Xincai; Zheng, Hongyu

    2011-04-01

    Silicon thin film with a nanohole (NH) array textured surface is systematically studied via simulation for solar energy harvesting and compared with a nanopillar (NP) array textured one. It is found that for the same thickness and optimized structure parameters, the NH array shows superior light trapping capability and thus, higher power conversion efficiency than its NP counterpart. The requirement for efficient cells at the optically optimized NH and NP geometries are studied in terms of minority carrier diffusion length, emitter doping level, and the emitter junction depth after considering the impact of surface recombination velocity. The results provide a practical guideline to design and fabricate high efficiency and cost effective NH textured Si thin film solar cells.

  5. 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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klein, Andreas

    2015-04-01

    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

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Approaching the Lambertian limit in randomly textured thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Fahr, Stephan; Kirchartz, Thomas; Rockstuhl, Carsten; Lederer, Falk

    2011-07-01

    The Lambertian limit for solar cells is a benchmark for evaluating their efficiency. It has been shown that the performance of either extremely thick or extremely thin solar cells can be driven close to this limit by using an appropriate photon management. Here we show that this is likewise possible for realistic, practically relevant thin-film solar cells based on amorphous silicon. Most importantly, we achieve this goal by relying on random textures already incorporated into state-of-the-art superstrates; with the only subtlety that their topology has to be downscaled to typical feature sizes of about 100 nm.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Advanced light-trapping effect of thin-film solar cell with dual photonic crystals.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Anjun; Guo, Zhongyi; Tao, Yifei; Wang, Wei; Mao, Xiaoqin; Fan, Guanghua; Zhou, Keya; Qu, Shiliang

    2015-01-01

    A thin-film solar cell with dual photonic crystals has been proposed, which shows an advanced light-trapping effect and superior performance in ultimate conversion efficiency (UCE). The shapes of nanocones have been optimized and discussed in detail by self-definition. The optimized shape of nanocone arrays (NCs) is a parabolic shape with a nearly linearly graded refractive index (GRI) profile from the air to Si, and the corresponding UCE is 30.3% for the NCs with a period of 300 nm and a thickness of only 2 μm. The top NCs and bottom NCs of the thin film have been simulated respectively to investigate their optimized shapes, and their separate contributions to the light harvest have also been discussed fully. The height of the top NCs and bottom NCs will also influence the performances of the thin-film solar cell greatly, and the result indicates that the unconformal NCs have better light-trapping ability with an optimal UCE of 32.3% than the conformal NCs with an optimal UCE of 30.3%. PMID:26034413

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Improved quantitative analysis of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin films using MCs+-SIMS depth profiling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Jihye; Kim, Seon Hee; Lee, Kang-Bong; Min, Byoung Koun; Lee, Yeonhee

    2014-06-01

    The chalcopyrite semiconductor, Cu(InGa)Se2 (CIGS), is popular as an absorber material for incorporation in high-efficiency photovoltaic devices because it has an appropriate band gap and a high absorption coefficient. To improve the efficiency of solar cells, many research groups have studied the quantitative characterization of the CIGS absorber layers. In this study, a compositional analysis of a CIGS thin film was performed by depth profiling in secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) with MCs+ (where M denotes an element from the CIGS sample) cluster ion detection, and the relative sensitivity factor of the cluster ion was calculated. The emission of MCs+ ions from CIGS absorber elements, such as Cu, In, Ga, and Se, under Cs+ ion bombardment was investigated using time-of-flight SIMS (TOF-SIMS) and magnetic sector SIMS. The detection of MCs+ ions suppressed the matrix effects of varying concentrations of constituent elements of the CIGS thin films. The atomic concentrations of the CIGS absorber layers from the MCs+-SIMS exhibited more accurate quantification compared to those of elemental SIMS and agreed with those of inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry. Both TOF-SIMS and magnetic sector SIMS depth profiles showed a similar MCs+ distribution for the CIGS thin films.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Plasma monitoring and PECVD process control in thin film silicon-based solar cell manufacturing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabriel, Onno; Kirner, Simon; Klick, Michael; Stannowski, Bernd; Schlatmann, Rutger

    2014-02-01

    A key process in thin film silicon-based solar cell manufacturing is plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) of the active layers. The deposition process can be monitored in situ by plasma diagnostics. Three types of complementary diagnostics, namely optical emission spectroscopy, mass spectrometry and non-linear extended electron dynamics are applied to an industrial-type PECVD reactor. We investigated the influence of substrate and chamber wall temperature and chamber history on the PECVD process. The impact of chamber wall conditioning on the solar cell performance is demonstrated.

  2. 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.

  3. Method for the continuous manufacture of thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Barnett, A.M.; Baron, B.N.; Masi, J.V.; Russell, T.W.

    1982-03-09

    A technique for manufacturing durable, reliable solar cells by a continuous process suitable for large-scale manufacture involves, in substance, providing a reel of thin metal foil substrate and forming on the substrate a series of layers operative to form a photovoltaic junction, short prevention blocking layers, contacts and integral encapsulation. The foil substrate is processed as a continuous reel substantially until final testing at which point, if desired, it can be cut into individual cells for deployment. In comparison with a batch process, the continuous technique can reduce manufacturing cost by as much as a factor of two.

  4. Progress with polycrystalline silicon thin-film solar cells on glass at UNSW

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aberle, Armin G.

    2006-01-01

    Polycrystalline Si (pc-Si) thin-film solar cells on glass have long been considered a very promising approach for lowering the cost of photovoltaic (PV) solar electricity. In recent years there have been dramatic advances with this PV technology, and the first commercial modules (CSG Solar) are expected to hit the marketplace in 2006. The CSG modules are based on solid-phase crystallisation of plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) -deposited amorphous Si. Independent research in the author's group at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) during recent years has led to the development of three alternative pc-Si thin-film solar cells on glass—EVA, ALICIA and ALICE. Cell thickness is generally about 2 μm. The first two cells are made by vacuum evaporation, whereas ALICE cells can be made by either vacuum evaporation or PECVD. Evaporation has the advantage of being a fast and inexpensive Si deposition method. A crucial component of ALICIA and ALICE cells is a seed layer made on glass by metal-induced crystallisation of amorphous silicon (a-Si). The absorber layer of these cells is made by either ion-assisted Si epitaxy (ALICIA) or solid-phase epitaxy of a-Si (ALICE). This paper reports on the status of these three new thin-film PV technologies. All three solar cells seem to be capable of voltages of over 500 mV and, owing to their potentially inexpensive and scalable fabrication process, have significant industrial appeal.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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)

  8. Advanced APCVD-processes for high-temperature grown crystalline silicon thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Driessen, Marion; Merkel, Benjamin; Reber, Stefan

    2011-09-01

    Crystalline silicon thin film (cSiTF) solar cells based on the epitaxial wafer-equivalent (EpiWE) concept combine advantages of wafer-based and thin film silicon solar cells. In this paper two processes beyond the standard process sequence for cSiTF cell fabrication are described. The first provides an alternative to wet chemical saw damage removal by chemical vapor etching (CVE) with hydrogen chloride in-situ prior to epitaxial deposition. This application decreases the number of process and handling steps. Solar cells fabricated with different etching processes achieved efficiencies up to 14.7%. 1300 degrees C etching temperature led to better cell results than 1200 degrees C. The second investigated process aims for an improvement of cell efficiency by implementation of a reflecting interlayer between substrate and active solar cell. Some characteristics of epitaxial lateral overgrowth (ELO) of a patterned silicon dioxide film in a lab-type reactor constructed at Fraunhofer ISE are described and first solar cell results are presented.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

    2016-10-01

    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.

  12. Carrier collection losses in interface passivated amorphous silicon thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neumüller, A.; Bereznev, S.; Ewert, M.; Volobujeva, O.; Sergeev, O.; Falta, J.; Vehse, M.; Agert, C.

    2016-07-01

    In silicon thin-film solar cells the interface between the i- and p-layer is the most critical. In the case of back diffusion of photogenerated minority carriers to the i/p-interface, recombination occurs mainly on the defect states at the interface. To suppress this effect and to reduce recombination losses, hydrogen plasma treatment (HPT) is usually applied. As an alternative to using state of the art HPT we apply an argon plasma treatment (APT) before the p-layer deposition in n-i-p solar cells. To study the effect of APT, several investigations were applied to compare the results with HPT and no plasma treatment at the interface. Carrier collection losses in resulting solar cells were examined with spectral response measurements with and without bias voltage. To investigate single layers, surface photovoltage and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) measurements were conducted. The results with APT at the i/p-interface show a beneficial contribution to the carrier collection compared with HPT and no plasma treatment. Therefore, it can be concluded that APT reduces the recombination centers at the interface. Further, we demonstrate that carrier collection losses of thin-film solar cells are significantly lower with APT.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Angular response of thin-film organic solar cells with periodic metal back nanostrips.

    PubMed

    Sha, Wei E I; Choy, Wallace C H; Chew, Weng Cho

    2011-02-15

    We theoretically study the angular response of thin-film organic solar cells with periodic Au back nanostrips. In particular, the equation of the generalized Lambert's cosine law for arbitrary periodic nanostructure is formulated. We show that the periodic strip structure achieves wide-angle absorption enhancement compared with the planar nonstrip structure for both the s- and p-polarized light, which is mainly attributed to the resonant Wood's anomalies and surface plasmon resonances, respectively. The work is important for designing and optimizing high-efficiency photovoltaic cells.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.}

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Progress towards high efficiency polycrystalline thin-film GaAs AMOS solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yeh, Y. C. M.; Ernest, F. P.; Stirn, R. J.

    1978-01-01

    Results of Ge film recrystallization using focused laser beams and GaAs film growth on such layers in the making of high efficiency thin-film AMOS solar cells are discussed. Since a conversion efficiency of 14% was obtained for an AMOS cell fabricated on sliced bulk polycrystalline GaAs, high efficiency cells are being developed by chemically vapor-depositing GaAs films on previously recrystallized evaporated Ge films to minimize the grain boundary (GB) effects. Schottky barrier solar cells made on sliced polycrystalline GaAs wafers were studied to investigate the effects of grain boundaries on cell properties and the potential efficiency of GaAs thin-film cells. Ge film recrystallization and the chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of the 2 to 3 micron thick GaAs films are described. AMOS solar cells with 100 Angstrom thick Ag metallization were made on CVD GaAs/recrystallized Ge/W substrates with an energy conversion efficiency of 8%.

  4. Doping-free fabrication of silicon thin films for schottky solar cell.

    PubMed

    Yun, Ju-Hyung; Park, Yun Chang; Yi, Junsin; Woo, Chang Su; Kim, Joondong

    2012-02-01

    Thin film Schottky solar cells were fabricated without doping processes, which may provide an alternative approach to the conventional thin film solar cells in the n-i-p configuration. A thin Co layer was coated on a substrate, which worked as a back contact metal and then Si film was grown above it. Deposition condition may modulate the Si film structure to be a fully amorphous Si (a-Si) or a mixing of microcrystalline Si (mc-Si) and a-Si. A thin Au layer was deposited above the grown Si films, which formed a Schottky junction. Two types of Schottky solar cells were prepared on a fully a-Si film and a mixing of mc-Si and a-Si film. Under one sun illumination, the mixing of mc-Si and a-Si device provided 35% and 68.4% enhancement in the open circuit voltage and fill factor compared to that of the amorphous device.

  5. Perovskite/germanium tandem: A potential high efficiency thin film solar cell design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zi, Wei; Ren, Xiaodong; Ren, Xianpei; Wei, Qinbo; Gao, Fei; Liu, Shengzhong Frank

    2016-12-01

    Perovskite absorbs from ultraviolet (UV) to ∼800 nm, and germanium covers to 1800 nm, the combination shows excellent match in terms of solar spectrum-splitting. The optical properties of CH3NH3PbI3-xClx perovskite and single-crystalline germanium (c-Ge) tandem solar cell on a special designed substrate with triangular grating are analyzed and discussed. The finite difference time domain (FDTD) approach is used to solve the Maxwell's equations in three dimensions rigorously. By optimizing the absorption layer thickness, the current match between the top and the bottom component cells is achieved using very thin films as thin as 1500 nm. By controlling the thickness of perovskite and c-Ge to 750 nm each, high short circuit current density (Jsc) of the tandem solar cell is achieved to as high as 23.70 mA/cm2. The perovskite/c-Ge tandem thin film cell design is capable of a potential efficiency 24.88% based on the simulation.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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).

  13. Polycrystalline Thin Film Photovoltaics: Research, Development, and Technologies: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

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

    2002-05-01

    II-VI binary thin-film solar cells based on cadmium telluride (CdTe) and I-III-VI ternary thin-film solar cells based on copper indium diselenide (CIS) and related materials have been the subject of intense research and development in the past few years. Substantial progress has been made thus far in the area of materials research, device fabrication, and technology development, and numerous applications based on CdTe and CIS have been deployed worldwide. World record efficiency of 16.5% has been achieved by NREL scientists for a thin-film CdTe solar cell using a modified device structure. Also, NREL scientists achieved world-record efficiency of 21.1% for a thin-film CIGS solar cell under a 14X concentration and AM1.5 global spectrum. When measured under a AM1.5 direct spectrum, the efficiency increases to 21.5%. Pathways for achieving 25% efficiency for tandem polycrystalline thin-film solar cells are elucidated. R&D issues relating to CdTe and CIS are reported in this paper, such as contact stability and accelerated life testing in CdTe, and effects of moisture ingress in thin-film CIS devices. Substantial technology development is currently under way, with various groups reporting power module efficiencies in the range of 7.0% to 12.1% and power output of 40.0 to 92.5 W. A number of lessons learned during the scale-up activities of the technology development for fabrication of thin-film power modules are discussed. The major global players actively involved in the technology development and commercialization efforts using both rigid and flexible power modules are highlighted.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Effect of the stacked structure on performance in CZTSSe thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Li-Ching; Lin, Yi-Cheng

    2015-11-01

    This study investigated the influence of stacked structures on the formation of secondary phases, as pertaining to the performance of Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 (CZTSSe) thin film solar cells. Absorber layer precursors of ZnS/Cu/Sn (Sample A) and ZnS/Cu/Sn/Cu/Sn (Sample B) were prepared by sputtering and selenization. Secondary phases of Cu2SnSe3, Cu2-xS and ZnS were observed at the bottom of the absorber layer in Sample A, while only ZnS secondary phases appeared in the absorber layer of Sample B. The structure of stacked precursors was shown to have a significant influence on the formation of secondary phases as well as the crystal quality of the CZTSSe absorber layer. CZTSSe thin film solar cells were prepared from a structure of glass/Mo/CZTSSe/CdS/ZnO:Al/Al. Sample B demonstrated cell efficiency of 2.4%, which is far superior to the 0.75% efficiency of Sample A. The existence of Cu2-xS and Cu2SnSe3 secondary phases degraded the crystal quality of the absorber layer and increased the number of defects in the crystalline structure.

  17. 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

  18. Thin film solar cells with Si nanocrystallites embedded in amorphous intrinsic layers by hot-wire chemical vapor deposition.

