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Sample records for commercial silicon solar

  1. On the performance limiting behavior of defect clusters in commercial silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Sopori, B.L.; Chen, W.; Jones, K.; Gee, J.

    1998-09-01

    The authors report the observation of defect clusters in high-quality, commercial silicon solar cell substrates. The nature of the defect clusters, their mechanism of formation, and precipitation of metallic impurities at the defect clusters are discussed. This defect configuration influences the device performance in a unique way--by primarily degrading the voltage-related parameters. Network modeling is used to show that, in an N/P junction device, these regions act as shunts that dissipate power generated within the cell.

  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. Optimization of plasma deposition and etching processes for commercial multicrystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Ruby, D.S.; Wilbanks, W.L.; Fleddermann, C.B.; Rosenblum, M.D.; Roncin, S.; Narayanan, S.

    1996-06-01

    The authors conducted an investigation of plasma deposition and etching processes on full-size multicrystalline (mc-Si) cells processed in commercial production lines, so that any improvements obtained will be immediately relevant to the PV industry. In one case, the authors performed a statistically designed multiparameter experiment to determine the optimum PECVD-nitride deposition conditions specific to EFG silicon from ASE Americas, Inc. In a related effort, they studied whether plasma-etching techniques can use standard screen-printed gridlines as etch masks to form self-aligned, patterned-emitter profiles on mc-Si cells from Solarex Corp. Initial results found a statistically significant improvement of about half an absolute percentage point in cell efficiency when the self-aligned emitter etchback was combined with the PECVD-nitride surface passivation treatment. Additional improvement is expected when the successful bulk passivation treatment is also added to the process.

  4. Thin silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, R.B.; Bacon, C.; DiReda, V.; Ford, D.H.; Ingram, A.E.; Cotter, J.; Hughes-Lampros, T.; Rand, J.A.; Ruffins, T.R.; Barnett, A.M.

    1992-12-01

    The silicon-film design achieves high performance by using a dun silicon layer and incorporating light trapping. Optimally designed thin crystalline solar cells (<50 microns thick) have performance advantages over conventional thick devices. The high-performance silicon-film design employs a metallurgical barrier between the low-cost substrate and the thin silicon layer. Light trapping properties of silicon-film on ceramic solar cells are presented and analyzed. Recent advances in process development are described here.

  5. Solar silicon via the Dow Corning process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, L. P.; Dosaj, V. D.

    1979-01-01

    Technical feasibility for high volume production of solar cell-grade silicon is investigated. The process consists of producing silicon from pure raw materials via the carbothermic reduction of quartz. This silicon was then purified to solar grade by impurity segregation during Czochralski crystal growth. Commercially available raw materials were used to produce 100 kg quantities of silicon during 60 hour periods in a direct arc reactor. This silicon produced single crystalline ingot, during a second Czochralski pull, that was fabricated into solar cells having efficiencies ranging from 8.2 percent to greater than 14 percent. An energy analysis of the entire process indicated a 5 month payback time.

  6. Multicrystalline silicon bifacial solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Jimeno, J.C.; Luque, A.

    1984-05-01

    The authors analyze the results of several batches of multicrystalline silicon bifacial solar cells (HEM and cast). They measured the I-V curves under front and back illuminations and also in the dark. In the last case they carried out measurements at several temperatures. It was concluded that HEM wafers might be used to manufacture commercial bifacial cells, while the high base recombination prevents the use of cast wafers for this purpose.

  7. Commercializing solar hydrogen production

    SciTech Connect

    Holmes, J.T.; Prairie, M.R.

    1991-01-01

    This paper discusses the need for a government-supported program to commercialize hydrogen production methods which use solar energy as the main source of energy. Current methods use hydrocarbons and generate large amounts of carbon dioxide. The paper describes results from a literature survey performed to identify technologies using direct solar energy that were likely to succeed on an industrial scale in the near term. Critical parameters included calculated efficiencies, measured efficiencies, and development status. The cost of solar collectors is cited as the reason most promising solar hydrogen research is not taken to the pilot plant stage. The author recommends use of existing DOE facilities already in operation for pilot plant testing. 14 refs. (CK)

  8. 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.

  9. Laser wafering for silicon solar.

    SciTech Connect

    Friedmann, Thomas Aquinas; Sweatt, William C.; Jared, Bradley Howell

    2011-03-01

    Current technology cuts solar Si wafers by a wire saw process, resulting in 50% 'kerf' loss when machining silicon from a boule or brick into a wafer. We want to develop a kerf-free laser wafering technology that promises to eliminate such wasteful wire saw processes and achieve up to a ten-fold decrease in the g/W{sub p} (grams/peak watt) polysilicon usage from the starting polysilicon material. Compared to today's technology, this will also reduce costs ({approx}20%), embodied energy, and green-house gas GHG emissions ({approx}50%). We will use short pulse laser illumination sharply focused by a solid immersion lens to produce subsurface damage in silicon such that wafers can be mechanically cleaved from a boule or brick. For this concept to succeed, we will need to develop optics, lasers, cleaving, and high throughput processing technologies capable of producing wafers with thicknesses < 50 {micro}m with high throughput (< 10 sec./wafer). Wafer thickness scaling is the 'Moore's Law' of silicon solar. Our concept will allow solar manufacturers to skip entire generations of scaling and achieve grid parity with commercial electricity rates. Yet, this idea is largely untested and a simple demonstration is needed to provide credibility for a larger scale research and development program. The purpose of this project is to lay the groundwork to demonstrate the feasibility of laser wafering. First, to design and procure on optic train suitable for producing subsurface damage in silicon with the required damage and stress profile to promote lateral cleavage of silicon. Second, to use an existing laser to produce subsurface damage in silicon, and third, to characterize the damage using scanning electron microscopy and confocal Raman spectroscopy mapping.

  10. Silicon concentrator solar cell research

    SciTech Connect

    Green, M.A.; Zhao, J.; Wang, A.; Dai, X.; Milne, A.; Cai, S.; Aberle, A.; Wenham, S.R.

    1993-06-01

    This report describes work conducted between December 1990 and May 1992 continuing research on silicon concentrator solar cells. The objectives of the work were to improve the performance of high-efficiency cells upon p-type substrates, to investigate the ultraviolet stability of such cells, to develop concentrator cells based on n-type substrates, and to transfer technology to appropriate commercial environments. Key results include the identification of contact resistance between boron-defused areas and rear aluminum as the source of anomalously large series resistance in both p- and n-type cells. A major achievement of the present project was the successful transfer of cell technology to both Applied Solar Energy Corporation and Solarex Corporation.

  11. Investigation of the stability and 1.0 MeV proton radiation resistance of commercially produced hydrogenated amorphous silicon alloy solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lord, Kenneth R., II; Walters, Michael R.; Woodyard, James R.

    1994-01-01

    The radiation resistance of commercial solar cells fabricated from hydrogenated amorphous silicon alloys is reported. A number of different device structures were irradiated with 1.0 MeV protons. The cells were annealing at 200 C. The annealing time was dependent on proton fluence. Annealing devices for one hour restores cell parameters or fluences below 1(exp 14) cm(exp -2); fluences above 1(exp 14) cm(exp -2) require longer annealing times. A parametric fitting model was used to characterize current mechanisms observed in dark I-V measurements. The current mechanisms were explored with irradiation fluence, and voltage and light soaking times. The thermal generation current density and quality factor increased with proton fluence. Device simulation shows the degradation in cell characteristics may be explained by the reduction of the electric field in the intrinsic layer.

  12. Investigation of the Stability and 1.0 MeV Proton Radiation Resistance of Commercially Produced Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Alloy Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lord, Kenneth R., II; Walters, Michael R.; Woodyard, James R.

    1994-01-01

    The radiation resistance of commercial solar cells fabricated from hydrogenated amorphous silicon alloys is reported. A number of different device structures were irradiated with 1.0 MeV protons. The cells were insensitive to proton fluences below 1E12 sq cm. The parameters of the irradiated cells were restored with annealing at 200 C. The annealing time was dependent on proton fluence. Annealing devices for one hour restores cell parameters for fluences below 1E14 sq cm fluences above 1E14 sq cm require longer annealing times. A parametric fitting model was used to characterize current mechanisms observed In dark I-V measurements. The current mechanism were explored with irradiation fluence, and voltage and light soaking times. The thermal generation current density and quality factor increased with proton fluence. Device simulation shows the degradation in cell characteristics may be explained by the reduction of the electric field in the intrinsic layer.

  13. Substrate for silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, D.E.

    1982-08-10

    A substrate is made for silicon solar cells by heating a sheet of large-grained silicon steel at a temperature of at least about 1300* C. In an atmosphere of hydrogen and tungsten hexafluo (Or hexachloride) at a partial pressure ratio of hydrogen to tungsten hexafluoride of about 3 to about 6 to deposit an epitaxial layer of tungsten on said sheet of silicon steel. Epitaxial silicon can then be deposited in a conventional manner on the layer of epitaxial tungsten.

  14. Low cost silicon solar arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ravi, K. V.; Serreze, H. B.; Bates, H. E.; Morrison, A. D.; Jewett, D. N.; Ho, J. C. T.; Schwuttke, G. H.; Ciszek, T. F.; Kran, A.

    1975-01-01

    Continuous growth methodology for silicon solar cell ribbons deals with capillary effects, die effects, thermal effects and crystal shape effects. Emphasis centers on the shape of the meniscus at the ribbon edge as a factor contributing to ribbon quality with respect to defect densities. Structural and electrical characteristics of edge defined, film-fed grown silicon ribbons are elaborated. Ribbon crystal solar cells produce AMO efficiencies of 6 to 10%.

  15. Compensated amorphous silicon solar cell

    DOEpatents

    Carlson, David E.

    1980-01-01

    An amorphous silicon solar cell incorporates a region of intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon fabricated by a glow discharge wherein said intrinsic region is compensated by P-type dopants in an amount sufficient to reduce the space charge density of said region under illumination to about zero.

  16. Low cost silicon solar arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goldsmith, J. V.; Cleland, J. W.; Westbrook, R. D.; Davis, H. L.; Wood, R. F.; Lindmayer, J.; Wakefield, G. F.

    1975-01-01

    The economic production of silicon solar cell arrays circumvents p-n junction degradation by nuclear doping, in which the Si-30 transmutes to P-31 after thermal neutron capture. Also considered are chemical purity specifications for improved silicon bulk states, surface induced states, and surface states.

  17. Silicon MINP solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olsen, L. C.; Addis, F. W.; Miller, W. A.

    1985-01-01

    The MINP solar cell concept refers to a cell structure designed to be a base region dominated device. Thus, it is desirable that recombination losses are reduced to the point that they occur only in the base region. The most unique feature of the MINP cell design is that a tunneling contact is utilized for the metallic contact on the front surface. The areas under the collector grid and bus bar are passivated by a thin oxide of tunneling thickness. Efforts must also be taken to minimize recombination at the surface between grid lines, at the junction periphery and within the emitter. Results of both theoretical and experimental studies of silicon MINP cells are given. Performance calculations are described which give expected efficiencies as a function of base resistivity and junction depth. Fabrication and characterization of cells are discussed which are based on 0.2 ohm-cm substrates, diffused emitters on the order of 0.15 to 0.20 microns deep, and with Mg MIS collector grids. A total area AM 1 efficiency of 16.8% was achieved. Detailed analyses of photocurrent and current loss mechanisms are presented and utilized to discuss future directions of research. Finally, results reported by other workers are discussed.

  18. Substrate for silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, D.E.

    1983-09-06

    A substrate is made for silicon solar cells by heating a sheet of large-grained silicon steel at a temperature of at least about 1300/sup 0/ C. in an atmosphere of hydrogen and tungsten hexafluoride (or hexachloride) at a partial pressure ratio of hydrogen to tungsten hexafluoride of about 3 to about 6 to deposit an epitaxial layer of tungsten on said sheet of silicon steel. Epitaxial silicon can then be deposited in a conventional manner on the layer of epitaxial tungsten.

  19. Compensated amorphous silicon solar cell

    DOEpatents

    Devaud, Genevieve

    1983-01-01

    An amorphous silicon solar cell including an electrically conductive substrate, a layer of glow discharge deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon over said substrate and having regions of differing conductivity with at least one region of intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon. The layer of hydrogenated amorphous silicon has opposed first and second major surfaces where the first major surface contacts the electrically conductive substrate and an electrode for electrically contacting the second major surface. The intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon region is deposited in a glow discharge with an atmosphere which includes not less than about 0.02 atom percent mono-atomic boron. An improved N.I.P. solar cell is disclosed using a BF.sub.3 doped intrinsic layer.

  20. Silicon bulk growth for solar cells: Science and technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kakimoto, Koichi; Gao, Bing; Nakano, Satoshi; Harada, Hirofumi; Miyamura, Yoshiji

    2017-02-01

    The photovoltaic industry is in a phase of rapid expansion, growing by more than 30% per annum over the last few decades. Almost all commercial solar cells presently use single-crystalline or multicrystalline silicon wafers similar to those used in microelectronics; meanwhile, thin-film compounds and alloy solar cells are currently under development. The laboratory performance of these cells, at 26% solar energy conversion efficiency, is now approaching thermodynamic limits, with the challenge being to incorporate these improvements into low-cost commercial products. Improvements in the optical design of cells, particularly in their ability to trap weakly absorbed light, have also led to increasing interest in thin-film cells based on polycrystalline silicon; these cells have advantages over other thin-film photovoltaic candidates. This paper provides an overview of silicon-based solar cell research, especially the development of silicon wafers for solar cells, from the viewpoint of growing both single-crystalline and multicrystalline wafers.

  1. Amorphous silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takahashi, K.; Konagai, M.

    The fabrication, performance, and applications of a-Si solar cells are discussed, summarizing the results of recent experimental investigations and trial installations. Topics examined include the fundamental principles and design strategies of solar power installations; the characteristics of monocrystalline-Si solar cells; techniques for reducing the cost of solar cells; independent, linked, and hybrid solar power systems; proposed satellite solar power systems; and the use of solar cells in consumer appliances. Consideration is given to the history of a-Si, a-Si fabrication techniques, quality criteria for a-Si films, solar cells based on a-Si, and techniques for increasing the efficiency and lowering the cost of a-Si solar cells. Graphs, diagrams, drawings, and black-and-white and color photographs are provided.

  2. Impurities in silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, R. H.

    1985-01-01

    Metallic impurities, both singly and in combinations, affect the performance of silicon solar cells. Czochralski silicon web crystals were grown with controlled additions of secondary impurities. The primary electrical dopants were boron and phosphorus. The silicon test ingots were grown under controlled and carefully monitored conditions from high-purity charge and dopant material to minimize unintentional contamination. Following growth, each crystal was characterized by chemical, microstructural, electrical, and solar cell tests to provide a detailed and internally consistent description of the relationships between silicon impurity concentration and solar cell performance. Deep-level spectroscopy measurements were used to measure impurity concentrations at levels below the detectability of other techniques and to study thermally-induced changes in impurity activity. For the majority of contaminants, impurity-induced performance loss is due to a reduction of the base diffusion length. From these observations, a semi-empirical model which predicts cell performance as a function of metal impurity concentration was formulated. The model was then used successfully to predict the behavior of solar cells bearing as many as 11 different impurities.

  3. Method for processing silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Tsuo, Y.S.; Landry, M.D.; Pitts, J.R.

    1997-05-06

    The instant invention teaches a novel method for fabricating silicon solar cells utilizing concentrated solar radiation. The solar radiation is concentrated by use of a solar furnace which is used to form a front surface junction and back-surface field in one processing step. The present invention also provides a method of making multicrystalline silicon from amorphous silicon. The invention also teaches a method of texturing the surface of a wafer by forming a porous silicon layer on the surface of a silicon substrate and a method of gettering impurities. Also contemplated by the invention are methods of surface passivation, forming novel solar cell structures, and hydrogen passivation. 2 figs.

  4. Method for processing silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Tsuo, Y. Simon; Landry, Marc D.; Pitts, John R.

    1997-01-01

    The instant invention teaches a novel method for fabricating silicon solar cells utilizing concentrated solar radiation. The solar radiation is concentrated by use of a solar furnace which is used to form a front surface junction and back-surface field in one processing step. The present invention also provides a method of making multicrystallline silicon from amorphous silicon. The invention also teaches a method of texturing the surface of a wafer by forming a porous silicon layer on the surface of a silicon substrate and a method of gettering impurities. Also contemplated by the invention are methods of surface passivation, forming novel solar cell structures, and hydrogen passivation.

  5. Point contact silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swanson, Richard M.

    1987-01-01

    A new type of silicon solar cell has been developed. It is called the point-contact cell because the metal semiconductor contacts are restricted to an array of small points on the back of the cell. The point contact cell has recently demonstrated 22 percent conversion efficiency at one sun and 27.5 percent at 100 suns under an AM1.5 spectrum.

  6. Commercialization of solar space power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pant, Alok; Sera, Gary

    1995-01-01

    The objective of this research is to help U.S. companies commercialize renewable energy in India, with a special focus on solar energy. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Mid-Continent Technology Transfer Center (MCTTC) is working with ENTECH, Inc., a solar photovoltaic (SPV) systems manufacturer to form partnerships with Indian companies. MCTTC has conducted both secondary and primary market research and obtained travel funding to meet potential Indian partners face to face. MCTTC and ENTECH traveled to India during June 2-20, 1994, and visited New Delhi, Bombay, Pune and Calcutta. Meetings were held with several key government officials and premier Indian business houses and entrepreneurs in the area of solar energy. A firsthand knowledge of India's renewable energy industry was gained, and companies were qualified in terms of capabilities and commitment to the SPV business. The World Bank has awarded India with 280 million to commercialize renewable energies, including 55 million for SPV. There is a market in India for both small-scale (kW) and large SPV (MW) applications. Each U.S. company needs to form a joint venture with an Indian firm and let the latter identify the states and projects with the greatest business potential. Several big Indian companies and entrepreneurs are planning to enter the SPV business, and they currently are seeking foreign technology partners. Since the lager companies have adopted a more conservative approach, however, partnerships with entrepreneurs might offer the quickest route to market entry in India.

  7. High Efficiency, Low Cost Solar Cells Manufactured Using 'Silicon Ink' on Thin Crystalline Silicon Wafers

    SciTech Connect

    Antoniadis, H.

    2011-03-01

    Reported are the development and demonstration of a 17% efficient 25mm x 25mm crystalline Silicon solar cell and a 16% efficient 125mm x 125mm crystalline Silicon solar cell, both produced by Ink-jet printing Silicon Ink on a thin crystalline Silicon wafer. To achieve these objectives, processing approaches were developed to print the Silicon Ink in a predetermined pattern to form a high efficiency selective emitter, remove the solvents in the Silicon Ink and fuse the deposited particle Silicon films. Additionally, standard solar cell manufacturing equipment with slightly modified processes were used to complete the fabrication of the Silicon Ink high efficiency solar cells. Also reported are the development and demonstration of a 18.5% efficient 125mm x 125mm monocrystalline Silicon cell, and a 17% efficient 125mm x 125mm multicrystalline Silicon cell, by utilizing high throughput Ink-jet and screen printing technologies. To achieve these objectives, Innovalight developed new high throughput processing tools to print and fuse both p and n type particle Silicon Inks in a predetermined pat-tern applied either on the front or the back of the cell. Additionally, a customized Ink-jet and screen printing systems, coupled with customized substrate handling solution, customized printing algorithms, and a customized ink drying process, in combination with a purchased turn-key line, were used to complete the high efficiency solar cells. This development work delivered a process capable of high volume producing 18.5% efficient crystalline Silicon solar cells and enabled the Innovalight to commercialize its technology by the summer of 2010.

  8. Amorphous silicon solar cell allowing infrared transmission

    DOEpatents

    Carlson, David E.

    1979-01-01

    An amorphous silicon solar cell with a layer of high index of refraction material or a series of layers having high and low indices of refraction material deposited upon a transparent substrate to reflect light of energies greater than the bandgap energy of the amorphous silicon back into the solar cell and transmit solar radiation having an energy less than the bandgap energy of the amorphous silicon.

  9. ELECTRON BOMBARDMENT OF SILICON SOLAR CELLS,

    DTIC Science & Technology

    DAMAGE, ELECTRON IRRADIATION, SOLAR CELLS , SILICON, PHOTOELECTRIC CELLS(SEMICONDUCTOR), QUARTZ, GLASS, SHIELDING, CRYSTAL DEFECTS, HEAT TREATMENT, ARTIFICIAL SATELLITES, SPACECRAFT, GRAPHICS, GRAPHICS.

  10. Characterization of a Commercial Silicon Beta Cell

    SciTech Connect

    Foxe, Michael P.; Hayes, James C.; Mayer, Michael F.; McIntyre, Justin I.; Sivels, Ciara B.; Suarez, Rey

    2016-03-31

    Silicon detectors are of interest for the verification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) due to their enhanced energy resolution compared to plastic scintillators beta cells. Previous work developing a figure-of-merit (FOM) for comparison of beta cells suggests that the minimum detectable activity (MDA) could be reduced by a factor of two to three with the use of silicon detectors. Silicon beta cells have been developed by CEA (France) and Lares Ltd. (Russia), with the PIPSBox developed by CEA being commercially available from Canberra for approximately $35k, but there is still uncertainty about the reproducibility of the capabilities in the field. PNNL is developing a high-resolution beta-gamma detector system in the shallow underground laboratory, which will utilize and characterize the operation of the PIPSBox detector. Throughout this report, we examine the capabilities of the PIPSBox as developed by CEA. The lessons learned through the testing and use of the PIPSBox will allow PNNL to strategically develop a silicon detector optimized to better suit the communities needs in the future.

  11. Silicon Carbide Solar Cells Investigated

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bailey, Sheila G.; Raffaelle, Ryne P.

    2001-01-01

    The semiconductor silicon carbide (SiC) has long been known for its outstanding resistance to harsh environments (e.g., thermal stability, radiation resistance, and dielectric strength). However, the ability to produce device-quality material is severely limited by the inherent crystalline defects associated with this material and their associated electronic effects. Much progress has been made recently in the understanding and control of these defects and in the improved processing of this material. Because of this work, it may be possible to produce SiC-based solar cells for environments with high temperatures, light intensities, and radiation, such as those experienced by solar probes. Electronics and sensors based on SiC can operate in hostile environments where conventional silicon-based electronics (limited to 350 C) cannot function. Development of this material will enable large performance enhancements and size reductions for a wide variety of systems--such as high-frequency devices, high-power devices, microwave switching devices, and high-temperature electronics. These applications would supply more energy-efficient public electric power distribution and electric vehicles, more powerful microwave electronics for radar and communications, and better sensors and controls for cleaner-burning, more fuel-efficient jet aircraft and automobile engines. The 6H-SiC polytype is a promising wide-bandgap (Eg = 3.0 eV) semiconductor for photovoltaic applications in harsh solar environments that involve high-temperature and high-radiation conditions. The advantages of this material for this application lie in its extremely large breakdown field strength, high thermal conductivity, good electron saturation drift velocity, and stable electrical performance at temperatures as high as 600 C. This behavior makes it an attractive photovoltaic solar cell material for devices that can operate within three solar radii of the Sun.

  12. Point contact silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swanson, R. M.

    1986-01-01

    The construction of a 22.2% efficient single-crystal silicon solar cell fabricated at Stanford University is described. The cell dimensions were 3 x 5 mm and 100 microns thick with a base lifetime of 500 microseconds. The cell featured light trapping between a texturized top surface and a reflective bottom surface, small point contact diffusions, alternating between n-type and p-type in a polka-dot pattern on the bottom surface, and a surface passivation on all surfaces between contact regions.

  13. Advanced crystallization techniques of 'solar grade' silicon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gasparini, M.; Calligarich, C.; Rava, P.; Sardi, L.; Alessandri, M.; Redaelli, F.; Pizzini, S.

    Microstructural, electrical and photo-voltaic characteristics of polycrystal line silicon solar cells fabricated with silicon ingots containing 5, 100 and 500 ppmw iron are reported and discussed. All silicon ingots were grown by the directional solidification technique in graphite or special quartz molds and doped intentionally with iron, in order to evaluate the potentiality of the D.S. technique when employed with solar silicon feedstocks. Results indicate that structural breakdown limits the amount of the ingot which is usable for solar cells fabrication, but also that efficiencies in excess of 10 percent are obtained using the 'good' region of the ingot.

  14. NREL Success Stories - Quest for Inexpensive Silicon Solar Cells

    ScienceCinema

    Branz, Howard

    2016-07-12

    Scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) share their story about a successful partnership with Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Ampulse Corporation and how support from the US Department of Energy's Technology Commercialization & Deployment Fund has helped it and their silicon solar cell research thrive.

  15. New developments in silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindmayer, J.

    1978-01-01

    Three areas of silicon solar cell development are discussed. The first area relates to ultra thin cells about 50 microns in thickness, which can be made with relative good yield and efficiency. The second describes a new effort in vertical junction cells which show increased efficiency and continues to improve. The third area describes our semicrystalline silicon work which resulted in silicon solar cells that show over 10% terrestrial conversion efficiency and are tolerant to impurities.

  16. High-efficiency silicon concentrator cell commercialization

    SciTech Connect

    Sinton, R.A.; Swanson, R.M.

    1993-05-01

    This report summarizes the first phase of a forty-one month program to develop a commercial, high-efficiency concentrator solar cell and facility for manufacturing it. The period covered is November 1, 1990 to December 31, 1991. This is a joint program between the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and Sandia National Laboratories. (This report is also published by EPRI as EPRI report number TR-102035.) During the first year of the program, SunPower accomplished the following major objectives: (1) a new solar cell fabrication facility, which is called the Cell Pilot Line (CPL), (2) a baseline concentrator cell process has been developed, and (3) a cell testing facility has been completed. Initial cell efficiencies are about 23% for the baseline process. The long-range goal is to improve this efficiency to 27%.

  17. Integrally covered silicon solar cells.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stella, P. M.; Somberg, H.

    1972-01-01

    The electron-beam technique for evaporating dielectric materials onto solar cells has been examined and developed. Titanium oxide cell antireflection coatings have been obtained which compare to silicon monoxide in environmental capabilities and which provide 3 to 4% improvement over SiO for glass covered cells. Evaporation processes have been obtained which provide a 50 to 100 micromil thick transparent (0.5 to 1.0% absorption per mil), low stressed integral cover capable of surviving space type qualification testing. Irradiation with 10 to the 15th power 1-MeV electrons shows 2% darkening, and long term UV irradiation incurs approximately 1.3% cover darkening for 50 micromil thick covers.

  18. Intermediate Bandgap Solar Cells From Nanostructured Silicon

    SciTech Connect

    Black, Marcie

    2014-10-30

    This project aimed to demonstrate increased electronic coupling in silicon nanostructures relative to bulk silicon for the purpose of making high efficiency intermediate bandgap solar cells using silicon. To this end, we formed nanowires with controlled crystallographic orientation, small diameter, <111> sidewall faceting, and passivated surfaces to modify the electronic band structure in silicon by breaking down the symmetry of the crystal lattice. We grew and tested these silicon nanowires with <110>-growth axes, which is an orientation that should produce the coupling enhancement.

  19. Transmutation doping of silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, R. F.; Westbrook, R. D.; Young, R. T.; Cleland, J. W.

    1977-01-01

    Normal isotopic silicon contains 3.05% of Si-30 which transmutes to P-31 after thermal neutron absorption, with a half-life of 2.6 hours. This reaction is used to introduce extremely uniform concentrations of phosphorus into silicon, thus eliminating the areal and spatial inhomogeneities characteristic of chemical doping. Annealing of the lattice damage in the irradiated silicon does not alter the uniformity of dopant distribution. Transmutation doping also makes it possible to introduce phosphorus into polycrystalline silicon without segregation of the dopant at the grain boundaries. The use of neutron transmutation doped (NTD) silicon in solar cell research and development is discussed.

  20. Fabricating solar cells with silicon nanoparticles

    DOEpatents

    Loscutoff, Paul; Molesa, Steve; Kim, Taeseok

    2014-09-02

    A laser contact process is employed to form contact holes to emitters of a solar cell. Doped silicon nanoparticles are formed over a substrate of the solar cell. The surface of individual or clusters of silicon nanoparticles is coated with a nanoparticle passivation film. Contact holes to emitters of the solar cell are formed by impinging a laser beam on the passivated silicon nanoparticles. For example, the laser contact process may be a laser ablation process. In that case, the emitters may be formed by diffusing dopants from the silicon nanoparticles prior to forming the contact holes to the emitters. As another example, the laser contact process may be a laser melting process whereby portions of the silicon nanoparticles are melted to form the emitters and contact holes to the emitters.

  1. Gap/silicon Tandem Solar Cell with Extended Temperature Range

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A. (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    A two-junction solar cell has a bottom solar cell junction of crystalline silicon, and a top solar cell junction of gallium phosphide. A three (or more) junction solar cell has bottom solar cell junctions of silicon, and a top solar cell junction of gallium phosphide. The resulting solar cells exhibit improved extended temperature operation.

  2. Develop Silicone Encapsulation Systems for Terrestrial Silicon Solar Arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1979-01-01

    The results for Task 3 of the Low Cost Solar Array Project are presented. Task 3 is directed toward the development of a cost effective encapsulating system for photovoltaic modules using silicon based materials. The technical approach of the contract effort is divided into four special tasks: (1) technology review; (2) generation of concepts for screening and processing silicon encapsulation systems; (3) assessment of encapsulation concepts; and (4) evaluation of encapsulation concepts. The candidate silicon materials are reviewed. The silicon and modified silicon resins were chosen on the basis of similarity to materials with known weatherability, cost, initial tangential modulus, accelerated dirt pick-up test results and the ratio of the content of organic phenyl substitution of methyl substitution on the backbone of the silicon resin.

  3. Inexpensive transparent nanoelectrode for crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Qiang; Pei, Ke; Han, Bing; Li, Ruopeng; Zhou, Guofu; Liu, Jun-Ming; Kempa, Krzysztof; Gao, Jinwei

    2016-06-01

    We report an easily manufacturable and inexpensive transparent conductive electrode for crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells. It is based on a silver nanoparticle network self-forming in the valleys between the pyramids of a textured solar cell surface, transformed into a nanowire network by sintering, and subsequently "buried" under the silicon surface by a metal-assisted chemical etching. We have successfully incorporated these steps into the conventional c-Si solar cell manufacturing process, from which we have eliminated the expensive screen printing and firing steps, typically used to make the macro-electrode of conducting silver fingers. The resulting, preliminary solar cell achieved power conversion efficiency only 14 % less than the conventionally processed c-Si control cell. We expect that a cell with an optimized processing will achieve at least efficiency of the conventional commercial cell, but at significantly reduced manufacturing cost.

  4. Inexpensive transparent nanoelectrode for crystalline silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Peng, Qiang; Pei, Ke; Han, Bing; Li, Ruopeng; Zhou, Guofu; Liu, Jun-Ming; Kempa, Krzysztof; Gao, Jinwei

    2016-12-01

    We report an easily manufacturable and inexpensive transparent conductive electrode for crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells. It is based on a silver nanoparticle network self-forming in the valleys between the pyramids of a textured solar cell surface, transformed into a nanowire network by sintering, and subsequently "buried" under the silicon surface by a metal-assisted chemical etching. We have successfully incorporated these steps into the conventional c-Si solar cell manufacturing process, from which we have eliminated the expensive screen printing and firing steps, typically used to make the macro-electrode of conducting silver fingers. The resulting, preliminary solar cell achieved power conversion efficiency only 14 % less than the conventionally processed c-Si control cell. We expect that a cell with an optimized processing will achieve at least efficiency of the conventional commercial cell, but at significantly reduced manufacturing cost.

  5. Improving Solar Cells With Polycrystalline Silicon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rohatgi, Ajeet; Campbell, Robert B.; Rai-Choudhury, Prosenjit

    1987-01-01

    In proposed solar-cell design, layers of polycrystalline silicon grown near front metal grid and back metal surface. Net electrical effect increases open-circuit voltage and short-circuit current, resulting in greater cell power output and energy conversion efficiency. Solar-cell configuration differs from existing one in that layers of doped polycrystalline silicon added to reduce recombination in emitter and back surface field regions.

  6. Large area Czochralski silicon for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rea, S. N.; Wakefield, G. F.

    1976-01-01

    A detailed model of a typical Czochralski silicon crystal puller is utilized to predict maximum crystal growth rate as a function of various furnace parameters. Results of this analysis, when combined with multiblade slurry sawing, indicate that the Czochralski process is highly attractive for achieving near-term cost reduction of solar cell silicon.

  7. Epitaxial silicon growth for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Daiello, R. V.; Robinson, P. H.; Richman, D.

    1979-01-01

    The epitaxial procedures, solar cell fabrication, and evaluation techniques are described. The development of baseline epitaxial solar cell structures grown on high quality conventional silicon substrates is discussed. Diagnostic layers and solar cells grown on four potentially low cost silicon substrates are considered. The crystallographic properties of such layers and the performance of epitaxially grown solar cells fabricated on these materials are described. An advanced epitaxial reactor, the rotary disc, is described along with the results of growing solar cell structures of the baseline type on low cost substrates. The add on cost for the epitaxial process is assessed and the economic advantages of the epitaxial process as they relate to silicon substrate selection are examined.

  8. Arrays of ultrathin silicon solar microcells

    DOEpatents

    Rogers, John A; Rockett, Angus A; Nuzzo, Ralph; Yoon, Jongseung; Baca, Alfred

    2014-03-25

    Provided are solar cells, photovoltaics and related methods for making solar cells, wherein the solar cell is made of ultrathin solar grade or low quality silicon. In an aspect, the invention is a method of making a solar cell by providing a solar cell substrate having a receiving surface and assembling a printable semiconductor element on the receiving surface of the substrate via contact printing. The semiconductor element has a thickness that is less than or equal to 100 .mu.m and, for example, is made from low grade Si.

  9. Arrays of ultrathin silicon solar microcells

    SciTech Connect

    Rogers, John A.; Rockett, Angus A.; Nuzzo, Ralph; Yoon, Jongseung; Baca, Alfred

    2015-08-11

    Provided are solar cells, photovoltaics and related methods for making solar cells, wherein the solar cell is made of ultrathin solar grade or low quality silicon. In an aspect, the invention is a method of making a solar cell by providing a solar cell substrate having a receiving surface and assembling a printable semiconductor element on the receiving surface of the substrate via contact printing. The semiconductor element has a thickness that is less than or equal to 100 .mu.m and, for example, is made from low grade Si.

  10. Manufacture of silicon carbide using solar energy

    DOEpatents

    Glatzmaier, Gregory C.

    1992-01-01

    A method is described for producing silicon carbide particles using solar energy. The method is efficient and avoids the need for use of electrical energy to heat the reactants. Finely divided silica and carbon are admixed and placed in a solar-heated reaction chamber for a time sufficient to cause a reaction between the ingredients to form silicon carbide of very small particle size. No grinding of silicon carbide is required to obtain small particles. The method may be carried out as a batch process or as a continuous process.

  11. Compensated amorphous-silicon solar cell

    DOEpatents

    Devaud, G.

    1982-06-21

    An amorphous silicon solar cell including an electrically conductive substrate, a layer of glow discharge deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon having regions of differing conductivity with at least one region of intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon. The layer of hydrogenated amorphous silicon has opposed first and second major surfaces where the first major surface contacts the elecrically conductive substrate and an electrode for electrically contacting the second major surface. The intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon region is deposited in a glow discharge with an atmosphere which includes not less than about 0.02 atom percent mono-atomic boron. An improved N.I.P. solar cell is disclosed using a BF/sub 3/ doped intrinsic layer.

  12. Develop Silicone Encapsulation Systems for Terrestrial Silicon Solar Arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1979-01-01

    The results of a study for Task 3 of the Low Cost Solar Array Project, directed toward the development of a cost effective encapsulation system for photovoltaic modules using silicon based materials, are reported. Results of the following are discussed: (1) weather-ometer stressing vs. weathering history of silicon and silicon modified materials; (2) humidity/temperature cycling exposure; (3) exposure at high humidity/high temperature; (4) outdoor exposure stress; (5) thermal cycling stress; and (6) UV screening agents. The plans for the next quarter are outlined.