    PubMed

    Park, Seungil; Parida, Bhaskar; Kim, Keunjoo

    2013-05-01

    We investigated the thin film growths of hydrogenated silicon by hot-wire chemical vapor deposition with different flow rates of SiH4 and H2 mixture ambient and fabricated thin film solar cells by implementing the intrinsic layers to SiC/Si heterojunction p-i-n structures. The film samples showed the different infrared absorption spectra of 2,000 and 2,100 cm(-1), which are corresponding to the chemical bonds of SiH and SiH2, respectively. The a-Si:H sample with the relatively high silane concentration provides the absorption peak of SiH bond, but the microc-Si:H sample with the relatively low silane concentration provides the absorption peak of SiH2 bond as well as SiH bond. Furthermore, the microc-Si:H sample showed the Raman spectral shift of 520 cm(-1) for crystalline phase Si bonds as well as the 480 cm(-1) for the amorphous phase Si bonds. These bonding structures are very consistent with the further analysis of the long-wavelength photoconduction tail and the formation of nanocrystalline Si structures. The microc-Si:H thin film solar cell has the photovoltaic behavior of open circuit voltage similar to crystalline silicon thin film solar cell, indicating that microc-Si:H thin film with the mixed phase of amorphous and nanocrystalline structures show the carrier transportation through the channel of nanocrystallites.

  19. Approaches to encapsulation of flexible CIGS cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olsen, L. C.; Gross, M. E.; Graff, G. L.; Kundu, S. N.; Chu, Xi; Lin, Steve

    2008-08-01

    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 85°C/85%RH. This paper discusses these two approaches, and reviews results for uncoated cells and mini-modules fabricated by the former Shell Solar Industries (SSI).

  20. 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

  1. Model for increased efficiency of CIGS solar cells by a stepped distribution of carrier density and Ga in the absorber layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharbati, Samaneh; Keshmiri, Sayyed-Hossein

    2013-08-01

    In this paper, several structures for multilayer Cu (In1- x Ga x ) Se2 (CIGS) thin film solar cells are proposed to achieve high conversion efficiency. All of the modeling and simulations were based on the actual data of experimentally produced CIGS cells reported in the literature. In standard CIGS cells with a single absorber layer, the effects of acceptor density and Ga content on device performance were studied, and then optimized for maximum conversion efficiency. The same procedure was performed for cells with two and three sectioned CIGS absorber layers in which Cu and/or Ga contents were varied within each consecutive section. This produces an internal additional electric field within the absorber layer, which resulted in an increase in carrier collection for longer wavelength photons, and hence, improvement in the conversion efficiency of the cell. An increase of approximately 3% in efficiency is predicted for cells with two layer absorbers. For multilayer cells in which Cu and Ga distribution were stepped simultaneously, the improvement could be approximately 3.5%. This improvement is due to; enhanced carrier collection for longer-wavelength photons, and reduced recombination at the heterojunction and back regions of the cell. These results are confirmed by the physics of the cells.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  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. 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.

  6. Thin film solar cell design based on photonic crystal and diffractive grating structures.

    PubMed

    Mutitu, James G; Shi, Shouyuan; Chen, Caihua; Creazzo, Timothy; Barnett, Allen; Honsberg, Christiana; Prather, Dennis W

    2008-09-15

    In this paper we present novel light trapping designs applied to multiple junction thin film solar cells. The new designs incorporate one dimensional photonic crystals as band pass filters that reflect short light wavelengths (400 - 867 nm) and transmit longer wavelengths(867 -1800 nm) at the interface between two adjacent cells. In addition, nano structured diffractive gratings that cut into the photonic crystal layers are incorporated to redirect incoming waves and hence increase the optical path length of light within the solar cells. Two designs based on the nano structured gratings that have been realized using the scattering matrix and particle swarm optimization methods are presented. We also show preliminary fabrication results of the proposed devices.

  7. 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.

  8. 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%.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. A nanoparticle ink printing process for all printed thin film copper-indium-selenide (CIS) solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, X. Charles; Soltesz, Istvan; Wu, Mindy; Ziobro, Frank; Amidon, Roger; Kiss, Zoltan

    2008-08-01

    Copper indium selenide (CIS) or its derivatives (such as gallium doped CIS and sulfur substituted CIS) are considered the best optical absorber material used in polycrystalline thin film photovoltaic solar cells due to their favorable electrical and optical properties, and long term stability. To develop a low cost yet high throughput thin film deposition process with both composition and film uniformity control, precursor ink has been formulated using nanoparticle metal oxide of copper and indium in an organic solvent system dissolved with selenium or sulfur. Smooth thin film of precursor oxide mixture has been demonstrated by wet printing process. Upon heat treatment of the precursor thin film under atmosphere of selenium and/or sulfur, copper-indium selenide and/or sulfide (CIS) was formed. Several approaches of nanoparticle ink coating processes have been investigated through spin-coating, screen-printing and contact printing. For using glass substrate, contact printing demonstrated superior uniformity and composition control. By using a post-thermal treatment process on the nanoparticle-coated film, good morphology thin film with composition control was achieved. Both the chemical composition and physical morphology has been investigated using ICP-OES and XRD measurements. Based on molybdenum glass substrate, all-printed solar cells have been demonstrated.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Electron-reflector strategy for cadmium telluride thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hsiao, Kuo-Jui

    The CdTe thin-film solar cell has a large absorption coefficient and high theoretical efficiency. Moreover, large-area photovoltaic panels can be economically fabricated. These features potentially make the CdTe thin-film solar cell the leading alternative energy source. However, the record CdTe efficiency (16.5%) is much less than its theoretical maximum efficiency (29%), primarily because the open-circuit voltage (0.845 V) is well below what is expected for its band gap (1.5 eV). The incorporation of an electron reflector is a strategy to improve the open-circuit voltage of solar cells, and thus a strong possibility to improve the efficiency of CdTe thin-film solar cells. An electron reflector is a conduction-band energy barrier at the back surface of the solar cell, which can reduce the recombination due to the electron flow to the back surface. Different methods to create an electron reflector are explained in the thesis: (1) expanded band gap, either an expanded-band-gap layer or a bulk-band-gap reduction, and (2) alteration to the band bending through a reversed back barrier or a heavily-doped back surface. Investigation shows that the expanded-band-gap layer is the most efficient and practical mechanism for an electron reflector, and the combination of any two mechanisms does not yield additional improvement. To have the optimal effect from the electron-reflector strategy, reasonable CdTe lifetime (1 ns or above) and full depletion of the CdTe layer are required to ensure high carrier collection. Furthermore, a good-quality reflector interface between the p-type CdTe layer and the electron-reflector layer is essential. Preliminary experimental evidence has shown that CdTe cells with a ZnTe back layer do have a slightly higher open-circuit voltage. An electron reflector should be particularly beneficial for thin (less than 2 microm) CdTe cells which have a fully-depleted CdTe absorber layer. Thin CdTe cells can also benefit from the optical reflection at the

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  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. 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.

  7. EE&RE; Session: CIGS (Presentation)

    SciTech Connect

    Contreras, M.

    2008-04-01

    This project supports the Solar America Initiative by carrying out work on target topics identified for Photovoltaic Systems: (1) Improving cell and module efficiency of thin film Cu(In,Ga)Se2 materials; (2) Implementing the Science and Technology Facility (S&TF) and the Process Development and Integration Laboratory (PDIL) to facilitate laboratory/industry interaction in developing PV manufacturing technologies; (3) Addressing industrial issues in materials and manufacturing processes with the objective to lower the cost of PV power; (4) Providing technology transfer efforts to accelerate transition of thin film PV technology to market and deployment; (5) Assisting R&D efforts to asses and improve reliability and stability of thin film PV products; and (6) Assist the SAI TPPs in technical matters related to CIGS PV technology.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. In-depth analysis of chloride treatments for thin-film CdTe solar cells

    PubMed Central

    Major, J. D.; Al Turkestani, M.; Bowen, L.; Brossard, M.; Li, C.; Lagoudakis, P.; Pennycook, S. J.; Phillips, L. J.; Treharne, R. E.; Durose, K.

    2016-01-01

    CdTe thin-film solar cells are now the main industrially established alternative to silicon-based photovoltaics. These cells remain reliant on the so-called chloride activation step in order to achieve high conversion efficiencies. Here, by comparison of effective and ineffective chloride treatments, we show the main role of the chloride process to be the modification of grain boundaries through chlorine accumulation, which leads an increase in the carrier lifetime. It is also demonstrated that while improvements in fill factor and short circuit current may be achieved through use of the ineffective chlorides, or indeed simple air annealing, voltage improvement is linked directly to chlorine incorporation at the grain boundaries. This suggests that focus on improved or more controlled grain boundary treatments may provide a route to achieving higher cell voltages and thus efficiencies. PMID:27775037

  13. CdS/CdTe thin-film solar cell with a zinc stannate buffer layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, X.; Sheldon, P.; Mahathongdy, Y.; Ribelin, R.; Mason, A.; Moutinho, H. R.; Coutts, T. J.

    1999-03-01

    This paper describes an improved CdS/CdTe polycrystalline thin-film solar-cell device structure that integrates a zinc stannate (Zn2SnO4 or ZTO) buffer layer between the transparent conductive oxide (TCO) layer and the CdS window layer. Zinc stannate films have a high bandgap, high transmittance, low absorptance, and low surface roughness. In addition, these films are chemically stable and exhibit higher resistivities that are roughly matched to that of the CdS window layer in the device structure. Preliminary device results have demonstrated that by integrating a ZTO buffer layer in both SnO2-based and Cd2SnO4 (CTO)-based CdS/CdTe devices, performance and reproducibility can be significantly enhanced.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Preparation of multiband structure with Cu2Se/Ga3Se2/In3Se2 thin films by thermal evaporation technique for maximal solar spectrum utilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohan, A.; Rajesh, S.; Gopalakrishnan, M.

    2016-10-01

    The paper investigates and discusses the formation of multiband structure through the Cu2Se-Ga3Se-In3Se2 thin films for maximal solar spectrum utilization. Stacking different semiconductor materials with various band gaps were done by successive evaporation method. Based on the band gap values the layers are arranged (low to high bandgap from the substrate). The XRD results exhibits the formation of CIGS composites through this successive evaporation of Cu2Se/Ga3Se/In3Se2 and treating then with temperature. Scanning Electron Microscope images shows improved crystallinity with the reduction in the larger grain boundary scattering after annealing. Optical spectra shows the stronger absorption in an UV-Visible region and higher transmission in the infrared and near infrared region. The optical band gap values calculated for as prepared films is 2.20 eV and the band gap was split into 1.62, 1.92 eV and 2.27eV for annealed samples. This multiband structures are much needed to utilize the full solar spectrum.

  1. 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

  2. Natural evolution inspired design of light trapping structure in thin film organic solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Chen; Yu, Shuangcheng; Chen, Wei; Sun, Cheng

    2013-09-01

    Light trapping has been developed to effectively enhance the efficiency of the thin film solar cell by extending the pathlength for light interacting with the active materials. Searching for optimal light trapping design requires a delicate balance among all the competing physical processes, including light refraction, reflection, and absorption. The existing design methods mainly depend on engineers' intuition to predefine the topology of the light-trapping structure. However, these methods are not capable of handling the topological variation in reaching the optimal design. In this work, a systematic approach based on Genetic Algorithm is introduced to design the scattering pattern for effective light trapping. Inspired by natural evolution, this method can gradually improve the performance of light trapping structure through iterative procedures, producing the most favorable structure with minimized reflection and substantial enhancement in light absorption. Both slot waveguide based solar cell and a more realistic organic solar with a scattering layer consisting of nano-scale patterned front layer is optimized to maximize absorption by strongly coupling incident sun light into the localized photonic modes supported by the multilayer system. Rigorous coupled wave analysis (RCWA) is implemented to evaluate the absorbance. The optimized slot waveguide cell achieves a broadband absorption efficiency of 48.1% and more than 3-fold increase over the Yablonovitch limit and the optimized realistic organic cell exhibits nearly 50% average absorbance over the solar spectrum with short circuit current density five times larger than the control case using planar ITO layer.

  3. 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

    2015-12-14

    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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Loss analysis of back-contact back-junction thin-film monocrystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haase, F.; Eidelloth, S.; Horbelt, R.; Bothe, K.; Garralaga Rojas, E.; Brendel, R.

    2011-12-01

    We investigate power losses in back-contact back-junction monocrystalline thin-film silicon solar cells fabricated using the porous silicon layer transfer process. Our loss analysis combines two-dimensional finite element modeling and resistance network simulations. The input parameters of the finite element modeling are determined experimentally by measuring saturation current densities and sheet resistances on test samples prepared identically to the solar cells. Characteristic solar cell parameters such as short circuit current, open circuit voltage, fill factor, and efficiency of measured and network simulated current voltage characteristics investigated in this study match within an uncertainty of 5%. Free energy loss analysis serves as comparison of all losses in units of power per area at the maximum power point. The largest loss is bulk recombination due to a carrier lifetime of 2 μs in the epitaxial Si layer. Further significant losses result from recombination at the base contacts characterized by a diode saturation current density of 50 000 fA cm-2 as well as resistive losses due to lateral majority carrier current flows within the solar cell base and contact resistance losses.

  8. 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

  9. Processing and modeling issues for thin-film solar cell devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Birkmire, R. W.; Phillips, J. E.; Buchanan, W. A.; Hegedus, S. S.; McCandless, B. E.; Shafarman, W. N.

    1995-06-01

    This report describes results achieved during the second phase of a four year subcontract to develop and understand thin film solar cell technology related to a-Si and its alloys, CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se2, and CdTe. Accomplishments during this phase include development of equations and reaction rates for the formation of CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se2 films by selenization, fabrication of a 15% efficient CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se2 cell, development of a reproducible, reliable Cu-diffused contact to CdTe, investigation of the role of CdTe-CdS interdiffusion on device operation, investigation of the substitution of HCl for CdCl2 in the post-deposition heat treatment of CdTe/CdS, demonstration of an improved reactor design for deposition of a-Si films, demonstration of improved process control in the fabrication of a ten set series of runs producing approximately 8% efficient a-Si devices, demonstration of the utility of a simplified optical model for determining quantity and effect of current generation in each layer of a triple stacked a-Si cell, presentation of analytical and modeling procedures adapted to devices produced with each material system, presentation of baseline parameters for devices produced with each material system, and various investigations of the roles played by other layers in thin film devices including the Mo underlayer, CdS and ZnO in CuIn(1-x)Ga(x)Se2 devices, the CdS in CdTe devices, and the ZnO as window layer and as part of the back surface reflector in a-Si devices. In addition, collaborations with over ten research groups are briefly described.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Fabrication of Cu2ZnSnS4 Thin Film Solar Cell Using Single Step Electrodeposition Method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pawar, Sambhaji M.; Pawar, Bharati S.; Gurav, Kishor V.; Bae, Do Won; Kwon, Se Han; Kolekar, Sanjay S.; Hyeok Kim, Jin

    2012-10-01

    Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin films were deposited onto Mo-coated and tin-doped indium oxide (ITO) coated glass substrates by using single step electrodeposition technique followed by annealing in N2 + H2S atmosphere. Subsequently, they were applied to the fabrication of thin film solar cells. Upon annealing, the amorphous nature of as-deposited precursor film changes into polycrystalline kesterite crystal structure with uniform and densely packed surface morphology. Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) study reveals that the deposited thin films are nearly stoichiometric. Optical absorption study shows the band gap energy of as-deposited CZTS thin films is 2.7 eV whereas, after annealing, it is found to be 1.53 eV. The solar cell fabricated with CZTS absorber layer, showed the best conversion efficiency (η) 1.21% for 0.44 cm2 with open-circuit voltage (Voc) = 315 mV, short-circuit current density (Jsc) = 12.27 mA/cm2 and fill factor (FF) = 0.31.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Series circuit of organic thin-film solar cells for conversion of water into hydrogen.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Atsushi; Naruse, Mitsuru; Abe, Takayuki

    2013-07-22

    A series circuit of bulk hetero-junction (BHJ) organic thin-film solar cells (OSCs) is investigated for electrolyzing water to gaseous hydrogen and oxygen. The BHJ OSCs applied consist of poly(3-hexylthiophene) as a donor and [6,6]-phenyl C61 butyric acid methyl ester as an acceptor. A series circuit of six such OSC units has an open circuit voltage (V(oc)) of 3.4 V, which is enough to electrolyze water. The short circuit current (J(sc)), fill factor (FF), and energy conversion efficiency (η) are independent of the number of unit cells. A maximum electric power of 8.86 mW cm(-2) is obtained at the voltage of 2.35 V. By combining a water electrolysis cell with the series circuit solar cells, the electrolyzing current and voltage obtained are 1.09 mA and 2.3 V under a simulated solar light irradiation (100 mW cm(-2), AM1.5G), and in one hour 0.65 mL hydrogen is generated.

  19. Combined front and back diffraction gratings for broad band light trapping in thin film solar cell.

    PubMed

    Meng, Xianqin; Drouard, Emmanuel; Gomard, Guillaume; Peretti, Romain; Fave, Alain; Seassal, Christian

    2012-09-10

    In this paper, we present the integration of combined front and back 1D and 2D diffraction gratings with different periods, within thin film photovoltaic solar cells based on crystalline silicon layers. The grating structures have been designed considering both the need for incident light absorption enhancement and the technological feasibility. Long wavelength absorption is increased thanks to the long period (750 nm) back grating, while the incident light reflection is reduced by using a short period (250 nm) front grating. The simulated short circuit current in a solar cell combining a front and a back grating structures with a 1.2 µm thick c-Si layer, together with the back electrode and TCO layers, is increased up to 30.3 mA/cm2, compared to 18.4 mA/cm2 for a reference stack, as simulated using the AM1.5G solar spectrum intensity distribution from 300 nm to 1100 nm, and under normal incidence.

  20. 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.

  1. 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%.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. InGaN-based thin film solar cells: Epitaxy, structural design, and photovoltaic properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sang, Liwen; Liao, Meiyong; Koide, Yasuo; Sumiya, Masatomo

    2015-03-01

    InxGa1-xN, 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-In0.08Ga0.92N is achieved with a high hole concentration of more than 1018 cm-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.

  6. 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.

  7. Electroless (autocatalytic) nickel-cobalt thin films as solar control coatings

    SciTech Connect

    John, S.; Srinivasan, K.N.; Selvam, M.; Anuradha, S.; Rajendran, S.

    1994-12-31

    This paper describes the deposition of nickel-cobalt-phosphorus coatings by the electroless deposition technique for use as solar control coatings in architectural glazing of buildings. Electroless deposition is characterized by the autocatalytic deposition of a metal/alloy from an aqueous solution of its ions by interaction with a chemical reducing agent. The reducing agent provides electrons for the metal ions to be neutralized. The reduction is initiated by the catalyzed surface of the substrate and continued by the self catalytic activity of the deposited metal/alloy as long as the substrate is immersed in the electroless bath and operating conditions are maintained. Electroless nickel-cobalt-phosphorus thin films were deposited from a solution containing 15 g/l nickel sulphate, 5 g/l cobalt sulphate, 60 g/l ammonium citrate and 25 g/l sodium hypophosphite operating at 30 C, at a pH of 9.5 for two minutes. Electroless nickel-cobalt-phosphorus coatings are found to satisfy the basic requirements of solar control coatings. Autocatalytic deposition technique offers the possibilities of producing large area coatings with low capital investment, stability and good adhesion to glass substrates.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Electrophoretic deposited TiO2 pigment-based back reflectors for thin film solar cells

    DOE PAGES

    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

  11. 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

  12. Research on high-efficiency, single-junction, monolithic, thin-film amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Carlson, D.E.; Ayra, R.R.; Bennett, M.S.; Brewer, J.A.; Catalano, A.W.; D'Aiello, R.V.; Dickson, C.R.; Fortmann, C.M.; Newton, J.L.; O'Dowd, J.G.; Oswald, R.S.; Wiedeman, S. . Thin Film Div.)

    1989-09-01

    This report present results of the third phase of research in high-efficiency, single-junction, monolithic, thin-film, a-Si solar cells. Six glow-discharge deposition systems, including an in-line multichamber system, were used to grow both doped and undoped a-Si films. In single load-lock system, a-Si was deposited over 1000- cm{sup 2} substrates with less then a 1% variation in thickness and low oxygen impurity levels. The system produced 1000-cm{sup 2} submodules with active-area efficiencies of 8.7%. A model was developed for light scattering in textured tin oxide that predicts scattered transmission through the air/glass/tin oxide/air configuration to within a few percent. Textured tin oxide films were grown by chemical vapor deposition using tin tetrachloride. Solar-cell efficiencies of about 11% were obtained in small-area p-i-n cells with reflective back contacts of Ti/Ag that exhibit external quantum efficiencies as high as 58.7% at 700 nm; other cells with ITO/Ag back contacts have had quantum efficiencies as high as 64% at 700 nm. High-performance cells were fabricated by employing dopant and carbon concentration gradients near the p/i interface. Total-area efficiencies around 8% were obtained for submodules in which the patterning was done by laser scribing. 11 refs., 35 figs., 18 tabs.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. CdS quantum dots sensitized Cu doped ZnO nanostructured thin films for solar cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poornima, K.; Gopala Krishnan, K.; Lalitha, B.; Raja, M.

    2015-07-01

    ZnO nanorods and Cu doped ZnO nanorods thin films have been prepared by simple hydrothermal method. CdS quantum dots are sensitized with Cu doped ZnO nanorod thin films using successive ionic layer adsorption and reaction (SILAR) method. The X-ray diffraction study reveals that ZnO nanorods, and CdS quantum dot sensitized Cu doped ZnO nanorods exhibit hexagonal structure. The scanning electron microscope image shows the presence of ZnO nanorods. The average diameter and length of the aligned nanorod is 300 nm and 1.5 μm respectively. The absorption spectra shows that the absorption edge of CdS quantum dot sensitized ZnO nanorod thin film is shifted toward longer wavelength region when compared to the absorption edge of ZnO nanorods film. The conversion efficiency of the CdS quantum dot sensitized Cu doped ZnO nanorod thin film solar cell is 1.5%.

  17. 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

  18. Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells. Progress report, 1 October 1983-30 September 1984

    SciTech Connect

    Chu, T.L.

    1985-04-01

    During this reporting period, the deposition of CdTe films by the direct combination of the Cd and Te vapor on foreign substrates has been continued with emphasis on the resistivity control of p-type films and the reduction of p-CdTe/substrate interface resistance. CdTe films deposited on graphite substrates were all p-type, irrespective of the substrate temperature and the reactant composition. This result indicates that carbon is incorporated into CdTe presumably thru its reaction with Te and that carbon is electrically active in CdTe. Using W/graphite as substrates, the change in conductivity type of nearly stoichiometric films has been found to take place over a very narrow range of the reactant composition. In addition to using a Cd-deficient reactant mixture, the resistivity of p-type CdTe films may also be controlled by adding a dopant to the reactant mixture. The effect of reactant composition and substrate temperature on the resistivity of the reactant mixture was studied in detail. The effect of adding oxygen to the reactant was also investigated. Using CdTe films deposited on Corning 7059 glass substrates, the optical band gap of CdTe films was found to be 1.50 eV at room temperature. The preparation and characterization of thin film cadium telluride heterojunction solar cells have been continued. The open-circuit voltage (up to 0.75V) and short-circuit current density (up to 20mA/cm/sup 2/) are reasonably reproducible; however, the high p-CdTe/substrate interface resistance remains to be a problem in the fabrication of thin film CdTe solar cells. Because of the uncontrolled series resistance, the best CdS/CdTe cells have an AM1 efficiency of about 6.5% and the best ITO/CdTe cell has an AM1 efficiency of about 8%. Further work will be directed to the use of inverted structures.

  19. New strategy to promote conversion efficiency using high-index nanostructures in thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Donglin; Su, Gang

    2014-11-01

    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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Growth of Zn doped Cu(In, Ga)Se 2 thin films by RF sputtering for solar cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Z. Q.; Liu, Q. Q.; Li, J. J.; Sun, Z.; Chen, Y. W.; Yang, Z.; Huang, S. M.

    2012-02-01

    Cu(In, Ga)Se 2 (CIGS) surface was modified with Zn doping using a magnetron sputtering method. CuInGa:Zn precursor films targeting a CuIn 0.7Ga 0.3Se 2 stoichiometry with increasing Zn content from 0 to 0.8 at% were prepared onto Mo-coated glass substrates via co-sputtering of Cu-Ga alloy, In and Zn targets. The CuInGa:Zn precursors were then selenized with solid Se pellets. The structures and morphologies of grown Zn doped CIGS films were found to depend on the Zn content. At zinc doping level ranging between 0.2 and 0.6 at%, the Zn doping improved the crystallinity and surface morphology of CIGS films. Compared with the performance of the non-doped CIGS cell, the fabricated CIGS solar cell displayed a relative efficiency enhancement of 9-22% and the maximum enhancement was obtained at a Zn content of 0.4 at%.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. Sub-100 °C solution processed amorphous titania nanowire thin films for high-performance perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Wu-Qiang; Chen, Dehong; Huang, Fuzhi; Cheng, Yi-Bing; Caruso, Rachel A.

    2016-10-01

    The present work demonstrates a facile one-step process to fabricate thin films of amorphous titania nanowires on transparent conducting oxide substrates via hydrolysis of potassium titanium oxide oxalate in an aqueous solution at 90 °C. The resultant titania nanowire thin films (that have not undergone further annealing) are efficient electron transport layers in CH3NH3PbI3 perovskite solar cells, yielding full sun solar-to-electricity conversion efficiencies of up to 14.67% and a stabilized efficiency of 14.00% under AM 1.5G one sun illumination, comparable to high temperature sintered TiO2 counterparts. The high photovoltaic performance is attributed to the porous nanowire network that facilitates perovskite infiltration, its unique 1D geometry and excellent surface coverage for efficient electron transport, as well as suppressed charge recombination between FTO and perovskite.

  6. High efficiency back-contact back-junction thin-film monocrystalline silicon solar cells from the porous silicon process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haase, F.; Kajari-Schröder, S.; Brendel, R.

    2013-11-01

    This work demonstrates the fabrication of a 45 μm thick back-contact back-junction thin-film monocrystalline silicon solar cell from the porous silicon process with an energy conversion efficiency of 18.9%. We demonstrate an efficiency improvement of 5.4% absolute compared to our prior record of 13.5% for back-contact back-junction thin-film monocrystalline silicon solar cells. This increase in efficiency is achieved by reducing the recombination at the base contact using a back surface field and by increasing the generation with a front texture. We investigate the loss mechanisms in the cell using finite element simulations. A free energy loss analysis based on experiments and simulations determines the dominating loss mechanisms. The efficiency loss by base recombination is 0.8% absolute and the loss by base contact recombination is 0.5% absolute in the 18.9% efficiency cell.

  7. 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

  8. Piezoelectric, solar and thermal energy harvesting for hybrid low-power generator systems with thin-film batteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gambier, P.; Anton, S. R.; Kong, N.; Erturk, A.; Inman, D. J.

    2012-01-01

    The harvesting of ambient energy to power small electronic components has received tremendous attention over the last decade. The research goal in this field is to enable self-powered electronic components for use particularly in wireless sensing and measurement applications. Thermal energy due to temperature gradients, solar energy and ambient vibrations constitute some of the major sources of energy that can be harvested. Researchers have presented several papers focusing on each of these topics separately. This paper aims to develop a hybrid power generator and storage system using these three sources of energy in order to improve both structural multifunctionality and system-level robustness in energy harvesting. A multilayer structure with flexible solar, piezoceramic, thin-film battery and metallic substructure layers is developed (with the overhang dimensions of 93 mm × 25 mm × 1.5 mm in cantilevered configuration). Thermal energy is also used for charging the thin-film battery layers using a 30.5 mm × 33 mm × 4.1 mm generator. Performance results are presented for charging and discharging of the thin-film battery layers using each one of the harvesting methods. It is shown based on the extrapolation of a set of measurements that 1 mA h of a thin-film battery can be charged in 20 min using solar energy (for a solar irradiance level of 223 W m-2), in 40 min using thermal energy (for a temperature difference of 31 °C) and in 8 h using vibrational energy (for a harmonic base acceleration input of 0.5g at 56.4 Hz).

  9. 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%.

  10. 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.

  11. Spray deposited ZnO: Au thin films for solar cell application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarwal, N. L.; Harale, N. S.; Jadhav, P. R.; Patil, P. S.

    2012-06-01

    In the present investigation, the ZnO-Au thin films are deposited in-situ with the simple and cost-effective spray pyrolysis technique. The preparative parameters were fine-tuned to yield better quality samples. A surface Plasmon resonance (SPR) induced absorption bands in the visible region have been observed for both the samples deposited at 450°C. The structural evolution of Au-ZnO thin films with doping concentrations are reflected in the XRD patterns. The surface morphological study of the synthesized thin films was carried out using FESEM micrographs. The evolution of the SPR absorption with concentration of the Gold incorporation is discussed. The optical studies were carried out by using UV-Vis Spectrophotometer and spectrofluorometer (JASCO FP-750) at room temperature. These thin films were used for photoelectrochemical (PEC) application. Encouraging results are obtained.

  12. 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)

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Methods for forming thin-film heterojunction solar cells from I-III-VI.sub. 2

    DOEpatents

    Mickelsen, Reid A.; Chen, Wen S.

    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.

  3. 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.

  4. Aqueous Solution-Phase Selenized CuIn(S,Se)2 Thin Film Solar Cells Annealed under Inert Atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Oh, Yunjung; Yang, Wooseok; Kim, Jimin; Woo, Kyoohee; Moon, Jooho

    2015-10-14

    A nonvacuum solution-based approach can potentially be used to realize low cost, roll-to-roll fabrication of chalcopyrite CuIn(S,Se)2 (CISSe) thin film solar cells. However, most solution-based fabrication methods involve highly toxic solvents and inevitably require sulfurization and/or postselenization with hazardous H2S/H2Se gases. Herein, we introduce novel aqueous-based Cu-In-S and Se inks that contain an amine additive for producing a high-quality absorber layer. CISSe films were fabricated by simple deposition of Cu-In-S ink and Se ink followed by annealing under an inert atmosphere. Compositional and phase analyses confirmed that our simple aqueous ink-based method facilitated in-site selenization of the CIS layer. In addition, we investigated the molecular structures of our aqueous inks to determine how crystalline chalcopyrite absorber layers developed without sulfurization and/or postselenization. CISSe thin film solar cells annealed at 550 °C exhibited an efficiency of 4.55% under AM 1.5 illumination. The low-cost, nonvacuum method to deposit chalcopyrite absorber layers described here allows for safe and simple processing of thin film solar cells.