  13. Three dimensional amorphous silicon/microcrystalline silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Kaschmitter, James L.

    1996-01-01

    Three dimensional deep contact amorphous silicon/microcrystalline silicon (a-Si/.mu.c-Si) solar cells which use deep (high aspect ratio) p and n contacts to create high electric fields within the carrier collection volume material of the cell. The deep contacts are fabricated using repetitive pulsed laser doping so as to create the high aspect p and n contacts. By the provision of the deep contacts which penetrate the electric field deep into the material where the high strength of the field can collect many of the carriers, thereby resulting in a high efficiency solar cell.

  14. Three dimensional amorphous silicon/microcrystalline silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Kaschmitter, J.L.

    1996-07-23

    Three dimensional deep contact amorphous silicon/microcrystalline silicon (a-Si/{micro}c-Si) solar cells are disclosed which use deep (high aspect ratio) p and n contacts to create high electric fields within the carrier collection volume material of the cell. The deep contacts are fabricated using repetitive pulsed laser doping so as to create the high aspect p and n contacts. By the provision of the deep contacts which penetrate the electric field deep into the material where the high strength of the field can collect many of the carriers, thereby resulting in a high efficiency solar cell. 4 figs.

  15. Solar energy innovation and Silicon Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kammen, Daniel M.

    2015-03-01

    The growth of the U. S. and global solar energy industry depends on a strong relationship between science and engineering innovation, manufacturing, and cycles of policy design and advancement. The mixture of the academic and industrial engine of innovation that is Silicon Valley, and the strong suite of environmental policies for which California is a leader work together to both drive the solar energy industry, and keep Silicon Valley competitive as China, Europe and other area of solar energy strength continue to build their clean energy sectors.

  16. Degradation of bulk diffusion length in CZ silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Reiss, J.H.; King, R.R.; Mitchell, K.W.

    1995-08-01

    Commercially-produced, unencapsulated, CZ silicon solar cells can lose 3 to 4% of their initial efficiency after exposure to light. After this initial, rapid ( < 30 min.) decrease, the cell power output remains stable. The cell performance recovers in a matter of hours in the dark at room temperature, and degrades again under light exposure. The different conditions under which CZ silicon cells degrade, and the reverse process, annealing, are characterized with the methods of spectral response and current-voltage (I-V) measurements. Iron impurities are a possible cause of this effect.

  17. Towards stable silicon nanoarray hybrid solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, W. W.; Wu, K. J.; Wang, K.; Shi, T. F.; Wu, L.; Li, S. X.; Teng, D. Y.; Ye, C. H.

    2014-01-01

    Silicon nanoarray hybrid solar cells benefit from the ease of fabrication and the cost-effectiveness of the hybrid structure, and represent a new research focus towards the utilization of solar energy. However, hybrid solar cells composed of both inorganic and organic components suffer from the notorious stability issue, which has to be tackled before the hybrid solar cells could become a viable alternative for harvesting solar energy. Here we show that Si nanoarray/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells with improved stability can be fabricated via eliminating the water inclusion in the initial formation of the heterojunction between Si nanoarray and PEDOT:PSS. The Si nanoarray hybrid solar cells are stable against rapid degradation in the atmosphere environment for several months without encapsulation. This finding paves the way towards the real-world applications of Si nanoarray hybrid solar cells.

  18. Towards stable silicon nanoarray hybrid solar cells.

    PubMed

    He, W W; Wu, K J; Wang, K; Shi, T F; Wu, L; Li, S X; Teng, D Y; Ye, C H

    2014-01-16

    Silicon nanoarray hybrid solar cells benefit from the ease of fabrication and the cost-effectiveness of the hybrid structure, and represent a new research focus towards the utilization of solar energy. However, hybrid solar cells composed of both inorganic and organic components suffer from the notorious stability issue, which has to be tackled before the hybrid solar cells could become a viable alternative for harvesting solar energy. Here we show that Si nanoarray/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells with improved stability can be fabricated via eliminating the water inclusion in the initial formation of the heterojunction between Si nanoarray and PEDOT:PSS. The Si nanoarray hybrid solar cells are stable against rapid degradation in the atmosphere environment for several months without encapsulation. This finding paves the way towards the real-world applications of Si nanoarray hybrid solar cells.

  19. Harmful Shunting Mechanisms Found in Silicon Solar Cells (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2011-05-01

    Scientists developed near-field optical microscopy for imaging electrical breakdown in solar cells and identified critical electrical breakdown mechanisms operating in industrial silicon and epitaxial silicon solar cells.

  20. Inverted amorphous silicon solar cell utilizing cermet layers

    DOEpatents

    Hanak, Joseph J.

    1979-01-01

    An amorphous silicon solar cell incorporating a transparent high work function metal cermet incident to solar radiation and a thick film cermet contacting the amorphous silicon opposite to said incident surface.

  1. Commercializing solar for industry in California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yudelson, J.

    1980-10-01

    The State of California has begun a commercialization program for increasing the rate of solar applications in industry. The components of this program include low interest loans, tax credits, revenue bonds and educational efforts. Many California industries appear to be likely candidates for solar systems, but as yet only a few companies have elected to install them. The various barriers to solar use by industry are primarily perceptual and financial. The emphasis of the state program for commercialization is turning increasingly towards educational seminars for industry groups and development of creative financial tools and arrangements. There are a few remaining legislative changes at state and federal levels, primarily involving leasing and tax laws which, if enacted, would overcome all of the remaining financial barriers to widespread adoption of solar applications by industry.

  2. NASA Solar Array Demonstrates Commercial Potential

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Creech, Gray

    2006-01-01

    A state-of-the-art solar-panel array demonstration site at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center provides a unique opportunity for studying the latest in high-efficiency solar photovoltaic cells. This five-kilowatt solar-array site (see Figure 1) is a technology-transfer and commercialization success for NASA. Among the solar cells at this site are cells of a type that was developed in Dryden Flight Research Center s Environmental Research Aircraft and Sensor Technology (ERAST) program for use in NASA s Helios solar-powered airplane. This cell type, now denoted as A-300, has since been transferred to SunPower Corporation of Sunnyvale, California, enabling mass production of the cells for the commercial market. High efficiency separates these advanced cells from typical previously commercially available solar cells: Whereas typical previously commercially available cells are 12 to 15 percent efficient at converting sunlight to electricity, these advanced cells exhibit efficiencies approaching 23 percent. The increase in efficiency is due largely to the routing of electrical connections behind the cells (see Figure 2). This approach to increasing efficiency originated as a solution to the problem of maximizing the degree of utilization of the limited space available atop the wing of the Helios airplane. In retrospect, the solar cells in use at this site could be used on Helios, but the best cells otherwise commercially available could not be so used, because of their lower efficiencies. Historically, solar cells have been fabricated by use of methods that are common in the semiconductor industry. One of these methods includes the use of photolithography to define the rear electrical-contact features - diffusions, contact openings, and fingers. SunPower uses these methods to produce the advanced cells. To reduce fabrication costs, SunPower continues to explore new methods to define the rear electrical-contact features. The equipment at the demonstration site includes

  3. Low cost solar array project. Experimental process system development unit for producing semiconductor-grade silicon using the silane-to-silicon process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1980-01-01

    Technical activities are reported in the design of process, facilities, and equipment for producing silicon at a rate and price comensurate with production goals for low cost solar cell modules. The silane-silicone process has potential for providing high purity poly-silicon on a commercial scale at a price of fourteen dollars per kilogram by 1986, (1980 dollars). Commercial process, economic analysis, process support research and development, and quality control are discussed.

  4. Comprehensive silicon solar-cell computer modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lamorte, M. F.

    1984-01-01

    A comprehensive silicon solar cell computer modeling scheme was developed to perform the following tasks: (1) model and analysis of the net charge distribution in quasineutral regions; (2) experimentally determined temperature behavior of Spire Corp. n+pp+ solar cells where n+-emitter is formed by ion implantation of 75As or 31P; and (3) initial validation results of computer simulation program using Spire Corp. n+pp+ cells.

  5. Silicon solar photovoltaic power stations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chowaniec, C. R.; Ferber, R. R.; Pittman, P. F.; Marshall, B. W.

    1977-01-01

    Modular design of components and arrays, cost estimates for modules and support structures, and cost/performance analysis of a central solar photovoltaic power plant are discussed. Costs of collector/reflector arrays are judged the dominant element in the total capital investment. High-concentration solar tracking arrays are recommended as the most economic means for producing solar photovoltaic energy when solar cells costs are high ($500 per kW generated). Capital costs for power conditioning subsystem components are itemized and system busbar energy costs are discussed at length.

  6. Metal electrode for amorphous silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Williams, Richard

    1983-01-01

    An amorphous silicon solar cell having an N-type region wherein the contact to the N-type region is composed of a material having a work function of about 3.7 electron volts or less. Suitable materials include strontium, barium and magnesium and rare earth metals such as gadolinium and yttrium.

  7. Low cost silicon solar cell array

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bartels, F. T. C.

    1974-01-01

    The technological options available for producing low cost silicon solar cell arrays were examined. A project value of approximately $250/sq m and $2/watt is projected, based on mass production capacity demand. Recommendations are included for the most promising cost reduction options.

  8. Silicon solar cells improved by lithium doping

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berman, P. A.

    1970-01-01

    Results of conference on characteristics of lithium-doped silicon solar cells and techniques required for fabrication indicate that output of cells has been improved to point where cells exhibit radiation resistance superior to those currently in use, and greater control and reproducibility of cell processing have been achieved.

  9. Aluminum doping improves silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1966-01-01

    Aluminum doped silicon solar cells with resistivities in the 10- to 20-ohm centimeter range have broad spectral response, high efficiency and long lifetimes in nuclear radiation environments. Production advantages include low material rejection and increased production yields, and close tolerance control.

  10. Silicon nanowires for photovoltaic solar energy conversion.

    PubMed

    Peng, Kui-Qing; Lee, Shuit-Tong

    2011-01-11

    Semiconductor nanowires are attracting intense interest as a promising material for solar energy conversion for the new-generation photovoltaic (PV) technology. In particular, silicon nanowires (SiNWs) are under active investigation for PV applications because they offer novel approaches for solar-to-electric energy conversion leading to high-efficiency devices via simple manufacturing. This article reviews the recent developments in the utilization of SiNWs for PV applications, the relationship between SiNW-based PV device structure and performance, and the challenges to obtaining high-performance cost-effective solar cells.

  11. New Method of Solar Grade Silicon Production

    SciTech Connect

    Zadde, V. V.; Pinov, A. B.; Strebkov, D. S.; Belov, E. P.; Efimov, N. K.; Lebedev, E. N.; Korobkov, E. I.; Blake, D.; Touryan, K.

    2002-08-01

    One of the main advantages of photovoltaic solar cells (PVC) is their ecological clarity of direct conversion of solar energy to electricity. For wide spreading of PV technologies it is necessary to ensure that there is no environment pollution at the stage of PVC-s manufacturing, beginning from producing of polysilicon feedstock. The objective of this project is creation of ecologically clean method for production of solar grade polysilicon feedstock (SGPF) as raw material for PVCs, and also raw material for producing monocrystalline silicon, which is used in electronic industry.

  12. Silicon heterojunction solar cell and crystallization of amorphous silicon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Meijun

    The rapid growth of photovoltaics in the past decade brings on the soaring price and demand for crystalline silicon. Hence it becomes necessary and also profitable to develop solar cells with over 20% efficiency, using thin (˜100mum) silicon wafers. In this respect, diffused junction cells are not the best choice, since the inescapable heating in the diffusion process not only makes it hard to handle thin wafers, but also reduces carriers' bulk lifetime and impairs the crystal quality of the substrate, which could lower cell efficiency. An alternative is the heterojunction cells, such as amorphous silicon/crystalline silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cell, where the emitter layer can be grown at low temperature (<200°C). In first part of this dissertation, I will introduce our work on front-junction SHJ solar cell, including the importance of intrinsic buffer layer; the discussion on the often observed anomalous "S"-shaped J-V curve (low fill factor) by using band diagram analysis; the surface passivation quality of intrinsic buffer and its relationship to the performance of front-junction SHJ cells. Although the a-Si:H is found to help to achieve high efficiency in c-Si heterojuntion solar cells, it also absorbs short wavelength (<600 nm) light, leading to non-ideal blue response and lower short circuit currents (JSC) in the front-junction SHJ cells. Considering this, heterojunction with both a-Si:H emitter and base contact on the back side in an interdigitated pattern, i.e. interdigitated back contact silicon heterojunction (IBC-SHJ) solar cell, is developed. This dissertation will show our progress in developing IBC-SHJ solar cells, including the structure design; device fabrication and characterization; two dimensional simulation by using simulator Sentaurus Device; some special features of IBC-SHJ solar cells; and performance of IBC-SHJ cells without and with back surface buffer layers. Another trend for solar cell industry is thin film solar cells, since

  13. Indium oxide/n-silicon heterojunction solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Feng, Tom; Ghosh, Amal K.

    1982-12-28

    A high photo-conversion efficiency indium oxide/n-silicon heterojunction solar cell is spray deposited from a solution containing indium trichloride. The solar cell exhibits an Air Mass One solar conversion efficiency in excess of about 10%.

  14. High efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sah, C. Tang

    1986-01-01

    A review of the entire research program since its inception ten years ago is given. The initial effort focused on the effects of impurities on the efficiency of silicon solar cells to provide figures of maximum allowable impurity density for efficiencies up to about 16 to 17%. Highly accurate experimental techniques were extended to characterize the recombination properties of the residual imputities in the silicon solar cell. A numerical simulator of the solar cell was also developed, using the Circuit Technique for Semiconductor Analysis. Recent effort focused on the delineation of the material and device parameters which limited the silicon efficiency to below 20% and on an investigation of cell designs to break the 20% barrier. Designs of the cell device structure and geometry can further reduce recombination losses as well as the sensitivity and criticalness of the fabrication technology required to exceed 20%. Further research is needed on the fundamental characterization of the carrier recombination properties at the chemical impurity and physical defect centers. It is shown that only single crystalline silicon cell technology can be successful in attaining efficiencies greater than 20%.

  15. Initial results for the silicon monolithically interconnected solar cell product

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dinetta, L. C.; Shreve, K. P.; Cotter, J. E.; Barnett, A. M.

    1995-01-01

    This proprietary technology is based on AstroPower's electrostatic bonding and innovative silicon solar cell processing techniques. Electrostatic bonding allows silicon wafers to be permanently attached to a thermally matched glass superstrate and then thinned to final thicknesses less than 25 micron. These devices are based on the features of a thin, light-trapping silicon solar cell: high voltage, high current, light weight (high specific power) and high radiation resistance. Monolithic interconnection allows the fabrication costs on a per watt basis to be roughly independent of the array size, power or voltage, therefore, the cost effectiveness to manufacture solar cell arrays with output powers ranging from milliwatts up to four watts and output voltages ranging from 5 to 500 volts will be similar. This compares favorably to conventionally manufactured, commercial solar cell arrays, where handling of small parts is very labor intensive and costly. In this way, a wide variety of product specifications can be met using the same fabrication techniques. Prototype solar cells have demonstrated efficiencies greater than 11%. An open-circuit voltage of 5.4 volts, fill factor of 65%, and short-circuit current density of 28 mA/sq cm at AM1.5 illumination are typical. Future efforts are being directed to optimization of the solar cell operating characteristics as well as production processing. The monolithic approach has a number of inherent advantages, including reduced cost per interconnect and increased reliability of array connections. These features make this proprietary technology an excellent candidate for a large number of consumer products.

  16. Solar silicon from directional solidification of MG silicon produced via the silicon carbide route

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rustioni, M.; Margadonna, D.; Pirazzi, R.; Pizzini, S.

    1986-01-01

    A process of metallurgical grade (MG) silicon production is presented which appears particularly suitable for photovoltaic (PV) applications. The MG silicon is prepared in a 240 KVA, three electrode submerged arc furnace, starting from high grade quartz and high purity silicon carbide. The silicon smelted from the arc furnace was shown to be sufficiently pure to be directionally solidified to 10 to 15 kg. After grinding and acid leaching, had a material yield larger than 90%. With a MG silicon feedstock containing 3 ppmw B, 290 ppmw Fe, 190 ppmw Ti, and 170 ppmw Al, blended with 50% of off grade electronic grade (EG) silicon to reconduct the boron content to a concentration acceptable for solar cell fabrication, the 99% of deep level impurities were concentrated in the last 5% of the ingot. Quite remarkably this material has OCV values higher tham 540 mV and no appreciable shorts due to SiC particles.

  17. Commercial dissemination approaches for solar home systems

    SciTech Connect

    Terrado, E.

    1997-12-01

    The author discusses the issue of providing solar home systems to primarily rural areas from the perspective of how to commercialize the process. He considers two different approaches, one an open market approach and the other an exclusive market approach. He describes examples of the exclusive market approach which are in process in Argentina and Brazil. Coming from a banking background, the business aspects are discussed in detail. He points out the strengths and weaknesses of both approaches toward developing such systems.

  18. Optical models for silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Marshall, T.; Sopori, B.

    1995-08-01

    Light trapping is an important design feature for high-efficiency silicon solar cells. Because light trapping can considerably enhance optical absorption, a thinner substrate can be used which, in turn, can lower the bulk carrier recombination and concommitantly increase open-circuit voltage, and fill factor of the cell. The basic concepts of light trapping are similar to that of excitation of an optical waveguide, where a prism or a grating structure increases the phase velocity of the incoming optical wave such that waves propagated within the waveguide are totally reflected at the interfaces. Unfortunately, these concepts break down because the entire solar cell is covered with such a structure, making it necessary to develop new analytical approaches to deal with incomplete light trapping in solar cells. This paper describes two models that analyze light trapping in thick and thin solar cells.

  19. Silicon solar cells as a high-solar-intensity radiometer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spisz, E. W.; Robson, R. R.

    1971-01-01

    The characteristics of a conventional, 1- by 2-cm, N/P, gridded silicon solar cell when used as a radiometer have been determined for solar intensity levels to 2800 mW/sq cm (20 solar constants). The short-circuit current was proportional to the radiant intensity for levels only to 700 mW/sq cm (5 solar constants). For intensity levels greater than 700 mW/sq cm, it was necessary to operate the cell in a photoconductive mode in order to obtain a linear relation between the measured current and the radiant intensity. When the solar cell was biased with a reverse voltage of -1 V, the measured current and radiant intensity were linearly related over the complete intensity range from 100 to 2800 mW/sq cm.

  20. Efficiency of silicon solar cells containing chromium

    DOEpatents

    Frosch, Robert A. Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space; Salama, Amal M.

    1982-01-01

    Efficiency of silicon solar cells containing about 10.sup.15 atoms/cm.sup.3 of chromium is improved about 26% by thermal annealing of the silicon wafer at a temperature of 200.degree. C. to form chromium precipitates having a diameter of less than 1 Angstrom. Further improvement in efficiency is achieved by scribing laser lines onto the back surface of the wafer at a spacing of at least 0.5 mm and at a depth of less than 13 micrometers to preferentially precipitate chromium near the back surface and away from the junction region of the device. This provides an economical way to improve the deleterious effects of chromium, one of the impurities present in metallurgical grade silicon material.

  1. Efficiency of silicon solar cells containing chromium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salama, A. M. (Inventor)

    1982-01-01

    Efficiency of silicon solar cells containing about one quadrillon atoms cu cm of chromium is improved about 26% by thermal annealing of the silicon wafer at a temperature of 200 C to form chromium precipitates having a diameter of less than 1 Angstrom. Further improvement in efficiency is achieved by scribing laser lines onto the back surface of the wafer at a spacing of at least 0.5 mm and at a depth of less than 13 micrometers to preferentially precipitate chromium near the back surface and away from the junction region of the device. This provides an economical way to improve the deleterious effects of chromium, one of the impurities present in metallurgical grade silicon mateial.

  2. Origami-enabled deformable silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, Rui; Huang, Hai; Liang, Hanshuang; Liang, Mengbing; Tu, Hongen; Xu, Yong; Song, Zeming; Jiang, Hanqing; Yu, Hongyu

    2014-02-24

    Deformable electronics have found various applications and elastomeric materials have been widely used to reach flexibility and stretchability. In this Letter, we report an alternative approach to enable deformability through origami. In this approach, the deformability is achieved through folding and unfolding at the creases while the functional devices do not experience strain. We have demonstrated an example of origami-enabled silicon solar cells and showed that this solar cell can reach up to 644% areal compactness while maintaining reasonable good performance upon cyclic folding/unfolding. This approach opens an alternative direction of producing flexible, stretchable, and deformable electronics.

  3. High efficiency silicon solar cell review

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Godlewski, M. P. (Editor)

    1975-01-01

    An overview is presented of the current research and development efforts to improve the performance of the silicon solar cell. The 24 papers presented reviewed experimental and analytic modeling work which emphasizes the improvment of conversion efficiency and the reduction of manufacturing costs. A summary is given of the round-table discussion, in which the near- and far-term directions of future efficiency improvements were discussed.

  4. Fracture strength of silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chen, C. P.

    1979-01-01

    A test program was developed to determine the nature and source of the flaw controlling the fracture of silicon solar cells and to provide information regarding the mechanical strength of cells. Significant changes in fracture strengths were found in seven selected in-process wafer-to-cell products from a manufacturer's production line. The fracture strength data were statistically analyzed and interpreted in light of the exterior flaw distribution of the samples.

  5. High efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sah, C. T.

    1986-01-01

    The factors which may limit current crystalline silicon solar cells to less than 20 percent efficiency at AM 1 are investigated together with the factors which may limit the ultimate efficiency achievable. It was found that base recombination at residual defect and impurity recombination centers was the likely cause of the 20-percent efficiency barrier. Suggestions for design changes that would cut the losses due to recombinations are presented.

  6. Substrate for thin silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Ciszek, T.F.

    1995-03-28

    A photovoltaic device for converting solar energy into electrical signals comprises a substrate, a layer of photoconductive semiconductor material grown on said substrate, wherein the substrate comprises an alloy of boron and silicon, the boron being present in a range of from 0.1 to 1.3 atomic percent, the alloy having a lattice constant substantially matched to that of the photoconductive semiconductor material and a resistivity of less than 1{times}10{sup {minus}3} ohm-cm. 4 figures.

  7. Environmentally benign silicon solar cell manufacturing

    SciTech Connect

    Tsuo, Y.S.; Gee, J.M.; Menna, P.; Strebkov, D.S.; Pinov, A.; Zadde, V.

    1998-09-01

    The manufacturing of silicon devices--from polysilicon production, crystal growth, ingot slicing, wafer cleaning, device processing, to encapsulation--requires many steps that are energy intensive and use large amounts of water and toxic chemicals. In the past two years, the silicon integrated-circuit (IC) industry has initiated several programs to promote environmentally benign manufacturing, i.e., manufacturing practices that recover, recycle, and reuse materials resources with a minimal consumption of energy. Crystalline-silicon solar photovoltaic (PV) modules, which accounted for 87% of the worldwide module shipments in 1997, are large-area devices with many manufacturing steps similar to those used in the IC industry. Obviously, there are significant opportunities for the PV industry to implement more environmentally benign manufacturing approaches. Such approaches often have the potential for significant cost reduction by reducing energy use and/or the purchase volume of new chemicals and by cutting the amount of used chemicals that must be discarded. This paper will review recent accomplishments of the IC industry initiatives and discuss new processes for environmentally benign silicon solar-cell manufacturing.

  8. Towards stable and commercially available perovskite solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Park, Nam-Gyu; Grätzel, Michael; Miyasaka, Tsutomu; Zhu, Kai; Emery, Keith

    2016-10-17

    Solar cells employing a halide perovskite with an organic cation now show power conversion efficiency of up to 22%. However, these cells are facing issues towards commercialization, such as the need to achieve long-term stability and the development of a manufacturing method for the reproducible fabrication of high-performance devices. Here, we propose a strategy to obtain stable and commercially viable perovskite solar cells. A reproducible manufacturing method is suggested, as well as routes to manage grain boundaries and interfacial charge transport. Electroluminescence is regarded as a metric to gauge theoretical efficiency. We highlight how optimizing the design of device architectures is important not only for achieving high efficiency but also for hysteresis-free and stable performance. We argue that reliable device characterization is needed to ensure the advance of this technology towards practical applications. We believe that perovskite-based devices can be competitive with silicon solar modules, and discuss issues related to the safe management of toxic material.

  9. Towards stable and commercially available perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Nam-Gyu; Grätzel, Michael; Miyasaka, Tsutomu; Zhu, Kai; Emery, Keith

    2016-11-01

    Solar cells employing a halide perovskite with an organic cation now show power conversion efficiency of up to 22%. However, these cells are facing issues towards commercialization, such as the need to achieve long-term stability and the development of a manufacturing method for the reproducible fabrication of high-performance devices. Here, we propose a strategy to obtain stable and commercially viable perovskite solar cells. A reproducible manufacturing method is suggested, as well as routes to manage grain boundaries and interfacial charge transport. Electroluminescence is regarded as a metric to gauge theoretical efficiency. We highlight how optimizing the design of device architectures is important not only for achieving high efficiency but also for hysteresis-free and stable performance. We argue that reliable device characterization is needed to ensure the advance of this technology towards practical applications. We believe that perovskite-based devices can be competitive with silicon solar modules, and discuss issues related to the safe management of toxic material.

  10. A review of high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rohatgi, A.

    1986-01-01

    Various parameters that affect solar cell efficiency were discussed. It is not understood why solar cells produced from less expensive Czochralski (Cz) silicon are less efficient than cells fabricated from more expensive float-zone (Fz) silicon. Performance characteristics were presented for recently produced, high-efficient solar cells fabricated by Westinghouse Electric Corp., Spire Corp., University of New South Wales, and Stanford University.

  11. Strength distribution in commercial silicon carbide materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dutta, Sunil

    1988-01-01

    Four-point flexural strength testing has been conducted in order to establish the baseline strength and reliability of four different commercial SiC types, in conjunction with reliable Weibull modulus values. Average strength of the samples ranged from 380 to 482 MPa at room temperature and 307 to 470 MPa at 1370 C. The strength scatter reflects the effect of flaw variability, which must be minimized to improve reliability in sintered SiC.

  12. Comparison of the surface charge behavior of commercial silicon nitride and silicon carbide powders

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whitman, Pamela K.; Feke, Donald L.

    1988-01-01

    The adsorption and desorption of protons from aqueous solution onto the surfaces of a variety of commercial silicon carbide and silicon nitride powders has been examined using a surface titration methodology. This method provides information on some colloidal characteristics, such as the point of zero charge (pzc) and the variation of proton adsorption with dispersion pH, useful for the prediction of optimal ceramic-processing conditions. Qualitatively, the magnitude of the proton adsorption from solution reveals small differences among all of the materials studied. However, the results show that the pzc for the various silicon nitride powders is affected by the powder synthesis route. Complementary investigations have shown that milling can also act to shift the pzc exhibited by silicon nitride powder. Also, studies of the role of the electrolyte in the development of surface charge have indicated no evidence of specific adsorption of ammonium ion on either silicon nitride or silicon carbide powders.

  13. Low cost silicon-on-ceramic photovoltaic solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koepke, B. G.; Heaps, J. D.; Grung, B. L.; Zook, J. D.; Sibold, J. D.; Leipold, M. H.

    1980-01-01

    A technique has been developed for coating low-cost mullite-based refractory substrates with thin layers of solar cell quality silicon. The technique involves first carbonizing one surface of the ceramic and then contacting it with molten silicon. The silicon wets the carbonized surface and, under the proper thermal conditions, solidifies as a large-grained sheet. Solar cells produced from this composite silicon-on-ceramic material have exhibited total area conversion efficiencies of ten percent.

  14. Development of standardized specifications for silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scott-Monck, J. A.

    1977-01-01

    A space silicon solar cell assembly (cell and coverglass) specification aimed at standardizing the diverse requirements of current cell or assembly specifications was developed. This specification was designed to minimize both the procurement and manufacturing costs for space qualified silicon solar cell assembilies. In addition, an impact analysis estimating the technological and economic effects of employing a standardized space silicon solar cell assembly was performed.

  15. Solar silicon via improved and expanded metallurgical silicon technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, L. P.; Dosaj, V. D.; Mccormick, J. R.

    1977-01-01

    A completed preliminary survey of silica sources indicates that sufficient quantities of high-purity quartz are available in the U.S. and Canada to meet goals. Supply can easily meet demand for this little-sought commodity. Charcoal, as a reductant for silica, can be purified to a sufficient level by high-temperature fluorocarbon treatment and vacuum processing. High-temperature treatment causes partial graphitization which can lead to difficulty in smelting. Smelting of Arkansas quartz and purified charcoal produced kilogram quantities of silicon having impurity levels generally much lower than in MG-Si. Half of the goal was met of increasing the boron resistivity from 0.03 ohm-cm in metallurgical silicon to 0.3 ohm-cm in solar silicon. A cost analysis of the solidification process indicate $3.50-7.25/kg Si for the Czochralski-type process and $1.50-4.25/kg Si for the Bridgman-type technique.

  16. Core-shell silicon nanowire solar cells.

    PubMed

    Adachi, M M; Anantram, M P; Karim, K S

    2013-01-01

    Silicon nanowires can enhance broadband optical absorption and reduce radial carrier collection distances in solar cell devices. Arrays of disordered nanowires grown by vapor-liquid-solid method are attractive because they can be grown on low-cost substrates such as glass, and are large area compatible. Here, we experimentally demonstrate that an array of disordered silicon nanowires surrounded by a thin transparent conductive oxide has both low diffuse and specular reflection with total values as low as < 4% over a broad wavelength range of 400 nm < λ < 650 nm. These anti-reflective properties together with enhanced infrared absorption in the core-shell nanowire facilitates enhancement in external quantum efficiency using two different active shell materials: amorphous silicon and nanocrystalline silicon. As a result, the core-shell nanowire device exhibits a short-circuit current enhancement of 15% with an amorphous Si shell and 26% with a nanocrystalline Si shell compared to their corresponding planar devices.

  17. Design of two dimensional silicon nanowire arrays for antireflection and light trapping in silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, Wuchang; Jia, Rui; Li, Haofeng; Chen, Chen; Sun, Yun; Jin, Zhi; Liu, Xinyu

    2014-01-01

    Silicon nitride coated nanowire arrays have been investigated as an efficient antireflection structure for silicon solar cells. The minimum average reflectance could reach 1.62% under AM1.5 spectrum. Scattering effects of silicon nanowire arrays also result in enhanced absorption in the substrate, and analytical results show that the scattered light can be well trapped in silicon substrate when the back surface is passivated by silicon dioxide. This ultra-low surface reflection property combined with light trapping effect may have potential applications in silicon solar cells with thin substrate.

  18. Determination of a Definition of Solar Grade Silicon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hill, D. E.; Gutsche, H. W.

    1975-01-01

    A definition of solar grade silicon was determined by investigating the singular and the combined effect of the impurities usually found in metallurgical grade silicon on solar cell device performance. The impurity matrix was defined by Jet Propulsion Laboratory Technical Direction Memorandum. The initial work was focussed on standardizing the solar cell process and test procedure, growing baseline crystals, growing crystals contaminated with carbon, iron, nickel, zirconium, aluminum and vanadium, solar blank preparation, and material characterization.

  19. Studies of silicon PN junction solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.

    1975-01-01

    Silicon pn junction solar cells made with low-resistivity substrates show poorer performance than traditional theory predicts. The purpose of this research was to identify and characterize the physical mechanisms responsible for the discrepancy. Attention was concentrated on the open circuit voltage in shallow junction cells of 0.1 ohm-cm substrate resistivity. A number of possible mechanisms that can occur in silicon devices were considered. Two mechanisms which are likely to be of main importance in explaining the observed low values of open-circuit voltage were found: (1) recombination losses associated with defects introduced during junction formation, and (2) inhomogeneity of defects and impurities across the area of the cell. To explore these theoretical anticipations, various diode test structures were designed and fabricated and measurement configurations for characterizing the defect properties and the areal inhomogeneity were constructed.

  20. Teflon bonding of silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, P. A.; Jones, D. E.

    The silicon adhesive used to bond the coverglass onto the solar cell can be replaced by a thin layer of FEP Teflon. The advantage of using Teflon as the adhesive is that it is supplied as a thin sheet in thicknesses of 25 or 50 microns and can be cut to size prior to use. Because the Teflon does not extrude from the join in the same manner as conventional adhesives, the cleanup after Teflon bonding is virtually nonexistent. It is considered that the use of a coverglass which is thermally matched to silicon will prevent the buildup of thermal stresses which could cause delamination. Work done to date on the Teflon bonding process including the results of some critical end of life tests is reviewed.

  1. High-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Green, M. A.; Blakers, A. W.; Shi, J.; Keller, E. M.; Wenham, S. R.

    1984-01-01

    Silicon solar cells are described which operate at energy conversion efficiencies independently measured at 18.7 percent under standard terrestrial test conditions (AM1.5, 100 mW/sq cm, 28 C). These are apparently the most efficient silicon cells fabricated to date. The high-efficiency results from a combination of high open-circuit voltage due to the careful attention paid to the passivation of the top surface of the cell, high fill factor due to the high open-circuit voltage and low parasitic resistance losses, and high short-circuit current density due to the use of shallow diffusions, a low grid coverage, and an optimized double layer antireflection coating.

  2. 18-percent efficient terrestrial silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blakers, A. W.; Green, M. A.; Jiqun, S.; Keller, E. M.; Wenham, S. R.; Godfrey, R. B.; Szpitalak, T.; Willison, M. R.

    1984-01-01

    Silicon solar cells are described which operate at energy conversion efficiencies in excess of 18 percent under standard terrestrial test conditions (AM1.5, 100 mW/sq cm, 28 C). These are believed to be the most efficient silicon cells reported to date. The high efficiency is a result of the combination of high open-circuit voltage due to the careful attention paid to passivation of the top surface of the cell; high fill factors due to the high open-circuit voltage and low parasitic resistance losses; and high short-circuit current due to the use of shallow diffusions, a low grid coverage, and an optimized double-layer antireflection coating.

  3. LSSA (Low-cost Silicon Solar Array) project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1976-01-01

    The Photovoltaic Conversion Program was established to find methods of economically generating enough electrical power to meet future requirements. Activities and progress in the following areas are discussed: silicon-refinement processes; silicon-sheet-growth techniques; encapsulants; manufacturing of off-the-shelf solar arrays; and procurement of semistandardized solar arrays.

  4. LSSA (Low-cost Silicon Solar Array) project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1976-01-01

    Methods are explored for economically generating electrical power to meet future requirements. The Low-Cost Silicon Solar Array Project (LSSA) was established to reduce the price of solar arrays by improving manufacturing technology, adapting mass production techniques, and promoting user acceptance. The new manufacturing technology includes the consideration of new silicon refinement processes, silicon sheet growth techniques, encapsulants, and automated assembly production being developed under contract by industries and universities.

  5. Solar-grade silicon prepared by carbothermic reduction of silica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Aulich, H. A.; Schulze, F. W.; Urbach, H. P.; Lerchenberger, A.

    1986-01-01

    An advanced carbothermic reduction (ACR) process was developed to produce solar grade (SC) silicon from high purity silica and carbon. Preparation of starting materials and operation of the arc furnace to product high purity silicon is described. Solar cells prepared from single crystal SG-Si had efficiencies of up to 12.3% practically identical to cells made from electronic grade silicon. The ACR process is not in the pilot stage for further evaluation.

  6. Advantages of thin silicon solar cells for use in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Denman, O. S.

    1978-01-01

    A system definition study on the Solar Power Satellite System showed that a thin, 50 micrometers, silicon solar cell has significant advantages. The advantages include a significantly lower performance degradation in a radiation environment and high power-to-mass ratios. The advantages of such cells for an employment in space is further investigated. Basic questions concerning the operation of solar cells are considered along with aspects of radiation induced performance degradation. The question arose in this connection how thin a silicon solar cell had to be to achieve resistance to radiation degradation and still have good initial performance. It was found that single-crystal silicon solar cells could be as thin as 50 micrometers and still develop high conversion efficiencies. It is concluded that the use of 50 micrometer silicon solar cells in space-based photovoltaic power systems would be advantageous.