  5. Electrophoretic deposition of Cu-In composite nanoparticle thin films for fabrication of CuInSe2 solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Wei; Hagedorn, Kevin; Liu, Bing

    2011-10-01

    Thin films of Cu-In composite nanoparticles were produced by electrophoretic deposition in colloidal suspensions. The nanoparticles were prepared with high power pulsed laser ablation in liquid solvents. The nanoparticles inherited composition (Cu/In ratio) from the target during laser ablation. The colloidal suspension was stable against agglomeration without adding additional surfactant or dispersing agent. The success of electrophoretic deposition of the nanoparticles was explained based on electrochemical interactions between the nanoparticles and the electrode. CuInSe2solar absorber layers were produced after annealing the thin films in selenium vapor under atmospheric pressure. Solar cell devices were made on Mo metal sheet and Mo-coated soda-lime glass substrates with an energy conversion efficiency of up to 3.4% under AM1.5G illumination. The results open up a new route of non-vacuum fabrication of thin film chalcopyrite solar cells on flexible substrates with minimized chemical contamination, easy compositional control, and high raw material utilization.ationDa

  6. 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).

  7. Thin-film cadium telluride solar cells: Annual subcontract report, 1 May 1986-31 May 1987

    SciTech Connect

    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 cm/sup 2/ and photovoltaic efficiencies of 13% or more. Thin-film p-CdTe/CdS/SnO/sub 2/:F/glass solar cells with an AM1.5 efficiency of 10.5% 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. 16 refs., 19 figs., 1 tab.

  8. A fast deposition-crystallization procedure for highly efficient lead iodide perovskite thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Manda; Huang, Fuzhi; Huang, Wenchao; Dkhissi, Yasmina; Zhu, Ye; Etheridge, Joanne; Gray-Weale, Angus; Bach, Udo; Cheng, Yi-Bing; Spiccia, Leone

    2014-09-01

    Thin-film photovoltaics based on alkylammonium lead iodide perovskite light absorbers have recently emerged as a promising low-cost solar energy harvesting technology. To date, the perovskite layer in these efficient solar cells has generally been fabricated by either vapor deposition or a two-step sequential deposition process. We report that flat, uniform thin films of this material can be deposited by a one-step, solvent-induced, fast crystallization method involving spin-coating of a DMF solution of CH3NH3PbI3 followed immediately by exposure to chlorobenzene to induce crystallization. Analysis of the devices and films revealed that the perovskite films consist of large crystalline grains with sizes up to microns. Planar heterojunction solar cells constructed with these solution-processed thin films yielded an average power conversion efficiency of 13.9±0.7% and a steady state efficiency of 13% under standard AM 1.5 conditions. PMID:25047967

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. CIGS solar cell devices on steel substrates coated with Na containing AlPO4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Moojin; Kim, Kyoung-Bo; Jeon, Chan-Wook; Lee, Dongyun; Lee, Sung-Nam; Lee, Ji-Myon; Lee, Hong-Chan

    2015-11-01

    Flexible copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS)-based solar cells are developed on stainless steel (STS) substrates covered with an insulating layer. The Na containing AlPO4 ("Na-AlPO4") material is processed using the slot-die coating method. The coated film is analyzed using various spectroscopic methods including scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry, transmission electron microscopy, secondary-ion mass spectrometry, X-ray diffraction, and 3D profiler. The characteristics of the solar cells fabricated on these insulating films are also evaluated. The application of the Na-AlPO4 layer on the STS substrates is compared with the electrical performance of the CIGS solar cells fabricated on metal foil. Although the insertion of the insulating layer does not influence the formation of the CIGS film and solar cell performance, a better uniformity in the current-voltage curve is obtained.

  12. 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.

  13. Two to six compound thin films by MOCVD for tandem solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Britt, Jeffrey Scott

    Te/CdS solar cells has been helpful in improving efficiences. thin film solar cell efficiency of 14.6 percent has been achieved through these steps.

  14. Development towards cell-to-cell monolithic integration of a thin-film solar cell and lithium-ion accumulator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agbo, Solomon N.; Merdzhanova, Tsvetelina; Yu, Shicheng; Tempel, Hermann; Kungl, Hans; Eichel, Rüdiger-A.; Rau, Uwe; Astakhov, Oleksandr

    2016-09-01

    This work focuses on the potentials of monolithic integrated thin-film silicon solar cell and lithium ion cell in a simple cell-to-cell integration without any control electronics as a compact power solution for portable electronic devices. To demonstrate this we used triple-junction thin-film silicon solar cell connected directly to a lithium ion battery cell to charge the battery and in turn discharge the battery through the solar cell. Our results show that with appropriate voltage matching the solar cell provides efficient charging for lab-scale lithium ion storage cell. Despite the absence of any control electronics the discharge rate of the Li-ion cell through the non-illuminated solar cell can be much lower than the charging rate when the current voltage (IV) characteristics of the solar cell is matched properly to the charge-discharge characteristics of the battery. This indicates good sustainability of the ultimately simple integrated device. At the maximum power point, solar energy-to-battery charging efficiency of 8.5% which is nearly the conversion efficiency of the solar cell was obtained indicating potential for loss-free operation of the photovoltaic (PV)-battery integration. For the rest of the charging points, an average of 8.0% charging efficiency was obtained.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  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. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Investigation of Cu2ZnSnS4 thin-film solar cells with carrier concentration gradient

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Jiaxiong

    2016-11-01

    To investigate the effect of carrier concentration gradient on Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin-film solar cells, the properties of CZTS solar cells were studied by numerical method. The photovoltaic performances of carrier concentration gradient CZTS solar cells were calculated by the solutions of Poisson's equation, continuity equation, and current density equation using AFors-Het v2.4 program. The carrier concentration gradient was changed to analyze its effect. Compared with CZTS solar cells without carrier concentration gradient, the photovoltaic performances of CZTS solar cells can be enhanced by using carrier concentration gradient absorber. The carrier concentration gradient can extend the distribution region of built-in electric field, which is beneficial to the drift of photo-generated carriers. However, the carrier concentration gradient also affects the recombination and series resistances of solar cells. When the defect density of CZTS layer is high, the photo-generated carriers are affected significantly by recombination, resulting in slight effect of carrier concentration gradient. Therefore, the defect density should be reduced to enhance the effect of carrier concentration gradient on improving conversion efficiency of CZTS thin-film solar cells.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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 %.

  10. 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)).

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Study of copper-free back contacts to thin film cadmium telluride solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viswanathan, Vijay

    The goals of this project are to study Cu free back contact alternatives for CdS/CdTe thin film solar cells, and to research dry etching for CdTe surface preparation before contact application. In addition, an attempt has been made to evaluate the stability of some of the contacts researched. The contacts studied in this work include ZnTe/Cu2Te, Sb2Te 3, and Ni-P alloys. The ZnTe/Cu2Te contact system is studied as basically an extension of the earlier work done on Cu2Te at USF. RF sputtering from a compound target of ZnTe and Cu2Te respectively deposits these layers on etched CdTe surface. The effect of Cu2Te thickness and deposition temperature on contact and cell performance will be studied with the ZnTe depositions conditions kept constant. C-V measurements to study the effect of contact deposition conditions on CdTe doping will also be performed. These contacts will then be stressed to high temperatures (70--100°C) and their stability with stress time is analyzed. Sb2Te3 will be deposited on glass using RF sputtering, to study film properties with deposition temperature. The Sb2Te 3 contact performance will also be studied as a function of the Sb 2Te3 deposition temperature and thickness. The suitability of Ni-P alloys for back contacts to CdTe solar cells was studied by forming a colloidal mixture of Ni2P in graphite paste. The Ni-P contacts, painted on Br-methanol etched CdTe surface, will be studied as a function of Ni-P concentration (in the graphite paste), annealing temperature and time. Some of these cells will undergo temperature stress testing to determine contact behavior with time. Dry etching of CdTe will be studied as an alternative for wet etching processes currently used for CdTe solar cells. The CdTe surface is isotropically etched in a barrel reactor in N2, Ar or Ar:O 2 ambient. The effect of etching ambient, pressure, plasma power and etch time on contact performance will be studied.

  14. 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

  15. Thin film photoelectrodes of ternary chalcogenide CdSe1-xTex for photoelectrochemical solar cells applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Das, V. D.

    1992-02-01

    The basic requirements of a good thin film photoelectrode for high efficiency photoelectrochemical (PEC) cells are low resistivity and large grain size. The large size grains lead to a reduction of the grain boundary area of the thin films, with important consequences for efficient energy conversion. The low resistivity of the photoelectrodes is required to minimize the series resistance of the PEC cell which leads to lower short circuit current. In addition, we have to tailor the band gap of the material further by adjusting the composition x in the alloy CdSe1-xTex. Low resistivity in the materials can be achieved by a careful control of the stoichiometry of the material or by doping with a proper trivalent dopant such as Ga or In. The control of the stoichiometry and the dopant concentration can be achieved by a careful control of the rate/s of deposition/s. The deposition rates should also be kept comparatively low and also the substrates should be heated to elevated temperatures so that the films formed consist of large size grains. It is advisable to also change the angle of deposition from normal incidence to an inclined deposition so that the films will tend to grow with columnar grains, which are very essential. The grain size can be further increased to some extent by carefully annealing the films in vacuum at pre-determined temperature and for a time interval. The large grain size films formed this way should be coated with very thin layers of oxides like TiO2 or In2O3 to prevent corrosion of the thin film electrodes when used in the PEC cells. Thus, by carefully controlling the various parameters as outlined above, it is possible to obtain high efficiency photo-electrochemical solar cells using these Cd-Se-Te ternary alloy thin films as photoelectrodes.

  16. Physical properties of hematite α-Fe2O3 thin films: application to photoelectrochemical solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shinde, S. S.; Bansode, R. A.; Bhosale, C. H.; Rajpure, K. Y.

    2011-01-01

    The physical properties and photoelectrochemical characterization of aluminium doped hematite α-Fe2O3, synthesized by spray pyrolysis, have been investigated in regard to solar energy conversion. Stable Al-doped iron (III) oxide thin films synthesized by a spray pyrolysis technique reveals an oxygen deficiency, and the oxide exhibits n-type conductivity confirmed by anodic photocurrent generation. The preparative parameters have been optimized to obtain good quality thin films which are uniform and well adherent to the substrate. The deposited iron oxide thin films show the single hematite phase with polycrystalline rhombohedral crystal structure with crystallite size 20-40 nm. Optical analysis enabled to point out the increase in direct band-gap energy from 2.2 to 2.25 eV with doping concentration which is attributed to a blue shift. The dielectric constant and dielectric loss are studied as a function of frequency. To understand the conduction mechanism in the films, AC conductivity is measured. The conduction occurs by small polaron hopping through mixed valences Fe2+/3+ with an electron mobility 300 K of 1.08 cm2/(V·s). The α-Fe2O3 exhibits long term chemical stability in neutral solution and has been characterized photoelectrochemically to assess its activity as a photoanode for various electrolytes using white light to obtain I — V characteristics. The Al-doped hematite exhibited a higher photocurrent response when compared with undoped films achieving a power conversion efficiency of 2.37% at 10 at % Al:Fe2O3 thin films along with fill factor 0.38 in NaOH electrolyte. The flat band potential Vfb (-0.87 VSCE) is determined by extrapolating the linear part to C-2 = 0 and the slope of the Mott-Schottky plot.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Investigation of some transparent metal oxides as damp heat protective coating for CIGS solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pern, F. J.; Yan, F.; Zaunbrecher, K.; 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 85°C and 85% relative humidity (RH). Sputter-deposited bilayer ZnO (BZO) with up to 0.5- μm Al-doped ZnO (AZO) layer and 0.2-μm bilayer InZnO were used as "inherent" part of device structure on CdS/CIGS/Mo/SLG. Sputter-deposited 0.2-μm ZnSnO and atomic layer deposited (ALD) 0.1-μm 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 micromorphology, 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Sodium-Doped Molybdenum Targets for Controllable Sodium Incorporation in CIGS Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Mansfield, L. M.; Repins, I. L.; Glynn, S.; Carducci, M. D.; Honecker, D. M.; Pankow, J.l W.; Young, M. R.; DeHart, C.; Sundaramoorthy, R.; Beall, C. L.; To, B.

    2011-01-01

    The efficiency of Cu(In, Ga)Se{sub 2} (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.

  3. 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.

  4. Antimony sulphide thin film as an absorber in chemically deposited solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Messina, Sarah; Nair, M. T. S.; Nair, P. K.

    2008-05-01

    Antimony sulfide thin films (thickness, 500 nm) were deposited on chemically deposited CdS thin films (100 nm) obtained on 3 mm glass substrates coated with a transparent conductive coating of SnO2:F (TEC-15 with 15 Ω sheet resistance). Two different chemical formulations were used for depositing antimony sulfide films. These contained (i) antimony trichloride dissolved in acetone and sodium thiosulfate, and (ii) potassium antimony tartrate, triethanolamine, ammonia, thioacetamide and small concentrations of silicotungstic acid. The films were heated at 250 °C in nitrogen. The cell structure was completed by depositing a 200 nm p-type PbS thin film. Graphite paint applied on the PbS thin film and a subsequent layer of silver paint served as the p-side contact. The cell structure: SnO2:F/CdS/Sb2S3 (i or ii)/PbS showed open circuit voltage (Voc) of 640 mV and short circuit current density (Jsc) above 1 mA cm-2 under 1 kW m-2 tungsten-halogen radiation. Four cells, each of 1.7 cm2 area, were series-connected to give Voc of 1.6 V and a short circuit current of 4.1 mA under sunlight (1060 W m-2).

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  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.

  8. 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.

  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. Device Physics of Nanoscale Interdigitated Solar Cells (Poster)

    SciTech Connect

    Metzger, W.; Levi, D.

    2008-05-01

    Nanoscale interdigitated solar cell device architectures are being investigated for organic and inorganic solar cell devices. Due to the inherent complexity of these device designs quantitative modeling is needed to understand the device physics. Theoretical concepts have been proposed that nanodomains of different phases may form in polycrystalline CIGS solar cells. These theories propose that the nanodomains may form complex 3D intertwined p-n networks that enhance device performance.Recent experimental evidence offers some support for the existence of nanodomains in CIGS thin films. This study utilizes CIGS solar cells to examine general and CIGS-specific concepts in nanoscale interdigitated solar cells.

  11. Nano-structured CuO-Cu2O Complex Thin Film for Application in CH3NH3PbI3 Perovskite Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Lung-Chieh; Chen, Cheng-Chiang; Liang, Kai-Chieh; Chang, Sheng Hsiung; Tseng, Zhong-Liang; Yeh, Shih-Chieh; Chen, Chin-Ti; Wu, Wen-Ti; Wu, Chun-Guey

    2016-09-01

    Nano-structured CuO-Cu2O complex thin film-based perovskite solar cells were fabricated on an indium tin oxide (ITO)-coated glass and studied. Copper (Cu) thin films with a purity of 99.995 % were deposited on an ITO-coated glass by magnetron reactive sputtering. To optimize the properties of the nano-structured CuO-Cu2O complex thin films, the deposited Cu thin films were thermally oxidized at various temperatures from 300 to 400 °C. A CH3NH3PbI3 perovskite absorber was fabricated on top of CuO-Cu2O complex thin film by a one-step spin-coating process with a toluene washing treatment. Following optimization, the maximum power conversion efficiency (PCE) exceeded 8.1 %. Therefore, the low-cost, solution-processed, stable nano-structured CuO-Cu2O complex thin film can be used as an alternative hole transport layer (HTL) in industrially produced perovskite solar cells.

  12. Nano-structured CuO-Cu2O Complex Thin Film for Application in CH3NH3PbI3 Perovskite Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lung-Chieh; Chen, Cheng-Chiang; Liang, Kai-Chieh; Chang, Sheng Hsiung; Tseng, Zhong-Liang; Yeh, Shih-Chieh; Chen, Chin-Ti; Wu, Wen-Ti; Wu, Chun-Guey

    2016-12-01

    Nano-structured CuO-Cu2O complex thin film-based perovskite solar cells were fabricated on an indium tin oxide (ITO)-coated glass and studied. Copper (Cu) thin films with a purity of 99.995 % were deposited on an ITO-coated glass by magnetron reactive sputtering. To optimize the properties of the nano-structured CuO-Cu2O complex thin films, the deposited Cu thin films were thermally oxidized at various temperatures from 300 to 400 °C. A CH3NH3PbI3 perovskite absorber was fabricated on top of CuO-Cu2O complex thin film by a one-step spin-coating process with a toluene washing treatment. Following optimization, the maximum power conversion efficiency (PCE) exceeded 8.1 %. Therefore, the low-cost, solution-processed, stable nano-structured CuO-Cu2O complex thin film can be used as an alternative hole transport layer (HTL) in industrially produced perovskite solar cells. PMID:27637894

  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. Absorber processing issues in high-efficiency, thin-film Cu(In,Ga)Se2-based solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuttle, John 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)Se2 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% 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.

  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. First-principles study of back-contact effects on CdTe thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Mao-Hua

    2009-11-01

    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, Sb2Te3 , 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 Sb2Te3 back contacts.

  17. 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.

  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. Comparison between periodic and stochastic parabolic light trapping structures for thin-film microcrystalline Silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Peters, M; Battaglia, C; Forberich, K; Bläsi, B; Sahraei, N; Aberle, A G

    2012-12-31

    Light trapping is of very high importance for silicon photovoltaics (PV) and especially for thin-film silicon solar cells. In this paper we investigate and compare theoretically the light trapping properties of periodic and stochastic structures having similar geometrical features. The theoretical investigations are based on the actual surface geometry of a scattering structure, characterized by an atomic force microscope. This structure is used for light trapping in thin-film microcrystalline silicon solar cells. Very good agreement is found in a first comparison between simulation and experimental results. The geometrical parameters of the stochastic structure are varied and it is found that the light trapping mainly depends on the aspect ratio (length/height). Furthermore, the maximum possible light trapping with this kind of stochastic structure geometry is investigated. In a second step, the stochastic structure is analysed and typical geometrical features are extracted, which are then arranged in a periodic structure. Investigating the light trapping properties of the periodic structure, we find that it performs very similar to the stochastic structure, in agreement with reports in literature. From the obtained results we conclude that a potential advantage of periodic structures for PV applications will very likely not be found in the absorption enhancement in the solar cell material. However, uniformity and higher definition in production of these structures can lead to potential improvements concerning electrical characteristics and parasitic absorption, e.g. in a back reflector.

  20. Radio Frequency Magnetron Sputtering Deposition of TiO2 Thin Films and Their Perovskite Solar Cell Applications.

    PubMed

    Chen, Cong; Cheng, Yu; Dai, Qilin; Song, Hongwei

    2015-12-03

    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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Thin film polycrystalline Si solar cells studied in transient regime by optical pump-terahertz probe spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pikna, P.; Skoromets, V.; Becker, C.; Fejfar, A.; Kužel, P.

    2015-12-01

    We used time-resolved terahertz spectroscopy to study ultrafast photoconductivity of polycrystalline thin-film silicon solar cells. We selected a series of samples, which exhibited variable conversion efficiencies due to hydrogen plasma passivation under various technological conditions. The decay of the transient terahertz conductivity shows two components: the fast one is related to the charge recombination at interfaces, while the slow nanosecond one is attributed to the trapping of photocarriers by defects localized at grain boundaries or at dislocations in the polycrystalline p- layer of the structure. We observed a clear correlation between the open-circuit voltage and the nanosecond-scale decay time of the transient terahertz conductivity of the solar cells. Thus, the terahertz spectroscopy appears to be a useful contactless tool for inspecting the local photoconductivity of solar cells including, in particular, various nanostructured schemes.

  11. 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%.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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%.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Atomic-scale characterization of the CdS/CuInSe2 interface in thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cojocaru-Mirédin, O.; Choi, P.; Wuerz, R.; Raabe, D.

    2011-03-01

    Elemental mixing at the CdS/CuInSe2 interface of a thin-film solar cell was studied by means of atom probe tomography. A Cu-depleted and Cd-doped region (˜2 nm in width) was detected at the CuInSe2 surface, proving the existence of a buried p-n homojunction within the CuInSe2 absorber layer. Furthermore, CdS was found to infiltrate open pores existing in CuInSe2 during the chemical bath deposition. This could explain why chemical bath deposition of CdS leads to higher solar cell efficiencies compared to physical vapor deposition of CdS.

  4. New layered structures of cuprous chalcogenides as thin film solar cell materials: Cu2Te and Cu2Se.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Manh Cuong; Choi, Jin-Ho; Zhao, Xin; Wang, Cai-Zhuang; Zhang, Zhenyu; Ho, Kai-Ming

    2013-10-18

    The stable crystal structures of two cuprous chalcogenides of Cu2X (X=Te or Se) are predicted using an adaptive genetic algorithm in combination with first-principles density functional theory calculations. Both systems are found to prefer a unique and previously unrecognized layered structure, with the total energies much lower than all structures proposed in the literature so far. The newly discovered structures are further shown to be dynamically and mechanically stable, and possess electronic properties consistent with existing experimental observations. In particular, their layered nature is expected to prevail over other structural forms at the interfaces of thin-film solar cells, and knowledge about the precise atomic structures of the interfaces is a prerequisite for achieving long-term stability and high efficiency of CdTe and Cu(In,Ga)Se2 solar cells.

  5. Enhanced photovoltaic performances of graphene/Si solar cells by insertion of a MoS₂ thin film.

    PubMed

    Tsuboi, Yuka; Wang, Feijiu; Kozawa, Daichi; Funahashi, Kazuma; Mouri, Shinichiro; Miyauchi, Yuhei; Takenobu, Taishi; Matsuda, Kazunari

    2015-09-14

    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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Enhanced electrical properties at boundaries including twin boundaries of polycrystalline CdTe thin-film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Li, H; Liu, X X; Lin, Y S; Yang, B; Du, Z M

    2015-05-01

    The effect of grain boundaries (GBs), in particular twin boundaries (TBs), on CdTe polycrystalline thin films is studied by conductive atomic force microscopy (C-AFM), electron-beam-induced current (EBIC), scanning Kelvin probe microscopy (SKPM), electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD), and scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM). Four types of CdTe grains with various densities of {111} Σ3 twin boundaries (TBs) are found in Cl-treated CdTe polycrystalline thin films: (1) grains having multiple {111} Σ3 TBs with a low angle to the film surface; (2) grains having multiple {111} Σ3 TBs parallel to the film surfaces; (3) small grains on a scale of not more than 500 nm, composed of Cd, Cl, Te, and O; and (4) CdTe grains with not more than two {111} Σ3 TBs. Grain boundaries (including TBs) exhibit enhanced current transport phenomena. However, the {111} Σ3 TB is much more beneficial to micro-current transport. The enhanced current transport can be explained by the lower electron potential at GBs (including TBs) than the grain interiors (GIs). Our results open new opportunities for enhancing solar cell performances by controlling the grain boundaries, and in particular TBs.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Theoretical Evaluation of Cu-Sn-S and Cu-Sb-S Based Solar Absorbers for Earth-Abundant Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zawadzki, Pawel; Peng, Haowei; Zakutayev, Andriy; Lany, Stephan

    2013-03-01

    Current thin-film solar absorbers such as Cu(In/Ga)Se2 or CdTe, although remarkably efficient, incorporate limited-supply elements like indium or tellurium. Meeting the cost competiveness criterion necessary for a large-scale deployment of thin-film PV technologies requires development of new earth-abundant solar absorbers. In an effort to accelerate such development we combine first principles theory and high throughput experiments to explore In-free ternary copper chalcogenides. As part of the theoretical evaluation, we study the Cu2SnS3, Cu4SnS4, CuSbS2 and Cu3SbS3 based compounds formed by isovalent alloying on Sn, Sb, and S sites. For this set of materials we predict band-structures and optical absorption coefficients and demonstrate the feasibility of achieving the optimal band gap of 1.3 eV for a single junction cell and a high optical absorption of ~104 cm-1 at Eg+0.2 eV. We additionally perform defect studies to elucidate the doping trends within this class of materials. The project ``Rapid Development of Earth-abundant Thin Film Solar Cells'' is supported as a part of the SunShot initiative by the U. S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy under Contract No. DE-AC36-08GO28308 to NREL.

  12. 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

  13. Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells. Technical progress report No. 2, October 1-December 31, 1979

    SciTech Connect

    Chu, T.L.

    1980-01-01

    The objectives of this contract are to investigate thin films of cadmium telluride on low cost substrates and to demonstrate the feasibility of producing thin film cells with a conversion efficiency of 10% or higher. The chemical vapor deposition of cadmium telluride films on foreign substrates by the direct combination of the elements has been further investigated. Inert substrates such as graphite and tungsten/graphite are not suitable for the deposition of device quality cadmium telluride films because of the rectifying interface and pinhole problems. Indium coated W/graphite forms an ohmic contact with n-type cadmium telluride, and the deposited films are essentially free of pinholes. The properties of Ag/n-CdTe/In/W/graphite structures, such as the current-voltage characteristics as a function of temperature, the barrier height, the photovoltaic properties, and the intragrain diffusion length in cadmium telluride, have been investigated. Preliminary work has also been carried out on the deposition of p-type cadmium telluride films on Sb/W/graphite substrates. The reaction between cadmium iodide and tellurium in a hydrogen atmosphere has been concluded to be unsuitable for the deposition of cadmium telluride films.

  14. Ultrasonically Sprayed and Inkjet Printed Thin Film Electrodes for Organic Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Steirer, K. X.; Berry, J. J.; Reese, M. O.; van Hest, M. F. A. M.; Miedaner, A.; Liberatore, M. W.; Collins, R. T.; Ginley, D. S.

    2009-01-01

    Thin film pi-conjugated poly(3,4ethylenedioxythiophene): poly(styrenesulphonate) (PEDOT:PSS) as a hole transport layer on indium tin oxide is a key element in some of the most efficient organic photovoltaic and light emitting devices to date. Films are typically deposited by spincoating, which is not readily scalable. In this paper we investigate the critical parameters for both inkjet and ultrasonic spray deposition of PEDOT:PSS thin films on commercial indium tin oxide as a potentially scalable approach to contact formation. Inkjet parameters investigated include drop spacing and substrate temperature. Ultrasonic spray coating parameters investigated include substrate temperature and solution flow rate. We also show that the ink viscosity has a Newtonian character, making it well suited for inkjet printing. Films were characterized via optical profilometry, sheet resistance and atomic force microscopy. Optimized inkjet printed and ultrasonic sprayed PEDOT:PSS films were then compared to spincast layers in a prototypical bulk heterojunction photovoltaic device employing a poly(3-hexylthiophene) and [6,6]-PCBM (6,6-phenylC61-butyric acid-methyl ester) blend as the absorber. Practically all three approaches produced devices of comparable efficiency. Efficiencies were 3.6%, 3.5% and 3.3% for spin, spray and inkjet depositions respectively.

  15. 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.

  16. Combined optical-electrical finite-element simulations of thin-film solar cells with homogeneous and nonhomogeneous intrinsic layers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Tom H.; Faryad, Muhammad; Mackay, Tom G.; Lakhtakia, Akhlesh; Singh, Rajendra

    2016-04-01

    A two-dimensional finite-element model was developed to simulate the optoelectronic performance of thin-film, p-i-n junction solar cells. One or three p-i-n junctions filled the region between the front window and back reflector; semiconductor layers were made from mixtures of two different alloys of hydrogenated amorphous silicon; empirical relationships between the complex-valued relative optical permittivity and the bandgap were used; a transparent-conducting-oxide layer was attached to the front surface of the solar cell; and a metallic reflector, either flat or periodically corrugated, was attached to the back surface. First, frequency-domain Maxwell postulates were solved to determine the spatial absorption of photons and thus the generation of electron-hole pairs. The AM1.5G solar spectrum was taken to represent the incident solar flux. Second, drift-diffusion equations were solved for the steady-state electron and hole densities. Numerical results indicate that increasing the number of p-i-n junctions from one to three may increase the solar-cell efficiency by up to 14%. In the case of single p-i-n junction solar cells, our simulations indicate that efficiency may be increased by up to 17% by incorporating a periodically corrugated back reflector (as opposed to a flat back reflector) and by tailoring the bandgap profile in the i layer.

  17. Loss mechanisms influence on Cu2ZnSnS4/CdS-based thin film solar cell performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Courel, Maykel; Andrade-Arvizu, J. A.; Vigil-Galán, O.

    2015-09-01

    One of the most important issues in kesterite Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS)-based thin film solar cells is low open circuit voltage, which is mainly related to loss mechanisms that take place in both CZTS bulk material and CdS/CZTS interface. A device model for CZTS/CdS solar cell which takes into account loss mechanisms influence on solar cell performance is presented. The simulation results showed that our model is able to reproduce experimental observations reported for CZTS/CdS-based solar cells with the highest conversion efficiencies, measured under room temperature and AM1.5 intensity. The comparison of simulation results to experimental observations demonstrated that among the different loss mechanisms, trap-assisted tunneling losses are the major hurdle to boost open circuit voltage. Under this loss mechanism, a solar cell efficiency enhancement up to 10.2% with CdS donor concentration decrease was reached. Finally, the possible path toward a further solar cell efficiency improvement is discussed.