  7. Singlet fission/silicon solar cell exceeding 100% EQE (Conference Presentation)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pazos, Luis M.; Lee, Jumin; Kirch, Anton; Tabachnyk, Maxim; Friend, Richard H.; Ehrler, Bruno

    2016-09-01

    Current matching limits the commercialization of tandem solar cells due to their instability over spectral changes, leading to the need of using solar concentrators and trackers to keep the spectrum stable. We demonstrate that voltage-matched systems show far higher performance over spectral changes; caused by clouds, dust and other variations in atmospheric conditions. Singlet fission is a process in organic semiconductors which has shown very efficient, 200%, down-conversion yield and the generated excitations are long-lived, ideal for solar cells. As a result, the number of publications has grown exponentially in the past 5 years. Yet, so far no one has achieved to combine singlet fission with most low bandgap semiconductors, including crystalline silicon, the dominating solar cell material with a 90% share of the PV Market. Here we show that singlet fission can facilitate the fabrication of voltage-matched systems, opening a simple design route for the effective implementation of down-conversion in commercially available photovoltaic technologies, with no modification of the electronic circuitry of such. The implemention of singlet fission is achieved simply by decoupling the fabrication of the individual subcells. For this demonstration we used an ITO/PEDOT/P3HT/Pentacene/C60/Ag wide-bandgap subcell, and a commercial silicon solar cell as the low-bandgap component. We show that the combination of the two leads to the first tandem silicon solar cell which exceeds 100% external quantum efficiency.

  8. Spraylon fluorocarbon encapsulation for silicon solar cell arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    A development program was performed for evaluating, modifying, and optimizing the Lockheed formulated liquid transparent filmforming Spraylon fluorocarbon protective coating for silicon solar cells and modules. The program objectives were designed to meet the requirements of the low-cost automated solar cell array fabrication process. As part of the study, a computer program was used to establish the limits of the safe working stress in the coated silicon solar cell array system under severe thermal shock.

  9. Process development for single-crystal silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bohra, Mihir H.

    Solar energy is a viable, rapidly growing and an important renewable alternative to other sources of energy generation because of its abundant supply and low manufacturing cost. Silicon still remains the major contributor for manufacturing solar cells accounting for 80% of the market share. Of this, single-crystal solar cells account for half of the share. Laboratory cells have demonstrated 25% efficiency; however, commercial cells have efficiencies of 16% - 20% resulting from a focus on implementation processes geared to rapid throughput and low cost, thereby reducing the energy pay-back time. An example would be the use of metal pastes which dissolve the dielectric during the firing process as opposed to lithographically defined contacts. With current trends of single-crystal silicon photovoltaic (PV) module prices down to 0.60/W, almost all other PV technologies are challenged to remain cost competitive. This presents a unique opportunity in revisiting the PV cell fabrication process and incorporating moderately more expensive IC process practices into PV manufacturing. While they may drive the cost toward a 1/W benchmark, there is substantial room to "experiment", leading to higher efficiencies which will help maintain the overall system cost. This work entails a turn-key process designed to provide a platform for rapid evaluation of novel materials and processes. A two-step lithographic process yielding a baseline 11% - 13% efficient cell is described. Results of three studies have shown improvements in solar cell output parameters due to the inclusion of a back-surface field implant, a higher emitter doping and also an additional RCA Clean.

  10. Electrical overstress failure in silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Pease, R.L.; Barnum, J.R.; van Lint, V.A.J.; Vulliet, W.V.; Wrobel, T.F.

    1982-11-01

    A solar-cell electrical-overstress-failure model and the results of experimental measurements of threshold pulsed failure currents on four types of silicon solar cells are presented. The transient EMP field surrounding a lightning stroke has been identified as a potential threat to a photovoltaic array, yet failure analysis of solar cells in a pulsed environment had not previously been reported. Failure in the low-resistivity concentrator cells at pulse widths between 1 ..mu..s and 1 ms occurred initially in the junction. Finger damage in the form of silver melting occurs at currents only slightly greater than that required for junction damage. The result of reverse-bias transient-overstress tests on high-resistivity (10 ..cap omega..cm) cells demonstrated that the predominant failure mode was due to edge currents. These flat-plate cells failed at currents of only 4 to 20 A, which is one or two orders of magnitude below the model predictions. It thus appears that high-resistivity flat-plate cells are quite vulnerable to electrical overstress which could be produced by a variety of mechanisms.

  11. Effect of copper impurity on polycrystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Daud, T.; Koliwad, K. M.

    1978-01-01

    The presence of copper impurity, up to 10 to the 15th atoms/cc, in single crystal silicon has been shown to have no deleterious effect on the p-n junction solar cell performance. However, in polycrystalline silicon, copper atoms tend to migrate to the defect sites because of the structural sensitive properties of copper. This study was undertaken to investigate the influence of this behavior of copper impurity on the performance of p-n junction solar cells fabricated from structurally imperfect silicon. Two sets of polycrystalline silicon substrates containing copper were examined. In one set of samples, copper was incorporated during growth, whereas in the other, copper was diffused. Solar cells were fabricated on both the sets of substrates by a standard process. Dark and light I-V and spectral response characteristics of the cells were measured and compared with copper-free polycrystalline silicon solar cells. The results and the model are discussed.

  12. The NASA program for standardizing silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bifano, W. J.; Forestieri, A. F.

    1974-01-01

    The program is discussed which was initiated to formulate standard silicon solar cell and cover specifications. The program includes (1) compilation of solar cell and cover specifications, both past and present (2) elicitation of inputs from major users and suppliers and (3) establishment of tentative standardized solar cell and cover specifications.

  13. A base-metal conductor system for silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Coleman, M. G.; Pryor, R. A.; Sparks, T. G.

    1980-01-01

    Solder, copper, and silver are evaluated as conductor layer metals for silicon solar cell metallization on the basis of metal price stability and reliability under operating conditions. Due to its properties and cost, copper becomes an attractive candidate for the conductor layer. It is shown that nickel operates as an excellent diffusion barrier between copper and silicon while simultaneously serving as an electrical contact and mechanical contact to silicon. The nickel-copper system may be applied to the silicon by plating techniques utilizing a variety of plating bath compositions. Solar cells having excellent current-voltage characteristics are fabricated to demonstrate the nickel-copper metallization system.

  14. Dendritic web silicon for solar cell application

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seidensticker, R. G.

    1977-01-01

    The dendritic web process for growing long thin ribbon crystals of silicon and other semiconductors is described. Growth is initiated from a thin wirelike dendrite seed which is brought into contact with the melt surface. Initially, the seed grows laterally to form a button at the melt surface; when the seed is withdrawn, needlelike dendrites propagate from each end of the button into the melt, and the web portion of the crystal is formed by the solidification of the liquid film supported by the button and the bounding dendrites. Apparatus used for dendritic web growth, material characteristics, and the two distinctly different mechanisms involved in the growth of a single crystal are examined. The performance of solar cells fabricated from dendritic web material is indistinguishable from the performance of cells fabricated from Czochralski grown material.

  15. Excess junction current of silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, E. Y.; Legge, R. N.; Christidis, N.

    1973-01-01

    The current-voltage characteristics of n(plus)-p silicon solar cells with 0.1, 1.0, 2.0, and 10 ohm-cm p-type base materials have been examined in detail. In addition to the usual I-V measurements, we have studied the temperature dependence of the slope of the I-V curve at the origin by the lock-in technique. The excess junction current coefficient (Iq) deduced from the slope at the origin depends on the square root of the intrinsic carrier concentration. The Iq obtained from the I-V curve fitting over the entire forward bias region at various temperatures shows the same temperature dependence. This result, in addition to the presence of an aging effect, suggest that the surface channel effect is the dominant cause of the excess junction current.

  16. Black metallurgical silicon for solar energy conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiaopeng; Lee, Jung-Ho; Sprafke, Alexander N.; Wehrspohn, Ralf B.

    2016-01-01

    Metal impurities are known to create deep traps in the silicon (Si) bandgap, significantly reducing the minority carrier lifetime and consequently deteriorating the efficiency of a Si-based solar conversion system. Traditional purification methods via ‘Siemens’ and metallurgical routes involve complex and energy-intensive processes. Therefore, it is highly desirable to develop novel Si treatment technologies. With the radical evolution of nanotechnology in the past decades, new nano-approaches are offering opportunities to diminish the detrimental impacts of metal impurities or upgrade low quality Si in a cost-effective and energy-saving way. Here we review various recently developed dry and wet chemical etching methods including reactive ion etching, electrochemical etching, stain etching and metal assisted chemical etching. The current progress and the application prospects of those methods in nanostructure creation and Si upgrading are given and discussed in detail.

  17. Thin silicon solar cell performance characteristics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gay, C. F.

    1978-01-01

    Refined techniques for surface texturizing, back surface field and back surface reflector formation were evaluated for use with shallow junction, single-crystal silicon solar cells. Each process was characterized individually and collectively as a function of device thickness and bulk resistivity. Among the variables measured and reported are open circuit voltage, short circuit current and spectral response. Substantial improvements were obtained by the utilization of a low cost aluminum paste process to simultaneously remove the unwanted n(+) diffused region, form the back surface field and produce an ohmic contact metallization. The highly effective BSF which results from applying this process has allowed fabrication of cells 0.05 mm thick with initial outputs as high as 79.5 mW/4 sq cm (28 C, AM0) and superior electron radiation tolerance. Cells of 0.02 mm to 0.04 mm thickness have been fabricated with power to mass ratios well in excess of 2 watts per gram.

  18. Solar cell structure incorporating a novel single crystal silicon material

    DOEpatents

    Pankove, Jacques I.; Wu, Chung P.

    1983-01-01

    A novel hydrogen rich single crystal silicon material having a band gap energy greater than 1.1 eV can be fabricated by forming an amorphous region of graded crystallinity in a body of single crystalline silicon and thereafter contacting the region with atomic hydrogen followed by pulsed laser annealing at a sufficient power and for a sufficient duration to recrystallize the region into single crystal silicon without out-gassing the hydrogen. The new material can be used to fabricate semiconductor devices such as single crystal silicon solar cells with surface window regions having a greater band gap energy than that of single crystal silicon without hydrogen.

  19. Silicon solar cell process development, fabrication and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Minahan, J. A.

    1981-01-01

    The fabrication of solar cells from several unconventional silicon materials is described, and cell performance measured and analyzed. Unconventional materials evaluated are edge defined film fed grown (EFG), heat exchanger method (HEM), dendritic web grown, and continuous CZ silicons. Resistivity, current voltage, and spectral sensitivity of the cells were measured. Current voltage was measured under AM0 and AM1 conditions. Maximum conversion efficiencies of cells fabricated from these and other unconventional silicons were compared and test results analyzed. The HEM and continuous CZ silicon were found to be superior to silicon materials considered previously.

  20. New high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Daud, T.; Crotty, G. T.

    1985-01-01

    A design for silicon solar cells was investigated as an approach to increasing the cell open-circuit voltage and efficiency for flat-plate terrestrial photovoltaic applications. This deviates from past designs, where either the entire front surface of the cell is covered by a planar junction or the surface is textured before junction formation, which results in an even greater (up to 70%) junction area. The heavily doped front region and the junction space charge region are potential areas of high recombination for generated and injected minority carriers. The design presented reduces junction area by spreading equidiameter dot junctions across the surface of the cell, spaced about a diffusion length or less from each other. Various dot diameters and spacings allowed variations in total junction area. A simplified analysis was done to obtain a first-order design optimization. Efficiencies of up to 19% can be obtained. Cell fabrication involved extra masking steps for selective junction diffusion, and made surface passivation a key element in obtaining good collection. It also involved photolithography, with line widths down to microns. A method is demonstrated for achieving potentially high open-circuit voltages and solar-cell efficiencies.

  1. Fabricating amorphous silicon solar cells by varying the temperature _of the substrate during deposition of the amorphous silicon layer

    DOEpatents

    Carlson, David E.

    1982-01-01

    An improved process for fabricating amorphous silicon solar cells in which the temperature of the substrate is varied during the deposition of the amorphous silicon layer is described. Solar cells manufactured in accordance with this process are shown to have increased efficiencies and fill factors when compared to solar cells manufactured with a constant substrate temperature during deposition of the amorphous silicon layer.

  2. Defect behavior of polycrystalline solar cell silicon

    SciTech Connect

    Schroder, D.K.; Park, S.H.; Hwang, I.G.; Mohr, J.B.; Hanly, M.P.

    1993-05-01

    The major objective of this study, conducted from October 1988 to September 1991, was to gain an understanding of the behavior of impurities in polycrystalline silicon and the influence of these impurities on solar cell efficiency. The authors studied edge-defined film-fed growth (EFG) and cast poly-Si materials and solar cells. With EFG Si they concentrated on chromium-doped materials and cells to determine the role of Cr on solar cell performance. Cast poly-Si samples were not deliberately contaminated. Samples were characterized by cell efficiency, current-voltage, deep-level transient spectroscopy (DLTS), surface photovoltage (SPV), open-circuit voltage decay, secondary ion mass spectrometry, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy measurements. They find that Cr forms Cr-B pairs with boron at room temperature and these pairs dissociate into Cr{sub i}{sup +} and B{sup {minus}} during anneals at 210{degrees}C for 10 min. Following the anneal, Cr-B pairs reform at room temperature with a time constant of 230 h. Chromium forms CrSi{sub 2} precipitates in heavily contaminated regions and they find evidence of CrSi{sub 2} gettering, but a lack of chromium segregation or precipitation to grain boundaries and dislocations. Cr-B pairs have well defined DLTS peaks. However, DLTS spectra of other defects are not well defined, giving broad peaks indicative of defects with a range of energy levels in the band gap. In some high-stress, low-efficiency cast poly-Si they detect SiC precipitates, but not in low-stress, high-efficiency samples. SPV measurements result in nonlinear SPV curves in some materials that are likely due to varying optical absorption coefficients due to locally varying stress in the material.

  3. Development of high-efficiency solar cells on silicon web

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rohatgi, A.; Meier, D. L.; Campbell, R. B.; Seidensticker, R. G.; Rai-Choudhury, P.

    1984-01-01

    The development of high efficiency solar cells on a silicon web is discussed. Heat treatment effects on web quality; the influence of twin plane lamellae, trace impurities and stress on minority carrier lifetime; and the fabrication of cells are discussed.

  4. Heavy doping effects in high efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.

    1984-01-01

    Several of the key parameters describing the heavily doped regions of silicon solar cells are examined. The experimentally determined energy gap narrowing and minority carrier diffusivity and mobility are key factors in the investigation.

  5. Novel duplex vapor electrochemical method for silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kapur, V.; Sancier, K. M.; Sanjurjo, A.; Leach, S.; Westphal, S.; Bartlett, R.; Nanis, L.

    1978-01-01

    Progress in the development of low-cost solar arrays is reported. Topics covered include: (1) development of a simplified feed system for the Na used in the Na-SiF4 reactor; (2) production of high purity silicon through the reduction of sodium fluosilicate with sodium metal; (3) the leaching process for recovering silicon from the reaction products of the SiF4-Na reaction; and (4) silicon separation by the melting of the reaction product.

  6. Dendritic web - A viable material for silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seidensticker, R. G.; Scudder, L.; Brandhorst, H. W., Jr.

    1975-01-01

    The dendritic web process is a technique for growing thin silicon ribbon from liquid silicon. The material is suitable for solar cell fabrication and, in fact, cells fabricated on web material are equivalent in performance to cells fabricated on Czochralski-grown material. A recently concluded study has delineated the thermal requirements for silicon web crucibles, and a detailed conceptual design has been developed for a laboratory growth apparatus.

  7. Ion implanted junctions for silicon space solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spitzer, M. B.; Sanfacon, M. M.; Wolfson, R. G.

    1983-01-01

    This paper reviews the application of ion implantation to emitter and back surface field formation in silicon space solar cells. Experiments based on 2 ohm-cm boron-doped silicon are presented. It is shown that the implantation process is particularly compatible with formation of a high-quality back surface reflector. Large area solar cells with AM0 efficiency greater than 14 percent are reported.

  8. Improved High/Low Junction Silicon Solar Cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Neugroschel, A.; Pao, S. C.; Lindholm, F. A.; Fossum, J. G.

    1986-01-01

    Method developed to raise value of open-circuit voltage in silicon solar cells by incorporating high/low junction in cell emitter. Power-conversion efficiency of low-resistivity silicon solar cell considerably less than maximum theoretical value mainly because open-circuit voltage is smaller than simple p/n junction theory predicts. With this method, air-mass-zero opencircuit voltage increased from 600 mV level to approximately 650 mV.

  9. 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.

  10. A silicon sheet casting experiment. [for solar cell water production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bickler, D. B.; Sanchez, L. E.; Sampson, W. J.

    1980-01-01

    The casting of silicon blanks for solar cells directly without slicing is an exciting concept. An experiment was performed to investigate the feasibility of developing a machine that casts wafers directly. A Czochralski furnace was modified to accept a graphite ingot-simulating fixture. Silicon was melted in the middle of the ingot simulator in a boron nitride mold. Sample castings showed reasonable crystal size. Solar cells were made from the cast blanks. The performance is reported.

  11. An economic model for passive solar designs in commercial environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, J. W.

    1980-06-01

    The model incorporates a life cycle costing approach that focuses on the costs of purchase, installation, maintenance, repairs, replacement, and energy. It includes a detailed analysis of tax laws affecting the use of solar energy in commercial buildings. Possible methods of treating difficult to measure benefits and costs, such as effects of the passive solar design on resale value of the building and on lighting costs, rental income from the building, and the use of commercial space, are presented. The model is illustrated in two case examples of prototypical solar design for low rise commercial buildings in an urban setting.

  12. Silicon solar cell process. Development, fabrication and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Iles, P. A.; Tanner, D. P.

    1978-01-01

    Solar cells were fabricated from unconventional silicon sheets, and the performances were characterized with an emphasis on statistical evaluation. A number of solar cell fabrication processes were used and conversion efficiency was measured under AMO condition at 25 C. Silso solar cells using standard processing showed an average efficiency of about 9.6%. Solar cells with back surface field process showed about the same efficiency as the cells from standard process. Solar cells from grain boundary passivation process did not show any improvements in solar cell performance.

  13. Production Of Tandem Amorphous Silicon Alloy Solar Cells In A Continuous Roll-To-Roll Process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Izu, Masat; Ovshinsky, Stanford R.

    1983-09-01

    A roll-to-roll plasma deposition machine for depositing multi-layered amorphous alloys has been developed. The plasma deposition machine (approximately 35 ft. long) has multiple deposition areas and processes 16-inch wide stainless steel substrate continuously. Amorphous photovoltaic thin films (less than 1pm) having a six layered structure (PINPIN) are deposited on a roll of 16-inch wide 1000 ft. long stainless steel substrate, continu-ously, in a single pass. Mass production of low-cost tandem amorphous solar cells utilizing roll-to-roll processes is now possible. A commercial plant utilizing this plasma deposition machine for manufacturing tandem amorphous silicon alloy solar cells is now in operation. At Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. (ECD), one of the major tasks of the photovoltaic group has been the scale-up of the plasma deposition process for the production of amorphous silicon alloy solar cells. Our object has been to develop the most cost effective way of producing amorphous silicon alloy solar cells having the highest efficiency. The amorphous silicon alloy solar cell which we produce has the following layer structure: 1. Thin steel substrate. 2. Multi-layered photovoltaic amorphous silicon alloy layers (approximately 1pm thick; tandem cells have six layers). 3. ITO. 4. Grid pattern. 5. Encapsulant. The deposition of the amorphous layer is technologically the key process. It was clear to us from the beginning of this scale-up program that amorphous silicon alloy solar cells produced in wide width, continuous roll-to-roll production process would be ultimate lowest cost solar cells according to the following reasons. First of all, the material cost of our solar cells is low because: (1) the total thickness of active material is less than 1pm, and the material usage is very small; (2) silicon, fluorine, hydrogen, and other materials used in the device are abundant and low cost; (3) thin, low-cost substrate is used; and (4) product yield is high. In

  14. Amorphous silicon carbide passivating layers for crystalline-silicon-based heterojunction solar cells

    DOE PAGES

    Boccard, Mathieu; Holman, Zachary C.

    2015-08-14

    With this study, amorphous silicon enables the fabrication of very high-efficiency crystalline-silicon-based solar cells due to its combination of excellent passivation of the crystalline silicon surface and permeability to electrical charges. Yet, amongst other limitations, the passivation it provides degrades upon high-temperature processes, limiting possible post-deposition fabrication possibilities (e.g., forcing the use of low-temperature silver pastes). We investigate the potential use of intrinsic amorphous silicon carbide passivating layers to sidestep this issue. The passivation obtained using device-relevant stacks of intrinsic amorphous silicon carbide with various carbon contents and doped amorphous silicon are evaluated, and their stability upon annealing assessed, amorphousmore » silicon carbide being shown to surpass amorphous silicon for temperatures above 300°C. We demonstrate open-circuit voltage values over 700 mV for complete cells, and an improved temperature stability for the open-circuit voltage. Transport of electrons and holes across the hetero-interface is studied with complete cells having amorphous silicon carbide either on the hole-extracting side or on the electron-extracting side, and a better transport of holes than of electrons is shown. Also, due to slightly improved transparency, complete solar cells using an amorphous silicon carbide passivation layer on the hole-collecting side are demonstrated to show slightly better performances even prior to annealing than obtained with a standard amorphous silicon layer.« less

  15. Amorphous silicon carbide passivating layers for crystalline-silicon-based heterojunction solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Boccard, Mathieu; Holman, Zachary C.

    2015-08-14

    Amorphous silicon enables the fabrication of very high-efficiency crystalline-silicon-based solar cells due to its combination of excellent passivation of the crystalline silicon surface and permeability to electrical charges. Yet, amongst other limitations, the passivation it provides degrades upon high-temperature processes, limiting possible post-deposition fabrication possibilities (e.g., forcing the use of low-temperature silver pastes). We investigate the potential use of intrinsic amorphous silicon carbide passivating layers to sidestep this issue. The passivation obtained using device-relevant stacks of intrinsic amorphous silicon carbide with various carbon contents and doped amorphous silicon are evaluated, and their stability upon annealing assessed, amorphous silicon carbide being shown to surpass amorphous silicon for temperatures above 300 °C. We demonstrate open-circuit voltage values over 700 mV for complete cells, and an improved temperature stability for the open-circuit voltage. Transport of electrons and holes across the hetero-interface is studied with complete cells having amorphous silicon carbide either on the hole-extracting side or on the electron-extracting side, and a better transport of holes than of electrons is shown. Also, due to slightly improved transparency, complete solar cells using an amorphous silicon carbide passivation layer on the hole-collecting side are demonstrated to show slightly better performances even prior to annealing than obtained with a standard amorphous silicon layer.

  16. Amorphous silicon carbide passivating layers for crystalline-silicon-based heterojunction solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Boccard, Mathieu; Holman, Zachary C.

    2015-08-14

    With this study, amorphous silicon enables the fabrication of very high-efficiency crystalline-silicon-based solar cells due to its combination of excellent passivation of the crystalline silicon surface and permeability to electrical charges. Yet, amongst other limitations, the passivation it provides degrades upon high-temperature processes, limiting possible post-deposition fabrication possibilities (e.g., forcing the use of low-temperature silver pastes). We investigate the potential use of intrinsic amorphous silicon carbide passivating layers to sidestep this issue. The passivation obtained using device-relevant stacks of intrinsic amorphous silicon carbide with various carbon contents and doped amorphous silicon are evaluated, and their stability upon annealing assessed, amorphous silicon carbide being shown to surpass amorphous silicon for temperatures above 300°C. We demonstrate open-circuit voltage values over 700 mV for complete cells, and an improved temperature stability for the open-circuit voltage. Transport of electrons and holes across the hetero-interface is studied with complete cells having amorphous silicon carbide either on the hole-extracting side or on the electron-extracting side, and a better transport of holes than of electrons is shown. Also, due to slightly improved transparency, complete solar cells using an amorphous silicon carbide passivation layer on the hole-collecting side are demonstrated to show slightly better performances even prior to annealing than obtained with a standard amorphous silicon layer.

  17. Low cost silicon solar array project silicon materials task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    A program was established to develop a high temperature silicon production process using existing electric arc heater technology. Silicon tetrachloride and a reductant will be injected into an arc heated mixture of hydrogen and argon. Under these high temperature conditions, a very rapid reaction is expected to occur and proceed essentially to completion, yielding silicon and gaseous sodium chloride. Techniques for high temperature separation and collection of the molten silicon will be developed using standard engineering approaches, and the salt vapor will later be electrolytically separated into its elemental constituents for recycle. Preliminary technical evaluations and economic projections indicate not only that this process appears to be feasible, but that it also has the advantages of rapid, high capacity production of good quality molten silicon at a nominal cost.

  18. Development of Solar Grade (SoG) Silicon

    SciTech Connect

    Joyce, David B; Schmid, Frederick

    2008-01-18

    The rapid growth of the photovoltaics (PV) industry is threatened by the ongoing shortage of suitable solar grade (SoG) silicon. Until 2004, the PV industry relied on the off spec polysilicon from the electronics industry for feedstock. The rapid growth of PV meant that the demand for SoG silicon predictably surpassed this supply. The long-term prospects for PV are very bright as costs have come down, and efficiencies and economies of scale make PV generated electricity ever more competitive with grid electricity. However, the scalability of the current process for producing poly silicon again threatens the future. A less costly, higher volume production technique is needed to supply the long-term growth of the PV industry, and to reduce costs of PV even further. This long-term need was the motivation behind this SBIR proposal. Upgrading metallurgical grade (MG) silicon would fulfill the need for a low-cost, large-scale production. Past attempts to upgrade MG silicon have foundered/failed/had trouble reducing the low segregation coefficient elements, B, P, and Al. Most other elements in MG silicon can be purified very efficiently by directional solidification. Thus, in the Phase I program, Crystal Systems proposed a variety of techniques to reduce B, P, and Al in MG silicon to produce a low cost commercial technique for upgrading MG silicon. Of the variety of techniques tried, vacuum refining and some slagging and additions turned out to be the most promising. These were pursued in the Phase II study. By vacuum refining, the P was reduced from 14 to 0.22 ppmw and the Al was reduced from 370 ppmw to 0.065 ppmw. This process was scaled to 40 kg scale charges, and the results were expressed in terms of half-life, or time to reduce the impurity concentration in half. Best half-lives were 2 hours, typical were 4 hours. Scaling factors were developed to allow prediction of these results to larger scale melts. The vacuum refining required the development of new crucibles

  19. Probing Photocurrent Nonuniformities in the Subcells of Monolithic Perovskite/Silicon Tandem Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Song, Zhaoning; Werner, Jérémie; Shrestha, Niraj; Sahli, Florent; De Wolf, Stefaan; Niesen, Björn; Watthage, Suneth C; Phillips, Adam B; Ballif, Christophe; Ellingson, Randy J; Heben, Michael J

    2016-12-15

    Perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells with high power conversion efficiencies have the potential to become a commercially viable photovoltaic option in the near future. However, device design and optimization is challenging because conventional characterization methods do not give clear feedback on the localized chemical and physical factors that limit performance within individual subcells, especially when stability and degradation is a concern. In this study, we use light beam induced current (LBIC) to probe photocurrent collection nonuniformities in the individual subcells of perovskite/silicon tandems. The choices of lasers and light biasing conditions allow efficiency-limiting effects relating to processing defects, optical interference within the individual cells, and the evolution of water-induced device degradation to be spatially resolved. The results reveal several types of microscopic defects and demonstrate that eliminating these and managing the optical properties within the multilayer structures will be important for future optimization of perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells.

  20. Inorganic/organic hybrid solar cells: optimal carrier transport in vertically aligned silicon nanowire arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sato, Keisuke; Dutta, Mrinal; Fukata, Naoki

    2014-05-01

    Inorganic/organic hybrid radial heterojunction solar cells that combine vertically-aligned n-type silicon nanowires (SiNWs) with poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrene-sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) have great potential for replacing commercial Si solar cells. The chief advantage of such solar cells is that they exhibit higher absorbance for a given thickness than commercial Si solar cells, due to incident light-trapping within the NW arrays, thus enabling lower-cost solar cell production. We report herein on the effects of NW length, annealing and surface electrode on the device performance of SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid radial heterojunction solar cells. The power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the obtained SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells can be optimized by tuning the thickness of the surface electrode, and the etching conditions during NW formation and post-annealing. The PCE of 9.3% is obtained by forming efficient transport pathways for photogenerated charge carriers to electrodes. Our approach is a significant contribution to design of high-performance and low-cost inorganic/organic hybrid heterojunction solar cells.Inorganic/organic hybrid radial heterojunction solar cells that combine vertically-aligned n-type silicon nanowires (SiNWs) with poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrene-sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) have great potential for replacing commercial Si solar cells. The chief advantage of such solar cells is that they exhibit higher absorbance for a given thickness than commercial Si solar cells, due to incident light-trapping within the NW arrays, thus enabling lower-cost solar cell production. We report herein on the effects of NW length, annealing and surface electrode on the device performance of SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid radial heterojunction solar cells. The power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the obtained SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells can be optimized by tuning the thickness of the surface electrode, and the etching conditions during NW formation and

  1. Silicon-film{trademark} on ceramic solar cells. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, R.B.; Bacon, C.; DiReda, V.; Ford, D.H.; Ingram, A.E.; Lampo, S.M.; Rand, J.A.; Ruffins, T.R.; Barnett, A.M.

    1993-02-01

    The Silicon-Film{trademark} design achieves high performance through the use of a thin silicon layer. Optimally designed thin crystalline solar cells (<50 microns thick) have performance advantages over conventional thick devices. The enhancement in performance requires the incorporation of back-surface passivation and light trapping. The high-performance Silicon-Film{trademark} design employs a metallurgical barrier between the low-cost substrate and the thin silicon layer. The properties of the metallurgical barrier must be engineered to implement specific device requirements, such as high back-surface reflectivity. Recent advances in process development are described here.

  2. Silicon Solar Cell Process Development, Fabrication and Analysis, Phase 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Iles, P. A.; Tanner, D. P.

    1979-01-01

    Solar cells from RTR ribbons, EFG (RF and RH) ribbons, dendritic webs, Silso wafers, cast silicon by HEM, silicon on ceramic, and continuous Czochralski ingots were fabricated using a standard process typical of those used currently in the silicon solar cell industry. Back surface field (BSF) processing and other process modifications were included to give preliminary indications of possible improved performance. The parameters measured included open circuit voltage, short circuit current, curve fill factor, and conversion efficiency (all taken under AM0 illumination). Also measured for typical cells were spectral response, dark I-V characteristics, minority carrier diffusion length, and photoresponse by fine light spot scanning. the results were compared to the properties of cells made from conventional single crystalline Czochralski silicon with an emphasis on statistical evaluation. Limited efforts were made to identify growth defects which will influence solar cell performance.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-02-01

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

  4. Silicon solar cells by ion implantation and pulsed energy processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirkpatrick, A. R.; Minnucci, J. A.; Shaughnessy, T. S.; Greenwald, A. C.

    1976-01-01

    A new method for fabrication of silicon solar cells is being developed around ion implantation in conjunction with pulsed electron beam techniques to replace conventional furnace processing. Solar cells can be fabricated totally in a vacuum environment at room temperature. Cells with 10% AM0 efficiency have been demonstrated. High efficiency cells and effective automated processing capabilities are anticipated.

  5. Applications of ion implantation for high efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Minnucci, J. A.; Kirkpatrick, A. R.

    1977-01-01

    Ion implantation is utilized for the dopant introduction processes necessary to fabricate a silicon solar cell. Implantation provides a versatile powerful tool for development of high efficiency cells. Advantages and problems of implantation and the present status of developmental use of the technique for solar cells are discussed.

  6. Thin foil silicon solar cells with coplanar back contacts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ho, F.; Iles, P. A.; Baraona, C. R.

    1981-01-01

    To fabricate 50 microns thick, coplanar back contact (CBC) silicon solar cells, wraparound junction design was selected and proved to be effective. The process sequence used, the cell design, and the cell performance are described. CBC cells with low solar absorptance have shown AMO efficiencies to 13%, high cells up to 14%; further improvements are projected with predictable optimization.

  7. Commercial Development Of Ovonic Thin Film Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ovshinsky, Stanford R.

    1983-09-01

    One square foot Ovonic amorphous photovoltaic devices are already in commercial production and are manufactured through a continuous web process. The next levels of commercialization required to achieve a large-volume power market will be discussed, and the device specifications correlated with the chemical and electronic properties of the materials that we are developing to achieve even higher efficiencies. It has been long considered a utopian dream to harness the energy of the sun to create electricity that would be competitive in cost to that produced from the conventional sources of energy such as oil, gas, and uranium. The impact on our society of stand-alone power generators without moving parts using the continually available, ubiquitous energy of the sun could certainly lead to a new age with consequences comparable to the first introduction of electricity which greatly accelerated the Industrial Revolution. Low cost, nonpolluting energy not dependent upon or limited by transmission costs could again make DC electricity a realistic option. The relatively young field of photovoltaics suffers from certain dogmas that are just now being questioned. For example, it is thought by many that solar cells utilizing crys-talline materials have inherently higher efficiencies than those using amorphous materials, and that somehow crystalline solar cells, whether fabricated from single crystals or polycrystalline material, in round or rectangular geometries, grown from the melt or by a rib-bon process, can be reduced in cost sufficiently that the economics become attractive enough for large-scale terrestrial generation of power. In this paper, we shall show that amorphous materials can have much higher efficiencies than do crystalline and that the answer to our power generation needs lies not in crystalline but in amorphous technology. At Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. (ECD), we have designed and built a production machine (described by my colleague, Dr. Izu, in a

  8. Cz-Silicon Produced from Solar-Grade and Recycled Materials. Part II: Investigating Performances of Solar Cell Produced from Solar-Grade Cz-Silicon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Song; Øvrelid, Eivind Johannes; Di Sabtino, Marisa; Juel, Mari; Tranell, Gabriella

    2015-03-01

    This paper is the second of two, investigating the properties of P-type Cz-silicon materials and solar cells produced with recycled silicon and Elkem Solar Silicon (ESS) materials. While the focus on the first work was on the bulk properties and grown defects of the material, the current study focuses on the solar cell performances. In the processing of the solar cells, the phosphorous diffusion process was optimized to improve the bulk properties and thus to maximize the final solar cell characteristics. Results from the characterization of material defects suggest that the performances of the experimental ingots are limited by the activated grown-in defects, which should be strictly controlled during crystal growth and solar cell processing. The solar cells produced from the investigated ingots showed efficiency values up to 18.5 pct and fill factor values up to 79 pct, comparable to conventional silicon produced from poly silicon. Solar cells produced from mixed recycled and ESS material exhibit a better performance than 100 pct recycled material. Boron and oxygen concentration levels and net doping level showed a concurrent effect on light-induced degradation (LID). Appropriate compensation was finally demonstrated to be an efficient way to improve solar cells efficiency of Cz-silicon produced from recycled silicon, even though higher dopant concentration incurred relatively faster LID.

  9. Design of plasmonic enhanced silicon-based solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hejazi, F.; Ding, S. Y.; Sun, Y.; Bottomley, A.; Ianoul, A.; Ye, W. N.

    2012-10-01

    We report a novel plasmonic solar cell design implemented on an amorphous silicon platform. The enhancement of the scattering and trapping of the light is achieved by embedding nano-metallic cubic particles within the cell's junction. Amorphous silicon cell with a thickness of 1200nm is used. The spectral absorption of the silicon cell is limited to wavelengths larger than 1.1 u. Our proposed solar cell has a p-i-n configuration, with the amorphous silicon as the photo-active layer. Silver cubic nanoparticles are embedded at different locations within the photoactive layers of the solar cell. With the use of an FDTD simulator, we are able to characterize the optical performance of the solar cell. Our results show that the plasmonic properties of the cubic nanoparticles are more attractive for sensing applications compared to the traditional spherical configuration. The geometry of the cubic nanoparticles enables control over plasmon resonances both in the resonant wavelength and the degree of field enhancement. This is done by improving the refractive-index sensitivity on a thin silicon film, as well as increasing the scattering and trapping of light. Our simulations predict that the silver metallic nanoparticles will enhance the solar cell efficiency, by optimizing the plasmonic properties of the silver nanocube monolayer. We have achieved a 67% increase (from 7.5% to 12.5%) in the cell's efficiency by adding plasmonics to traditional amorphous p-i-n solar cell.