  18. Structural, morphological, optical and compositional characterization of spray deposited Ga doped ZnO thin film for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amala Rani, A.; Ernest, Suhashini

    2014-11-01

    Zinc Oxide and Gallium doped Zinc Oxide films have been deposited by the Spray Pyrolysis method onto preheated glass substrates using Zinc acetate and Gallium (III) acetyl acetonate as precursors for Zn and Ga ions, respectively. The effect of ZnO and Ga doping on the structural, morphological, optical and chemical properties of sprayed ZnO and Gallium doped ZnO thin films were investigated. XRD studies reveal that the films are crystalline with hexagonal (wurtzite) crystal structure. The average transparency in the visible range was around 75% for the thin film deposited using Gallium doping. X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) was utilized to view the changes in the oxidation state of ZnO and Gallium doped ZnO thin films. The ZnO and Gallium doped ZnO thin film has been deposited above the Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) coated glass substrate. The efficiency of the obtained DSSC measured for 0.1 M ZnO thin film by sensitizing for 12 h was, ŋ = 2.5%. Similarly for Gallium doped Zinc Oxide, the efficiency ŋ is found to be 3.9%, 4.1% and 4.3% for every increase in doping of Gallium concentrations which is utilized for the application of Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell.

  19. Polycrystalline thin-film, cadmium-telluride solar cells fabricated by electrodeposition cells. Final subcontract report, March 20, 1992--April 27, 1995

    SciTech Connect

    Trefny, J.U.; Mao, D.; Kim, D.

    1995-10-01

    The objective of this project was to develop improved processes for the fabrication of CdTe/CdS polycrystalline thin film solar cells. The technique we used for the formation of CdTe, electrodeposition, was a non-vacuum, low-cost technique that is attractive for economic, large-scale production. Annealing effects and electrical properties are discussed.

  20. Electrical properties and surface morphology of electron beam evaporated p-type silicon thin films on polyethylene terephthalate for solar cells applications

    SciTech Connect

    Ang, P. C.; Ibrahim, K.; Pakhuruddin, M. Z.

    2015-04-24

    One way to realize low-cost thin film silicon (Si) solar cells fabrication is by depositing the films with high-deposition rate and manufacturing-compatible electron beam (e-beam) evaporation onto inexpensive foreign substrates such as glass or plastic. Most of the ongoing research is reported on e-beam evaporation of Si films on glass substrates to make polycrystalline solar cells but works combining both e-beam evaporation and plastic substrates are still scarce in the literature. This paper studies electrical properties and surface morphology of 1 µm electron beam evaporated Al-doped p-type silicon thin films on textured polyethylene terephthalate (PET) substrate for application as an absorber layer in solar cells. In this work, Si thin films with different doping concentrations (including an undoped reference) are prepared by e-beam evaporation. Energy dispersion X-ray (EDX) showed that the Si films are uniformly doped by Al dopant atoms. With increased Al/Si ratio, doping concentration increased while both resistivity and carrier mobility of the films showed opposite relationships. Root mean square (RMS) surface roughness increased. Overall, the Al-doped Si film with Al/Si ratio of 2% (doping concentration = 1.57×10{sup 16} atoms/cm{sup 3}) has been found to provide the optimum properties of a p-type absorber layer for fabrication of thin film Si solar cells on PET substrate.

  1. Investigation of blister formation in sputtered Cu{sub 2}ZnSnS{sub 4} absorbers for thin film solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Bras, Patrice; Sterner, Jan; Platzer-Björkman, Charlotte

    2015-11-15

    Blister formation in Cu{sub 2}ZnSnS{sub 4} (CZTS) thin films sputtered from a quaternary compound target is investigated. While the thin film structure, composition, and substrate material are not correlated to the blister formation, a strong link between sputtering gas entrapment, in this case argon, and blistering effect is found. It is shown that argon is trapped in the film during sputtering and migrates to locally form blisters during the high temperature annealing. Blister formation in CZTS absorbers is detrimental for thin film solar cell fabrication causing partial peeling of the absorber layer and potential shunt paths in the complete device. Reduced sputtering gas entrapment, and blister formation, is seen for higher sputtering pressure, higher substrate temperature, and change of sputtering gas to larger atoms. This is all in accordance with previous publications on blister formation caused by sputtering gas entrapment in other materials.

  2. ZnS thin films deposition by thermal evaporation for photovoltaic applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benyahia, K.; Benhaya, A.; Aida, M. S.

    2015-10-01

    ZnS thin films were deposited on glass substrates by thermal evaporation from millimetric crystals of ZnS. The structural, compositional and optical properties of the films are studied by X-ray diffraction, SEM microscopy, and UV-VIS spectroscopy. The obtained results show that the films are pin hole free and have a cubic zinc blend structure with (111) preferential orientation. The estimated optical band gap is 3.5 eV and the refractive index in the visible wavelength ranges from 2.5 to 1.8. The good cubic structure obtained for thin layers enabled us to conclude that the prepared ZnS films may have application as buffer layer in replacement of the harmful CdS in CIGS thin film solar cells or as an antireflection coating in silicon-based solar cells.

  3. Surface Modification of Polycrystalline Cu(In,Ga)Se2 Thin-Film Solar Cell Absorber Surfaces for PEEM Measurements

    SciTech Connect

    Wilks, R. G.; Contreras, M. A.; Lehmann, S.; Herrero-Albillos, J.; Bismaths, L. T.; Kronast, F.; Noufi, R.; Bar, M.

    2011-01-01

    We present a thorough examination of the {micro}m-scale topography of Cu(In, Ga)Se{sub 2} ('CIGSe') thin-film solar cell absorbers using different microscopy techniques. We specifically focus on the efficacy of preparing smooth sample surfaces - by etching in aqueous bromine solution - for a spatially resolved study of their chemical and electronic structures using photoelectron emission microscopy (PEEM). The etching procedure is shown to reduce the CIGSe surface roughness from ca. 40 to 25 nm after 40s etching, resulting in an increase in the quality of the obtained PEEM images. Furthermore we find that the average observed grain size at the etched surfaces appears larger than at the unetched surfaces. Using a liftoff procedure, it is additionally shown that the backside of the absorber is flat but finely patterned, likely due to being grown on the finely-structured Mo back contact.

  4. Photocatalytic thin films coupled with polymeric microcapsules for the controlled-release of volatile agents upon solar activation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliveira, L. F.; Marques, J.; Coutinho, P. J. G.; Parpot, P.; Tavares, C. J.

    2013-06-01

    This work reportson the application of solar-activated photocatalytic thin films that allow the controlled-release of volatile agents (e.g., insecticides, repellents) from the interior of adsorbedpolymericmicrocapsules. In order to standardize the tests, a quantification of the inherent controlled-release of a particular volatile agent is determined by gas chromatography coupled to mass spectroscopy, so that an application can be offered to a wide range of supports from various industrial sectors, such as in textiles (clothing, curtains, mosquito nets). This technology takes advantage of the established photocatalytic property of titanium dioxide (TiO2) for the use as an active surface/site to promote the controlled-release of a specific vapor (volatile agentfrom within the aforementioned microcapsules.

  5. Plasmonic organic thin-film solar cell: light trapping by using conformal vs. non-conformal relief gratings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keshmiri, Hamid; Dostlek, Jakub

    2015-05-01

    Theoretical study of light management in thin film organic photovoltaic cell that utilizes diffraction coupling to guided waves is presented. As a model system, a regular solar cell geometry with P3HT:PCBM active layer, transparent ITO electrode and Al backside electrode is used. The paper discusses enhancement of absorption of incident photons selectively in the active layer by the interplay of surface plasmon polariton and optical waveguide waves, the effect on the profile of their field and damping that affects the spatial distribution of dissipated light energy in the layer structure. The model shows that for optimized grating period and modulation depth the number of absorbed photons in the active layer can be increased by 24 per cent. The comparison of the geometry with conformal and non-conformally corrugated layers reveals that the conformal structure outperforms the non-conformal in the enhancing of photon absorption in the wavelength range of 350-800 nm.

  6. Conducting glasses recovered from thin film transistor liquid crystal display wastes for dye-sensitized solar cell cathodes.

    PubMed

    Chen, C-C; Chang, F-C; Peng, C Y; Wang, H Paul

    2015-01-01

    Transparent conductive glasses such as thin film transistor (TFT) array and colour filter glasses were recovered from the TFT-liquid crystal display panel wastes by dismantling and sonic cleaning. Noble metals (i.e. platinum (Pt)) and indium tin oxide (ITO) are generally used in the cathode of a dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC). To reduce the DSSC cost, Pt was replaced with nano nickel-encapsulated carbon-shell (Ni@C) nanoparticles, which were prepared by carbonization of Ni²⁺-β-cyclodextrin at 673 K for 2 h. The recovered conductive glasses were used in the DSSC electrodes in the substitution of relatively expensive ITO. Interestingly, the efficiency of the DSSC having the Ni@C-coated cathode is as high as 2.54%. Moreover, the cost of the DSSC using the recovered materials can be reduced by at least 24%. PMID:25399759

  7. Conducting glasses recovered from thin film transistor liquid crystal display wastes for dye-sensitized solar cell cathodes.

    PubMed

    Chen, C-C; Chang, F-C; Peng, C Y; Wang, H Paul

    2015-01-01

    Transparent conductive glasses such as thin film transistor (TFT) array and colour filter glasses were recovered from the TFT-liquid crystal display panel wastes by dismantling and sonic cleaning. Noble metals (i.e. platinum (Pt)) and indium tin oxide (ITO) are generally used in the cathode of a dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC). To reduce the DSSC cost, Pt was replaced with nano nickel-encapsulated carbon-shell (Ni@C) nanoparticles, which were prepared by carbonization of Ni²⁺-β-cyclodextrin at 673 K for 2 h. The recovered conductive glasses were used in the DSSC electrodes in the substitution of relatively expensive ITO. Interestingly, the efficiency of the DSSC having the Ni@C-coated cathode is as high as 2.54%. Moreover, the cost of the DSSC using the recovered materials can be reduced by at least 24%.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Electrodeposited ZnS Precursor Layer with Improved Electrooptical Properties for Efficient Cu2ZnSnS4 Thin-Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mkawi, E. M.; Ibrahim, K.; Ali, M. K. M.; Farrukh, M. A.; Mohamed, A. S.

    2015-10-01

    Zinc sulfide (ZnS) thin films were prepared on indium tin oxide-coated glass by electrodeposition using aqueous zinc sulfate, thiourea, and ammonia solutions at 80°C. The effects of sulfurization at temperatures of 350°C, 400°C, 450°C, and 500°C on the morphological, structural, optical, and electrical properties of the ZnS thin films were investigated. X-ray diffraction analysis showed that the ZnS thin films exhibited cubic zincblende structure with preferred (111) orientation. The film crystallization improved with increasing annealing temperature. Field-emission scanning electron microscopy images showed that the film morphology became more compact and uniform with increasing annealing temperature. The percentage of sulfur in the ZnS thin films increased after sulfurization until a stoichiometric S/Zn ratio was achieved at 500°C. The annealed films showed good adhesion to the glass substrates, with moderate transmittance (85%) in the visible region. Based on absorption measurements, the direct bandgap increased from 3.71 eV to 3.79 eV with annealing temperature, which is attributed to the change of the buffer material composition and suitable crystal surface properties for effective p- n junction formation. The ZnS 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 1.86%.

  12. Process for fabricating polycrystalline semiconductor thin-film solar cells, and cells produced thereby

    DOEpatents

    Wu, Xuanzhi; Sheldon, Peter

    2000-01-01

    A novel, simplified method for fabricating a thin-film semiconductor heterojunction photovoltaic device includes initial steps of depositing a layer of cadmium stannate and a layer of zinc stannate on a transparent substrate, both by radio frequency sputtering at ambient temperature, followed by the depositing of dissimilar layers of semiconductors such as cadmium sulfide and cadmium telluride, and heat treatment to convert the cadmium stannate to a substantially single-phase material of a spinel crystal structure. Preferably, the cadmium sulfide layer is also deposited by radio frequency sputtering at ambient temperature, and the cadmium telluride layer is deposited by close space sublimation at an elevated temperature effective to convert the amorphous cadmium stannate to the polycrystalline cadmium stannate with single-phase spinel structure.

  13. Improving Si solar cell performance using Mn:ZnSe quantum dot-doped PLMA thin film

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Dan-Chen; Hao, Hong-Chen; Zhang, Miao; Shi, Wei; Lu, Ming

    2013-06-01

    Poly(lauryl methacrylate) (PLMA) thin film doped with Mn:ZnSe quantum dots (QDs) was spin-deposited on the front surface of Si solar cell for enhancing the solar cell efficiency via photoluminescence (PL) conversion. Significant solar cell efficiency enhancements (approximately 5% to 10%) under all-solar-spectrum (AM0) condition were observed after QD-doped PLMA coatings. Furthermore, the real contribution of the PL conversion was precisely assessed by investigating the photovoltaic responses of the QD-doped PLMA to monochromatic and AM0 light sources as functions of QD concentration, combined with reflectance and external quantum efficiency measurements. At a QD concentration of 1.6 mg/ml for example, among the efficiency enhancement of 5.96%, about 1.04% was due to the PL conversion, and the rest came from antireflection. Our work indicates that for the practical use of PL conversion in solar cell performance improvement, cautions are to be taken, as the achieved efficiency enhancement might not be wholly due to the PL conversion.

  14. Improving Si solar cell performance using Mn:ZnSe quantum dot-doped PLMA thin film

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Poly(lauryl methacrylate) (PLMA) thin film doped with Mn:ZnSe quantum dots (QDs) was spin-deposited on the front surface of Si solar cell for enhancing the solar cell efficiency via photoluminescence (PL) conversion. Significant solar cell efficiency enhancements (approximately 5% to 10%) under all-solar-spectrum (AM0) condition were observed after QD-doped PLMA coatings. Furthermore, the real contribution of the PL conversion was precisely assessed by investigating the photovoltaic responses of the QD-doped PLMA to monochromatic and AM0 light sources as functions of QD concentration, combined with reflectance and external quantum efficiency measurements. At a QD concentration of 1.6 mg/ml for example, among the efficiency enhancement of 5.96%, about 1.04% was due to the PL conversion, and the rest came from antireflection. Our work indicates that for the practical use of PL conversion in solar cell performance improvement, cautions are to be taken, as the achieved efficiency enhancement might not be wholly due to the PL conversion. PMID:23787125

  15. Compositional and Interfacial Modification of Cu2 ZnSn(S,Se)4 Thin-Film Solar Cells Prepared by Electrochemical Deposition.