  10. Membrane transfer of crystalline silicon thin film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vempati, Venkata Kesari Nandan

    Silicon has been dominating the solar industry for many years and has been touted as the gold standard of the photovoltaic world. The factors for its dominance: government subsidies and ease of processing. Silicon holds close to 90% of the market share in the material being used for solar cell production. Of which 14% belongs to single-crystalline Silicon. Although 24% efficient bulk crystalline solar cells have been reported, the industry has been looking for thin film alternatives to reduce the cost of production. Moreover with the new avenues like flexible consumer electronics opening up, there is a need to introduce the flexibility into the solar cells. Thin film films make up for their inefficiency keeping their mechanical properties intact by incorporating Anti-reflective schemes such as surface texturing, textured back reflectors and low reflective surfaces. This thesis investigates the possibility of using thin film crystalline Silicon for fabricating solar cells and has demonstrated a low cost and energy efficient way for fabricating 2microm thick single crystalline Silicon solar cells with an efficiency of 0.8% and fill factor of 35%.

  11. Concept of epitaxial silicon structures for edge illuminated solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarnecki, J.; Gawlik, G.; Teodorczyk, M.; Jeremiasz, O.; Kozłowski, R.; Lipiński, D.; Krzyżak, K.; Brzozowski, A.

    2011-12-01

    A new concept of edge illuminated solar cells (EISC) based on silicon epitaxial technique has been proposed. In this kind of photovoltaic (PV) devices, sun-light illuminates directly a p-n junction through the edge of the structure which is perpendicular to junction surface. The main motivation of the presented work is preparation of a working model of an edge-illuminated silicon epitaxial solar cell sufficient to cooperation with a luminescent solar concentrator (LSC) consisted of a polymer foil doped with a luminescent material. The technological processes affecting the cell I-V characteristic and PV parameters are considered.

  12. Studies of silicon p-n junction solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Neugroschel, A.; Lindholm, F. A.

    1979-01-01

    To provide theoretical support for investigating different ways to obtain high open-circuit voltages in p-n junction silicon solar cells, an analytical treatment of heavily doped transparent-emitter devices is presented that includes the effects of bandgap narrowing, Fermi-Dirac statistics, a doping concentration gradient, and a finite surface recombination velocity at the emitter surface. Topics covered include: (1) experimental determination of bandgap narrowing in the emitter of silicon p-n junction devices; (2) heavily doped transparent regions in junction solar cells, diodes, and transistors; (3) high-low-emitter solar cell; (4) determination of lifetimes and recombination currents in p-n junction solar cells; (5) MOS and oxide-charged-induced BSF solar cells; and (6) design of high efficiency solar cells for space and terrestrial applications.

  13. Alternative Architecture for Commercial Space Solar Power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Potter, Seth

    2000-01-01

    This presentation discuss the space solar power (SSP) concept. It takes us step by step through the process: the use of sunlight and solar cells to create power, the conversion of the sunlight into electricity, the conversion of electricity to microwaves, and finally the from microwaves back to electricity by the Rectennas on Earth.

  14. Silver nanoparticles-coated glass frits for silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yingfen; Gan, Weiping; Li, Biyuan

    2016-04-01

    Silver nanoparticles-coated glass frit composite powders for silicon solar cells were prepared by electroless plating. Silver colloids were used as the activating agent of glass frits. The products were characterized by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and differential scanning calorimetry. The characterization results indicated that silver nanoparticles with the melting temperature of 838 °C were uniformly deposited on glass frit surface. The particle size of silver nanoparticles could be controlled by adjusting the [Ag(NH3)2]NO3 concentration. The as-prepared composite powders were applied in the front side metallization of silicon solar cells. Compared with those based on pure glass frits, the solar cells containing the composite powders had the denser silver electrodes and the better silver-silicon ohmic contacts. Furthermore, the photovoltaic performances of solar cells were improved after the electroless plating.

  15. Response of silicon solar cell to pulsed laser illumination

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Willowby, D.; Alexander, D.; Edge, T.; Herren, K.

    1993-01-01

    The response of silicon solar cell(s) to pulsed laser illumination is discussed. The motivation was due to the interest of Earth to space/Moon power beaming applications. When this work began, it was not known if solar cells would respond to laser light with pulse lengths in the nanosecond range and a repetition frequency in the kHz range. This is because the laser pulse would be shorter than the minority carrier lifetime of silicon. A 20-nanosecond (ns) full width half max (FWHM) pulse from an aluminum-gallium/arsenide (Al-Ga-As) diode laser was used to illuminate silicon solar cells at a wavelength of 885 nanometers (nm). Using a high-speed digital oscilloscope, the response of the solar cells to individual pulses across various resistive loads was observed and recorded.

  16. Develop Silicone Encapsulation Systems for Terrestrial Silicon Solar Arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1979-01-01

    A cost effective encapsulant system was identified and a silicone acrylic cover material containing a durable ultraviolet screening agent was prepared. The effectiveness of the cover material in protecting photo-oxidatively sensitive polymers was demonstrated.

  17. Silicon solar cell process development, fabrication, and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Iles, P. A.; Leung, D. C.

    1980-01-01

    Solar cells from HEM, Dendritic Webs, and EFG ribbons were fabricated and characterized. The HEM solar cells showed only slight enhancement in cell performance after gettering steps (diffusion glass) were added. Dendritic webs from various growth runs indicated that performance of solar cells made from the webs was not as good as that of the conventional CZ cells. The EFG ribbons grown in CO ambient showed significant improvement in silicon quality.

  18. Silicon materials task of the Low Cost Solar Array Project: Effect of impurities and processing on silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, R. H.; Davis, J. R.; Rohatgi, A.; Hanes, M. H.; Rai-Choudhury, P.; Mollenkopf, H. C.

    1982-01-01

    The effects of impurities and processing on the characteristics of silicon and terrestrial silicon solar cells were defined in order to develop cost benefit relationships for the use of cheaper, less pure solar grades of silicon. The amount of concentrations of commonly encountered impurities that can be tolerated in typical p or n base solar cells was established, then a preliminary analytical model from which the cell performance could be projected depending on the kinds and amounts of contaminants in the silicon base material was developed. The impurity data base was expanded to include construction materials, and the impurity performace model was refined to account for additional effects such as base resistivity, grain boundary interactions, thermal processing, synergic behavior, and nonuniform impurity distributions. A preliminary assessment of long term (aging) behavior of impurities was also undertaken.

  19. Development of Silver-Free Silicon Photovoltaic Solar Cells with All-Aluminum Electrodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Wen-Cheng

    To date, the most popular and dominant material for commercial solar cells is crystalline silicon (or wafer-Si). It has the highest cell efficiency and cell lifetime out of all commercial solar cells. Although the potential of crystalline-Si solar cells in supplying energy demands is enormous, their future growth will likely be constrained by two major bottlenecks. The first is the high electricity input to produce crystalline-Si solar cells and modules, and the second is the limited supply of silver (Ag) reserves. These bottlenecks prevent crystalline-Si solar cells from reaching terawatt-scale deployment, which means the electricity produced by crystalline-Si solar cells would never fulfill a noticeable portion of our energy demands in the future. In order to solve the issue of Ag limitation for the front metal grid, aluminum (Al) electroplating has been developed as an alternative metallization technique in the fabrication of crystalline-Si solar cells. The plating is carried out in a near-room-temperature ionic liquid by means of galvanostatic electrolysis. It has been found that dense, adherent Al deposits with resistivity in the high 10--6 Ω-cm range can be reproducibly obtained directly on Si substrates and nickel seed layers. An all-Al Si solar cell, with an electroplated Al front electrode and a screen-printed Al back electrode, has been successfully demonstrated based on commercial p-type monocrystalline-Si solar cells, and its efficiency is approaching 15%. Further optimization of the cell fabrication process, in particular a suitable patterning technique for the front silicon nitride layer, is expected to increase the efficiency of the cell to ~18%. This shows the potential of Al electroplating in cell metallization is promising and replacing Ag with Al as the front finger electrode is feasible.

  20. Silicon solar cells: Past, present and the future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Youn-Jung; Kim, Byung-Sung; Ifitiquar, S. M.; Park, Cheolmin; Yi, Junsin

    2014-08-01

    There has been a great demand for renewable energy for the last few years. However, the solar cell industry is currently experiencing a temporary plateau due to a sluggish economy and an oversupply of low-quality cells. The current situation can be overcome by reducing the production cost and by improving the cell is conversion efficiency. New materials such as compound semiconductor thin films have been explored to reduce the fabrication cost, and structural changes have been explored to improve the cell's efficiency. Although a record efficiency of 24.7% is held by a PERL — structured silicon solar cell and 13.44% has been realized using a thin silicon film, the mass production of these cells is still too expensive. Crystalline and amorphous silicon — based solar cells have led the solar industry and have occupied more than half of the market so far. They will remain so in the future photovoltaic (PV) market by playing a pivotal role in the solar industry. In this paper, we discuss two primary approaches that may boost the silicon — based solar cell market; one is a high efficiency approach and the other is a low cost approach. We also discuss the future prospects of various solar cells.

  1. Flat-plate solar array project. Volume 2: Silicon material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lutwack, R.

    1986-10-01

    The goal of the Silicon Material Task, a part of the Flat Plate Solar Array (FSA) Project, was to develop and demonstate the technology for the low cost production of silicon of suitable purity to be used as the basic material for the manufacture of terrestrial photovoltaic solar cells. Summarized are 11 different processes for the production of silicon that were investigated and developed to varying extent by industrial, university, and Government researchers. The silane production section of the Union Carbide Corp. (UCC) silane process was developed completely in this program. Coupled with Siemens-type chemical vapor deposition reactors, the process was carried through the pilot stage. The overall UCC process involves the conversion of metallurgical-grade silicon to silane followed by decomposition of the silane to purified silicon. The other process developments are described to varying extents. Studies are reported on the effects of impurities in silicon on both silicon-material properties and on solar cell performance. These studies on the effects of impurities yielded extensive information and models for relating specific elemental concentrations to levels of deleterious effects.

  2. Flat-plate solar array project. Volume 2: Silicon material

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lutwack, R.

    1986-01-01

    The goal of the Silicon Material Task, a part of the Flat Plate Solar Array (FSA) Project, was to develop and demonstate the technology for the low cost production of silicon of suitable purity to be used as the basic material for the manufacture of terrestrial photovoltaic solar cells. Summarized are 11 different processes for the production of silicon that were investigated and developed to varying extent by industrial, university, and Government researchers. The silane production section of the Union Carbide Corp. (UCC) silane process was developed completely in this program. Coupled with Siemens-type chemical vapor deposition reactors, the process was carried through the pilot stage. The overall UCC process involves the conversion of metallurgical-grade silicon to silane followed by decomposition of the silane to purified silicon. The other process developments are described to varying extents. Studies are reported on the effects of impurities in silicon on both silicon-material properties and on solar cell performance. These studies on the effects of impurities yielded extensive information and models for relating specific elemental concentrations to levels of deleterious effects.

  3. Combined Silicon and Gallium Arsenide Solar Cell UV Testing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Willowby, Douglas

    2005-01-01

    The near and long-term effect of UV on silicon solar cells is relatively understood. In an effort to learn more about the effects of UV radiation on the performance of GaAs/Ge solar cells, silicon and gallium arsenide on germanium (GaAs/Ge) solar cells were placed in a vacuum chamber and irradiated with ultraviolet light by a Spectrolab XT 10 solar simulator. Seventeen GaAs/Ge and 8 silicon solar cells were mounted on an 8 inch copper block. By having all the cells on the same test plate we were able to do direct comparison of silicon and GaAs/Ge solar cell degradation. The test article was attached to a cold plate in the vacuum chamber to maintain the cells at 25 degrees Celsius. A silicon solar cell standard was used to measure beam uniformity and any degradation of the ST-10 beam. The solar cell coverings tested included cells with AR-0213 coverglass, fused silica coverglass, BRR-0213 coverglass and cells without coverglass. Of interest in the test is the BRR-0213 coverglass material manufactured by OCLI. It has an added Infrared rejection coating to help reduce the solar cell operating temperature. This coverglass is relatively new and of interest to several current and future programs at Marshall. Due to moves of the laboratory equipment and location only 350 hours of UV degradation have been completed. During this testing a significant leveling off in the rate of degradation was reached. Data from the test and comparisons of the UV effect of the bare cells and cells with coverglass material will be presented.

  4. Silicon space solar cells: progression and radiation-resistance analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rehman, Atteq ur; Lee, Sang Hee; Lee, Soo Hong

    2016-02-01

    In this paper, an overview of the solar cell technology based on silicon for applications in space is presented. First, the space environment and its effects on the basis of satellite orbits, such as geostationary earth orbit (GEO) and low earth orbit (LEO), are described. The space solar cell technology based on silicon-based materials, including thin-film silicon solar cells, for use in space was appraised. The evolution of the design for silicon solar cell for use in space, such as a backsurface field (BSF), selective doping, and both-side passivation, etc., is illustrated. This paper also describes the nature of radiation-induced defects and the models proposed for understanding the output power degradation in silicon space solar cells. The phenomenon of an anomalous increase in the short-circuit current ( I sc) in the fluence irradiation range from 2 × 1016 cm-2 to 5 × 1016 cm-2 is also described explicitly from the view point of the various presented models.

  5. High-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olsen, L. C.

    1985-01-01

    Fabrication and characterization of high-efficiency metal insulator, n-p (MINP) cells is described. Particular attention was paid to development of measurement methods for surface recombination and density of surface states. A modified Rosier test structure was used successfully for density of surface states. Silicon oxide and silicon nitride passivants were studied. Heat treatment after plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of silicon nitride was shown to be beneficial. A more optimum emitter concentration profile was modeled.

  6. Efficiency improvement of silicon nanostructure-based solar cells.

    PubMed

    Huang, Bohr-Ran; Yang, Ying-Kan; Yang, Wen-Luh

    2014-01-24

    Solar cells based on a high-efficiency silicon nanostructure (SNS) were developed using a two-step metal-assisted electroless etching (MAEE) technique, phosphorus silicate glass (PSG) doping and screen printing. This process was used to produce solar cells with a silver nitrate (AgNO3) etching solution in different concentrations. Compared to cells produced using the single MAEE technique, SNS-based solar cells produced with the two-step MAEE technique showed an increase in silicon surface coverage of ~181.1% and a decrease in reflectivity of ~144.3%. The performance of the SNS-based solar cells was found to be optimized (~11.86%) in an SNS with a length of ~300 nm, an aspect ratio of ~5, surface coverage of ~84.9% and a reflectivity of ~6.1%. The ~16.8% increase in power conversion efficiency (PCE) for the SNS-based solar cell indicates good potential for mass production.

  7. Semiconductor Grade, Solar Silicon Purification Project. [photovoltaic solar energy conversion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ingle, W. M.; Rosler, R. S.; Thompson, S. W.; Chaney, R. E.

    1979-01-01

    A low cost by-product, SiF4, is reacted with mg silicon to form SiF2 gas which is polymerized. The (SiF2)x polymer is heated forming volatile SixFy homologues which disproportionate on a silicon particle bed forming silicon and SiF4. The silicon analysis procedure relied heavily on mass spectroscopic and emission spectroscopic analysis. These analyses demonstrated that major purification had occured and some samples were indistinguishable from semiconductor grade silicon (except possibly for phosphorus). However, electrical analysis via crystal growth reveal that the product contains compensated phosphorus and boron.

  8. Characterization of solar-grade silicon produced by the SiF4-Na process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sanjurjo, A.; Sancier, K. M.; Emerson, R. M.; Leach, S. C.; Minahan, J.

    1986-01-01

    A process was developed for producing low cost solar grade silicon by the reaction between SiF4 gas and sodium metal. The results of the characterization of the silicon are presented. These results include impurity levels, electronic properties of the silicon after crystal growth, and the performance of solar photovoltaic cells fabricated from wafers of the single crystals. The efficiency of the solar cells fabricated from semiconductor silicon and SiF4-Na silicon was the same.

  9. A magnesium/amorphous silicon passivating contact for n-type crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wan, Yimao; Samundsett, Chris; Yan, Di; Allen, Thomas; Peng, Jun; Cui, Jie; Zhang, Xinyu; Bullock, James; Cuevas, Andres

    2016-09-01

    Among the metals, magnesium has one of the lowest work functions, with a value of 3.7 eV. This makes it very suitable to form an electron-conductive cathode contact for silicon solar cells. We present here the experimental demonstration of an amorphous silicon/magnesium/aluminium (a-Si:H/Mg/Al) passivating contact for silicon solar cells. The conduction properties of a thermally evaporated Mg/Al contact structure on n-type crystalline silicon (c-Si) are investigated, achieving a low resistivity Ohmic contact to moderately doped n-type c-Si (˜5 × 1015 cm-3) of ˜0.31 Ω cm2 and ˜0.22 Ω cm2 for samples with and without an amorphous silicon passivating interlayer, respectively. Application of the passivating cathode to the whole rear surface of n-type front junction c-Si solar cells leads to a power conversion efficiency of 19% in a proof-of-concept device. The low thermal budget of the cathode formation, its dopant-less nature, and the simplicity of the device structure enabled by the Mg/Al contact open up possibilities in designing and fabricating low-cost silicon solar cells.

  10. Silicon solar cell efficiency improvement: Status and outlook

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolf, M.

    1985-01-01

    Efficiency and operating life is an economic attribute in silicon solar cells application. The efficiency improvements made during the 30 year existence of the silicon solar cells, from about 6% efficiency at the beginning to 19% in the most recent experimental cells is illustrated. In the more stationary periods, the effort was oriented towards improving radiation resistance and yields on the production lines, while, in other periods, the emphasis was on reaching new levels of efficiency through better cell design and improved material processing. First results were forthcoming from the recent efforts. Considerably more efficiency advancement in silicon solar cells is expected, and the anticipated attainment of efficiencies significantly above 20% is discussed. Major advances in material processing and in the resulting material perfection are required.

  11. Inorganic/organic hybrid solar cells: optimal carrier transport in vertically aligned silicon nanowire arrays.

    PubMed

    Sato, Keisuke; Dutta, Mrinal; Fukata, Naoki

    2014-06-07

    Inorganic/organic hybrid radial heterojunction solar cells that combine vertically-aligned n-type silicon nanowires (SiNWs) with poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrene-sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) have great potential for replacing commercial Si solar cells. The chief advantage of such solar cells is that they exhibit higher absorbance for a given thickness than commercial Si solar cells, due to incident light-trapping within the NW arrays, thus enabling lower-cost solar cell production. We report herein on the effects of NW length, annealing and surface electrode on the device performance of SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid radial heterojunction solar cells. The power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the obtained SiNW/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells can be optimized by tuning the thickness of the surface electrode, and the etching conditions during NW formation and post-annealing. The PCE of 9.3% is obtained by forming efficient transport pathways for photogenerated charge carriers to electrodes. Our approach is a significant contribution to design of high-performance and low-cost inorganic/organic hybrid heterojunction solar cells.

  12. In-Line Crack and Stress Detection in Silicon Solar Cells Using Resonance Ultrasonic Vibrations

    SciTech Connect

    Ostapenko, Sergei

    2013-04-03

    Statement of Problem and Objectives. Wafer breakage in automated solar cell production lines is identified as a major technical problem and a barrier for further cost reduction of silicon solar module manufacturing. To the best of our knowledge, there are no commercial systems addressing critical needs for in-line inspection of the mechanical quality of solar wafers and cells. The principal objective of the SBIR program is to validate through experiments and computer modeling the applicability of the Resonance Ultrasonic Vibrations system, which ultimately can be used as a real-time in-line manufacturing quality control tool for fast detection of mechanically unstable silicon solar cells caused by cracks. The specific objective of Phase II is to move the technology of in-line crack detection from the laboratory level to commercial demonstration through development of a system prototype. The fragility of silicon wafers possessing low mechanical strength is attributed to peripheral and bulk millimeter-length cracks. The research program is based on feasibility results obtained during Phase I, which established that: (i) the Resonance Ultrasonic Vibrations method is applicable to as-cut, processed wafers and finished cells; (ii) the method sensitivity depends on the specific processing step; it is highest in as-cut wafers and lowest in wafers with metallization pattern and grid contacts; (iii) the system is capable of matching the 2.0 seconds per wafer throughput rate of state-of-art solar cell production lines; (iv) finite element modeling provides vibration mode analysis along with peak shift versus crack length and crack location dependence; (v) a high 91% crack rejection rate was confirmed through experimentation and statistical analysis. The Phase II project has the following specific tasks: (i) specify optimal configurations of the in-line system's component hardware and software; (ii) develop and justify a system prototype that meets major specifications for an

  13. Concentrating Solar Power Commercial Application Study

    SciTech Connect

    none,

    2009-10-01

    This report has been prepared in response to section 603(b) of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, (Pub. L. No. 110-140), which states that “…the Secretary of Energy shall transmit to Congress a report on the results of a study on methods to reduce the amount of water consumed by concentrating solar power systems.”

  14. Silicon Web Process Development. [for solar cell fabrication

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duncan, C. S.; Seidensticker, R. G.; Hopkins, R. H.; Mchugh, J. P.; Hill, F. E.; Heimlich, M. E.; Driggers, J. M.

    1979-01-01

    Silicon dendritic web, ribbon form of silicon and capable of fabrication into solar cells with greater than 15% AMl conversion efficiency, was produced from the melt without die shaping. Improvements were made both in the width of the web ribbons grown and in the techniques to replenish the liquid silicon as it is transformed to web. Through means of improved thermal shielding stress was reduced sufficiently so that web crystals nearly 4.5 cm wide were grown. The development of two subsystems, a silicon feeder and a melt level sensor, necessary to achieve an operational melt replenishment system, is described. A gas flow management technique is discussed and a laser reflection method to sense and control the melt level as silicon is replenished is examined.

  15. Interface engineering of Graphene-Silicon heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Dikai; Yu, Xuegong; Yang, Lifei; Yang, Deren

    2016-11-01

    Graphene has attracted great research interests due to its unique mechanical, electrical and optical properties, which opens up a huge number of opportunities for applications. Recently, Graphene-Silicon (Grsbnd Si) solar cell has been recognized as one interesting candidate for the future photovoltaic. Since the first Grsbnd Si solar cell reported in 2010, Grsbnd Si solar cell has been intensively investigated and the power converse efficiency (PCE) of it has been developed to 15.6%. This review presents and discusses current development of Grsbnd Si solar cell. Firstly, the basic concept and mechanism of Grsbnd Si solar cell are introduced. Then, several key technologies are introduced to improve the performance of Grsbnd Si solar cells, such as chemical doping, annealing, Si surface passivation and interlayer insertion. Particular emphasis is placed on strategies for Grsbnd Si interface engineering. Finally, new pathways and opportunities of "MIS-like structure" Grsbnd Si solar cells are described.

  16. Heavy doping effects in high efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.; Neugroschel, A.

    1985-01-01

    The use of a (silicon)/(heavily doped polysilicon)/(metal) structure to replace the conventional high-low junction (or back-surface-field, BSF) structure of silicon solar cells was examined. The results of an experimental study designed to explore both qualitatively and quantitatively the mechanism of the improved current gain in bipolar transistors with polysilicon emitter contact are presented. A reciprocity theorem is presented that relates the short circuit current of a device, induced by a carrier generation source, to the minority carrier Fermi level in the dark. A method for accurate measurement of minority-carrier diffusion coefficients in silicon is described.

  17. Theoretical and experimental considerations for high silicon solar cell performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spitzer, M. B.; Keavney, C. J.; Geoffroy, L. M.

    1986-01-01

    This paper reviews ongoing research aimed at the attainment of highly efficient silicon solar cells. The importance of low-recombination highly-doped n(+) and p(+) regions and the manner in which such regions are fabricated are discussed. Theoretical light-trapping considerations are combined with experimental reflectance data to show that high quantum efficiency may be obtained from thin (100-micron) cells. The principal finding of this work is that thin solar cells with conversion efficiencies of over 20 percent may be fabricated if recombination at the front and back metal/silicon interfaces is reduced. Large-area cells (53 sq cm) with an efficiency of 18 percent are reported.

  18. Optical absorption of several nanostructures arrays for silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Zhaopeng; Qiao, Huiling; Huangfu, Huichao; Li, Xiaowei; Guo, Jingwei; Wang, Haiyan

    2015-12-01

    To improve the efficiency and reduce the cost of solar cells, it's important to enhance the light absorption. Within the visible solar spectrum based on optimization simulations by COMSOL Multiphysics, the optical absorption of silicon cylindrical nanowires, nanocones and inverted nanocones was calculated respectively. The results reveal that the average absorption for the nanocones between 400 and 800 nm is 70.2%, which is better than cylindrical nanowires (55.3%), inverted nanocones (42.3%) and bulk silicon (42.2%). In addition, more than 95% of light from 630 to 800 nm is reflected for inverted nanocones, which can be used to enhance infrared reflection in photovoltaic devices.

  19. Damage coefficients in low resistivity silicon. [solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Srour, J. R.; Othmer, S.; Chiu, K. Y.; Curtis, O. L., Jr.

    1975-01-01

    Electron and proton damage coefficients are determined for low resistivity silicon based on minority-carrier lifetime measurements on bulk material and diffusion length measurements on solar cells. Irradiations were performed on bulk samples and cells fabricated from four types of boron-doped 0.1 ohm-cm silicon ingots, including the four possible combinations of high and low oxygen content and high and low dislocation density. Measurements were also made on higher resistivity boron-doped bulk samples and solar cells. Major observations and conclusions from the investigation are discussed.

  20. Silicon-on-ceramic process: Silicon sheet growth and device development for the large-area silicon sheet task of the low-cost solar array project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whitehead, A. B.; Zook, J. D.; Grung, B. L.; Heaps, J. D.; Schmit, F.; Schuldt, S. B.; Chapman, P. W.

    1981-01-01

    The technical feasibility of producing solar cell quality sheet silicon to meet the DOE 1986 cost goal of 70 cents/watt was investigated. The silicon on ceramic approach is to coat a low cost ceramic substrate with large grain polycrystalline silicon by unidirectional solidification of molten silicon. Results and accomplishments are summarized.

  1. A 2-terminal perovskite/silicon multijunction solar cell enabled by a silicon tunnel junction

    SciTech Connect

    Mailoa, Jonathan P.; Bailie, Colin D.; Johlin, Eric C.; Hoke, Eric T.; Akey, Austin J.; Nguyen, William H.; McGehee, Michael D.; Buonassisi, Tonio

    2015-03-24

    With the advent of efficient high-bandgap metal-halide perovskite photovoltaics, an opportunity exists to make perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells. We fabricate a monolithic tandem by developing a silicon-based interband tunnel junction that facilitates majority-carrier charge recombination between the perovskite and silicon sub-cells. We demonstrate a 1 cm2 2-terminal monolithic perovskite/silicon multijunction solar cell with a VOC as high as 1.65 V. As a result, we achieve a stable 13.7% power conversion efficiency with the perovskite as the current-limiting sub-cell, and identify key challenges for this device architecture to reach efficiencies over 25%.

  2. A 2-terminal perovskite/silicon multijunction solar cell enabled by a silicon tunnel junction

    DOE PAGES

    Mailoa, Jonathan P.; Bailie, Colin D.; Johlin, Eric C.; ...

    2015-03-24

    With the advent of efficient high-bandgap metal-halide perovskite photovoltaics, an opportunity exists to make perovskite/silicon tandem solar cells. We fabricate a monolithic tandem by developing a silicon-based interband tunnel junction that facilitates majority-carrier charge recombination between the perovskite and silicon sub-cells. We demonstrate a 1 cm2 2-terminal monolithic perovskite/silicon multijunction solar cell with a VOC as high as 1.65 V. As a result, we achieve a stable 13.7% power conversion efficiency with the perovskite as the current-limiting sub-cell, and identify key challenges for this device architecture to reach efficiencies over 25%.

  3. Developments toward an 18% efficient silicon solar cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meulenberg, A., Jr.

    1983-01-01

    Limitations to increased open-circuit voltage were identified and experimentally verified for 0.1 ohm-cm solar cells with heavily doped emitters. After major reduction in the dark current contribution from the metal-silicon interface of the grid contacts, the surface recombination velocity of the oxide-silicon interface of shallow junction solar cells is the limiting factor. In deep junction solar cells, where the junction field does not aid surface collection, the emitter bulk is the limiting factor. Singly-diffused, shallow junction cells have been fabricated with open circuit voltages in excess of 645 mV. Double-diffusion shallow and deep junctions cells have displayed voltages above 650 mV. MIS solar cells formed on 0.1 ohm-cm substrates have exibited the lowest dark currents produced in the course of the contract work.

  4. Crystalline silicon solar cells with micro/nano texture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dimitrov, Dimitre Z.; Du, Chen-Hsun

    2013-02-01

    Crystalline silicon solar cells with two-scale texture consisting of random upright pyramids and surface nanotextured layer directly onto the pyramids are prepared and reflectance properties and I-V characteristics measured. Random pyramids texture is produced by etching in an alkaline solution. On top of the pyramids texture, a nanotexture is developed using an electroless oxidation/etching process. Solar cells with two-scale surface texturization are prepared following the standard screen-printing technology sequence. The micro/nano surface is found to lower considerably the light reflectance of silicon. The short wavelengths spectral response (blue response) improvement is observed in micro/nano textured solar cells compared to standard upright pyramids textured cells. An efficiency of 17.5% is measured for the best micro/nano textured c-Si solar cell. The efficiency improvement is found to be due to the gain in both Jsc and Voc.

  5. Silicon material task. Part 3: Low-cost silicon solar array project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roques, R. A.; Coldwell, D. M.

    1977-01-01

    The feasibility of a process for carbon reduction of low impurity silica in a plasma heat source was investigated to produce low-cost solar-grade silicon. Theoretical aspects of the reaction chemistry were studied with the aid of a computer program using iterative free energy minimization. These calculations indicate a threshold temperature exists at 2400 K below which no silicon is formed. The computer simulation technique of molecular dynamics was used to study the quenching of product species.

  6. Silicon-Rich Silicon Carbide Hole-Selective Rear Contacts for Crystalline-Silicon-Based Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Nogay, Gizem; Stuckelberger, Josua; Wyss, Philippe; Jeangros, Quentin; Allebé, Christophe; Niquille, Xavier; Debrot, Fabien; Despeisse, Matthieu; Haug, Franz-Josef; Löper, Philipp; Ballif, Christophe

    2016-12-28

    The use of passivating contacts compatible with typical homojunction thermal processes is one of the most promising approaches to realizing high-efficiency silicon solar cells. In this work, we investigate an alternative rear-passivating contact targeting facile implementation to industrial p-type solar cells. The contact structure consists of a chemically grown thin silicon oxide layer, which is capped with a boron-doped silicon-rich silicon carbide [SiCx(p)] layer and then annealed at 800-900 °C. Transmission electron microscopy reveals that the thin chemical oxide layer disappears upon thermal annealing up to 900 °C, leading to degraded surface passivation. We interpret this in terms of a chemical reaction between carbon atoms in the SiCx(p) layer and the adjacent chemical oxide layer. To prevent this reaction, an intrinsic silicon interlayer was introduced between the chemical oxide and the SiCx(p) layer. We show that this intrinsic silicon interlayer is beneficial for surface passivation. Optimized passivation is obtained with a 10-nm-thick intrinsic silicon interlayer, yielding an emitter saturation current density of 17 fA cm(-2) on p-type wafers, which translates into an implied open-circuit voltage of 708 mV. The potential of the developed contact at the rear side is further investigated by realizing a proof-of-concept hybrid solar cell, featuring a heterojunction front-side contact made of intrinsic amorphous silicon and phosphorus-doped amorphous silicon. Even though the presented cells are limited by front-side reflection and front-side parasitic absorption, the obtained cell with a Voc of 694.7 mV, a FF of 79.1%, and an efficiency of 20.44% demonstrates the potential of the p(+)/p-wafer full-side-passivated rear-side scheme shown here.

  7. Semiconductor grade, solar silicon purification project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ingle, W. M.; Thompson, S.; Rosler, D.; Jackson, J.

    1977-01-01

    The conversion of metallurgical grade silicon into semiconductor grade silicon by way of a three step SiF2 polymer transport purification process was investigated. Developments in the following areas were also examined: (1) spectroscopic analysis and characterization of (SiF2) sub x polymer and Si sub x F sub y homologue conversion; (2) demonstration runs on the near continuous apparatus; (3) economic analysis; and (4) elemental analysis.

  8. Novel duplex vapor-electrochemical method for silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nanis, L.; Sanjurjo, A.; Sancier, K. M.; Kapur, V. K.; Bartlett, R. W.; Westphal, S.

    1980-01-01

    A process was developed for the economic production of high purity Si from inexpensive reactants, based on the Na reduction of SiF4 gas. The products of reaction (NaF, Si) are separated by either aqueous leaching or by direct melting of the NaF-Si product mixture. Impurities known to degrade solar cell performance are all present at sufficiently low concentrations so that melt solidification (e.g., Czochralski) will provide a silicon material suitable for solar cells.

  9. Control of back surface reflectance from aluminum alloyed contacts on silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Cudzinovic, M.; Sopori, B.

    1996-05-01

    A process for forming highly reflective aluminum back contacts with low contact resistance to silicon solar cells is described. By controlling the process conditions, it is possible to vary the silicon/aluminum interface from a specular to a diffuse reflector while maintaining a high interface reflectance. The specular interface is found to be a uniform silicon/aluminum alloy layer a few angstroms thick that has epitaxially regrown on the silicon. The diffuse interface consists of randomly distributed (111) pyramids produced by crystallographic out-diffusion of the bulk silicon. The light trapping ability of the diffuse contact is found to be close to the theoretical limit. Both types of contacts are found to have specific contact resistivities of 10{sup {minus}5} {Omega}-cm{sup 2}. The process for forming the contacts involves illuminating the devices with tungsten halogen lamps. The process is rapid (under 100 s) and low temperature (peak temperature < 580{degrees}C), making it favorable for commercial solar cell fabrication.

  10. Silicon on ceramic process. Silicon sheet growth development for the large-area silicon sheet task of the low-cost silicon solar array project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zook, J. D.; Heaps, J. D.; Maciolek, R. B.; Koepke, B. G.; Butter, C. D.; Schuldt, S. B.

    1977-01-01

    The technical and economic feasibility of producing solar-cell-quality sheet silicon was investigated. The sheets were made by coating one surface of carbonized ceramic substrates with a thin layer of large-grain polycrystalline silicon from the melt. Significant progress was made in all areas of the program.

  11. Silicon Solar Cell Process Development, Fabrication and Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Iles, P. A.; Tanner, D. P.

    1979-01-01

    The standard solar cells (2x2 cm) from the cast silicon heatexchanger method) showed a maximum AMO efficiency of 10.1%. Cells from low resistivity material (0.5 ohm-cm) showed lower performance than those of the high resistivity cast silicon (3 ohm-cm), an average efficiency 9.5% versus 7.6% Maximum AMO efficiency of the standard solar cells (2x2 cm) from the EFG (RH) ribbons was about 7.5%. The solar cells from controlled SiC, using the displaced die, showed more consistent and better performance than those of the uncontrolled SiC ribbons, an average efficiency of 6.6% versus 5.4% The average AMO efficiency of the standard silicon ceramic (soc) solar calls were about 6%. These were large area solar cells (an average area of 15 sq cm). A maximum efficiency of 7.3% was obtained. The SOC solar cells showed both leakage and series resistance problems, leading to an average curve fill factor of about 60%.

  12. Cooperative passive-solar commercial retrofit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, W. T.

    1982-12-01

    The primary objectives of this project were: the conversion of an existing south-facing storefront into a trombe'-wall passive solar collector, the sharing of information on simple low-cost energy alternatives with the local community, and the reduction of the store building's dependence on non-renewable fossil fuel for space heating. Six 6' wide pre-assembled collector glazing panels were mounted on a 12' high by 36' long portion of the south-facing masonry wall. Vent-holes were cut through the wall at each panel to provide air inlets and outlets for the collector and monitoring equipment was installed to record performance. A series of hands-on construction workshops were attended by Co-op and community members. During these sessions, collector components were assembled. The panels were installed on April 22, 1981 in celebration of Earth Day. Additional sessions were held to complete the project, make necessary modifications and install sensors. Project personnel participated in several energy-education activities, including workshops, seminars and alternative energy home tours. A community-based energy resource council was founded with the assistance of several key Co-op project members and a fully-illustrated How-To manual, entitled Passive Solar Collector: A Trombe'-Wall Retrofit Guide was published. Finally, a variety of energy conservation measures were undertaken. These included a new airlock store entry, insulated store ceiling, destratification ceiling fans and wood-burning furnaces have combined with the passive solar collector to substantially reduce the use of fuel oil for heat.

  13. Foaming of aluminium-silicon alloy using concentrated solar energy

    SciTech Connect

    Cambronero, L.E.G.; Ruiz-Roman, J.M.; Canadas, I.; Martinez, D.

    2010-06-15

    Solar energy is used for the work reported here as a nonconventional heating system to produce aluminium foam from Al-Si alloy precursors produced by powder metallurgy. A commercial precursor in cylindrical bars enclosed in a stainless-steel mould was heated under concentrated solar radiation in a solar furnace with varied heating conditions (heating rate, time, and temperature). Concentrated solar energy close to 300 W/cm{sup 2} on the mould is high enough to achieve complete foaming after heating for only 200 s. Under these conditions, the density and pore distribution in the foam change depending on the solar heating parameters and mould design. (author)

  14. Silicon solar cell using optimized intermediate reflector layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khalifa, Ahmed E.; Swillam, Mohamed A.

    2016-03-01

    Thin film silicon based photovoltaic cells have the advantages of using low cost nontoxic abundant constituents and low thermal manufacturing budget. However, better long-term efficiencies need to be achieved overcoming its inherent bad electrical properties of amorphous and/or microcrystalline Silicon. For the goal of achieving best results, multijunction cells of amorphous and microcrystalline silicon thin layers are industrially and lab utilized in addition to using one or more light management techniques such as textured layers, periodic and plasmonic back reflectors, flattened reflective substrates and intermediate reflector layer (IRL) between multijunction cells. The latter, IRL, which is the focus of this paper, serves as spectrally selective layer between different cells of the multijunction silicon thin film solar cell. IRL, reflects to the top cell short wavelength while permitting and scattering longer ones to achieve the best possible short circuit current. In this study, a new optimized periodic design of Intermediate reflector layer in micromorph (two multijunction cells of Microcrystalline and Amorphous Silicon) thin film solar cells is proposed. The optically simulated short circuit current reaches record values for same thickness designs when using all-ZnO design and even better results is anticipated if Lacquer material is used in combination with ZnO. The design methodology used in the paper can be easily applied to different types of IRL materials and also extended to triple and the relatively newly proposed quadruple thin films solar cells.

  15. A metallurgical route to solar-grade silicon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schei, A.

    1986-01-01

    The aim of the process is to produce silicon for crystallization into ingots that can be sliced to wafers for processing into photovoltaic cells. If the potential purity can be realized, the silicon will also be applicable for ribbon pulling techniques where the purification during crystallization is negligible. The process consists of several steps: selection and purification of raw materials, carbothermic reduction of silica, ladle treatment, casting, crushing, leaching, and melting. The leaching step is crucial for high purity, and the obtainable purity is determined by the solidification before leaching. The most difficult specifications to fulfill are the low contents of boron, phosphorus, and carbon. Boron and phosphorus can be excluded from the raw materials, but the carbothermic reduction will unavoidably saturate the silicon with carbon at high temperature. During cooling carbon will precipitate as silicon carbide crystals, which will be harmful in solar cells. The cost of this solar silicon will depend strongly on the scale of production. It is as yet premature to give exact figures, but with a scale of some thousand tons per year, the cost will only be a few times the cost of ordinary metallurgical silicon.

  16. Development of high efficiency solar cells on silicon web

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rohatgi, A.; Meier, D. L.; Campbell, R. B.; Schmidt, D. N.; Rai-Choudhury, P.

    1984-01-01

    Web base material is being improved with a goal toward obtaining solar cell efficiencies in excess of 18% (AM1). Carrier loss mechanisms in web silicon was investigated, techniques were developed to reduce carrier recombination in the web, and web cells were fabricated using effective surface passivation. The effect of stress on web cell performance was also investigated.

  17. Energy requirement for the production of silicon solar arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindmayer, J.; Wihl, M.; Scheinine, A.; Morrison, A.

    1977-01-01

    An assessment of potential changes and alternative technologies which could impact the photovoltaic manufacturing process is presented. Topics discussed include: a multiple wire saw, ribbon growth techniques, silicon casting, and a computer model for a large-scale solar power plant. Emphasis is placed on reducing the energy demands of the manufacturing process.

  18. Silicon solar cell monitors high temperature furnace operation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zellner, G. J.

    1968-01-01

    Silicon solar cell, attached to each viewpoint, monitors that incandescent emission from the hot interior of a furnace without interfering with the test assembly or optical pyrometry during the test. This technique can provide continuous indication of hot spots or provide warning of excessive temperatures in cooler regions.

  19. Radiation tolerance of boron doped dendritic web silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rohatgi, A.

    1980-01-01

    The potential of dendritic web silicon for giving radiation hard solar cells is compared with the float zone silicon material. Solar cells with n(+)-p-P(+) structure and approximately 15% (AMl) efficiency were subjected to 1 MeV electron irradiation. Radiation tolerance of web cell efficiency was found to be at least as good as that of the float zone silicon cell. A study of the annealing behavior of radiation-induced defects via deep level transient spectroscopy revealed that E sub v + 0.31 eV defect, attributed to boron-oxygen-vacancy complex, is responsible for the reverse annealing of the irradiated cells in the temperature range of 150 to 350 C.

  20. Current status of solar cell performance of unconventional silicon sheets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Liu, J. K.

    1981-01-01

    It is pointed out that activities in recent years directed towards reduction in the cost of silicon solar cells for terrestrial photovoltaic applications have resulted in impressive advancements in the area of silicon sheet formation from melt. The techniques used in the process of sheet formation can be divided into two general categories. All approaches in one category require subsequent ingot wavering. The various procedures of the second category produce silicon in sheet form. The performance of baseline solar cells is discussed. The baseline process included identification marking, slicing to size, and surface treatment (etch-polishing) when needed. Attention is also given to the performance of cells with process variations, and the effects of sheet quality on performance and processing.

  1. Light-induced performance increase of silicon heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kobayashi, Eiji; De Wolf, Stefaan; Levrat, Jacques; Christmann, Gabriel; Descoeudres, Antoine; Nicolay, Sylvain; Despeisse, Matthieu; Watabe, Yoshimi; Ballif, Christophe

    2016-10-01

    Silicon heterojunction solar cells consist of crystalline silicon (c-Si) wafers coated with doped/intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) bilayers for passivating-contact formation. Here, we unambiguously demonstrate that carrier injection either due to light soaking or (dark) forward-voltage bias increases the open circuit voltage and fill factor of finished cells, leading to a conversion efficiency gain of up to 0.3% absolute. This phenomenon contrasts markedly with the light-induced degradation known for thin-film a-Si:H solar cells. We associate our performance gain with an increase in surface passivation, which we find is specific to doped a-Si:H/c-Si structures. Our experiments suggest that this improvement originates from a reduced density of recombination-active interface states. To understand the time dependence of the observed phenomena, a kinetic model is presented.

  2. Solar breeder: Energy payback time for silicon photovoltaic systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindmayer, J.

    1977-01-01

    The energy expenditures of the prevailing manufacturing technology of terrestrial photovoltaic cells and panels were evaluated, including silicon reduction, silicon refinement, crystal growth, cell processing and panel building. Energy expenditures include direct energy, indirect energy, and energy in the form of equipment and overhead expenses. Payback times were development using a conventional solar cell as a test vehicle which allows for the comparison of its energy generating capability with the energies expended during the production process. It was found that the energy payback time for a typical solar panel produced by the prevailing technology is 6.4 years. Furthermore, this value drops to 3.8 years under more favorable conditions. Moreover, since the major energy use reductions in terrestrial manufacturing have occurred in cell processing, this payback time directly illustrates the areas where major future energy reductions can be made -- silicon refinement, crystal growth, and panel building.

  3. Semiconductor grade, solar silicon purification project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ingle, W. M.; Rosler, R. R.; Thompson, S. W.; Chaney, R. E.

    1979-01-01

    Experimental apparatus and procedures used in the development of a 3-step SiF2(x) polymer transport purification process are described. Both S.S.M.S. and E.S. analysis demonstrated that major purification had occured and some samples were indistinguishable from semiconductor grade silicon (except possibly for phosphorus). Recent electrical analysis via crystal growth reveals that the product contains compensated phosphorus and boron. The low projected product cost and short energy payback time suggest that the economics of this process will result in a cost less than the goal of $10/Kg(1975 dollars). The process appears to be readily scalable to a major silicon purification facility.

  4. Diagnostics of Forward Biased Silicon Solar Cells Using Noise Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macku, R.; Koktavy, P.; Skarvada, P.; Raska, M.; Sadovsky, P.

    2009-04-01

    Our research is above all focused on non-destructive testing of the solar cells. We study a single-crystal silicon solar cells n+p and we don't have serious information about features of a pn junction and impurities distribution. The main point of our study is characterization of the local defects in samples. These defects lead to live-time reduction and degradation of reliability. Flicker noise in forward biased solar cells is subject of this paper. We will discuss our measurement with Kleinpenning approaches for inhomogeneous semiconductors and we suggest the physical nature of the samples behaviour.

  5. The NASA Lewis Research Center program in space solar cell research and technology. [efficient silicon solar cell development program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brandhorst, H. W., Jr.

    1979-01-01

    Progress in space solar cell research and technology is reported. An 18 percent-AMO-efficient silicon solar cell, reduction in the radiation damage suffered by silicon solar cells in space, and high efficiency wrap-around contact and thin (50 micrometer) coplanar back contact silicon cells are among the topics discussed. Reduction in the cost of silicon cells for space use, cost effective GaAs solar cells, the feasibility of 30 percent AMO solar energy conversion, and reliable encapsulants for space blankets are also considered.

  6. Investigation of Backside Textures for Genesis Solar Wind Silicon Collectors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gonzalez, C. P.; Burkett, P. J.; Rodriguez, M. C.; Allton, J. H.

    2014-01-01

    Genesis solar wind collectors were comprised of a suite of 15 types of ultrapure materials. The single crystal, pure silicon collectors were fabricated by two methods: float zone (FZ) and Czochralski (CZ). Because of slight differences in bulk purity and surface cleanliness among the fabrication processes and the specific vendor, it is desirable to know which variety of silicon and identity of vendor, so that appropriate reference materials can be used. The Czochralski method results in a bulk composition with slightly higher oxygen, for example. The CZ silicon array wafers that were Genesis-flown were purchased from MEMC Electronics. Most of the Genesis-flown FZ silicon was purchased from Unisil and cleaned by MEMC, although a few FZ wafers were acquired from International Wafer Service (IWS).

  7. Light Trapping for Silicon Solar Cells: Theory and Experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Hui

    Crystalline silicon solar cells have been the mainstream technology for photovoltaic energy conversion since their invention in 1954. Since silicon is an indirect band gap material, its absorption coefficient is low for much of the solar spectrum, and the highest conversion efficiencies are achieved only in cells that are thicker than about 0.1 mm. Light trapping by total internal reflection is important to increase the optical absorption in silicon layers, and becomes increasingly important as the layers are thinned. Light trapping is typically characterized by the enhancement of the absorptance of a solar cell beyond the value for a single pass of the incident beam through an absorbing semiconductor layer. Using an equipartition argument, in 1982 Yablonovitch calculated an enhancement of 4n2 , where n is the refractive index. We have extracted effective light-trapping enhancements from published external quantum efficiency spectra in several dozen silicon solar cells. These results show that this "thermodynamic" enhancement has never been achieved experimentally. The reasons for incomplete light trapping could be poor anti-reflection coating, inefficient light scattering, and parasitic absorption. We report the light-trapping properties of nanocrystalline silicon nip solar cells deposited onto two types of Ag/ZnO backreflectors at United Solar Ovonic, LLC. We prepared the first type by first making silver nanparticles onto a stainless steel substrate, and then overcoating the nanoparticles with a second silver layer. The second type was prepared at United Solar using a continuous silver film. Both types were then overcoated with a ZnO film. The root mean square roughness varied from 27 to 61 nm, and diffuse reflectance at 1000 nm wavelength varied from 0.4 to 0.8. The finished cells have a thin, indium-tin oxide layer on the top that acts as an antireflection coating. For both backreflector types, the short-circuit photocurrent densities J SC for solar

  8. Demonstration of a commercial solar greenhouse. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Figueras, A.

    1982-03-31

    The greenhouse is located in the town of Russell, in St. Lawrence County, New York. It was built to demonstrate the economics of using the solar greenhouse design as a commercial greenhouse growing vegetables for local sale. The design and construction of the greenhouse are briefly described. Records of temperatures monitored and produce grown and sold are included. (BCS)

  9. Increasing the efficiency of polymer solar cells by silicon nanowires.

    PubMed

    Eisenhawer, B; Sensfuss, S; Sivakov, V; Pietsch, M; Andrä, G; Falk, F

    2011-08-05

    Silicon nanowires have been introduced into P3HT:[60]PCBM solar cells, resulting in hybrid organic/inorganic solar cells. A cell efficiency of 4.2% has been achieved, which is a relative improvement of 10% compared to a reference cell produced without nanowires. This increase in cell performance is possibly due to an enhancement of the electron transport properties imposed by the silicon nanowires. In this paper, we present a novel approach for introducing the nanowires by mixing them into the polymer blend and subsequently coating the polymer/nanowire blend onto a substrate. This new onset may represent a viable pathway to producing nanowire-enhanced polymer solar cells in a reel to reel process.

  10. Quantum efficiencies exceeding unity in amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Vanmaekelbergh, D.; Lagemaat, J. van de; Schropp, R.E.I.

    1994-12-31

    The experimental observation of internal quantum efficiencies above unity in crystalline silicon solar cells has brought up the question whether the generation of multiple electron/hole pairs has to be taken into consideration also in solar cells based on direct gap amorphous semiconductors. To study photogenerated carrier dynamics, the authors have applied Intensity Modulated Photocurrent Spectroscopy (IMPS) to hydrogenated amorphous silicon p-i-n solar cells. In the reverse voltage bias region at low illumination intensities it has been observed that the low frequency limit of the AC quantum yield Y increases significantly above unit with decreasing light intensity, indicating that more than one electron per photon is detected in the external circuit. This phenomenon can be explained by considering trapping and thermal emission of photogenerated carriers at intragap atmospheric dangling bond defect centers.

  11. Role of majority and minority carrier barriers silicon/organic hybrid heterojunction solar cells.

    PubMed

    Avasthi, Sushobhan; Lee, Stephanie; Loo, Yueh-Lin; Sturm, James C

    2011-12-22

    A hybrid approach to solar cells is demonstrated in which a silicon p-n junction, used in conventional silicon-based photovoltaics, is replaced by a room-temperature fabricated silicon/organic heterojunction. The unique advantage of silicon/organic heterojunction is that it exploits the cost advantage of organic semiconductors and the performance advantages of silicon to enable potentially low-cost, efficient solar cells.

  12. Thin silicon foils produced by epoxy-induced spalling of silicon for high efficiency solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Martini, R.; Kepa, J.; Stesmans, A.; Debucquoy, M.; Depauw, V.; Gonzalez, M.; Gordon, I.; Poortmans, J.

    2014-10-27

    We report on the drastic improvement of the quality of thin silicon foils produced by epoxy-induced spalling. In the past, researchers have proposed to fabricate silicon foils by spalling silicon substrates with different stress-inducing materials to manufacture thin silicon solar cells. However, the reported values of effective minority carrier lifetime of the fabricated foils remained always limited to ∼100 μs or below. In this work, we investigate epoxy-induced exfoliated foils by electron spin resonance to analyze the limiting factors of the minority carrier lifetime. These measurements highlight the presence of disordered dangling bonds and dislocation-like defects generated by the exfoliation process. A solution to remove these defects compatible with the process flow to fabricate solar cells is proposed. After etching off less than 1 μm of material, the lifetime of the foil increases by more than a factor of 4.5, reaching a value of 461 μs. This corresponds to a lower limit of the diffusion length of more than 7 times the foil thickness. Regions with different lifetime correlate well with the roughness of the crack surface which suggests that the lifetime is now limited by the quality of the passivation of rough surfaces. The reported values of the minority carrier lifetime show a potential for high efficiency (>22%) thin silicon solar cells.

  13. Method for forming indium oxide/n-silicon heterojunction solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Feng, Tom; Ghosh, Amal K.

    1984-03-13

    A high photo-conversion efficiency indium oxide/n-silicon heterojunction solar cell is spray deposited from a solution containing indium trichloride. The solar cell exhibits an Air Mass One solar conversion efficiency in excess of about 10%.

  14. Small solar thermal electric power plants with early commercial potential

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, H. E.; Bisantz, D. J.; Clayton, R. N.; Heiges, H. H.; Ku, A. C.

    1979-01-01

    Cost-effective small solar thermal electric power plants (1- to 10-MW nominal size) offer an attractive way of helping the world meet its future energy needs. The paper describes the characteristics of a conceptual near-term plant (about 1 MW) and a potential 1990 commercial version. The basic system concept is one in which steam is generated using two-axis tracking, parabolic dish, and point-focusing collectors. The steam is transported through low-loss piping to a central steam turbine generator unit where it is converted to electricity. The plants have no energy storage and their output power level varies with the solar insolation level. This system concept, which is firmly based on state-of-the-art technology, is projected to offer one of the fastest paths for U.S. commercialization of solar thermal electric power plants through moderate technology advances and mass production.

  15. Amorphous silicon oxide window layers for high-efficiency silicon heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peter Seif, Johannes; Descoeudres, Antoine; Filipič, Miha; Smole, Franc; Topič, Marko; Charles Holman, Zachary; De Wolf, Stefaan; Ballif, Christophe

    2014-01-01

    In amorphous/crystalline silicon heterojunction solar cells, optical losses can be mitigated by replacing the amorphous silicon films by wider bandgap amorphous silicon oxide layers. In this article, we use stacks of intrinsic amorphous silicon and amorphous silicon oxide as front intrinsic buffer layers and show that this increases the short-circuit current density by up to 0.43 mA/cm2 due to less reflection and a higher transparency at short wavelengths. Additionally, high open-circuit voltages can be maintained, thanks to good interface passivation. However, we find that the gain in current is more than offset by losses in fill factor. Aided by device simulations, we link these losses to impeded carrier collection fundamentally caused by the increased valence band offset at the amorphous/crystalline interface. Despite this, carrier extraction can be improved by raising the temperature; we find that cells with amorphous silicon oxide window layers show an even lower temperature coefficient than reference heterojunction solar cells (-0.1%/°C relative drop in efficiency, compared to -0.3%/°C). Hence, even though cells with oxide layers do not outperform cells with the standard design at room temperature, at higher temperatures—which are closer to the real working conditions encountered in the field—they show superior performance in both experiment and simulation.

  16. Wide gap microcrystalline silicon carbide emitter for amorphous silicon oxide passivated heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomaska, Manuel; Richter, Alexei; Lentz, Florian; Niermann, Tore; Finger, Friedhelm; Rau, Uwe; Ding, Kaining

    2017-02-01

    Wide gap n-type microcrystalline silicon carbide [µc-SiC:H(n)] is highly suitable as window layer material for silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells due to its high optical transparency combined with high electrical conductivity. However, the hot wire chemical vapor deposition (HWCVD) of highly crystalline µc-SiC:H(n) requires a high hydrogen radical density in the gas phase that gives rise to strong deterioration of the intrinsic amorphous silicon oxide [a-SiO x :H(i)] surface passivation. Introducing an n-type microcrystalline silicon oxide [µc-SiO x :H(n)] protection layer between the µc-SiC:H(n) and the a-SiO x :H(i) prevents the deterioration of the passivation by providing an etch resistance and by blocking the diffusion of hydrogen radicals. We fabricated solar cells with µc-SiC:H(n)/µc-SiO x :H(n)/a-SiO x :H(i) stack for the front side and varied the µc-SiO x :H(n) material properties by changing the microstructure of the µc-SiO x :H(n) to evaluate the potential of such stack implemented in SHJ solar cells and to identify the limiting parameters of the protection layer in the device. With this approach we achieved a maximum open circuit voltage of 677 mV and a maximum energy conversion efficiency of 18.9% for a planar solar cell.

  17. Silicon Solar Cell Process Development, Fabrication and Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Iles, P. A.; Tanner, D. P.

    1979-01-01

    The standard solar cells (2x2 cm) from the cast silicon (HEM) showed a maximum AMO efficiency of 10.1%. Cells from the low resistivity material (0.5 ohm-cm) showed lower performance than those of the high resistivity cast silicon (3 ohm-cm), an average efficiency 9.5% versus 7.6%. Maximum AMO efficiency of the standard solar cells from the EFG (RH) ribbons was about 7.5%. The solar cells from the controlled SiC, using the displaced die, showed more consistent and better performance than those of the uncontrolled SiC ribbons, an average efficiency of 6.6% versus 5.4%. The average AMO efficiency of the standard SOC solar cells were about 6%. These were large area solar cells (an average area of 15 sq cm). A maximum efficiency of 7.3% was obtained. The SOC solar cells showed both leakage and series resistance problems, leading to an average curve fill factor of about 60%.

  18. Silicon diffusion in aluminum for rear passivated solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Urrejola, Elias; Peter, Kristian; Plagwitz, Heiko; Schubert, Gunnar

    2011-04-11

    We show that the lateral spread of silicon in a screen-printed aluminum layer increases by (1.50{+-}0.06) {mu}m/ deg. C, when increasing the peak firing temperature within an industrially applicable range. In this way, the maximum spread limit of diffused silicon in aluminum is predictable and does not depend on the contact area size but on the firing temperature. Therefore, the geometry of the rear side pattern can influence not only series resistance losses within the solar cell but the process of contact formation itself. In addition, too fast cooling lead to Kirkendall void formations instead of an eutectic layer.

  19. A New Method of Metallization for Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Macha, M.

    1979-01-01

    A low cost ohmic contact on silicon solar cells based on molybdenum-tin metal systems was developed. The approach is based on the formulation of a screenable ink composed from molybdenum oxide and tin mixture. The reduction of Mo03 into Mo and the establishment of Mo 03:Sn ratio is studied. Both tasks were done in an experimental station constructed for this purpose. The results show that molybdenum was formed from its oxide at 800 C. and improved in bonding to silicon at 900 C. A 20% Mo03-80%Sn mixture was converted into metallic coating within this temperature range.

  20. Resource recovery of scrap silicon solar battery cell.

    PubMed

    Lee, Ching-Hwa; Hung, Chi-En; Tsai, Shang-Lin; Popuri, Srinivasa R; Liao, Ching-Hua

    2013-05-01

    In order to minimize pollution problems and to conserve limited natural resources, a hydrometallurgical procedure was developed in this study to recover the valuable resources of silicon (Si), silver (Ag) and aluminum (Al) from scrap silicon solar battery cells. In this study, several methods of leaching, crystallization, precipitation, electrolysis and replacement were employed to investigate the recovery efficiency of Ag and Al from defective monocrystalline silicon solar battery cells. The defective solar battery cells were ground into powder followed by composition analysis with inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectrometry. The target metals Ag and Al weight percentage were found to be 1.67 and 7.68 respectively. A leaching process was adopted with nitric acid (HNO3), hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid (H2SO4) and sodium hydroxide as leaching reagent to recover Ag and Al from a ground solar battery cell. Aluminum was leached 100% with 18N H2SO4 at 70°C and Ag was leached 100% with 6N HNO3. Pure Si of 100% was achieved from the leaching solution after the recovery of Ag and Al, and was analyzed by scanning electron microscope-energy dispersive spectroscopy. Aluminum was recovered by crystallization process and silver was recovered by precipitation, electrolysis and replacement processes. These processes were applied successfully in the recovery of valuable metal Ag of 98-100%.

  1. Silicon web process development. [for low cost solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duncan, C. S.; Hopkins, R. H.; Seidensticker, R. G.; Mchugh, J. P.; Hill, F. E.; Heimlich, M. E.; Driggers, J. M.

    1979-01-01

    Silicon dendritic web, a single crystal ribbon shaped during growth by crystallographic forces and surface tension (rather than dies), is a highly promising base material for efficient low cost solar cells. The form of the product smooth, flexible strips 100 to 200 microns thick, conserves expensive silicon and facilitates automation of crystal growth and the subsequent manufacturing of solar cells. These characteristics, coupled with the highest demonstrated ribbon solar cell efficiency-15.5%-make silicon web a leading candidate to achieve, or better, the 1986 Low Cost Solar Array (LSA) Project cost objective of 50 cents per peak watt of photovoltaic output power. The main objective of the Web Program, technology development to significantly increase web output rate, and to show the feasibility for simultaneous melt replenishment and growth, have largely been accomplished. Recently, web output rates of 23.6 sq cm/min, nearly three times the 8 sq cm/min maximum rate of a year ago, were achieved. Webs 4 cm wide or greater were grown on a number of occassions.

  2. Silicon solar cells with Al2O3 antireflection coating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dobrzański, Leszek; Szindler, Marek; Drygała, Aleksandra; Szindler, Magdalena

    2014-09-01

    The paper presents the possibility of using Al2O3 antireflection coatings deposited by atomic layer deposition ALD. The ALD method is based on alternate pulsing of the precursor gases and vapors onto the substrate surface and then chemisorption or surface reaction of the precursors. The reactor is purged with an inert gas between the precursor pulses. The Al2O3 thin film in structure of the finished solar cells can play the role of both antireflection and passivation layer which will simplify the process. For this research 50×50 mm monocrystalline silicon solar cells with one bus bar have been used. The metallic contacts were prepared by screen printing method and Al2O3 antireflection coating by ALD method. Results and their analysis allow to conclude that the Al2O3 antireflection coating deposited by ALD has a significant impact on the optoelectronic properties of the silicon solar cell. For about 80 nm of Al2O3 the best results were obtained in the wavelength range of 400 to 800 nm reducing the reflection to less than 1%. The difference in the solar cells efficiency between with and without antireflection coating was 5.28%. The LBIC scan measurements may indicate a positive influence of the thin film Al2O3 on the bulk passivation of the silicon.

  3. Silicon solar cell enhancement by plasmonic silver nanocubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Veenkamp, R.; Ding, S.; Smith, I.; Ye, W. N.

    2014-03-01

    Our paper presents a detailed numerical simulation and experimental study of the efficiency enhancement gained by optimizing metal nanocubes incorporated on the surface of silicon solar cells. We investigate the effects of nanoparticle size, surface coverage and spacer layer thickness on solar absorption and cell efficiency. The fabrication of nanocubes on solar cells is also presented, with the trends observed in simulation verified through experimental data. Testing reveals that nanocubes show worse performance than nanospheres when sitting directly on the silicon substrate; however, enhancement exceeds that of nanospheres when particles are placed on an optimized spacer layer of SiO2, for reasonable surface coverages of up to 25%. Our analysis shows that for a large range of particle sizes, 60 - 100nm, enhancement in light absorption remains at a high level, near the optimum. This suggests a high level of fabrication tolerance which is important due to the chemical growth mechanism used for nanocube synthesis, as it consistently produces nanocubes in that range. Further, we note that efficiency enhancement by nanocubes is influenced by particle size, surface coverage, and spacer layer thickness much differently than that for a spherical geometry, thus our study focuses on the optimization of the nanocube parameters. We show that 80nm nanocubes on a 25nm SiO2 spacer layer realize ~ 24% enhancement in light absorption compared to an identical particle-free cell. Finally, we present both the numerical and experimental results for silicon solar cells coated with nanocube arrays.

  4. Coaxial silicon nanowires as solar cells and nanoelectronic power sources.

    PubMed

    Tian, Bozhi; Zheng, Xiaolin; Kempa, Thomas J; Fang, Ying; Yu, Nanfang; Yu, Guihua; Huang, Jinlin; Lieber, Charles M

    2007-10-18

    Solar cells are attractive candidates for clean and renewable power; with miniaturization, they might also serve as integrated power sources for nanoelectronic systems. The use of nanostructures or nanostructured materials represents a general approach to reduce both cost and size and to improve efficiency in photovoltaics. Nanoparticles, nanorods and nanowires have been used to improve charge collection efficiency in polymer-blend and dye-sensitized solar cells, to demonstrate carrier multiplication, and to enable low-temperature processing of photovoltaic devices. Moreover, recent theoretical studies have indicated that coaxial nanowire structures could improve carrier collection and overall efficiency with respect to single-crystal bulk semiconductors of the same materials. However, solar cells based on hybrid nanoarchitectures suffer from relatively low efficiencies and poor stabilities. In addition, previous studies have not yet addressed their use as photovoltaic power elements in nanoelectronics. Here we report the realization of p-type/intrinsic/n-type (p-i-n) coaxial silicon nanowire solar cells. Under one solar equivalent (1-sun) illumination, the p-i-n silicon nanowire elements yield a maximum power output of up to 200 pW per nanowire device and an apparent energy conversion efficiency of up to 3.4 per cent, with stable and improved efficiencies achievable at high-flux illuminations. Furthermore, we show that individual and interconnected silicon nanowire photovoltaic elements can serve as robust power sources to drive functional nanoelectronic sensors and logic gates. These coaxial silicon nanowire photovoltaic elements provide a new nanoscale test bed for studies of photoinduced energy/charge transport and artificial photosynthesis, and might find general usage as elements for powering ultralow-power electronics and diverse nanosystems.

  5. High-efficiency silicon heterojunction solar cells: Status and perspectives

    SciTech Connect

    De Wolf, S.

    2015-04-27

    Silicon heterojunction technology (HJT) uses silicon thin-film deposition techniques to fabricate photovoltaic devices from mono-crystalline silicon wafers (c-Si). This enables energy-conversion efficiencies above 21 %, also at industrial-production level. In this presentation we review the present status of this technology and point out recent trends. We first discuss how the properties of thin hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) films can be exploited to fabricate passivating contacts, which is the key to high- efficiency HJT solar cells. Such contacts enable very high operating voltages, approaching the theoretical limits, and yield small temperature coefficients. With this approach, an increasing number of groups are reporting devices with conversion efficiencies well over 20 % on n-type wafers, Panasonic leading the field with 24.7 %. Exciting results have also been obtained on p-type wafers. Despite these high voltages, important efficiency gains can still be made in fill factor and optical design. This requires improved understanding of carrier transport across device interfaces and reduced parasitic absorption in HJT solar cells. For the latter, several strategies can be followed: Short- wavelength losses can be reduced by replacing the front a-Si:H films with wider-bandgap window layers, such as silicon alloys or even metal oxides. Long-wavelength losses are mitigated by introducing new high-mobility TCO’s such as hydrogenated indium oxide, and also by designing new rear reflectors. Optical shadow losses caused by the front metalisation grid are significantly reduced by replacing printed silver electrodes with fine-line plated copper contacts, leading also to possible cost advantages. The ultimate approach to minimize optical losses is the implementation of back-contacted architectures, which are completely devoid of grid shadow losses and parasitic absorption in the front layers can be minimized irrespective of electrical transport requirements. The

  6. High-efficiency silicon heterojunction solar cells: Status and perspectives

    SciTech Connect

    De Wolf, S.; Geissbuehler, J.; Loper, P.; Martin de Nicholas, S.; Seif, J.; Tomasi, A.; Ballif, C.

    2015-05-11

    Silicon heterojunction technology (HJT) uses silicon thin-film deposition techniques to fabricate photovoltaic devices from mono-crystalline silicon wafers (c-Si). This enables energy-conversion efficiencies above 21 %, also at industrial-production level. In this presentation we review the present status of this technology and point out recent trends. We first discuss how the properties of thin hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) films can be exploited to fabricate passivating contacts, which is the key to high- efficiency HJT solar cells. Such contacts enable very high operating voltages, approaching the theoretical limits, and yield small temperature coefficients. With this approach, an increasing number of groups are reporting devices with conversion efficiencies well over 20 % on both-sides contacted n-type cells, Panasonic leading the field with 24.7 %. Exciting results have also been obtained on p-type wafers. Despite these high voltages, important efficiency gains can still be made in fill factor and optical design. This requires improved understanding of carrier transport across device interfaces and reduced parasitic absorption in HJT solar cells. For the latter, several strategies can be followed: Short-wavelength losses can be reduced by replacing the front a-Si:H films with wider-bandgap window layers, such as silicon alloys or even metal oxides. Long- wavelength losses are mitigated by introducing new high-mobility TCO’s such as hydrogenated indium oxide, and also by designing new rear reflectors. Optical shadow losses caused by the front metallization grid are significantly reduced by replacing printed silver electrodes with fine-line plated copper contacts, leading also to possible cost advantages. The ultimate approach to minimize optical losses is the implementation of back-contacted architectures, which are completely devoid of grid shadow losses and parasitic absorption in the front layers can be minimized irrespective of electrical

  7. NREL Paves the Way to Commercialization of Silicon Ink (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2012-04-01

    In 2008, Innovalight, a start-up company in Sunnyvale, California, invented a liquid form of silicon, called Silicon Ink. It contains silicon nanoparticles that are suspended evenly within the solution. Those nanoparticles contain dopant atoms that can be driven into silicon solar cells, which changes the conductivity of the silicon and creates the internal electric fields that are needed to turn photons into electrons -- and thus into electricity. The ink is applied with a standard screen printer, already commonly used in the solar industry. The distinguishing feature of Silicon Ink is that it can be distributed in exact concentrations in precisely the correct locations on the surface of the solar cell. This allows most of the surface to be lightly doped, enhancing its response to blue light, while heavily doping the area around the electrical contacts, raising the conductivity in that area to allow the contact to work more efficiently. The accuracy and uniformity of the ink distribution allows the production of solar cells that achieve higher power production at a minimal additional cost.

  8. High-efficiency one-sun photovoltaic module demonstration using solar-grade CZ silicon. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Gee, J.M.

    1996-10-01

    This work was performed jointly by Sandia National Laboratories (Albuquerque, NM) and Siemens Solar Industries (Camarillo, CA) under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA 1248). The work covers the period May 1994 to March 1996. The purpose of the work was to explore the performance potential of commercial, photovoltaic-grade Czochralski (Cz) silicon, and to demonstrate this potential through fabrication of high-efficiency cells and a module. Fabrication of the module was omitted in order to pursue further development of advanced device structures. The work included investigation of response of the material to various fabrication processes, development of advanced cell structures using the commercial material, and investigation of the stability of Cz silicon solar cells. Some important achievements of this work include the following: post-diffusion oxidations were found to be a possible source of material contamination; bulk lifetimes around 75 pts were achieved; efficiencies of 17.6% and 15.7% were achieved for large-area cells using advanced cell structures (back-surface fields and emitter wrap-through); and preliminary investigations into photodegradation in Cz silicon solar cells found that oxygen thermal donors might be involved. Efficiencies around 20% should be possible with commercial, photovoltaic-grade silicon using properly optimized processes and device structures.

  9. Development of an Improved High Efficiency Thin Silicon Solar Cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Storti, G.; Wrigley, C.

    1979-01-01

    Breakage and front contact failure in high efficiency, textured ultrathin cells was reduced as a consequence of the introduction of process modifications. In a small production run, over one hundred ultrathin cells, having an average AMO efficiency of 13%, were fabricated from 10-25 ohm cm silicon. An in-house aluminum paste for back surface field formation was developed that resulted in cell efficiencies equivalent to those from commercial pastes. The quality of the back surface field was found to be dependent on the orientation of the silicon slice during alloying.