    PubMed

    Seo, Se Won; Jeon, Jong-Ok; Seo, Jung Woo; Yu, Yi Yin; Jeong, Jeung-Hyun; Lee, Doh-Kwon; Kim, Honggon; Ko, Min Jae; Son, Hae Jung; Jang, Ho Won; Kim, Jin Young

    2016-03-01

    A highly efficient Cu2 ZnSn(S,Se)4 (CZTSSe)-based thin-film solar cell (9.9%) was prepared using an electrochemical deposition method followed by thermal annealing. The Cu-Zn-Sn alloy films was grown on a Mo-coated glass substrate using a one-pot electrochemical deposition process, and the metallic precursor films was annealed under a mixed atmosphere of S and Se to form CZTSSe thin films with bandgap energies ranging from 1.0 to 1.2 eV. The compositional modification of the S/(S+Se) ratio shows a trade-off effect between the photocurrent and photovoltage, resulting in an optimum bandgap of roughly 1.14 eV. In addition, the increased S content near the p-n junction reduces the dark current and interface recombination, resulting in a further enhancement of the open-circuit voltage. As a result of the compositional and interfacial modification, the best CZTSSe-based thin-film solar cell exhibits a conversion efficiency of 9.9%, which is among the highest efficiencies reported so far for electrochemically deposited CZTSSe-based thin-film solar cells. PMID:26822494

  16. A general water-based precursor solution approach to deposit earth abundant Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yanchun; Kang, Xiaojiao; Huang, Lijian; Wei, Song; Pan, Daocheng

    2016-05-01

    Earth abundant Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 (CZTSSe) has been considered as one of the most promising thin film solar cell absorber candidates. Here, we develop a facile water-based precursor solution approach for depositing high-efficiency Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 thin film solar cells. In this environmentally friendly approach, inexpensive elemental Cu, Zn, Sn and S powders are used as the starting materials and are dissolved in the aqueous solution of thioglycolic acid and methylamine, forming a homogeneous precursor solution for depositing Cu2ZnSnS4 nanocrystal thin film. As-deposited CZTS nanocrystal thin films are selenized to form the large-grain CZTSSe absorber layers. It was found that Na doping plays an important role in the formation of the extremely dense and flat CZTSSe absorber layer, and fill factor can be significantly improved for Na-doped CZTSSe solar cells, which lead to a photoelectric conversion efficiency of 6.96% with an open-circuit voltage of 378 mV, a short current density of 28.17 mA cm-2, and a fill factor of 65.4%.

  17. Development of Cd1-xMgxTe thin films for application as an electron reflector in CdS/CdTe solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kobyakov, Pavel S.

    Efficiencies of CdS/CdTe photovoltaic cells significantly lag behind their theoretical limit, primarily because open-circuit voltage ( VOC) of record efficiency cells (872 mV) is well below what is expected for the CdTe band gap (1.5 eV). A substantial V OC improvement can be achieved through addition of an electron reflector (ER) layer to CdTe devices. The ER layer forms a conduction-band barrier that reflects minority-charge carriers (i.e. electrons in p-type CdTe) away from the back surface. Similar to back-surface fields in c-Si, III-V, and CIGS solar cells, the ER strategy is expected to reduce back-surface recombination and is estimated to increase CdTe VOC by about 200 mV based on numerical simulation. The presented research investigates the addition of a thin layer of wider band gap Cd1-xMgxTe (CMT) to achieve a CdTe ER structure. First, a novel co-sublimation process was developed for deposition of Cd 1-xMgxTe thin films that demonstrates excellent experimental capabilities, commercial viability, and improved alloy control over other techniques. Next, the effects of processing on material properties of CMT deposition onto CdS/CdTe structures were investigated. It was discovered that substrate temperature during CMT deposition is a critical parameter for achieving uniform CMT film coverage on polycrystalline CdTe. Furthermore, CMT film growth was found to be epitaxial on CdTe where the CMT films retain the same microstructural features as the underlying CdTe grains. Despite film uniformity, significant Mg loss from the CMT film, oxide formation, and a reduction of the optical band gap was found after CdCl2-based passivation treatments. Preliminary process optimization found that band gap degradation can be minimized by utilizing MgCl2 in addition to CdCl2 as a treatment source material. Finally, development of CdS/CdTe/Cd1-xMgxTe electron reflector devices demonstrated a barrier behavior at high voltage bias and improved voltage when CdTe thickness is held

  18. Thin film cadmium telluride, zinc telluride, and mercury zinc telluride solar cells. Final subcontract report, 1 July 1988--31 December 1991

    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.

  19. 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.

  20. Adequacy of the rigorous coupled-wave approach for thin-film silicon solar cells with periodically corrugated metallic backreflectors: spectral analysis.

    PubMed

    Shuba, Mikhail V; Faryad, Muhammad; Solano, Manuel E; Monk, Peter B; Lakhtakia, Akhlesh

    2015-07-01

    The rigorous coupled-wave approach (RCWA) is extensively used to compute optical absorption and photon absorption in thin-film photovoltaic solar cells backed by 1D metallic gratings when the wave vector of the incident light lies wholly in the grating plane. The RCWA algorithm converges rapidly for incident s-polarized light over the entire 400-1100 nm solar spectrum. It also performs well for incident p-polarized light in the 400-650 nm spectral regime, but even with a large number of Floquet harmonics in the solution, the total reflectance is underestimated in the 650-1100 nm spectral regime. Despite that shortcoming, the RCWA underestimates the solar-spectrum-integrated photon absorption rate only by 5%-10% for p-polarized light. As sunlight is almost unpolarized, the RCWA should be considered adequate to design thin-film silicon solar cells with periodically corrugated metallic backreflectors.

  1. Adequacy of the rigorous coupled-wave approach for thin-film silicon solar cells with periodically corrugated metallic backreflectors: spectral analysis.

    PubMed

    Shuba, Mikhail V; Faryad, Muhammad; Solano, Manuel E; Monk, Peter B; Lakhtakia, Akhlesh

    2015-07-01

    The rigorous coupled-wave approach (RCWA) is extensively used to compute optical absorption and photon absorption in thin-film photovoltaic solar cells backed by 1D metallic gratings when the wave vector of the incident light lies wholly in the grating plane. The RCWA algorithm converges rapidly for incident s-polarized light over the entire 400-1100 nm solar spectrum. It also performs well for incident p-polarized light in the 400-650 nm spectral regime, but even with a large number of Floquet harmonics in the solution, the total reflectance is underestimated in the 650-1100 nm spectral regime. Despite that shortcoming, the RCWA underestimates the solar-spectrum-integrated photon absorption rate only by 5%-10% for p-polarized light. As sunlight is almost unpolarized, the RCWA should be considered adequate to design thin-film silicon solar cells with periodically corrugated metallic backreflectors. PMID:26367148

  2. Processing and modeling issues for thin-film solar cell devices. Annual subcontract report, January 16, 1994--January 15, 1995

    SciTech Connect

    Birkmire, R.W.; Phillips, J.E.; Buchanan, W.A.; Hegedus, S.S.; McCandless, B.E.; Shafarman, W.N.

    1995-06-01

    This report describes results achieved during the second phase of a four year subcontract to develop and understand thin film solar cell technology related to a-Si and its alloys, CuIn{sub 1{minus}x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2}, and CdTe. Accomplishments during this phase include, development of equations and reaction rates for the formation of CuIn{sub 1{minus}x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2} films by selenization, fabrication of a 15% efficient CuIn{sub 1{minus}x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2} cell, development of a reproducible, reliable Cu-diffused contact to CdTe, investigation of the role of CdTe-CdS interdiffusion on device operation, investigation of the substitution of HCl for CdCl{sub 2} in the post-deposition heat treatment of CdTe/CdS, demonstration of an improved reactor design for deposition of a-Si films, demonstration of improved process control in the fabrication of a ten set series of runs producing {approximately}8% efficient a-Si devices, demonstration of the utility of a simplified optical model for determining quantity and effect of current generation in each layer of a triple stacked a-Si cell, presentation of analytical and modeling procedures adapted to devices produced with each material system, presentation of baseline parameters for devices produced with each material system, and various investigations of the roles played by other layers in thin film devices including the Mo underlayer, CdS and ZnO in CuIn{sub 1{minus}x}Ga{sub x}Se{sub 2} devices, the CdS in CdTe devices, and the ZnO as window layer and as part of the back surface reflector in a-Si devices. In addition, collaborations with over ten research groups are briefly described. 73 refs., 54 figs., 34 tabs.

  3. Thin film photovoltaic device

    DOEpatents

    Catalano, Anthony W.; Bhushan, Manjul

    1982-01-01

    A thin film photovoltaic solar cell which utilizes a zinc phosphide semiconductor is of the homojunction type comprising an n-type conductivity region forming an electrical junction with a p-type region, both regions consisting essentially of the same semiconductor material. The n-type region is formed by treating zinc phosphide with an extrinsic dopant such as magnesium. The semiconductor is formed on a multilayer substrate which acts as an opaque contact. Various transparent contacts may be used, including a thin metal film of the same chemical composition as the n-type dopant or conductive oxides or metal grids.

  4. Effect of thickness on physical properties of electron beam vacuum evaporated CdZnTe thin films for tandem solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chander, Subhash; Dhaka, M. S.

    2016-10-01

    The thickness and physical properties of electron beam vacuum evaporated CdZnTe thin films have been optimized in the present work. The films of thickness 300 nm and 400 nm were deposited on ITO coated glass substrates and subjected to different characterization tools like X-ray diffraction (XRD), UV-Vis spectrophotometer, source meter and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to investigate the structural, optical, electrical and surface morphological properties respectively. The XRD results show that the as-deposited CdZnTe thin films have zinc blende cubic structure and polycrystalline in nature with preferred orientation (111). Different structural parameters are also evaluated and discussed. The optical study reveals that the optical transition is found to be direct and energy band gap is decreased for higher thickness. The transmittance is found to increase with thickness and red shift observed which is suitable for CdZnTe films as an absorber layer in tandem solar cells. The current-voltage characteristics of deposited films show linear behavior in both forward and reverse directions as well as the conductivity is increased for higher film thickness. The SEM studies show that the as-deposited CdZnTe thin films are found to be homogeneous, uniform, small circle-shaped grains and free from crystal defects. The experimental results confirm that the film thickness plays an important role to optimize the physical properties of CdZnTe thin films for tandem solar cell applications as an absorber layer.

  5. Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells. Final technical report for period July 1, 1979-August 31, 1980

    SciTech Connect

    Chu, T.L.

    1980-08-01

    The objectives of this contract are to investigate thin films of cadmium telluride on low cost substrates and to determine the feasibility of using these films for high efficiency solar cells. Efforts during this program have been directed to the construction of apparatus for the chemical vapor deposition of cadmium telluride films, the selection and preparation of substrates, the deposition and characterization of cadmium telluride films, and the fabrication and characterization of solar cells. Cadmium telluride films have been deposited on a number of substrates by the direct combination of cadmium and tellurium on the substrate surface at 500/sup 0/C or higher at rates of up to 0.6 ..mu..m/min. The structural, crystallographic, and electrical properties of cadmium telluride films deposited over a wide range of conditions have been evaluated. A series of doping experiments have been carried out using iodine and indium as the n-type dopant, and phosphorus, arsenic, and antimony as the p-type dopant. Low resistivity films have not been produced thus far. In/W/graphite substrates have been used for the deposition of n-type films with an ohmic interface. However, no suitable substrates have been found to form an ohmic interface with p-type films. Solar cells prepared from these films exhibit relatively good short-circuit current density, up to 15 mA/cm/sup 2/, but their conversion efficiencies are severely limited by the high series resistance of the devices.

  6. Effect of chlorine activation treatment on electron beam induced current signal distribution of cadmium telluride thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zywitzki, Olaf; Modes, Thomas; Morgner, Henry; Metzner, Christoph; Siepchen, Bastian; Späth, Bettina; Drost, Christian; Krishnakumar, Velappan; Frauenstein, Sven

    2013-10-01

    We have investigated CdTe thin film solar cells without activation treatment and with CdCl2 activation treatment at temperatures between 370 and 430 °C using a constant activation time of 25 min. For this purpose, CdS/CdTe layers were deposited by closed-space-sublimation on FTO coated float glass. The solar cells were characterized by measurements of the JV characteristics and quantum efficiencies. In addition, ion polished cross sections of the solar cells were prepared for high-resolution FE-SEM imaging of the microstructure and the simultaneous registration of electron beam induced current (EBIC) signal distribution. By measurement of the EBIC signal distribution, it can be shown that without activation treatment the CdTe grain boundaries itself and grain boundary near regions exhibit no EBIC signal, whereas centres of some singular grains already show a distinct EBIC signal. In contrast, after the chlorine activation treatment, the grain boundary near regions exhibit a significant higher EBIC signal than the centre of the grains. The results can be discussed as a direct evidence for defect passivation of grain boundary near regions by the chlorine activation treatment. At activation temperature of 430 °C, additionally, a significant grain growth and agglomeration of the CdS layer can be recognized, which is linked with the formation of voids within the CdS layer and a deterioration of pn junction properties.

  7. Local band gap measurements by VEELS of thin film solar cells.

    PubMed

    Keller, Debora; Buecheler, Stephan; Reinhard, Patrick; Pianezzi, Fabian; Pohl, Darius; Surrey, Alexander; Rellinghaus, Bernd; Erni, Rolf; Tiwari, Ayodhya N

    2014-08-01

    This work presents a systematic study that evaluates the feasibility and reliability of local band gap measurements of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin films by valence electron energy-loss spectroscopy (VEELS). The compositional gradients across the Cu(In,Ga)Se2 layer cause variations in the band gap energy, which are experimentally determined using a monochromated scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM). The results reveal the expected band gap variation across the Cu(In,Ga)Se2 layer and therefore confirm the feasibility of local band gap measurements of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 by VEELS. The precision and accuracy of the results are discussed based on the analysis of individual error sources, which leads to the conclusion that the precision of our measurements is most limited by the acquisition reproducibility, if the signal-to-noise ratio of the spectrum is high enough. Furthermore, we simulate the impact of radiation losses on the measured band gap value and propose a thickness-dependent correction. In future work, localized band gap variations will be measured on a more localized length scale to investigate, e.g., the influence of chemical inhomogeneities and dopant accumulations at grain boundaries.

  8. Thin films of mixed metal compounds

    DOEpatents

    Mickelsen, Reid A.; Chen, Wen S.

    1985-01-01

    A compositionally uniform thin film of a mixed metal compound is formed by simultaneously evaporating a first metal compound and a second metal compound from independent sources. The mean free path between the vapor particles is reduced by a gas and the mixed vapors are deposited uniformly. The invention finds particular utility in forming thin film heterojunction solar cells.

  9. Controlling the texture and crystallinity of evaporated lead phthalocyanine thin films for near-infrared sensitive solar cells.

    PubMed

    Vasseur, Karolien; Broch, Katharina; Ayzner, Alexander L; Rand, Barry P; Cheyns, David; Frank, Christian; Schreiber, Frank; Toney, Michael F; Froyen, Ludo; Heremans, Paul

    2013-09-11

    To achieve organic solar cells with a broadened spectral absorption, we aim to promote the growth of the near-infrared (NIR)-active polymorph of lead phthalocyanine (PbPc) on a relevant electrode for solar cell applications. We studied the effect of different substrate modification layers on PbPc thin film structure as a function of thickness and deposition rate (rdep). We characterized crystallinity and orientation by grazing incidence X-ray diffraction (GIXD) and in situ X-ray reflectivity (XRR) and correlated these data to the performance of bilayer solar cells. When deposited onto a self-assembled monolayer (SAM) or a molybdenum oxide (MoO3) buffer layer, the crystallinity of the PbPc films improves with thickness. The transition from a partially crystalline layer close to the substrate to a more crystalline film with a higher content of the NIR-active phase is enhanced at low rdep, thereby leading to solar cells that exhibit a higher maximum in short circuit current density (JSC) for thinner donor layers. The insertion of a CuI layer induces the formation of strongly textured, crystalline PbPc layers with a vertically homogeneous structure. Solar cells based on these templated donor layers show a variation of JSC with thickness that is independent of rdep. Consequently, without decreasing rdep we could achieve JSC=10 mA/cm2, yielding a bilayer solar cell with a peak external quantum efficiency (EQE) of 35% at 900 nm, and an overall power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 2.9%.