  10. Linkages from DOE's Solar Photovoltaic R&D to Commercial Renewable Power from Solar Energy

    SciTech Connect

    Ruegg, Rosalie; Thomas, Patrick

    2011-04-01

    DOE's Solar Photovoltaic R&D Subprogram promotes the development of cost-effective systems for directly converting solar energy into electricity for residential, commercial, and industrial applications. This study was commissioned to assess the extent to which the knowledge outputs of R&D funded by the DOE Solar PV subprogram are linked to downstream developments in commercial renewable power. A second purpose was to identify spillovers of the resulting knowledge to other areas of application. A third purpose was to lend support to a parallel benefit-cost study by contributing evidence of attribution of benefits to DOE.

  11. Accelerated commercialization program for materials and components. Solar sheet glass: an example of materials commercialization

    SciTech Connect

    Livingston, R.; Butler, B.

    1980-03-01

    The SERI Accelerated Commercialization Program for Materials and Components is designed to serve as a catalyst in promoting technological change through the introduction of new materials into solar technologies. This report focuses on technological diffusion of advances in materials technology from the developer to the manufacturers of solar equipment. It provides an overview and understanding of the problems encountered in the private sector in trying to advance technological change and discusses a program designed to facilitate this change. Using as example of solar sheet glass, this report describes the process by which sample quantities of new materials are sent to solar equipment manufacturers for appliations testing. It also describes other materials that might undergo testing in a similar way. The entire program is an example of how government and industry can work together to accomplish common goals.

  12. Increasing light capture in silicon solar cells with encapsulants incorporating air prisms to reduce metallic contact losses.

    PubMed

    Chen, Fu-Hao; Pathreeker, Shreyas; Kaur, Jaspreet; Hosein, Ian D

    2016-10-31

    Silicon solar cells are the most widely deployed modules owing to their low-cost manufacture, large market, and suitable efficiencies for residential and commercial use. Methods to increase their solar energy collection must be easily integrated into module fabrication. We perform a theoretical and experimental study on the light collection properties of an encapsulant that incorporates a periodic array of air prisms, which overlay the metallic front contacts of silicon solar cells. We show that the light collection efficiency induced by the encapsulant depends on both the shape of the prisms and angle of incidence of incoming light. We elucidate the changes in collection efficiency in terms of the ray paths and reflection mechanisms in the encapsulant. We fabricated the encapsulant from a commercial silicone and studied the change in the external quantum efficiency (EQE) on an encapsulated, standard silicon solar cell. We observe efficiency enhancements, as compared to a uniform encapsulant, over the visible to near infrared region for a range of incident angles. This work demonstrates exactly how a periodic air prism architecture increases light collection, and how it may be designed to maximize light collection over the widest range of incident angles.

  13. Silicon materials task of the low-cost solar array project. Phase 4: Effects of impurities and processing on silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, R. H.; Hanes, M. H.; Davis, J. R.; Rohatgi, A.; Rai-Choudhury, P.; Mollenkopf, H. C.

    1981-01-01

    The effects of impurities, various thermochemical processes, and any impurity-process interactions upon the performance of terrestrial solar cells are defined. The results form a basis for silicon producers, wafer manufacturers, and cell fabricators to develop appropriate cost benefit relationships for the use of less pure, less costly solar grade silicon.

  14. Plasmonic reflection grating back contacts for microcrystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paetzold, U. W.; Moulin, E.; Michaelis, D.; Böttler, W.; Wächter, C.; Hagemann, V.; Meier, M.; Carius, R.; Rau, U.

    2011-10-01

    We report on the fabrication and optical simulation of a plasmonic light-trapping concept for microcrystalline silicon solar cells, consisting of silver nanostructures arranged in square lattice at the ZnO:Al/Ag back contact of the solar cell. Those solar cells deposited on this plasmonic reflection grating back contact showed an enhanced spectral response in the wavelengths range from 500 nm to 1000 nm, when comparing to flat solar cells. For a particular period, even an enhancement of the short circuit current density in comparison to the conventional random texture light-trapping concept is obtained. Full three-dimensional electromagnetic simulations are used to explain the working principle of the plasmonic light-trapping concept.

  15. Laser recrystallization for efficient multi-crystalline silicon solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Lihui; Wilson, John; Lee, James

    2016-08-01

    A multi-crystalline silicon wafer contains dislocations and grain boundaries, which are detrimental to the performance of the multi-crystalline silicon solar cell. The dislocations and grain boundaries extend across the junction and dramatically degrade the ideality and fill factor of the cell. In this paper, a laser is used to recrystallize the emitter region of a multi-crystalline silicon wafer to remove crystallographic defects present in the junction. It was demonstrated that, with an appropriate laser power and scan speed, laser recrystallized patterns can have an enhanced photoluminescence response and internal quantum efficiency. Backscattered electron image and x-ray diffraction analyses also revealed that the laser recrystallized layer resembles a single crystalline like layer. Introducing a full area laser recrystallized layer may improve the open circuit voltage and fill factor of the cell, which significantly improved cell efficiency. External quantum efficiency and dark I-V measurements consistently supported this result.

  16. Chlorine Free Technology for Solar-Grade Silicon Manufacturing: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Strebkov, D. S.; Pinov, A. P.; Zadde, V. V.; Lebedev, E. N.; Belov, E. P.; Efimov, N. K.; Kleshevnikova, S. I.; Touryan, K.; Bleak, D.

    2004-08-01

    Due to the development of the solar energy industry, a significant increase of polysilicon feedstock (PSF) production will be required in near future. The creation of special technology of solar grade polysilicon feedstock production is an important problem. Today, semiconductor-grade polysilicon is mainly manufactured using the trichlorosilane (SiHCl3) distillation and reduction. The feed-stock for trichlorosilane is metallurgical-grade silicon, the product of reduction of natural quartzite (silica). This polysilicon production method is characterized by high energy consumption and large amounts of wastes, containing environmentally harmful chlorine based compounds. In the former USSR the principles of industrial method for production of monosilane and polycrystalline silicon by thermal decomposition of monosilane were founded. This technology was proved in industrial scale at production of gaseous monosilane and PSF. We offered new chlorine free technology (CFT). Originality and novelty of the process were confirmed by Russian and US patents.

  17. Solution-processed crystalline silicon double-heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devkota, Ramesh; Liu, Qiming; Ohki, Tatsuya; Hossain, Jaker; Ueno, Keiji; Shirai, Hajime

    2016-02-01

    Crystalline silicon double-heterojunction solar cells were fabricated using Si/organic and Si/Cs2CO3 heterojunctions. The front heterojunction is formed by spin-coating conductive polymer poly(3,4-ethyenedioxythiophene):poly(styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) on n-type Czochralski (CZ) (100) silicon, which separates the photogenerated carriers and blocks the electron dark current while allowing the photocurrent to pass through. The rear heterojunction, formed by spin-coating Cs2CO3 and polyethylenimine (PEI) dissolved in 2-ethoxyethanol and Al metal evaporation, functions as a back surface field that reduces the hole dark current while allowing the electron photocurrent to pass through. The double-heterojunction device showed a power conversion efficiency of 12.7% under AM1.5G simulated solar light exposure.

  18. Surface and allied studies in silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.

    1984-01-01

    Significant improvements were made in the short-circuit current-decay method of measuring the recombination lifetime tau and the back surface recombination velocity S of the quasineutral base of silicon solar cells. The improvements include a circuit implementation that increases the speed of switching from the forward-voltage to the short-circuit conditions. They also include a supplementation of this method by some newly developed techniques employing small-signal admittance as a function of frequency omega. This supplementation is highly effective for determining tau for cases in which the diffusion length L greatly exceeds the base thickness W. Representative results on different solar cells are reported. Some advances made in the understanding of passivation provided by the polysilicon/silicon heterojunction are outlined. Recent measurements demonstrate that S 10,000 cm/s derive from this method of passivation.

  19. Silicon solar cells with nickel/solder metallization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petersen, R. C.; Muleo, A.

    1981-01-01

    The use of nickel plus solder is shown to be feasible for contact metallization for silicon solar cells by offering a relatively inexpensive method of making electrical contact with the cell surfaces. Nickel is plated on silicon solar cells using an electroless chemical deposition method to give contacts with good adhesion, and in some cases where adhesion is poor initially, sintering under relatively mild conditions will dramatically improve the quality of the bond without harming the p-n junction of the cell. The cells can survive terrestrial environment stresses, which is demonstrated by a 1000 hour test at 85 C and 85% relative humidity under constant forward bias of 0.45 volt.

  20. Material-induced shunts in multicrystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Breitenstein, O. Bauer, J.; Rakotoniaina, J. P.

    2007-04-15

    By applying lock-in thermography imaging, light-beam-induced current imaging, electron-beam-induced current imaging at different stages of sample preparation, and infrared light microscopy in transmission mode, the physical nature of the dominant material-induced shunts in multicrystalline solar cells made from p-type silicon material has been investigated. It turns out that these shunts are due to silicon carbide (SiC) filaments, which grow preferentially in grain boundaries and cross the whole cell. These filaments are highly n-type doped, like the emitter layer on the surface of the cells. They are electrically connected both with the emitter and with the back contact, thereby producing internal shunts in the solar cell.

  1. The abundance of silicon in the solar atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaltout, A. M. K.; Beheary, M. M.; Bakry, A.; Ichimoto, K.

    2013-04-01

    High-resolution solar spectra were used to determine the silicon abundance (εSi) content by comparison with Si line synthesis relying on realistic hydrodynamical simulations of the solar surface convection, as 3D inhomogeneous model of the solar photosphere. Based on a set of 19 Si I and 2 Si II lines, with accurate transition probabilities as well as accurate observational data available, the solar photospheric Si abundance has been determined to be log εSi(3D) = 7.53 ± 0.07. Here we derive the photospheric silicon abundance taking into account non-LTE effects based on 1D solar model, the non-LTE abundance value we find is log εSi (1D) = 7.52 ± 0.08. The photospheric Si abundance agrees well with the results of Asplund and more recently published by Asplund et al. relative to previous 3D-based abundances, the consistency given that the quoted errors here are (±0.07 dex).

  2. Efficiency improvement of silicon nanostructure-based solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Bohr-Ran; Yang, Ying-Kan; Yang, Wen-Luh

    2014-01-01

    Solar cells based on a high-efficiency silicon nanostructure (SNS) were developed using a two-step metal-assisted electroless etching (MAEE) technique, phosphorus silicate glass (PSG) doping and screen printing. This process was used to produce solar cells with a silver nitrate (AgNO3) etching solution in different concentrations. Compared to cells produced using the single MAEE technique, SNS-based solar cells produced with the two-step MAEE technique showed an increase in silicon surface coverage of ∼181.1% and a decrease in reflectivity of ∼144.3%. The performance of the SNS-based solar cells was found to be optimized (∼11.86%) in an SNS with a length of ∼300 nm, an aspect ratio of ∼5, surface coverage of ∼84.9% and a reflectivity of ∼6.1%. The ∼16.8% increase in power conversion efficiency (PCE) for the SNS-based solar cell indicates good potential for mass production.

  3. The status of silicon ribbon growth technology for high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ciszek, T. F.

    1985-01-01

    More than a dozen methods have been applied to the growth of silicon ribbons, beginning as early as 1963. The ribbon geometry has been particularly intriguing for photovoltaic applications, because it might provide large area, damage free, nearly continuous substrates without the material loss or cost of ingot wafering. In general, the efficiency of silicon ribbon solar cells has been lower than that of ingot cells. The status of some ribbon growth techniques that have achieved laboratory efficiencies greater than 13.5% are reviewed, i.e., edge-defined, film-fed growth (EFG), edge-supported pulling (ESP), ribbon against a drop (RAD), and dendritic web growth (web).

  4. Junction Transport in Epitaxial Film Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Young, D. L.; Li, J. V.; Teplin, C. W.; Stradins, P.; Branz, H. M.

    2011-07-01

    We report our progress toward low-temperature HWCVD epitaxial film silicon solar cells on inexpensive seed layers, with a focus on the junction transport physics exhibited by our devices. Heterojunctions of i/p hydrogenated amorphous Si (a-Si) on our n-type epitaxial crystal Si on n++ Si wafers show space-charge-region recombination, tunneling or diffusive transport depending on both epitaxial Si quality and the applied forward voltage.

  5. Processes for producing low cost, high efficiency silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Rohatgi, Ajeet; Chen, Zhizhang; Doshi, Parag

    1996-01-01

    Processes which utilize rapid thermal processing (RTP) are provided for inexpensively producing high efficiency silicon solar cells. The RTP processes preserve minority carrier bulk lifetime .tau. and permit selective adjustment of the depth of the diffused regions, including emitter and back surface field (bsf), within the silicon substrate. Silicon solar cell efficiencies of 16.9% have been achieved. In a first RTP process, an RTP step is utilized to simultaneously diffuse phosphorus and aluminum into the front and back surfaces, respectively, of a silicon substrate. Moreover, an in situ controlled cooling procedure preserves the carrier bulk lifetime .tau. and permits selective adjustment of the depth of the diffused regions. In a second RTP process, both simultaneous diffusion of the phosphorus and aluminum as well as annealing of the front and back contacts are accomplished during the RTP step. In a third RTP process, the RTP step accomplishes simultaneous diffusion of the phosphorus and aluminum, annealing of the contacts, and annealing of a double-layer antireflection/passivation coating SiN/SiO.sub.x.

  6. Studies of silicon pn junction solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.; Neugroschel, A.

    1977-01-01

    Modifications of the basic Shockley equations that result from the random and nonrandom spatial variations of the chemical composition of a semiconductor were developed. These modifications underlie the existence of the extensive emitter recombination current that limits the voltage over the open circuit of solar cells. The measurement of parameters, series resistance and the base diffusion length is discussed. Two methods are presented for establishing the energy bandgap narrowing in the heavily-doped emitter region. Corrections that can be important in the application of one of these methods to small test cells are examined. Oxide-charge-induced high-low-junction emitter (OCI-HLE) test cells which exhibit considerably higher voltage over the open circuit than was previously seen in n-on-p solar cells are described.

  7. Modeling of Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Luppina, P.; Lugli, P.; Goodnick, S.

    2015-06-14

    Here we present modeling results on crystalline Si/amorphous Si (a-Si) heterojunction solar cells using Sentaurus including various models for defect states in the a-Si barriers, as well as explicit models for the ITO emitter contact. We investigate the impact of the band offsets and barrier heights of the a-Si/c-Si interface, particularly in terms of the open circuit voltage. It is also shown that the solar cell performance is sensitively dependent on the quality of the a-Si in terms of defect states and their distribution, particularly on the emitter side. Finally, we have investigate the role of tunneling and thermionic emission across the heterointerface in terms of transport from the Si to the ITO contact layer

  8. Silicon halide-alkali metal flames as a source of solar grade silicon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olsen, D. B.; Miller, W. J.

    1979-01-01

    The feasibility of using alkali metal-silicon halide diffusion flames to produce solar-grade silicon in large quantities and at low cost is demonstrated. Prior work shows that these flames are stable and that relatively high purity silicon can be produced using Na + SiCl4 flames. Silicon of similar purity is obtained from Na + SiF4 flames although yields are lower and product separation and collection are less thermochemically favored. Continuous separation of silicon from the byproduct alkali salt was demonstrated in a heated graphite reactor. The process was scaled up to reduce heat losses and to produce larger samples of silicon. Reagent delivery systems, scaled by a factor of 25, were built and operated at a production rate of 0.5 kg Si/h. Very rapid reactor heating rates are observed with wall temperatures reaching greater than 2000 K. Heat release parameters were measured using a cooled stainless steel reactor tube. A new reactor was designed.

  9. Development of low cost thin film polycrystalline silicon solar cells for terrestrial applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chu, T. L.

    1975-01-01

    The AMO efficiencies (no anti-reflection coating) obtained to date are 2.5% for solar cells deposited on graphite substrates, 3.5% for solar cells deposited on metallurgical silicon substrates, and 4.5% for solar cells fabricated from purified metallurgical silicon.

  10. Effect of zinc impurity on silicon solar-cell efficiency

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sah, C.-T.; Chan, P. C. H.; Wang, C.-K.; Yamakawa, K. A.; Lutwack, R.; Sah, R. L.-Y.

    1981-01-01

    Zinc is a major residue impurity in the preparation of solar-grade silicon material by the zinc vapor reduction of silicon tetrachloride. This paper projects that in order to get a 17-percent AM1 cell efficiency for the Block IV module of the Low-Cost Solar Array Project, the concentration of the zinc recombination centers in the base region of silicon solar cells must be less than 4 x 10 to the 11th Zn/cu cm in the p-base n+/p/p+ cell and 7 x 10 to the 11th Zn/cu cm in the n-base p+/n/n+ cell for a base dopant impurity concentration of 5 x 10 to the 14 atoms/cu cm. If the base dopant impurity concentration is increased by a factor of 10 to 5 x 10 to the 15th atoms/cu cm, then the maximum allowable zinc concentration is increased by a factor of about two for a 17-percent AM1 efficiency. The thermal equilibrium electron and hole recombination and generation rates at the double-acceptor zinc centers are obtained from previous high-field measurements as well as new measurements at zero field described in this paper. These rates are used in the exact dc-circuit model to compute the projections.

  11. Silicon detector readout system using commercially available items

    SciTech Connect

    Green, D.

    1986-05-01

    The basic properties of silicon detectors are briefly noted, including bulk and electrical properties. Thermal and shot noise in front end amplifiers is discussed. The configuration of detectors and preamps is then briefly described. A detector test is described and results are given. (LEW)

  12. Reduced annealing temperatures in silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weinberg, I.; Swartz, C. K.

    1981-01-01

    Cells irradiated to a fluence of 5x10,000,000,000,000/square cm showed short circuit current on annealing at 200 C, with complete annealing occurring at 275 C. Cells irradiated to 100,000,000,000,000/square cm showed a reduction in annealing temperature from the usual 500 to 300 C. Annealing kinetic studies yield an activation energy of (1.5 + or - 2) eV for the low fluence, low temperature anneal. Comparison with activation energies previously obtained indicate that the presently obtained activation energy is consistent with the presence of either the divacancy or the carbon interstitial carbon substitutional pair, a result which agrees with the conclusion based on defect behavior in boron-doped silicon.

  13. Terrestrial Solar Thermal Power Plants: On the Verge of Commercialization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romero, M.; Martinez, D.; Zarza, E.

    2004-12-01

    Solar Thermal Power Plants (STPP) with optical concentration technologies are important candidates for providing the bulk solar electricity needed within the next few decades, even though they still suffer from lack of dissemination and confidence among citizens, scientists and decision makers. Concentrating solar power is represented nowadays at pilot-scale and demonstration-scale by four technologies, parabolic troughs, linear Fresnel reflector systems, power towers or central receiver systems, and dish/engine systems, which are ready to start up in early commercial/demonstration plants. Even though, at present those technologies are still three times more expensive than intermediate-load fossil thermal power plants, in ten years from now, STPP may already have reduced production costs to ranges competitive. An important portion of this reduction (up to 42%) will be obtained by R&D and technology advances in materials and components, efficient integration schemes with thermodynamic cycles, highly automated control and low-cost heat storage systems.

  14. 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.

  15. Silicon based solar cells using a multilayer oxide as emitter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bao, Jie; Wu, Weiliang; Liu, Zongtao; Shen, Hui

    2016-08-01

    In this work, n-type silicon based solar cells with WO3/Ag/WO3 multilayer films as emitter (WAW/n-Si solar cells) were presented via simple physical vapor deposition (PVD). Microstructure and composition of WAW/n-Si solar cells were studied by TEM and XPS, respectively. Furthermore, the dependence of the solar cells performances on each WO3 layer thickness was investigated. The results indicated that the bottom WO3 layer mainly induced band bending and facilitated charge-carriers separation, while the top WO3 layer degraded open-circuit voltage but actually improved optical absorption of the solar cells. The WAW/n-Si solar cells, with optimized bottom and top WO3 layer thicknesses, exhibited 5.21% efficiency on polished wafer with area of 4 cm2 under AM 1.5 condition (25 °C and 100 mW/cm2). Compared with WO3 single-layer film, WAW multilayer films demonstrated better surface passivation quality but more optical loss, while the optical loss could be effectively reduced by implementing light-trapping structures. These results pave a new way for dopant-free solar cells in terms of low-cost and facile process flow.

  16. Space Qualification Test of a-Silicon Solar Cell Modules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Q.; Lawton, R. A.; Manion, S. J.; Okuno, J. O.; Ruiz, R. P.; Vu, D. T.; Vu, D. T.; Kayali, S. A.; Jeffrey, F. R.

    2004-01-01

    The basic requirements of solar cell modules for space applications are generally described in MIL-S-83576 for the specific needs of the USAF. However, the specifications of solar cells intended for use on space terrestrial applications are not well defined. Therefore, this qualifications test effort was concentrated on critical areas specific to the microseismometer probe which is intended to be included in the Mars microprobe programs. Parameters that were evaluated included performance dependence on: illuminating angles, terrestrial temperatures, lifetime, as well as impact landing conditions. Our qualification efforts were limited to these most critical areas of concern. Most of the tested solar cell modules have met the requirements of the program except the impact tests. Surprisingly, one of the two single PIN 2 x 1 amorphous solar cell modules continued to function even after the 80000G impact tests. The output power parameters, Pout, FF, Isc and Voc, of the single PIN amorphous solar cell module were found to be 3.14 mW, 0.40, 9.98 mA and 0.78 V, respectively. These parameters are good enough to consider the solar module as a possible power source for the microprobe seismometer. Some recommendations were made to improve the usefulness of the amorphous silicon solar cell modules in space terrestrial applications, based on the results obtained from the intensive short term lab test effort.

  17. Progress on the carbothermic production of solar-grade silicon using high-purity starting materials

    SciTech Connect

    Schultz, F.W.; Aulich, H.A.; Fenzi, H.J.; Hecht, M.D.

    1984-05-01

    Solar-grade silicon was produced by carbothermic reduction (CR) in a 70 kW arc-furnace. Silicon suitable for solar cells with an efficiency > 10% was obtained form silicon dioxide of different origin and purified carbon. The importance of a low P- and B-concentration (<10/sup 17/a/cm/sup 3/) in the silicon produced was established. Cells made from CR-Si were successfully processed into modules using conventional technology.

  18. Silicon Halide-alkali Metal Flames as a Source of Solar Grade Silicon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olson, D. B.; Gould, R. K.

    1979-01-01

    A program is presented which was aimed at determining the feasibility of using high temperature reactions of alkali metals and silicon halides to produce low cost solar-grade silicon. Experiments are being conducted to evaluate product separation and collection processes, measure heat release parameters for scaling purposes, and determine the effects of the reactants and/or products on materials of reactor construction. During the current reporting period, the results of heat release experiments were used to design and construct a new type of thick-wall graphite reactor to produce larger quantities of silicon. A reactor test facility was constructed. Material compatibility tests were performed for Na in contact with graphite and several coated graphites. All samples were rapidly degraded at T = 1200K, while samples retained structural strength at 1700K. Pyrolytic graphite coatings cracked and separated from substances in all cases.

  19. Laser assisted patterning of hydrogenated amorphous silicon for interdigitated back contact silicon heterojunction solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Vecchi, S.; Desrues, T.; Souche, F.; Muñoz, D.; Lemiti, M.

    2012-10-01

    This work reports on the elaboration of a new industrial process based on laser selective ablation of dielectric layers for Interdigitated Back Contact Silicon Heterojunction (IBC Si-HJ) solar cells fabrication. Choice of the process is discussed and cells are processed to validate its performance. A pulsed green laser (515nm) with 10-20ns pulse duration is used for hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) layers patterning steps, whereas metallization is made by screen printed. High Open-Circuit Voltage (Voc=699mV) and Fill Factor (FF=78.5%) values are obtained simultaneously on IBC Si-HJ cells, indicating a high surface passivation level and reduced resistive losses. An efficiency of 19% on non textured 26 cm² solar cells has been reached with this new industrial process.

  20. Development of a Novel Hybrid Multi-Junction Architecture for Silicon Solar Cells

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-03-26

    DEVELOPMENT OF A NOVEL HYBRID MULTI-JUNCTION ARCHITECTURE FOR SILICON SOLAR CELLS THESIS...the United States. AFIT-ENG-MS-15-M-026 DEVELOPMENT OF A NOVEL HYBRID MULTI-JUNCTION ARCHITECTURE FOR SILICON SOLAR CELLS THESIS...AFIT-ENG-MS-15-M-026 DEVELOPMENT OF A NOVEL HYBRID MULTI-JUNCTION ARCHITECTURE FOR SILICON SOLAR CELLS Robert S. LaFleur 1st

  1. High Efficiency c-Silicon Solar Cells Based on Micro-Nanoscale Structure

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-06-01

    High Efficiency c- Silicon Solar Cells Based on Micro-nanoscale Structure by Fred Semendy, Priyalal Wijewarnasuriya, and Nibir K. Dhar...20783-1197 ARL-TR-5576 June 2011 High Efficiency c- Silicon Solar Cells Based on Micro-nanoscale Structure Fred Semendy and Priyalal...4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE High Efficiency c- Silicon Solar Cells Based on Micro-nanoscale Structure 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c

  2. High efficiency silicon solar cell based on asymmetric nanowire.

    PubMed

    Ko, Myung-Dong; Rim, Taiuk; Kim, Kihyun; Meyyappan, M; Baek, Chang-Ki

    2015-07-08

    Improving the efficiency of solar cells through novel materials and devices is critical to realize the full potential of solar energy to meet the growing worldwide energy demands. We present here a highly efficient radial p-n junction silicon solar cell using an asymmetric nanowire structure with a shorter bottom core diameter than at the top. A maximum short circuit current density of 27.5 mA/cm(2) and an efficiency of 7.53% were realized without anti-reflection coating. Changing the silicon nanowire (SiNW) structure from conventional symmetric to asymmetric nature improves the efficiency due to increased short circuit current density. From numerical simulation and measurement of the optical characteristics, the total reflection on the sidewalls is seen to increase the light trapping path and charge carrier generation in the radial junction of the asymmetric SiNW, yielding high external quantum efficiency and short circuit current density. The proposed asymmetric structure has great potential to effectively improve the efficiency of the SiNW solar cells.

  3. High efficiency silicon solar cell based on asymmetric nanowire

    PubMed Central

    Ko, Myung-Dong; Rim, Taiuk; Kim, Kihyun; Meyyappan, M.; Baek, Chang-Ki

    2015-01-01

    Improving the efficiency of solar cells through novel materials and devices is critical to realize the full potential of solar energy to meet the growing worldwide energy demands. We present here a highly efficient radial p-n junction silicon solar cell using an asymmetric nanowire structure with a shorter bottom core diameter than at the top. A maximum short circuit current density of 27.5 mA/cm2 and an efficiency of 7.53% were realized without anti-reflection coating. Changing the silicon nanowire (SiNW) structure from conventional symmetric to asymmetric nature improves the efficiency due to increased short circuit current density. From numerical simulation and measurement of the optical characteristics, the total reflection on the sidewalls is seen to increase the light trapping path and charge carrier generation in the radial junction of the asymmetric SiNW, yielding high external quantum efficiency and short circuit current density. The proposed asymmetric structure has great potential to effectively improve the efficiency of the SiNW solar cells. PMID:26152914

  4. A virtual crystallization furnace for solar silicon

    SciTech Connect

    Steinbach, I.; Franke, D.; Krumbe, W.; Liebermann, J.

    1994-12-31

    Blocks of silicon for photovoltaic applications are economically crystallized in large casting furnaces. The quality of the material is determined by the velocity of the crystallization front, the flatness of the liquid-solid interface and the thermal gradients in the solid during cooling. The process cycle time, which is determined by the rate of crystallization and cooling, has a large effect on the process economic viability. Traditionally trial and error was used to determine the process control parameters, the success of which depended on the operator`s experience and intuition. This paper presents a numerical model, which when completed by a fitted data set, constitutes a virtual model of a real crystallization furnace, the Virtual Crystallization Furnace (VCF). The time-temperature distribution during the process cycle is the main output, which includes a display of actual liquid-solid front position. Moreover, solidification velocity, temperature gradients and thermal stresses can be deduced from this output. The time needed to run a simulation on a modern work-station is approximately 1/6 of real process time, thereby allowing the user to make many process variations at very reasonable costs. Therefore the VCF is a powerful tool for optimizing the process in order to reduce cycle time and to increase product quality.

  5. Effects of Impurities and Processing on Silicon Solar Cells, Phase 3

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, R. H.; Davis, J. R.; Blais, P. D.; Rohatgi, A.; Campbell, R. B.; Rai-Choudhury, P.; Stapleton, R. E.; Mollenkopf, H. C.; Mccormick, J. R.

    1979-01-01

    Results of the 14th quarterly report are presented for a program designed to assess the effects of impurities, thermochemical processes and any impurity process interactions on the performance of terrestrial silicon solar cells. The Phase 3 effort encompasses: (1) potential interactions between impurities and thermochemical processing of silicon; (2) impurity-cell performance relationships in n-base silicon; (3) effect of contaminants introduced during silicon production, refining or crystal growth on cell performance; (4) effects of nonuniform impurity distributions in large area silicon wafers; and (5) a preliminary study of the permanence of impurity effects in silicon solar cells.

  6. Comprehensive silicon solar cell computer modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lamorte, M. F.

    1984-01-01

    The development of an efficient, comprehensive Si solar cell modeling program that has the capability of simulation accuracy of 5 percent or less is examined. A general investigation of computerized simulation is provided. Computer simulation programs are subdivided into a number of major tasks: (1) analytical method used to represent the physical system; (2) phenomena submodels that comprise the simulation of the system; (3) coding of the analysis and the phenomena submodels; (4) coding scheme that results in efficient use of the CPU so that CPU costs are low; and (5) modularized simulation program with respect to structures that may be analyzed, addition and/or modification of phenomena submodels as new experimental data become available, and the addition of other photovoltaic materials.

  7. Silicon halide-alkali metal flames as a source of solar grade silicon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olson, D. B.; Miller, W. J.; Gould, R. K.

    1980-01-01

    The feasibility of using continuous high-temperature reactions of alkali metals and silicon halides to produce silicon in large quantities and of suitable purity for use in the production of photovoltaic solar cells was demonstrated. Low pressure experiments were performed demonstrating the production of free silicon and providing experience with the construction of reactant vapor generators. Further experiments at higher reagent flow rates were performed in a low temperature flow tube configuration with co-axial injection of reagents and relatively pure silicon was produced. A high temperature graphite flow tube was built and continuous separation of Si from NaCl was demonstrated. A larger scaled well stirred reactor was built. Experiments were performed to investigate the compatability of graphite based reactor materials of construction with sodium. At 1100 to 1200 K none of these materials were found to be suitable. At 1700 K the graphites performed well with little damage except to coatings of pyrolytic graphite and silicon carbide which were damaged.

  8. Use of Advanced Solar Cells for Commercial Communication Satellites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bailey, Sheila G.; Landis, Geoffrey A.

    1995-01-01

    The current generation of communications satellites are located primarily in geosynchronous Earth orbit (GEO). Over the next decade, however, a new generation of communications satellites will be built and launched, designed to provide a world-wide interconnection of portable telephones. For this mission, the satellites must be positioned in lower polar and near-polar orbits. To provide complete coverage, large numbers of satellites will be required. Because the required number of satellites decreases as the orbital altitude is increased, fewer satellites would be required if the orbit chosen were raised from low to intermediate orbit. However, in intermediate orbits, satellites encounter significant radiation due to trapped electrons and protons. Radiation tolerant solar cells may be necessary to make such satellites feasible. We analyze the amount of radiation encountered in low and intermediate polar orbits at altitudes of interest to next-generation communication satellites, calculate the expected degradation for silicon, GaAs, and InP solar cells, and show that the lifetimes can be significantly increased by use of advanced solar cells.

  9. Use of advanced solar cells for commercial communication satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bailey, Sheila G.; Landis, Geoffrey A.

    1995-03-01

    The current generation of communications satellites are located primarily in geosynchronous Earth orbit (GEO). Over the next decade, however, a new generation of communications satellites will be built and launched, designed to provide a world-wide interconnection of portable telephones. For this mission, the satellites must be positioned in lower polar and near-polar orbits. To provide complete coverage, large numbers of satellites will be required. Because the required number of satellites decreases as the orbital altitude is increased, fewer satellites would be required if the orbit chosen were raised from low to intermediate orbit. However, in intermediate orbits, satellites encounter significant radiation due to trapped electrons and protons. Radiation tolerant solar cells may be necessary to make such satellites feasible. We analyze the amount of radiation encountered in low and intermediate polar orbits at altitudes of interest to next-generation communication satellites, calculate the expected degradation for silicon, GaAs, and InP solar cells, and show that the lifetimes can be significantly increased by use of advanced solar cells.

  10. Features of photoconversion in highly efficient silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Sachenko, A. V.; Shkrebtii, A. I.; Korkishko, R. M.; Kostylyov, V. P.; Kulish, N. R.; Sokolovskyi, I. O.

    2015-02-15

    The photoconversion efficiency η in highly efficient silicon-based solar cells (SCs) is analyzed depending on the total surface-recombination rate S{sub s} on illuminated and rear surfaces. Solar cells based on silicon p-n junctions and α-Si:H or α-SiC:H-Si heterojunctions (so-called HIT structures) are considered in a unified approach. It is shown that a common feature of these SCs is an increased open-circuit voltage V{sub oc} associated with an additional contribution of the rear surface. Within an approach based on analysis of the physical features of photoconversion in SCs, taking into account the main recombination mechanisms, including Shockley-Read-Hall recombination, radiative recombination, surface recombination, recombination in the space-charge region, and band-to-band Auger recombination, expressions for the photoconversion efficiency of such SCs are obtained. The developed theory is compared with experiments, including those for SCs with record parameters, e.g., η = 25% and 24.7% for SCs with a p-n junction for HIT structures, respectively, under AM1.5 conditions. By comparing theory and experiment, the values of S{sub s} achieved as a result of recombination-loss minimization by various methods are determined. The results of calculations of the maximum possible value η{sub max} in silicon SCs are compared with the data of other papers. Good agreement is observed.

  11. Hole selective MoOx contact for silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Battaglia, Corsin; Yin, Xingtian; Zheng, Maxwell; Sharp, Ian D; Chen, Teresa; McDonnell, Stephen; Azcatl, Angelica; Carraro, Carlo; Ma, Biwu; Maboudian, Roya; Wallace, Robert M; Javey, Ali

    2014-02-12

    Using an ultrathin (∼ 15 nm in thickness) molybdenum oxide (MoOx, x < 3) layer as a transparent hole selective contact to n-type silicon, we demonstrate a room-temperature processed oxide/silicon solar cell with a power conversion efficiency of 14.3%. While MoOx is commonly considered to be a semiconductor with a band gap of 3.3 eV, from X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy we show that MoOx may be considered to behave as a high workfunction metal with a low density of states at the Fermi level originating from the tail of an oxygen vacancy derived defect band located inside the band gap. Specifically, in the absence of carbon contamination, we measure a work function potential of ∼ 6.6 eV, which is significantly higher than that of all elemental metals. Our results on the archetypical semiconductor silicon demonstrate the use of nm-thick transition metal oxides as a simple and versatile pathway for dopant-free contacts to inorganic semiconductors. This work has important implications toward enabling a novel class of junctionless devices with applications for solar cells, light-emitting diodes, photodetectors, and transistors.

  12. Heterojunction solar cells based on single-crystal silicon with an inkjet-printed contact grid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abolmasov, S. N.; Abramov, A. S.; Ivanov, G. A.; Terukov, E. I.; Emtsev, K. V.; Nyapshaev, I. A.; Bazeley, A. A.; Gubin, S. P.; Kornilov, D. Yu.; Tkachev, S. V.; Kim, V. P.; Ryndin, D. A.; Levchenkova, V. I.

    2017-01-01

    Results on the creation of a current-collecting grid for heterojunction silicon solar cells by ink-jet printing are presented. Characteristics of the obtained solar cells are compared with those of the samples obtained using standard screen printing.