  10. Photosensitivity of ZnO/CdS/Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2}/Mo thin-film solar cells fabricated on various substrates

    SciTech Connect

    Rud, V. Yu.; Rud, Yu. V.; Gremenok, V. F.; Terukov, E. I.; Bairamov, B. Kh.; Song, Y. W.

    2012-02-15

    The results of measuring the first spectra of relative quantum efficiency for photoconversion in thin-film ZnO/CdS/Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2}/Mo solar cells fabricated on rigid (glass) and flexible (polyimide) substrates are reported. The character of interband transitions has been studied and the values of the band gap for direct and indirect transitions in thin Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} films are determined. It is found that a shift of the maximal photosensitivity for the obtained solar cells to shorter wavelengths is observed as rigid substrates are replaced by flexible ones. It is concluded that thin-film Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} structures can be used as broad-band photoconverters of solar radiation.

  11. Development of gold induced surface plasmon enhanced CIGS absorption layer on polyimide substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Seong-Un; Sharma, Rahul; Sim, Jae-Kwan; Baek, Byung Joon; Ahn, Haeng-Kwun; Kim, Jin Soo; Lee, Cheul-Ro

    2013-09-01

    Localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) with metal nanoparticles is the promising phenomenon to increase light absorption by trapping light in thin film solar cells. In this study we demonstrate a successful LSPR effect with gold (Au) nanoparticles onto the Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) absorption layer. First, the CIGS absorber layers is fabricated onto the Mo coated polyimide (PI) substrate by using two stage process as DC sputtering of CIG thin film followed by the selenization at 400 °C. Finally, the Au nanoparticles are deposited onto the CIGS layer with increasing particles size from 4-15 nm by using sputter coater for 10-120 s. The X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns confirm the formation of CIGS/Au nanocomposite structure with prominent peak shift of CIGS reflections and increasing intensity for Au phase. The CIGS/Au nanocomposite morphologies with Au particle size distribution uniformity and surface coverage is examined under ultra-high resolution field effect scanning electron microscope (UHR-FESEM). A peak at 176 cm-1 in Raman spectra, associated with the “A1” mode of lattice vibration for the attributed to the pure chalcopyrite structure. The secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) showed ∼200 nm depth converge of Au nanoparticles into the CIGS absorption layer. The optical properties as transmittance, reflectance and absorbance of CIGS/Au layers were found to expand in the infrared region and the LSPR effect is the most prominent for Au particles (5-7 nm) deposited for 60 s. The absorption coefficient and band gap measurement also confirms that the LSPR effect for 5-7 nm Au particles with band gap improvement from 1.31 to 1.52 eV for CIGS/Au layer as the defect density decreases due to the deposition of Au nanoparticles onto the CIGS layer. Such LSPR effect in CIGS/Au nanocomposite absorption layer will be a key parameter to further improve performance of the solar cell.

  12. Polycrystalline thin film cadmium telluride solar cells fabricated by electrodeposition. Annual technical report, 20 March 1995--19 March 1996

    SciTech Connect

    Trefny, J U; Mao, D

    1997-04-01

    The objective of this project is to develop improved processes for fabricating CdTe/CdS polycrystalline thin-film solar cells. Researchers used electrodeposition to form CdTe; electrodeposition is a non-vacuum, low-cost technique that is attractive for economic, large-scale production. During the past year, research and development efforts focused on several steps that are most critical to the fabricating high-efficiency CdTe solar cells. These include the optimization of the CdTe electrodeposition process, the effect of pretreatment of CdS substrates, the post-deposition annealing of CdTe, and back-contact formation using Cu-doped ZnTe. Systematic investigations of these processing steps have led to a better understanding and improved performance of the CdTe-based cells. Researchers studied the structural properties of chemical-bath-deposited CdS thin films and their growth mechanisms by investigating CdS samples prepared at different deposition times; investigated the effect of CdCl{sub 2} treatment of CdS films on the photovoltaic performance of CdTe solar cells; studied Cu-doped ZnTe as a promising material for forming stable, low-resistance contacts to the p-type CdTe; and investigated the effect of CdTe and CdS thickness on the photovoltaic performance of the resulting cells. As a result of their systematic investigation and optimization of the processing conditions, researchers improved the efficiency of CdTe/CdS cells using ZnTe back-contact and electrodeposited CdTe. The best CdTe/CdS cell exhibited a V{sub oc} of 0.778 V, a J{sub sc} of 22.4 mA/cm{sup 2}, a FF of 74%, and an efficiency of 12.9% (verified at NREL). In terms of individual parameters, researchers obtained a V{sub oc} over 0.8 V and a FF of 76% on other cells.

  13. Intercalation crystallization of phase-pure α-HC(NH2)2PbI3 upon microstructurally engineered PbI2 thin films for planar perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Yuanyuan; Yang, Mengjin; Kwun, Joonsuh; Game, Onkar S.; Zhao, Yixin; Pang, Shuping; Padture, Nitin P.; Zhu, Kai

    2016-03-01

    The microstructure of the solid-PbI2 precursor thin film plays an important role in the intercalation crystallization of the formamidinium lead triiodide perovskite (α-HC(NH2)2PbI3). It is shown that microstructurally engineered PbI2 thin films with porosity and low crystallinity are the most favorable for conversion into uniform-coverage, phase-pure α-HC(NH2)2PbI3 perovskite thin films. Planar perovskite solar cells fabricated using these thin films deliver power conversion efficiency (PCE) up to 13.8%.The microstructure of the solid-PbI2 precursor thin film plays an important role in the intercalation crystallization of the formamidinium lead triiodide perovskite (α-HC(NH2)2PbI3). It is shown that microstructurally engineered PbI2 thin films with porosity and low crystallinity are the most favorable for conversion into uniform-coverage, phase-pure α-HC(NH2)2PbI3 perovskite thin films. Planar perovskite solar cells fabricated using these thin films deliver power conversion efficiency (PCE) up to 13.8%. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c5nr06189j

  14. Preparation of CIGS-based solar cells using a buffered electrodeposition bath

    SciTech Connect

    Bhattacharya, Raghu Nath

    2007-11-20

    A photovoltaic cell exhibiting an overall conversion efficiency of at least 9.0% is prepared from a copper-indium-gallium-diselenide thin film. The thin film is prepared by simultaneously electroplating copper, indium, gallium, and selenium onto a substrate using a buffered electro-deposition bath. The electrodeposition is followed by adding indium to adjust the final stoichiometry of the thin film.

  15. Investigation of CdZnTe for Thin-Film Tandem Solar Cell Applications: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Dhere, R.; Gessert, T.; Zhou, J.; Asher, S.; Pankow, J.; Moutinho, H.

    2003-04-01

    Modeling of two-junction tandem devices shows that for optimal device performance, the bandgap of the top cell should be around 1.6-1.8 eV. CdZnTe alloys can be tailored to yield bandgaps in the desired range. In this study, we considered were used to fabricate these films, using close-spaced sublimation (CSS) and radio-frequency sputtering (RFS) techniques. In the first approach, we used mixed powders of CdTe and ZnTe as the source for film deposition by CSS. Even for the ZnTe/CdTe (95:5 ratio) source material, the deposited films were entirely CdTe due to higher vapor pressure of CdTe. In the second approach, we used pre-alloyed CdZnTe powders (CERAC, Inc.) as the source. Due to the lower sticking coefficient of Zn, even for the source composition of 75% Zn, these films contained very low quantities of Zn (~5%). We tried unsuccessfully to increase the Zn content in the films by confining Zn vapor by enclosing the region between the source and substrate, reducing the substrate temperature to 400C, and adjusting the source/substance distance. Finally, we used thin-film couples consisting of 300-nm-thick CdTe deposited by CSS and 300-nm-thick ZnTe deposited by RFS; the samples were then heat-treated in cadmium chloride vapor. Compositional analysis of the samples showed extensive interdiffusion of Cd and Zn for the annealed samples. We will present the data on the various stack configurations of CdTe and ZnTe, the effect of different post-deposition anneals, the effect of oxygen on the interdiffusion and alloy formation and its possible correlation to the device performance degradation.

  16. Spectroscopic Ellipsometry Studies of Ag and ZnO Thin Films and Their Interfaces for Thin Film Photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sainju, Deepak

    Many modern optical and electronic devices, including photovoltaic devices, consist of multilayered thin film structures. Spectroscopic ellipsometry (SE) is a critically important characterization technique for such multilayers. SE can be applied to measure key parameters related to the structural, optical, and electrical properties of the components of multilayers with high accuracy and precision. One of the key advantages of this non-destructive technique is its capability of monitoring the growth dynamics of thin films in-situ and in real time with monolayer level precision. In this dissertation, the techniques of SE have been applied to study the component layer materials and structures used as back-reflectors and as the transparent contact layers in thin film photovoltaic technologies, including hydrogenated silicon (Si:H), copper indium-gallium diselenide (CIGS), and cadmium telluride (CdTe). The component layer materials, including silver and both intrinsic and doped zinc oxide, are fabricated on crystalline silicon and glass substrates using magnetron sputtering techniques. These thin films are measured in-situ and in real time as well as ex-situ by spectroscopic ellipsometry in order to extract parameters related to the structural properties, such as bulk layer thickness and surface roughness layer thickness and their time evolution, the latter information specific to real time measurements. The index of refraction and extinction coefficient or complex dielectric function of a single unknown layer can also be obtained from the measurement versus photon energy. Applying analytical expressions for these optical properties versus photon energy, parameters that describe electronic transport, such as electrical resistivity and electron scattering time, can be extracted. The SE technique is also performed as the sample is heated in order to derive the effects of annealing on the optical properties and derived electrical transport parameters, as well as the

  17. Thin-film fixed-bed reactor for solar photocatalytic inactivation of Aeromonas hydrophila: influence of water quality

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Controlling fish disease is one of the major concerns in contemporary aquaculture. The use of antibiotics or chemical disinfection cannot provide a healthy aquaculture system without residual effects. Water quality is also important in determining the success or failure of fish production. Several solar photocatalytic reactors have been used to treat drinking water or waste water without leaving chemical residues. This study has investigated the impact of several key aspects of water quality on the inactivation of the pathogenic bacterium Aeromonas hydrophila using a pilot-scale thin-film fixed-bed reactor (TFFBR) system. Results The level of inactivation of Aeromonas hydrophila ATCC 35654 was determined using a TFFBR with a photocatalytic area of 0.47 m2 under the influence of various water quality variables (pH, conductivity, turbidity and colour) under high solar irradiance conditions (980–1100 W m-2), at a flow rate of 4.8 L h-1 through the reactor. Bacterial enumeration were obtained through conventional plate count using trypticase soy agar media, cultured in conventional aerobic conditions to detect healthy cells and under ROS-neutralised conditions to detect both healthy and sub-lethally injured (oxygen-sensitive) cells. The results showed that turbidity has a major influence on solar photocatalytic inactivation of A. hydrophila. Humic acids appear to decrease TiO2 effectiveness under full sunlight and reduce microbial inactivation. pH in the range 7–9 and salinity both have no major effect on the extent of photoinactivation or sub-lethal injury. Conclusions This study demonstrates the effectiveness of the TFFBR in the inactivation of Aeromonas hydrophila under the influence of several water quality variables at high solar irradiance, providing an opportunity for the application of solar photocatalysis in aquaculture systems, as long as turbidity remains low. PMID:23194331

  18. Si-SiGe hetero-structure thin-film solar cells using integrated electro-optical modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khizar, Muhammad; Mei, Dongming

    2012-02-01

    Hetrostructure Si-SiGe thin film solar cells have been designed and optimized using advance electro-optical theoretical modeling and simulation. Some of the key characteristics such as short-circuit current density (Jsc), open circuit voltage (Voc), and fill factor (FF) have been studied for varying concentration of Ge in SiGe buffer layer. The effect of thickness variation of alloyed layer for varying Ge composition ˜0.1---10% has been performed. The improvement in the conversion efficiency of these cells was calculating by tailoring the thickness of p+ doped layer. An approach relying on phenomena of improved absorption of the alloys which leads to a gain in the current was explored. Improved infrared response with higher short circuit current has been obtained for about 25 μm thick structures. With the optimized Ge concentration, and the incorporated structure design parameters, as much as 4-6% enhancement in the overall efficiency of the solar cells has been calculated compared to that of the conventional single crystal Si solar cells. Moreover, the efficiency of these cells can further be improved because Si-SiGe based solar cells have improved absorption characteristics and offer minimum operating temperature sensitivity. It is believed that with better understanding of the band-gap engineering of SiGe when used as buffer and junction layers, the overall conversion efficiency of such devices can further be improved and could play a critical role to develop low cost and high efficiency solar cells technology. This work is supported by DOE grant DE-FG02-10ER46709 and the state of South Dakota.

  19. Pulsed voltage deposited lead selenide thin film as efficient counter electrode for quantum-dot-sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Bin Bin; Wang, Ye Feng; Wang, Xue Qing; Zeng, Jing Hui

    2016-04-01

    Lead selenide (PbSe) thin films were deposited on fluorine doped tin oxide (FTO) glass by a facile one-step pulse voltage electrodeposition method, and used as counter electrode (CE) in CdS/CdSe quantum dot-sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs). A power conversion efficiency of 4.67% is received for the CdS/CdSe co-sensitized solar cells, which is much better than that of 2.39% received using Pt CEs. The enhanced performance is attributed to the extended absorption in the near infrared region, superior electrocatalytic activity and p-type conductivity with a reflection of the incident light at the back electrode in addition. The physical and chemical properties were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscope (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), energy-dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), reflectance spectra, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and Tafel polarization measurements. The present work provides a facile pathway to an efficient CE in the QDSSCs.

  20. Efficient water-splitting device based on a bismuth vanadate photoanode and thin-film silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Han, Lihao; Abdi, Fatwa F; van de Krol, Roel; Liu, Rui; Huang, Zhuangqun; Lewerenz, Hans-Joachim; Dam, Bernard; Zeman, Miro; Smets, Arno H M

    2014-10-01

    A hybrid photovoltaic/photoelectrochemical (PV/PEC) water-splitting device with a benchmark solar-to-hydrogen conversion efficiency of 5.2% under simulated air mass (AM) 1.5 illumination is reported. This cell consists of a gradient-doped tungsten-bismuth vanadate (W:BiVO4 ) photoanode and a thin-film silicon solar cell. The improvement with respect to an earlier cell that also used gradient-doped W:BiVO4 has been achieved by simultaneously introducing a textured substrate to enhance light trapping in the BiVO4 photoanode and further optimization of the W gradient doping profile in the photoanode. Various PV cells have been studied in combination with this BiVO4 photoanode, such as an amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) single junction, an a-Si:H/a-Si:H double junction, and an a-Si:H/nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si:H) micromorph junction. The highest conversion efficiency, which is also the record efficiency for metal oxide based water-splitting devices, is reached for a tandem system consisting of the optimized W:BiVO4 photoanode and the micromorph (a-Si:H/nc-Si:H) cell. This record efficiency is attributed to the increased performance of the BiVO4 photoanode, which is the limiting factor in this hybrid PEC/PV device, as well as better spectral matching between BiVO4 and the nc-Si:H cell.