  13. Laser processing of silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Katzeff, J. S.; Lopez, M.; Burger, D. R.

    1981-01-01

    Results of a study to utilize an Nd:glass laser for production line annealing of ion implantation induced damage in solar cells are reported. Czochralski-grown and sawn Si wafers 7.6 cm in diam, 0.35 mm thick, were implanted with phosphorus junctions and boron BSFs. Annealing with electron beam, laser, and firing of an Al paste to form the BSFs in different cells was compared. The laser was employed at 1.06 and 0.53 micron and in combination of both, with a 20-50 nsec pulsewidth, and energy densities of 1.2, 1.5, 1.9, and 2.1 J/sq cm. Best optical coupling was observed with the combined wavelengths and a 20 nsec pulse, using energy densities less than 1.5 J/sq cm. Although the Al sintered cells displayed the best characteristics, laser annealing is concluded to offer electrically active, defect-free, shallow junction Si substrates for high efficiency cells.

  14. Polyimide based amorphous silicon solar modules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jeffrey, Frank R.; Grimmer, Derrick P.; Martens, Steven A.; Abudagga, Khaled; Thomas, Michael L.; Noak, Max

    1993-01-01

    Requirements for space power are increasingly emphasizing lower costs and higher specific powers. This results from new fiscal constraints, higher power requirements for larger applications, and the evolution toward longer distance missions such as a Lunar or Mars base. The polyimide based a-Si modules described are being developed to meet these needs. The modules consist of tandem a-Si solar cell material deposited directly on a roll of polyimide. A laser scribing/printing process subdivides the deposition into discrete cell strips which are series connected to produce the required voltage without cutting the polymer backing. The result is a large, monolithic, blanket type module approximately 30 cm wide and variable in length depending on demand. Current production modules have a specific power slightly over 500 W/Kg with room for significant improvement. Costs for the full blanket modules range from $30/Watt to $150/Watt depending on quantity and engineering requirements. Work to date focused on the modules themselves and adjusting them for the AMO spectrum. Work is needed yet to insure that the modules are suitable for the space environment.

  15. Current status of silicon solar cell technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brandhorst, H. W., Jr.

    1975-01-01

    Recent advances in solar cell technology have led to the development of laboratory cells with efficiencies above 15% and production cells with efficiencies in the area of 13%. The increased output is largely the result of increases in the short-circuit current. The most significant gain in the amount of light entering the cell has been obtained through surface texturing by chemical etching techniques. Sheet resistances resulting from phosphorus diffusion in the 800 C temperature range yield junction depths on the order of 0.1 micrometer, leading to significant increases in the blue region of the cell spectral response. The inclusion of a back surface field in 10 ohm-cm cells has produced an increase in open-circuit voltage of about 50 mV and an increase in the minority carrier lifetime. It appears that a low emitter efficiency of the diffused region is the cause of poor voltages. Future research will be primarily directed toward correcting this deficiency and toward the development of low cost production methods.

  16. Silicon solar cell process development, fabrication and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Iles, P. A.; Leung, D. C.

    1981-01-01

    Solar cells were fabricated from EFG ribbons dendritic webs, cast ingots by heat exchanger method, and cast ingots by ubiquitous crystallization process. Baseline and other process variations were applied to fabricate solar cells. EFG ribbons grown in a carbon-containing gas atmosphere showed significant improvement in silicon quality. Baseline solar cells from dendritic webs of various runs indicated that the quality of the webs under investigation was not as good as the conventional CZ silicon, showing an average minority carrier diffusion length of about 60 um versus 120 um of CZ wafers. Detail evaluation of large cast ingots by HEM showed ingot reproducibility problems from run to run and uniformity problems of sheet quality within an ingot. Initial evaluation of the wafers prepared from the cast polycrystalline ingots by UCP suggested that the quality of the wafers from this process is considerably lower than the conventional CZ wafers. Overall performance was relatively uniform, except for a few cells which showed shunting problems caused by inclusions.

  17. High-purity silicon for solar cell applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dosaj, V. D.; Hunt, L. P.; Schei, A.

    1978-01-01

    The article discusses the production of solar cells from high-purity silicon. The process consists of reducing the level of impurities in the raw materials, preventing material contamination before and after entering the furnace, and performing orders-of-magnitude reduction of metal impurity concentrations. The high-purity raw materials are considered with reference to carbon reductants, silica, and graphite electrodes. Attention is also given to smelting experiments used to demonstrate, in an experimental-scale furnace, the production of high-purity SoG-Si. It is found that high-purity silicon may be produced from high-purity quartz and chemically purified charcoal in a 50-kVA arc furnace. The major contamination source is shown to be impurities from the carbon reducing materials.

  18. Effects of impurities on silicon solar-cell performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, R. H.

    1986-01-01

    Model analyses indicate that sophisticated solar cell designs (back surface fields, optical reflectors, surface passivation, and double layer antireflective coatings) can produce devices with conversion efficiencies above 20%. To realize this potential, the quality of the silicon from which the cells are made must be improved; and these excellent electrical properties must be maintained during device processing. As the cell efficiency rises, the sensitivity to trace contaminants also increases. For example, the threshold Ti impurity concentraion at which cell performance degrades is more than an order of magnitude lower for an 18% cell than for a 16% cell. Similar behavior occurs for numerous other metal species which introduce deep level traps that stimulate the recombination of photogenerated carriers in silicon. Purification via crystal growth in conjunction with gettering steps to preserve the large diffusion length of the as grown material can lead to the production of devices with efficiencies above 18%, as verified experimentally.

  19. Towards a 700 mV silicon solar cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Green, M. A.; Blakers, A. W.; Gauja, E.; Willison, M. R.; Szpitalak, T.

    1982-01-01

    The key to improved silicon solar cell performance lies in increasing cell open circuit voltage. Not only does improved voltage direclty increase cell efficiency, but it also increases the limiting value of fill factor and decreases the temperature sensitivity of the cell. Limits on attainable open circuit voltage are not well defined. A thermodynamic limit of 850 mV exists for black body silicon cells, with 700 mV long regarded as a practical limit. This paper describes experimental work which has resulted in experimental devices with open circuit voltages approaching 700 mV. Values up to 694 (AM0, 25 C) have been demonstrated. The cells are similar in structure to conventional p-n junction cells, but particular attention is paid to passivating the entire top surface of the cell, including regions under the top contact.

  20. Effect of dopants on annealing performance of silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scott-Monck, J. A.; Anspaugh, B. E.

    1979-01-01

    The optimum annealing parameters of time and temperature for producing cell output recovery were established. Devices made from gallium doped and boron doped silicon were investigated. The cells ranged in resistivity from 0.1 to 20 ohm-cm and in thickness from 50 to 250 micrometers. The observations can be explained in a qualitative manner by postulating a pair of competing mechanisms to account for the low temperature reverse annealing seen in most boron and gallium doped silicon solar cells. Still another mechanism dominates at higher temperatures (350 C and greater) to complete this model. One of the mechanisms, defined as B, allows migrators to couple with radiation induced recombination sites thus increasing or enhancing their capture cross sections. This would tend to reduce minority carrier diffusion length. The new recombination complex is postulated to be thermally stable up to temperatures of approximately 350 C.

  1. Impurity effects in silicon for high efficiency solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, R. H.; Rohatgi, A.

    1986-01-01

    Model analyses indicate that sophisticated solar cell designs including, e.g., back surface fields, optical reflectors, surface passivation, and double layer antireflective coatings can produce devices with conversion efficiencies above 20 percent (AM1). To realize this potential, the quality of the silicon from which the cells are made must be improved; and these excellent electrical properties must be maintained during device processing. As the cell efficiency rises, the sensitivity to trace contaminants also increases. For example, the threshold Ti impurity concentration at which cell performance degrades is more than an order of magnitude lower for an 18-percent cell. Similar behavior occurs for numerous other metal species which introduce deep level traps that stimulate the recombination of photogenerated carriers in silicon. Purification via crystal growth in conjunction with gettering steps to preserve the large diffusion length of the as-grown material can lead to the production of devices with efficiencies aboved 18 percent, as has been verified experimentally.

  2. The Production of Solar Cell Grade Silicon from Bromosilanes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schumacher, J. C.; Woerner, L.; Moore, E.; Newman, C.

    1979-01-01

    A continuous Flow Reactor (CFR) process based on the hydrogen reduction of the bromosilanes SiBr4 and SiHBr3 was proposed. Initial experiments carried and directed at obtaining overall yield data for bromosilane reduction in the CFR, indicated the need for increased reactor residence time and deposition substrate particle packing density to fully characterize the kinetics (rate) and thermodynamics (yield) of observed silicon production. Fluidized bed experiments were therefore initiated to overcome these experimental difficulties, which showed both thermal decomposition and hydrogen reduction of SiHBr3 in a fluid bed reactor to present attractive closed-loop processes for producing solar cell grade polycrystalline silicon. No process selection could be made however due to the fact that preliminary optimization of 2 of 3 process stages in each case during the course of the experimental program showed comparable attainment of cost element objectives.

  3. Commercialization of dish-Stirling solar terrestrial systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, Brad; Penswick, Barry; White, Maury; Cooper, Martin; Farbman, Gerald

    1990-01-01

    The requirements for dish-Stirling commercialization are described. The requirements for practical terrestrial power systems, both technical and economic, are described. Solar energy availability, with seasonal and regional variations, is discussed. The advantages and disadvantages of hybrid operation are listed. The two systems described use either a 25-kW free-piston Stirling hydraulic engine or a 5-kW kinematic Stirling engine. Both engines feature long-life characteristics that result from the use of welded metal bellows as hermetic seals between the working gas and the crankcase fluid. The advantages of the systems, the state of the technology, and the challenges that remain are discussed. Technology transfer between solar terrestrial Stirling applications and other Stirling applications is predicted to be important and synergistic.

  4. Passive solar renovation of an existing commercial greenhouse

    SciTech Connect

    McGinnis, J.W.; Whitehead, N.

    1980-01-01

    The renovation of an existing 1800 square foot commercial greenhouse to incorporate passive solar reliant and energy conserving features is detailed. The Aquatic-Agriculture Institute for Research, a non-profit group, sponsored the project to develop efficient production methods to raise vegetables and fish at the community level. The performance of the remodeled greenhouse will be compared to the performance of the same greenhouse as it was originally designed. The restored greenhouse began operation in September 1979. Accurate fuel and temperature records maintained through-out the past winter, show the cost of back-up heating under operating conditions to be approximately $150.00. Old fuel receipts dating back into the 1940's show an average use of 2000 gallons of heating fuel each winter prior to remodeling. This would indicate a yearly fuel savings of better than 90% through the use of passive solar techniques.

  5. Commercialization of dish-Stirling solar terrestrial systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, Brad; Penswick, Barry; White, Maury; Cooper, Martin; Farbman, Gerald

    The requirements for dish-Stirling commercialization are described. The requirements for practical terrestrial power systems, both technical and economic, are described. Solar energy availability, with seasonal and regional variations, is discussed. The advantages and disadvantages of hybrid operation are listed. The two systems described use either a 25-kW free-piston Stirling hydraulic engine or a 5-kW kinematic Stirling engine. Both engines feature long-life characteristics that result from the use of welded metal bellows as hermetic seals between the working gas and the crankcase fluid. The advantages of the systems, the state of the technology, and the challenges that remain are discussed. Technology transfer between solar terrestrial Stirling applications and other Stirling applications is predicted to be important and synergistic.

  6. Heterogenous solar photocatalysis of two commercial reactive azo dyes.

    PubMed

    Dhodapkar, Rita S; Chaturvedi, Vibha; Neti, Nageswara R; Kaul, Santosh N

    2003-01-01

    Two commercial reactive azo dyes--Reactive Black 5 (RB5) and Reactive Orange 16 (RO 16) have been treated by titanium dioxide and Zinc oxide photocatalysts separately under presence of sunlight. It is observed that solar photocatalytic treatment is effective in terms of colour and COD. The photodegradation efficiency of zinc oxide is comparable with TiO2 at pH 5-6 for RO16. The extent of decolourization and degradation of RB5 is greater in presence of zinc oxide photocatalyst than TiO2 at pH 5- 6. Zinc oxide undergoes <1% photodissolution after 6 hours of solar irradiation at working pH.

  7. Development of low cost contacts to silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tanner, D. P.

    1980-01-01

    The results of the second phase of the program of developing low cost contacts to silicon solar cells using copper are presented. Phase 1 yielded the development of a plated Pd-Cr-Cu contact system. This process produced cells with shunting problems when they were heated to 400 C for 5 minutes. Means of stopping the identified copper diffusion which caused the shunting were investigated. A contact heat treatment study was conducted with Pd-Ag, Ci-Ag, Pd-Cu, Cu-Cr, and Ci-Ni-Cu. Nickel is shown to be an effective diffusion barrier to copper.

  8. Novel silicon phases and nanostructures for solar energy conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wippermann, Stefan; He, Yuping; Vörös, Márton; Galli, Giulia

    2016-12-01

    Silicon exhibits a large variety of different bulk phases, allotropes, and composite structures, such as, e.g., clathrates or nanostructures, at both higher and lower densities compared with diamond-like Si-I. New Si structures continue to be discovered. These novel forms of Si offer exciting prospects to create Si based materials, which are non-toxic and earth-abundant, with properties tailored precisely towards specific applications. We illustrate how such novel Si based materials either in the bulk or as nanostructures may be used to significantly improve the efficiency of solar energy conversion devices.

  9. High efficiency interdigitated back contact silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verlinden, P.; van de Wiele, F.; Stehelin, G.; Floret, F.; David, J. P.

    Interdigitated back contact (IBC) silicon solar cells with 25.6 percent efficiency at 10 W/sq cm and 24.4 percent at 30 W/ sq cm were fabricated. The authors report on the technological process, which produces a high effective carrier lifetime in the bulk (780 microsec), and on the characterization of the cells. The front side of these cells is textured and has an efficient polka-dot floating tandem junction. IBC and point-contact (PC) cells are fabricated on the same substrate and their efficiencies are compared. The possiblity of reaching 29 percent efficiency at 300X is shown.

  10. Silicon solar cell process development, fabrication and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leung, D. C.; Iles, P. A.

    1983-01-01

    Measurements of minority carrier diffusion lengths were made on the small mesa diodes from HEM Si and SILSO Si. The results were consistent with previous Voc and Isc measurements. Only the medium grain SILSO had a distinct advantage for the non grain boundary diodes. Substantial variations were observed for the HEM ingot 4141C. Also a quantitatively scaled light spot scan was being developed for localized diffusion length measurements in polycrystalline silicon solar cells. A change to a more monochromatic input for the light spot scan results in greater sensitivity and in principle, quantitative measurement of local material qualities is now possible.

  11. Effects of high doping levels silicon solar cell performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Godlewski, M. P.; Brandhorst, H. W., Jr.; Baraona, C. R.

    1975-01-01

    The significance of the heavy doping effects (HDE) on the open-circuit voltage of silicon solar cells is assessed. Voltage calculations based on diffusion theory are modified to include the first order features of the HDE. Comparisions of the open-circuit voltage measured for cells of various base resistivities are made with those calculated using the diffusion model with and without the HDE. Results indicate that the observed variation of voltage with base resistivity is predicted by these effects. A maximum efficiency of 19% (AM0) and a voltage of 0.7 volts are calculated for 0.1 omega-cm cells assuming an optimum diffused layer impurity profile.

  12. Development of high-efficiency solar cells on silicon web

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meier, D. L.; Greggi, J.; Okeeffe, T. W.; Rai-Choudhury, P.

    1986-01-01

    Work was performed to improve web base material with a goal of obtaining solar cell efficiencies in excess of 18% (AM1). Efforts in this program are directed toward identifying carrier loss mechanisms in web silicon, eliminating or reducing these mechanisms, designing a high efficiency cell structure with the aid of numerical models, and fabricating high efficiency web solar cells. Fabrication techniques must preserve or enhance carrier lifetime in the bulk of the cell and minimize recombination of carriers at the external surfaces. Three completed cells were viewed by cross-sectional transmission electron microscopy (TEM) in order to investigate further the relation between structural defects and electrical performance of web cells. Consistent with past TEM examinations, the cell with the highest efficiency (15.0%) had no dislocations but did have 11 twin planes.

  13. High performance silicon solar arrays employing advanced structures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rockey, D. E.; Hedgepeth, J. M.; Adams, L.

    1981-01-01

    Specific design features to reduce cell mass, lower panel operating temperatures, and improve power to mass ratios for silicon solar cell arrays in space applications are presented. Because mass constraints limit payload capacity for launch into GEO, graphite/epoxy structures combined with high performance Si cells are needed to deliver a power/mass ratio of 265 W/kg, notably for Solar Electric Propulsion systems, compared with existing level of 65 W/kg. Shallow diffusion and back surface field cell technology have raised cell efficiencies to 15%, with a back emissivity of 1.64. Structural design requirements comprise Shuttle interface compatibility, full ground test capability, low mass, and high stiffness. Three array alternatives are discussed, and the STACBEAM configuration, which consists of a triangular truss and a piston deployer with folding accomplished on simple hinges, provides 0.2 Hz stiffness and achieves the design power/mass goals.

  14. Light trapping in horizontally aligned silicon microwire solar cells.

    PubMed

    Martinsen, Fredrik A; Smeltzer, Benjamin K; Ballato, John; Hawkins, Thomas; Jones, Max; Gibson, Ursula J

    2015-11-30

    In this study, we demonstrate a solar cell design based on horizontally aligned microwires fabricated from 99.98% pure silicon via the molten core fiber drawing method. A similar structure consisting of 50 μm diameter close packed wires (≈ 0.97 packing density) on a Lambertian white back-reflector showed 86 % absorption for incident light of wavelengths up to 850 nm. An array with a packing fraction of 0.35 showed an absorption of 58 % over the same range, demonstrating the potential for effective light trapping. Prototype solar cells were fabricated to demonstrate the concept. Horizontal wire cells offer several advantages as they can be flexible, and partially transparent, and absorb light efficiently over a wide range of incident angles.

  15. High efficiency silicon nanohole/organic heterojunction hybrid solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Lei; Wang, Xincai; Zheng, Hongyu; He, Lining; Wang, Hao; Yu, Hongyu; Rusli

    2014-02-01

    High efficiency hybrid solar cells are fabricated based on silicon with a nanohole (SiNH) structure and poly (3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT:PSS). The SiNH structure is fabricated using electroless chemical etching with silver catalyst, and the heterojunction is formed by spin coating of PEDOT on the SiNH. The hybrid cells are optimized by varying the hole depth, and a maximum power conversion efficiency of 8.3% is achieved with a hole depth of 1 μm. The SiNH hybrid solar cell exhibits a strong antireflection and light trapping property attributed to the sub-wavelength dimension of the SiNH structure.

  16. A stamped PEDOT:PSS-silicon nanowire hybrid solar cell.

    PubMed

    Moiz, Syed Abdul; Nahhas, Ahmed Muhammad; Um, Han-Don; Jee, Sang-Won; Cho, Hyung Koun; Kim, Sang-Woo; Lee, Jung-Ho

    2012-04-13

    A novel stamped hybrid solar cell was proposed using the stamping transfer technique by stamping an active PEDOT:PSS thin layer onto the top of silicon nanowires (SiNWs). Compared to a bulk-type counterpart that fully embeds SiNWs inside PEDOT:PSS, an increase in the photovoltaic efficiency was observed by a factor of ∼4.6, along with improvements in both electrical and optical responses for the stamped hybrid cell. Such improvements for hybrid cells was due to the formation of well-connected and linearly aligned active PEDOT:PSS channels at the top ends of the nanowires after the stamping process. These stamped channels facilitated not only to improve the charge transport, light absorption, but also to decrease the free carriers as well as exciton recombination losses for stamped hybrid solar cells.

  17. Performance of single crystalline silicon solar cell with irradiance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chander, Subhash; Purohit, A.; Nehra, Anshu; Nehra, S. P.; Dhaka, M. S.

    2015-06-01

    In this paper, the effect of irradiance on the performance parameters of single crystalline silicon solar cell is undertaken. The experiment was carried out employing solar cell simulator with varying irradiance in the range 115-550W/m2 at constant cell temperature 25°C. The results show that the short circuit current is found to be increased linearly with irradiance and the open circuit voltage is increased slightly. The fill factor, maximum power and cell efficiency are also found to be increased with irradiance. The efficiency is increased linearly at lower irradiance while slightly increased at higher. The results revealed that the irradiance has a dominant effect on the performance parameters. The results are in good agreement with the available literature.

  18. Modeling of thin, back-wall silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baraona, C. R.

    1979-01-01

    The performance of silicon solar cells with p-n junctions on the nonilluminated surface (i.e., upside-down or back-wall cells) was calculated. These structures consisted of a uniformly shaped p-type substrate layer, a p(+)-type field layer on the front (illuminated) surface, and a shallow, n-type junction on the back (nonilluminated) surface. A four-layer solar cell model was used to calculate efficiency, open-circuit voltage, and short-circuit current. The effect on performance of p-layer thickness and resistivity was determined. The diffusion length was varied to simulate the effect of radiation damage. The results show that peak initial efficiencies greater than 15 percent are possible for cell thicknesses or 100 micrometers or less. After 10 years of radiation damage in geosynchronous orbit, thin (25 to 50 micrometers thick) cells made from 10 to 100 ohm cm material show the smallest decrease (approximately 10 percent) in performance.

  19. Materials requirements for high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolf, M.

    1985-01-01

    To achieve higher Si solar cell efficiencies (greater than 20%), better single-crystal Si must be produced. It is believed possible to bring Cz (Czochralski) Si up to the same low recombination level as FZ (Float Zone) Si. It is also desirable that solar cell Si meet the following requirements: long minority carrier lifetime (0.2 ohm-cm p-type with tau less than 500 microsec); repeatedly uniform lifetime (not spread from 50 to 1000 microsec); a lifetime that does not decrease during normal device processing; a silicon wafer sheet that is flat and stays throughout normal device processing; uniform and reasonable mechanical strength; and, manufacture at low cost (less than $50/sq m).

  20. High efficiency silicon nanohole/organic heterojunction hybrid solar cell

    SciTech Connect

    Hong, Lei; Wang, Xincai; Zheng, Hongyu; He, Lining; Wang, Hao; Rusli E-mail: erusli@ntu.edu.sg; Yu, Hongyu E-mail: erusli@ntu.edu.sg

    2014-02-03

    High efficiency hybrid solar cells are fabricated based on silicon with a nanohole (SiNH) structure and poly (3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT:PSS). The SiNH structure is fabricated using electroless chemical etching with silver catalyst, and the heterojunction is formed by spin coating of PEDOT on the SiNH. The hybrid cells are optimized by varying the hole depth, and a maximum power conversion efficiency of 8.3% is achieved with a hole depth of 1 μm. The SiNH hybrid solar cell exhibits a strong antireflection and light trapping property attributed to the sub-wavelength dimension of the SiNH structure.

  1. Short circuit current in indium tin oxide/silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, R.

    1980-09-01

    The short-circuit current density of indium tin oxide/single and polycrystalline silicon solar cells reported by Schunck and Coche (1979) is much higher than other silicon solar cells. It is shown that the short-circuit current density reported in the above reference does not represent the true value of these devices.

  2. Study of the Effects of Impurities on the Properties of Silicon Materials and Performance of Silicon Solar Cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sah, C. T.

    1979-01-01

    Numerical solutions were obtained from the exact one dimensional transmission line circuit model to study the following effects on the terrestrial performance of silicon solar cells: interband Auger recombination; surface recombination at the contact interfaces; enhanced metallic impurity solubility; diffusion profiles; and defect-impurity recombination centers. Thermal recombination parameters of titanium impurity in silicon were estimated from recent experimental data. Based on those parameters, computer model calculations showed that titanium concentration must be kept below 6x10 to the 12th power Ti/cu cm in order to achieve 16% AM1 efficiency in a silicon solar cell of 250 micrometers thick and 1.5 ohm-cm resistivity.

  3. Development of Low Cost Contacts to Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Iles, P. A.; Tanner, D. P.

    1978-01-01

    Commercial electroless Cu solutions were used. Satisfactory adhesion (and fairly good cell performance) resulted from the use of thin layers of barrier metals such as Au, Cr or Pd. In these tests, photoresist masks were used to contact silicon P-type slices with diffused N+ and alloyed P+ surfaces; and electrolytic Cu solution was used to build up the contact thickness to provide good cell behavior. In addition some cells with evaporated Cr-Cu contacts were also made (along with evaporated Ti-Pd-Ag contacts as controls), with the intention of subjecting cells to gradually increasing heat-treatments, to determine whether Cu causes the cells to be inherently unstable.

  4. Direct glass bonded high specific power silicon solar cells for space applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dinetta, L. C.; Rand, J. A.; Cummings, J. R.; Lampo, S. M.; Shreve, K. P.; Barnett, Allen M.

    1991-01-01

    A lightweight, radiation hard, high performance, ultra-thin silicon solar cell is described that incorporates light trapping and a cover glass as an integral part of the device. The manufacturing feasibility of high specific power, radiation insensitive, thin silicon solar cells was demonstrated experimentally and with a model. Ultra-thin, light trapping structures were fabricated and the light trapping demonstrated experimentally. The design uses a micro-machined, grooved back surface to increase the optical path length by a factor of 20. This silicon solar cell will be highly tolerant to radiation because the base width is less than 25 microns making it insensitive to reduction in minority carrier lifetime. Since the silicon is bonded without silicone adhesives, this solar cell will also be insensitive to UV degradation. These solar cells are designed as a form, fit, and function replacement for existing state of the art silicon solar cells with the effect of simultaneously increasing specific power, power/area, and power supply life. Using a 3-mil thick cover glass and a 0.3 g/sq cm supporting Al honeycomb, a specific power for the solar cell plus cover glass and honeycomb of 80.2 W/Kg is projected. The development of this technology can result in a revolutionary improvement in high survivability silicon solar cell products for space with the potential to displace all existing solar cell technologies for single junction space applications.

  5. Recombination-active defects in silicon ribbon and polycrystalline solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheng, L. J.

    1984-01-01

    This paper reports results from a study of recombination-active structural defects in silicon ribbon and polycrystalline solar cells using the electron beam induced current (EBIC) technique in a scanning electron microscope. It is demonstrated that low temperature EBIC measurements can reveal a range of defects that are not observable at room temperature, including slip dislocations in silicon dendritic web ribbons as well as decorated twin boundaries and dislocation complexes in cast polycrystalline silicon solar cell materials.

  6. Single crystalline silicon solar cells with rib structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshiba, Shuhei; Hirai, Masakazu; Abe, Yusuke; Konagai, Makoto; Ichikawa, Yukimi

    2017-02-01

    To improve the conversion efficiency of Si solar cells, we have developed a thin Si wafer-based solar cell that uses a rib structure. The open-circuit voltage of a solar cell is known to increase with deceasing wafer thickness if the cell is adequately passivated. However, it is not easy to handle very thin wafers because they are brittle and are subject to warpage. We fabricated a lattice-shaped rib structure on the rear side of a thin Si wafer to improve the wafer's strength. A silicon nitride film was deposited on the Si wafer surface and patterned to form a mask to fabricate the lattice-shaped rib, and the wafer was then etched using KOH to reduce the thickness of the active area, except for the rib region. Using this structure in a Si heterojunction cell, we demonstrated that a high open-circuit voltage (VOC) could be obtained by thinning the wafer without sacrificing its strength. A wafer with thickness of 30 μm was prepared easily using this structure. We then fabricated Si heterojunction solar cells using these rib wafers, and measured their implied VOC as a function of wafer thickness. The measured values were compared with device simulation results, and we found that the measured VOC agrees well with the simulated results. To optimize the rib and cell design, we also performed device simulations using various wafer thicknesses and rib dimensions.

  7. Optimization methods and silicon solar cell numerical models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Girardini, K.; Jacobsen, S. E.

    1986-01-01

    An optimization algorithm for use with numerical silicon solar cell models was developed. By coupling an optimization algorithm with a solar cell model, it is possible to simultaneously vary design variables such as impurity concentrations, front junction depth, back junction depth, and cell thickness to maximize the predicted cell efficiency. An optimization algorithm was developed and interfaced with the Solar Cell Analysis Program in 1 Dimension (SCAP1D). SCAP1D uses finite difference methods to solve the differential equations which, along with several relations from the physics of semiconductors, describe mathematically the performance of a solar cell. A major obstacle is that the numerical methods used in SCAP1D require a significant amount of computer time, and during an optimization the model is called iteratively until the design variables converge to the values associated with the maximum efficiency. This problem was alleviated by designing an optimization code specifically for use with numerically intensive simulations, to reduce the number of times the efficiency has to be calculated to achieve convergence to the optimal solution.

  8. Crystalline Silicon/Graphene Oxide Hybrid Junction Solar Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Qiming; Wanatabe, Fumiya; Hoshino, Aya; Ishikawa, Ryo; Gotou, Takuya; Ueno, Keiji; Shirai, Hajime

    2012-10-01

    Soluble graphene oxide (GO) and plasma-reduced (pr-) GO were investigated using crystalline silicon (c-Si) (100)/GO/pr-GO hybrid junction solar cells. Their photovoltaic performances were compared with those of c-Si/GO/pristine conductive poly(ethylene dioxythiophene):poly(styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) heterojunction and c-Si/PEDOT:PSS:GO composite devices. The c-Si/GO/pr-GO and conductive PEDOT:PSS/Al heterojunction solar cells showed power conversion efficiencies of 6.5 and 8.2%, respectively, under illumination with AM 1.5 G 100 mW/cm2 simulated solar light. A higher performance of 10.7% was achieved using the PEDOT:PSS:GO (12.5 wt %) composite device. These findings imply that soluble GO, pr-GO, and the PEDOT:PSS:GO composite are promising materials as hole transport and transparent conductive layers for c-Si/organic hybrid junction solar cells.

  9. Raman spectroscopy of PIN hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keya, Kimitaka; Torigoe, Yoshihiro; Toko, Susumu; Yamashita, Daisuke; Seo, Hyunwoong; Itagaki, Naho; Koga, Kazunori; Shiratani, Masaharu

    2015-09-01

    Light-induced degradation of hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) is a key issue for enhancing competitiveness in solar cell market. A-Si:H films with a lower density of Si-H2 bonds shows higher stability. Here we identified Si-H2 bonds in PIN a-Si:H solar cells fabricated by plasma CVD using Raman spectroscopy. A-Si:H solar cell has a structure of B-doped μc-SiC:H (12.5 nm)/ non-doped a-Si:H (250nm)/ P-doped μc-Si:H (40 nm) on glass substrates (Asahi-VU). By irradiating HeNe laser light from N-layer, peaks correspond to Si-H2 bonds (2100 cm-1) and Si-H bonds (2000 cm-1) have been identified in Raman scattering spectra. The intensity ratio of Si-H2 and Si-H ISiH2/ISiH is found to correlate well to light induced degradation of the cells Therefore, Raman spectroscopy is a promising method for studying origin of light-induced degradation of PIN solar cells.

  10. Quantitative Analysis of Defects in Silicon. [to predict energy conversion efficiency of silicon samples for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Natesh, R.; Smith, J. M.; Qidwai, H. A.; Bruce, T.

    1979-01-01

    The evaluation and prediction of the conversion efficiency for a variety of silicon samples with differences in structural defects, such as grain boundaries, twin boundaries, precipitate particles, dislocations, etc. are discussed. Quantitative characterization of these structural defects, which were revealed by etching the surface of silicon samples, is performed by using an image analyzer. Due to different crystal growth and fabrication techniques the various types of silicon contain a variety of trace impurity elements and structural defects. The two most important criteria in evaluating the various silicon types for solar cell applications are cost and conversion efficiency.

  11. Processes for producing low cost, high efficiency silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Rohatgi, A.; Doshi, P.; Tate, J.K.; Mejia, J.; Chen, Z.

    1998-06-16

    Processes which utilize rapid thermal processing (RTP) are provided for inexpensively producing high efficiency silicon solar cells. The RTP processes preserve minority carrier bulk lifetime {tau} and permit selective adjustment of the depth of the diffused regions, including emitter and back surface field (bsf), within the silicon substrate. In a first RTP process, an RTP step is utilized to simultaneously diffuse phosphorus and aluminum into the front and back surfaces, respectively, of a silicon substrate. Moreover, an in situ controlled cooling procedure preserves the carrier bulk lifetime {tau} and permits selective adjustment of the depth of the diffused regions. In a second RTP process, both simultaneous diffusion of the phosphorus and aluminum as well as annealing of the front and back contacts are accomplished during the RTP step. In a third RTP process, the RTP step accomplishes simultaneous diffusion of the phosphorus and aluminum, annealing of the contacts, and annealing of a double-layer antireflection/passivation coating SiN/SiO{sub x}. In a fourth RTP process, the process of applying front and back contacts is broken up into two separate respective steps, which enhances the efficiency of the cells, at a slight time expense. In a fifth RTP process, a second RTP step is utilized to fire and adhere the screen printed or evaporated contacts to the structure. 28 figs.

  12. Processes for producing low cost, high efficiency silicon solar cells

    DOEpatents

    Rohatgi, Ajeet; Doshi, Parag; Tate, John Keith; Mejia, Jose; Chen, Zhizhang

    1998-06-16

    Processes which utilize rapid thermal processing (RTP) are provided for inexpensively producing high efficiency silicon solar cells. The RTP processes preserve minority carrier bulk lifetime .tau. and permit selective adjustment of the depth of the diffused regions, including emitter and back surface field (bsf), within the silicon substrate. In a first RTP process, an RTP step is utilized to simultaneously diffuse phosphorus and aluminum into the front and back surfaces, respectively, of a silicon substrate. Moreover, an in situ controlled cooling procedure preserves the carrier bulk lifetime .tau. and permits selective adjustment of the depth of the diffused regions. In a second RTP process, both simultaneous diffusion of the phosphorus and aluminum as well as annealing of the front and back contacts are accomplished during the RTP step. In a third RTP process, the RTP step accomplishes simultaneous diffusion of the phosphorus and aluminum, annealing of the contacts, and annealing of a double-layer antireflection/passivation coating SiN/SiO.sub.x. In a fourth RTP process, the process of applying front and back contacts is broken up into two separate respective steps, which enhances the efficiency of the cells, at a slight time expense. In a fifth RTP process, a second RTP step is utilized to fire and adhere the screen printed or evaporated contacts to the structure.

  13. Burst annealing of electron damage in silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Day, A. C.; Horne, W. E.; Thompson, M. A.; Lancaster, C. A.

    1985-01-01

    A study has been performed of burst annealing of electron damage in silicon solar cells. Three groups of cells consisting of 3 and 0.3 ohm-cm silicon were exposed to fluences of 2 x 10 to the 14th power, 4 x 10 to the 14th power, and 8 x 10 to the 14th power 1-MeV electrons/sq cm, respectively. They were subsequently subjected to 1-minute bursts of annealing at 500 C. The 3 ohm-cm cells showed complete recovery from each fluence level. The 0.3 ohm-cm cells showed complete recovery from the 2 x 10 to the 14th power e/sq cm fluence; however, some of the 0.3 ohm-cm cells did not recover completely from the higher influences. From an analysis of the results it is concluded that burst annealing of moderate to high resistivity silicon cell arrays in space is feasible and that with more complete understanding, even the potentially higher efficiency low resistivity cells may be usable in annealable arrays in space.

  14. Solar cells and modules from dentritic web silicon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Campbell, R. B.; Rohatgi, A.; Seman, E. J.; Davis, J. R.; Rai-Choudhury, P.; Gallagher, B. D.

    1980-01-01

    Some of the noteworthy features of the processes developed in the fabrication of solar cell modules are the handling of long lengths of web, the use of cost effective dip coating of photoresist and antireflection coatings, selective electroplating of the grid pattern and ultrasonic bonding of the cell interconnect. Data on the cells is obtained by means of dark I-V analysis and deep level transient spectroscopy. A histogram of over 100 dentritic web solar cells fabricated in a number of runs using different web crystals shows an average efficiency of over 13%, with some efficiencies running above 15%. Lower cell efficiency is generally associated with low minority carrier time due to recombination centers sometimes present in the bulk silicon. A cost analysis of the process sequence using a 25 MW production line indicates a selling price of $0.75/peak watt in 1986. It is concluded that the efficiency of dentritic web cells approaches that of float zone silicon cells, reduced somewhat by the lower bulk lifetime of the former.

  15. Wide-bandgap epitaxial heterojunction windows for silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Loferski, Joseph J.; Beaulieu, Roland; Sekula-Moise, Patricia A.; Vernon, Stanley M.

    1990-01-01

    It is shown that the efficiency of a solar cell can be improved if minority carriers are confined by use of a wide-bandgap heterojunction window. For silicon (lattice constant a = 5.43 A), nearly lattice-matched wide-bandgap materials are ZnS (a = 5.41 A) and GaP (a = 5.45 A). Isotype n-n heterojuntions of both ZnS/Si and GaP/Si were grown on silicon n-p homojunction solar cells. Successful deposition processes used were metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MO-CVD) for GaP and ZnS, and vacuum evaporation of ZnS. Planar (100) and (111) and texture-etched - (111)-faceted - surfaces were used. A decrease in minority-carrier surface recombination compared to a bare surface was seen from increased short-wavelength spectral response, increased open-circuit voltage, and reduced dark saturation current, with no degradation of the minority carrier diffusion length.

  16. III-V/silicon germanium tandem solar cells on silicon substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmieder, Kenneth J.

    The development of a cost-effective high voltage tandem solar cell that can be grown directly on a silicon (Si) platform can lead to a 34% increase in efficiency over the present best monocrystalline Si laboratory device. III-V devices are known to yield some of the highest efficiencies in photovoltaics, but the high cost of lattice matched substrates and metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) and device development make them prohibitively expensive in many markets. By utilizing silicon substrates and limiting the thickness of the III-V MOCVD material growth, this cost can be reduced. The leveraging technology of this initiative is a metamorphic silicon:germanium (SiGe) buffer between the silicon substrate and the active device layers. As developed by AmberWave Inc., it provides a low-dislocation interface for III-V nucleation and a high quality bottom cell grown by reduced pressure chemical vapor deposition (RPCVD). This research first reports on the theoretical limits of a III-V/SiGe tandem solar cell. Results will evaluate multiple III-V materials for the determination of optimal material composition to be lattice-matched with SiGe. Following this, a more complex device simulation, incorporating all major loss mechanisms, is accomplished in order to predict ideal efficiency targets and evaluate present experimental structures. Results demonstrate a robust model capable of simulating a wide range of binary and ternary III-V devices. Predictions show the capability of a tandem device operating at 32.5% 1-sun efficiency without requiring TDD improvement beyond that of the present SiGe layers. Following simulations, experimental III-V structures are grown via MOCVD and characterized, indicating successful process development for growth of III-V materials on the SiGe platform. This growth is then validated via the design and development of experimental solar device structures. Each iteration, beginning with the single-junction windowless GaAsP solar cell and

  17. Reaching Grid Parity Using BP Solar Crystalline Silicon Technology: A Systems Class Application

    SciTech Connect

    Cunningham, Daniel W; Wohlgemuth, John; Carlson, David E; Clark, Roger F; Gleaton, Mark; Posbic, John P; Zahler, James

    2010-12-06

    The primary target market for this program was the residential and commercial PV markets, drawing on BP Solar's premium product and service offerings, brand and marketing strength, and unique routes to market. These two markets were chosen because: (1) in 2005 they represented more than 50% of the overall US PV market; (2) they are the two markets that will likely meet grid parity first; and (3) they are the two market segments in which product development can lead to the added value necessary to generate market growth before reaching grid parity. Federal investment in this program resulted in substantial progress toward the DOE TPP target, providing significant advancements in the following areas: (1) Lower component costs particularly the modules and inverters. (2) Increased availability and lower cost of silicon feedstock. (3) Product specifically developed for residential and commercial applications. (4) Reducing the cost of installation through optimization of the products. (5) Increased value of electricity in mid-term to drive volume increases, via the green grid technology. (6) Large scale manufacture of PV products in the US, generating increased US employment in manufacturing and installation. To achieve these goals BP Solar assembled a team that included suppliers of critical materials, automated equipment developers/manufacturers, inverter and other BOS manufacturers, a utility company, and University research groups. The program addressed all aspects of the crystalline silicon PV business from raw materials (particularly silicon feedstock) through installation of the system on the customers site. By involving the material and equipment vendors, we ensured that supplies of silicon feedstock and other PV specific materials like encapsulation materials (EVA and cover glass) will be available in the quantities required to meet the DOE goals of 5 to 10 GW of installed US PV by 2015 and at the prices necessary for PV systems to reach grid parity in 2015

  18. 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.

  19. Influence of black silicon surfaces on the performance of back-contacted back silicon heterojunction solar cells.

    PubMed

    Ziegler, Johannes; Haschke, Jan; Käsebier, Thomas; Korte, Lars; Sprafke, Alexander N; Wehrspohn, Ralf B

    2014-10-20

    The influence of different black silicon (b-Si) front side textures prepared by inductively coupled reactive ion etching (ICP-RIE) on the performance of back-contacted back silicon heterojunction (BCB-SHJ) solar cells is investigated in detail regarding their optical performance, black silicon surface passivation and internal quantum efficiency. Under optimized conditions the effective minority carrier lifetime measured on black silicon surfaces passivated with Al(2)O(3) can be higher than lifetimes measured for the SiO(2)/SiN(x) passivation stack used in the reference cells with standard KOH textures. However, to outperform the electrical current of silicon back-contact cells, the black silicon back-contact cell process needs to be optimized with aspect to chemical and thermal stability of the used dielectric layer combination on the cell.

  20. High efficiency hybrid silicon nanopillar-polymer solar cells.

    PubMed

    Pudasaini, Pushpa Raj; Ruiz-Zepeda, Francisco; Sharma, Manisha; Elam, David; Ponce, Arturo; Ayon, Arturo A

    2013-10-09

    Recently, inorganic/organic hybrid solar cells have been considered as a viable alternative for low-cost photovoltaic devices because the Schottky junction between inorganic and organic materials can be formed employing low temperature processing methods. We present an efficient hybrid solar cell based on highly ordered silicon nanopillars (SiNPs) and poly(3,4-ethylene-dioxythiophene):polystyrenesulfonate (PEDOT:PSS). The proposed device is formed by spin coating the organic polymer PEDOT:PSS on a SiNP array fabricated using metal assisted electroless chemical etching process. The characteristics of the hybrid solar cells are investigated as a function of SiNP height. A maximum power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 9.65% has been achieved for an optimized SiNP array hybrid solar cell with nanopillar height of 400 nm, despite the absence of a back surface field enhancement. The effect of an ultrathin atomic layer deposition (ALD), grown aluminum oxide (Al2O3), as a passivation layer (recombination barrier) has also been studied for the enhanced electrical performance of the device. With the inclusion of the ultrathin ALD deposited Al2O3 between the SiNP array textured surface and the PEDOT:PSS layer, the PCE of the fabricated device was observed to increase to 10.56%, which is ∼10% greater than the corresponding device without the Al2O3 layer. The device described herein is considered to be promising toward the realization of a low-cost, high-efficiency inorganic/organic hybrid solar cell.

  1. Solar Grade Silicon from Agricultural By-products

    SciTech Connect

    Richard M. Laine

    2012-08-20

    In this project, Mayaterials developed a low cost, low energy and low temperature method of purifying rice hull ash to high purity (5-6Ns) and converting it by carbothermal reduction to solar grade quality silicon (Sipv) using a self-designed and built electric arc furnace (EAF). Outside evaluation of our process by an independent engineering firm confirms that our technology greatly lowers estimated operating expenses (OPEX) to $5/kg and capital expenses (CAPEX) to $24/kg for Sipv production, which is well below best-in-class plants using a Siemens process approach (OPEX of 14/kg and CAPEX of $87/kg, respectively). The primary limiting factor in the widespread use of photovoltaic (PV) cells is the high cost of manufacturing, compared to more traditional sources to reach 6 g Sipv/watt (with averages closer to 8+g/watt). In 2008, the spot price of Sipv rose to $450/kg. While prices have since dropped to a more reasonable $25/kg; this low price level is not sustainable, meaning the longer-term price will likely return to $35/kg. The 6-8 g Si/watt implies that the Sipv used in a module will cost $0.21-0.28/watt for the best producers (45% of the cost of a traditional solar panel), a major improvement from the cost/wafer driven by the $50/kg Si costs of early 2011, but still a major hindrance in fulfilling DOE goal of lowering the cost of solar energy below $1/watt. The solar cell industry has grown by 40% yearly for the past eight years, increasing the demand for Sipv. As such, future solar silicon price spikes are expected in the next few years. Although industry has invested billions of dollars to meet this ever-increasing demand, the technology to produce Sipv remains largely unchanged requiring the energy intensive, and chlorine dependent Siemens process or variations thereof. While huge improvements have been made, current state-of-the-art industrial plant still use 65 kWh/kg of silicon purified. Our technology offers a key distinction to other technologies as it

  2. Radial junction amorphous silicon solar cells on PECVD-grown silicon nanowires.

    PubMed

    Yu, Linwei; O'Donnell, Benedict; Foldyna, Martin; Roca i Cabarrocas, Pere

    2012-05-17

    Constructing radial junction hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cells on top of silicon nanowires (SiNWs) represents a promising approach towards high performance and cost-effective thin film photovoltaics. We here develop an all-in situ strategy to grow SiNWs, via a vapour-liquid-solid (VLS) mechanism on top of ZnO-coated glass substrate, in a plasma-enhanced chemical vapour deposition (PECVD) reactor. Controlling the distribution of indium catalyst drops allows us to tailor the as-grown SiNW arrays into suitable size and density, which in turn results in both a sufficient light trapping effect and a suitable arrangement allowing for conformal coverage of SiNWs by subsequent a-Si:H layers. We then demonstrate the fabrication of radial junction solar cells and carry on a parametric study designed to shed light on the absorption and quantum efficiency response, as functions of the intrinsic a-Si:H layer thickness and the density of SiNWs. These results lay a solid foundation for future structural optimization and performance ramp-up of the radial junction thin film a-Si:H photovoltaics.

  3. Transparent electrodes in silicon heterojunction solar cells: Influence on contact passivation

    SciTech Connect

    Tomasi, Andrea; Sahli, Florent; Seif, Johannes Peter; Fanni, Lorenzo; de Nicolas Agut, Silvia Martin; Geissbuhler, Jonas; Paviet-Salomon, Bertrand; Nicolay, Sylvain; Barraud, Loris; Niesen, Bjoern; De Wolf, Stefaan; Ballif, Christophe

    2015-10-26

    Charge carrier collection in silicon heterojunction solar cells occurs via intrinsic/doped hydrogenated amorphous silicon layer stacks deposited on the crystalline silicon wafer surfaces. Usually, both the electron and hole collecting stacks are externally capped by an n-type transparent conductive oxide, which is primarily needed for carrier extraction. Earlier, it has been demonstrated that the mere presence of such oxides can affect the carrier recombination in the crystalline silicon absorber. Here, we present a detailed investigation of the impact of this phenomenon on both the electron and hole collecting sides, including its consequences for the operating voltages of silicon heterojunction solar cells. As a result, we define guiding principles for improved passivating contact design for high-efficiency silicon solar cells.

  4. Low cost silicon solar array project large area silicon sheet task: Silicon web process development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duncan, C. S.; Seidensticker, R. G.; Mchugh, J. P.; Blais, P. D.; Davis, J. R., Jr.

    1977-01-01

    Growth configurations were developed which produced crystals having low residual stress levels. The properties of a 106 mm diameter round crucible were evaluated and it was found that this design had greatly enhanced temperature fluctuations arising from convection in the melt. Thermal modeling efforts were directed to developing finite element models of the 106 mm round crucible and an elongated susceptor/crucible configuration. Also, the thermal model for the heat loss modes from the dendritic web was examined for guidance in reducing the thermal stress in the web. An economic analysis was prepared to evaluate the silicon web process in relation to price goals.

  5. Development of thin wraparound junction silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ho, F.; Iles, P. A.

    1981-01-01

    The state of the art technologies was applied to fabricate 50 micro thick 2x4 cm, coplanar back contact (CBC) solar cells with AMO efficiency above 12%. A requirement was that the cells have low solar absorptance. A wraparound junction (WAJ) with wraparound metallization was chosen. This WAJ approach avoided the need for very complex fixturing, especially during rotation of the cells for providing adequate contacts over dielectric edge layers. The contact adhesion to silicon was considered better than to an insulator. It is indicated that shunt resistance caused by poor WAJ diode quality, and series resistance from the WAJ contact, give good cell performance. The cells developed reached 14 percent AMO efficiency (at 25 C), with solar absorptance values of 0.73. Space/cell environmental tests were performed on these cells and the thin CSC cells performed well. The optimized design configuration and process sequence were used to make 50 deliverable CBC cells. These cells were all above 12 percent efficiency and had an average efficiency of -13 percent. Results of environmental tests (humidity-temperature, thermal shock, and contact adherence) are also given.

  6. Array Automated Assembly Task Low Cost Silicon Solar Array Project, Phase 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rhee, S. S.; Jones, G. T.; Allison, K. L.

    1978-01-01

    Progress in the development of solar cells and module process steps for low-cost solar arrays is reported. Specific topics covered include: (1) a system to automatically measure solar cell electrical performance parameters; (2) automation of wafer surface preparation, printing, and plating; (3) laser inspection of mechanical defects of solar cells; and (4) a silicon antireflection coating system. Two solar cell process steps, laser trimming and holing automation and spray-on dopant junction formation, are described.

  7. Flat-plate solar array project. Volume 3: Silicon sheet: Wafers and ribbons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Briglio, A.; Dumas, K.; Leipold, M.; Morrison, A.

    1986-01-01

    The primary objective of the Silicon Sheet Task of the Flat-Plate Solar Array (FSA) Project was the development of one or more low cost technologies for producing silicon sheet suitable for processing into cost-competitive solar cells. Silicon sheet refers to high purity crystalline silicon of size and thickness for fabrication into solar cells. Areas covered in the project were ingot growth and casting, wafering, ribbon growth, and other sheet technologies. The task made and fostered significant improvements in silicon sheet including processing of both ingot and ribbon technologies. An additional important outcome was the vastly improved understanding of the characteristics associated with high quality sheet, and the control of the parameters required for higher efficiency solar cells. Although significant sheet cost reductions were made, the technology advancements required to meet the task cost goals were not achieved.

  8. Characterization of the Copper-Silicon System and Utilization of Metallurgical Techniques in Silicon Refining for Solar Cell Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitrasinovic, Aleksandar

    Two methods for refining metallurgical grade silicon to solar grade silicon have been investigated. The first method involved the reduction of impurities from metallurgical grade silicon by high temperature vacuum refining. The concentrations of analyzed elements were reduced several times. The main steps in the second refining method include alloying with copper, solidification, grinding and heavy media separation. A metallographic study of the Si-Cu alloy showed the presence of only two microconstituents, mainly pure silicon dendrites and the Cu3Si intermetallic. SEM analysis showed a distinct boundary between the silicon and the Cu3Si phases, with a large concentration of microcracks along the boundary, which allowed for efficient separation. After alloying and grinding, a heavy media liquid was used to separate the light silicon phase from the heavier Cu3Si phase. Cu3Si residues together with the remaining impurities were found to be located at the surface of the pure silicon particles, and should be efficiently removed by acid leaching. Thirty elements were analyzed by the Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP) chemical analysis technique. ICP revealed a several times higher impurity level in the Cu3Si intermetallic than in the pure silicon; furthermore, the amounts of 22 elements in the refined silicon were reduced below the detection limit where the concentrations of 7 elements were below 1ppmw and 6 elements were below 2ppmw. The results showed that the suggested method is efficient in removing impurities from metallurgical grade silicon with great potential for further development.

  9. CROSS-DISCIPLINARY PHYSICS AND RELATED AREAS OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Silicon Purification by a New Type of Solar Furnace

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Ying-Tian; Lim, Chern-Sing; Ho, Tso-Hsiu; Lim, Boon-Han; Wang, Yi-Nan

    2009-07-01

    We propose a new method to reveal a direct transformation from solar energy to solar electricity. Instead of using electricity in the process, we use concentrated solar rays with a crucibleless process to upgrade metallurgical silicon into solar-grade silicon feedstock.

  10. Nanoetching process on silicon solar cell wafers during mass production for surface texture improvement.

    PubMed

    Ahn, Chisung; Kulkarni, Atul; Ha, Soohyun; Cho, Yujin; Kim, Jeongin; Park, Heejin; Kim, Taesung

    2014-12-01

    Major challenge in nanotechnology is to improve the solar cells efficiency. This can be achieved by controlling the silicon solar cell wafer surface structure. Herein, we report a KOH wet etching process along with an ultrasonic cleaning process to improve the surface texture of silicon solar cell wafers. We evaluated the KOH temperature, concentration, and ultra-sonication time. It was observed that the surface texture of the silicon solar wafer changed from a pyramid shape to a rectangular shape under edge cutting as the concentration of the KOH solution was increased. We controlled the etching time to avoid pattern damage and any further increase of the reflectance. The present study will be helpful for the mass processing of silicon solar cell wafers with improved reflectance.

  11. 22.5% efficient silicon heterojunction solar cell with molybdenum oxide hole collector

    SciTech Connect

    Geissbühler, Jonas Werner, Jérémie; Martin de Nicolas, Silvia; Hessler-Wyser, Aïcha; Tomasi, Andrea; Niesen, Bjoern; De Wolf, Stefaan; Barraud, Loris; Despeisse, Matthieu; Nicolay, Sylvain; Ballif, Christophe

    2015-08-24

    Substituting the doped amorphous silicon films at the front of silicon heterojunction solar cells with wide-bandgap transition metal oxides can mitigate parasitic light absorption losses. This was recently proven by replacing p-type amorphous silicon with molybdenum oxide films. In this article, we evidence that annealing above 130 °C—often needed for the curing of printed metal contacts—detrimentally impacts hole collection of such devices. We circumvent this issue by using electrodeposited copper front metallization and demonstrate a silicon heterojunction solar cell with molybdenum oxide hole collector, featuring a fill factor value higher than 80% and certified energy conversion efficiency of 22.5%.

  12. Evaluation and optimization of silicon sheet solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H.; Iles, P.; Tanner, D.; Pollock, G.; Uno, F.

    1980-01-01

    This paper describes the results and procedures to evaluate and improve the efficiency of solar cells made from various unconventional silicon sheets. The performance parameters included photovoltaic characteristics, spectral response, dark I-V characteristics, and diffusion length. The evaluation techniques used provided accurate and reliable information on sheet performance, and self-consistent results were obtained from the various measurement techniques used. Minority carrier diffusion length (L) was shown to be the ultimate limiting factor for the sheet cell performance (efficiency) and other back-up measurements confirmed this L-dependence. Limited efforts were made to identify defects which influence cell performance, and to use some improved process methods to increase cell efficiency.

  13. Hybrid solar cells from P3HT and silicon nanocrystals.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chin-Yi; Holman, Zachary C; Kortshagen, Uwe R

    2009-01-01

    We are reporting new hybrid solar cells based on blends of silicon nanocrystals (Si NCs) and poly-3(hexylthiophene) (P3HT) polymer in which a percolating network of the nanocrystals acts as the electron-conducting phase. The properties of composite Si NCs/P3HT devices made by spin-coating Si NCs and P3HT from a common solvent were studied as a function of Si NC size and Si NC/P3HT ratio. The open-circuit voltage and short-circuit current are observed to depend on the Si NC size due to changes in the bandgap and surface-area-to-volume ratio. Under simulated one-sun A.M. 1.5 direct illumination (100 mW/cm2), devices made with 35 wt % Si NCs 3-5 nm in size showed 1.15% power conversion efficiency.

  14. Review of silicon solar cells for high concentrations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwartz, R. J.

    1982-06-01

    The factors that limit the performance of high concentration silicon solar cells are reviewed. The design of a conventional high concentration cell is discussed, together with the present state of the art. Unconventional cell designs that have been proposed to overcome the limitations of the conventional design are reviewed and compared. The current status of unconventional cells is reviewed. Among the unconventional cells discussed are the interdigitated back-contact cell, the double-sided cell, the polka dot cell, and the V-groove cell. It is noted that all the designs for unconventional cells require long diffusion lengths for high efficiency operation, even though the demands in this respect are less for those cells with the optical path longer than the diffusion path.

  15. Electricity from sunlight. [low cost silicon for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yaws, C. L.; Miller, J. W.; Lutwack, R.; Hsu, G.

    1978-01-01

    The paper discusses a number of new unconventional processes proposed for the low-cost production of silicon for solar cells. Consideration is given to: (1) the Battelle process (Zn/SiCl4), (2) the Battelle process (SiI4), (3) the Silane process, (4) the Motorola process (SiF4/SiF2), (5) the Westinghouse process (Na/SiCl4), (6) the Dow Corning process (C/SiO2), (7) the AeroChem process (SiCl4/H atom), and the Stanford process (Na/SiF4). Preliminary results indicate that the conventional process and the SiI4 processes cannot meet the project goal of $10/kg by 1986. Preliminary cost evaluation results for the Zn/SiCl4 process are favorable.

  16. Surface and allied studies in silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.

    1984-01-01

    Measuring small-signal admittance versus frequency and forward bias voltage together with a new transient measurement apparently provides the most reliable and flexible method available for determining back surface recombination velocity and low-injection lifetime of the quasineutral base region of silicon solar cells. The new transient measurement reported here is called short-circuit-current decay (SCCD). In this method, forward voltage equal to about the open-circuit or the maximum power voltage establishes excess holes and electrons in the junction transition region and in the quasineutral regions. The sudden application of a short circuit causes an exiting of the excess holes and electrons in the transition region within about ten picoseconds. From observing the slope and intercept of the subsequent current decay, the base lifetime and surface recombination velocity can be determined. The admittance measurement previously mentioned then enters to increase accuracy particularly for devices for which the diffusion length exceeds the base thickness.

  17. Fabrication process study for matrix silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shepovalova, Olga V.

    2017-02-01

    The possibility of manufacturing silicon matrix solar cells (MSC) on the base of multi-layer epitaxial structures with electrically broken reverse-biased p-n junctions has been investigated. As a result of technological processes studies, experimental dependencies and theoretical expressions have been obtained to determine the values of electrical breakdown voltages applied in the course of MSC multi-layer epitaxial structure fabrication. The optimal technological conditions and parameters of the MSC fabrication process have been defined. Experimental samples of MSCs have been studied. The output voltage of experimental samples is 0.3V to 0.6V per one p-n junction wile the efficiency is from 8% to 8.6%, for MSCs with ten n-p junctions, and it ranges from 8.2% to 8.5%, for MSCs with twelve n-p junctions.

  18. Silicon solar cell process development, fabrication, and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoo, H. I.; Iles, P. A.; Leung, D. C.

    1981-01-01

    Work has progressed in fabrication and characterization of solar cells from ubiquitous crystallization process (UCP) wafers and LASS ribbons. Gettering tests applied to UCP wafers made little change on their performance compared with corresponding baseline data. Advanced processes such as shallow junction (SJ), back surface field (BSF), and multilayer antireflection (MLAR) were also applied. While BSF by Al paste had shunting problems, cells with SJ and BSF by evaporated Al, and MLAR did achieve 14.1% AMI on UCP silicon. The study of LASS material was very preliminary. Only a few cells with SJ, BSR, (no BSF) and MLAR were completed due to mechanical yield problems after lapping the material. Average efficiency was 10.7% AMI with 13.4% AMI for CZ controls. Relatively high minority carrier diffusion lengths were obtained. The lower than expected Jsc could be partially explained by low active area due to irregular sizes.

  19. Silicon solar cell interconnectors for low temperature applications.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ralph, E. L.; Roger, J.

    1971-01-01

    Discussion of the design and techniques of solar cell interconnections meeting the requirements of mission life expectancies of 5 to 10 years in the face of the vibration stresses of launch and the stresses induced (especially between dissimilar materials with different thermal coefficients of expansion) by thermal cycling throughout the mission. Generalized stress equations are developed that give the minimum stress relief loop dimensions for a 'no fatigue' interconnector. Also, the thermal expansion stresses induced at the metal-to-silicon interface were investigated and generalized equations developed for determining the stresses in each of the members. These relationships, as verified by experimental tests, can be used to determine the maximum allowable interconnector thickness for failure prevention in thermal cycling environments.

  20. Effects of high doping levels on silicon solar cell performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Godlewski, M. P.; Brandhorst, H. W., Jr.; Baraona, C. R.

    1975-01-01

    Open-circuit voltages measured in silicon solar cells made from 0.01 ohm-cm material are 150 mV lower than voltages calculated from simple diffusion theory and cannot be explained by poor diffusion lengths or surface leakage currents. An analytical study was made to determine whether high doping effects, which increase the intrinsic carrier concentration, could account for the low observed voltages and to determine the limits on voltage and efficiency imposed by high doping effects. The results indicate that the observed variation of voltage with base resistivity is predicted by these effects. A maximum efficiency of 19% (AMO) and a voltage of 0.7 volts were calculated for 0.1 ohm-cm cells assuming an optimum diffused layer impurity profile.

  1. Polymorphous silicon: Transport properties and solar cell applications

    SciTech Connect

    Longeaud, C.; Kleider, J.P.; Gauthier, M.; Brueggemann, R.; Poissant, Y.; Cabarrocas, P.R.

    1999-07-01

    Transport properties of hydrogenated polymorphous silicon layers (pm-Si:H) deposited at 150 C under various pressures in the range 80--293 Pa in sandwich (Schottky and p-i-n diodes) and coplanar structures have been compared to those of hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) samples deposited at the same temperature in standard conditions. The layers have been studied as-deposited, annealed and after light-soaking. With increasing pressure up to 240 Pa: (1) the density of states above the Fermi level decreases as determined by means of the modulated photocurrent technique, (2) the mobility-lifetime products of electrons and holes measured by means of steady-state photoconductivity and photocarrier grating techniques both increase. The highest values for the diffusion length of minority carriers exceed 200 nm. Capacitance measurements as a function of frequency and temperature show that the density of states at the Fermi level is lower in the pm-Si:H than in the a-Si:H films. After light-soaking the diffusion length of minority carriers in a-Si:H is reduced by a factor of two whereas it is less reduced or not affected in the pm-Si:H layers. Solar cells including this new material present an excellent stability.

  2. Hydrogenation of Dislocation-Limited Heteroepitaxial Silicon Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Bolen, M. L.; Grover, S.; Teplin, C. W.; Bobela, D.; Branz, H. M.; Stradins, P.

    2012-06-01

    Post-deposition hydrogenation by remote plasma significantly improves performance of heteroepitaxial silicon solar cells. Heteroepitaxial deposition of thin crystal silicon on sapphire for photovoltaics (PV) is an excellent model system for the study and improvement of deposition on inexpensive Al2O3-coated (100) biaxially-textured metal foils. Without hydrogenation, PV conversion efficiencies are less than 1% on our model system. Performance is limited by carrier recombination at electrically active dislocations that result from lattice mismatch, and other defects. We find that low-temperature hydrogenation at 350 degrees C is more effective than hydrogenation at 610 degrees C. In this work, we use measurements such as spectral quantum efficiency, secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), and vibrational Si-H spectroscopies to understand the effects of hydrogenation on the materials and devices. Quantum efficiency increases most at red and green wavelengths, indicating hydrogenation is affecting the bulk more than the surface of the cells. SIMS shows there are 100X more hydrogen atoms in our cells than dangling bonds along dislocations. Yet, Raman spectroscopy indicates that only low temperature hydrogenation creates Si-H bonds; trapped hydrogen does not stably passivate dangling-bond recombination sites at high temperatures.

  3. Resistivity and thickness effects in dendritic web silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meier, D. L.; Hwang, J. M.; Greggi, J.; Campbell, R. B.

    1987-01-01

    The decrease of minority carrier lifetime as resistivity decreases in dendritic-web silicon solar cells is addressed. This variation is shown to be consistent with the presence of defect levels in the bandgap which arise from extended defects in the web material. The extended defects are oxide precipitates (SiOx) and the dislocation cores they decorate. Sensitivity to this background distribution of defect levels increases with doping because the Fermi level moves closer to the majority carrier band edge. For high-resistivity dendritic-web silicon, which has a low concentration of these extended defects, cell efficiencies as high as 16.6 percent (4 sq cm, 40 ohm-cm boron-doped base, AM1.5 global, 100 mW/sq cm, 25 C JPL LAPSS1 measurement) and a corresponding electron lifetime of 38 microsec have been obtained. Thickness effects occur in bifacial cell designs and in designs which use light trapping. In some cases, the dislocation/precipitate defect can be passivated through the full thickness of web cells by hydrogen ion implantation.

  4. Photovoltaic solar panels of crystalline silicon: Characterization and separation.

    PubMed

    Dias, Pablo Ribeiro; Benevit, Mariana Gonçalves; Veit, Hugo Marcelo

    2016-03-01

    Photovoltaic panels have a limited lifespan and estimates show large amounts of solar modules will be discarded as electronic waste in a near future. In order to retrieve important raw materials, reduce production costs and environmental impacts, recycling such devices is important. Initially, this article investigates which silicon photovoltaic module's components are recyclable through their characterization using X-ray fluorescence, X-ray diffraction, energy dispersion spectroscopy and atomic absorption spectroscopy. Next, different separation methods are tested to favour further recycling processes. The glass was identified as soda-lime glass, the metallic filaments were identified as tin-lead coated copper, the panel cells were made of silicon and had silver filaments attached to it and the modules' frames were identified as aluminium, all of which are recyclable. Moreover, three different components segregation methods have been studied. Mechanical milling followed by sieving was able to separate silver from copper while chemical separation using sulphuric acid was able to detach the semiconductor material. A thermo gravimetric analysis was performed to evaluate the use of a pyrolysis step prior to the component's removal. The analysis showed all polymeric fractions present degrade at 500 °C.

  5. Silicon on graphite cloth

    SciTech Connect

    Rand, J.A.; Cotter, J.E.; Thomas, C.J.; Ingram, A.E.; Bai, Y.B.; Ruffins, T.R.; Barnett, A.M.

    1994-12-31

    A new polycrystalline silicon solar cell has been developed that utilizes commercially available graphite cloth as a substrate. This solar cell has achieved an energy conversion efficiency of 13.4% (AM1.5G). It is believed that this is a record efficiency for a silicon solar cell formed on a graphite substrate. The silicon-on-fabric structure is comprised of a thin layer of polycrystalline silicon grown directly on the graphite fabric substrate. The structure is fabricated by a low-cost ribbon process that avoids the expense and waste of wafering. The fabric substrate gives structural support to the thin device. Critical to the achievement of device quality silicon layers is control over impurities in the graphite fabric. The silicon-on-fabric technology has the potential to supply lightweight, low-cost solar cells to weight-sensitive markets at a fraction of the cost of conventionally thinned wafers.

  6. Fundamental Research and Development for Improved Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells: Final Subcontract Report, March 2002 - July 2006

    SciTech Connect

    Rohatgi, A.

    2007-11-01

    This report summarizes the progress made by Georgia Tech in the 2002-2006 period toward high-efficiency, low-cost crystalline silicon solar cells. This program emphasize fundamental and applied research on commercial substrates and manufacturable technologies. A combination of material characterization, device modeling, technology development, and complete cell fabrication were used to accomplish the goals of this program. This report is divided into five sections that summarize our work on i) PECVD SiN-induced defect passivation (Sections 1 and 2); ii) the effect of material inhomogeneity on the performance of mc-Si solar cells (Section 3); iii) a comparison of light-induced degradation in commercially grown Ga- and B-doped Czochralski Si ingots (Section 4); and iv) the understanding of the formation of high-quality thick-film Ag contacts on high sheet-resistance emitters (Section 5).

  7. Biomimetic and plasmonic hybrid light trapping for highly efficient ultrathin crystalline silicon solar cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Y; Jia, B; Gu, M

    2016-03-21

    Designing effective light-trapping structures for the insufficiently absorbed long-wavelength light in ultrathin silicon solar cells represents a key challenge to achieve low cost and highly efficient solar cells. We propose a hybrid structure based on the biomimetic silicon moth-eye structure combined with Ag nanoparticles to achieve advanced light trapping in 2 μm thick crystalline silicon solar cells approaching the Yablonovitch limit. By synergistically using the Mie resonances of the silicon moth-eye structure and the plasmonic resonances of the Ag nanoparticles, the integrated absorption enhancement achieved across the usable solar spectrum is 69% compared with the cells with the conventional light trapping design. This is significantly larger than both the silicon moth-eye structure (58%) and Ag nanoparticle (41%) individual light trapping. The generated photocurrent in the 2 μm thick silicon layer is as large as 33.4 mA/cm2, which is equivalent to that generated by a 30 μm single-pass absorption in the silicon. The research paves the way for designing highly efficient light trapping structures in ultrathin silicon solar cells.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Plasma-initiated rehydrogenation of amorphous silicon to increase the temperature processing window of silicon heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Jianwei; Boccard, Mathieu; Holman, Zachary

    2016-07-01

    The dehydrogenation of intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) at temperatures above approximately 300 °C degrades its ability to passivate silicon wafer surfaces. This limits the temperature of post-passivation processing steps during the fabrication of advanced silicon heterojunction or silicon-based tandem solar cells. We demonstrate that a hydrogen plasma can rehydrogenate intrinsic a-Si:H passivation layers that have been dehydrogenated by annealing. The hydrogen plasma treatment fully restores the effective carrier lifetime to several milliseconds in textured crystalline silicon wafers coated with 8-nm-thick intrinsic a-Si:H layers after annealing at temperatures of up to 450 °C. Plasma-initiated rehydrogenation also translates to complete solar cells: A silicon heterojunction solar cell subjected to annealing at 450 °C (following intrinsic a-Si:H deposition) had an open-circuit voltage of less than 600 mV, but an identical cell that received hydrogen plasma treatment reached a voltage of over 710 mV and an efficiency of over 19%.

  11. Silicon nanospheres for directional scattering in thin-film solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shokeen, Poonam; Jain, Amit; Kapoor, Avinashi

    2016-07-01

    Reducing active layer thickness of solar cell stresses on efficient light trapping mechanisms to keep the cell efficiency intact. Directional light scattering and promising refractive index of silicon nanoparticles make them encouraging scattering centers for thin-film silicon solar cells. Finite-difference time-domain simulations are used to study the optical properties of silicon nanospheres embedded in the top and bottom buffer layer of solar cells. Diameter of a silicon nanoparticle plays a crucial role in the forward and backward scattering of incident light into the cell. Silicon nanospheres outperform commonly used metallic and dielectric nanospheres and trapped the incident light over a broad spectrum. Silicon nanospheres require special attention when placed in both the buffer layers of the solar cell simultaneously, and lateral displacement of the silicon nanospheres at the top buffer layer with respect to nanospheres at the bottom buffer layer is beneficial. Lateral displacement of nanospheres provides a total quantum efficiency of 51.49% in comparison to 21.9% of the pristine cell. These exceptional scattering competencies of silicon nanospheres make them a promising candidate for photovoltaic applications. Silicon scatterers may be used with well-established fabrication techniques.

  12. Solar concentrator modules with silicone-onglass Fresnel lens panels and multijunction cells.

    PubMed

    Rumyantsev, Valery D

    2010-04-26

    High-efficiency multijunction (MJ) solar cells, being very expensive to manufacture, should only be used in combination with solar concentrators in terrestrial applications. An essential cost reduction of electric power produced by photovoltaic (PV) installations with MJ cells, may be expected by the creation of highly-effective, but inexpensive, elements for optical concentration and sun tracking. This article is an overview of the corresponding approach under development at the Ioffe Physical Technical Institute. The approach to R&D of the solar PV modules is based on the concepts of sunlight concentration by small-aperture area Fresnel lenses and "all-glass" module design. The small-aperture area lenses are arranged as a panel with silicone-on-glass structure where the glass plate serves as the front surface of a module. In turn, high-efficiency InGaP/(In)GaAs/Ge cells are arranged on a rear module panel mounted on a glass plate which functions as a heat sink and integrated protective cover for the cells. The developed PV modules and sun trackers are characterized by simple design, and are regarded as the prototypes for further commercialization.

  13. Solar concentrator modules with silicone-on-glass Fresnel lens panels and multijunction cells.

    PubMed

    Rumyantsev, Valery D

    2010-04-26

    High-efficiency multijunction (MJ) solar cells, being very expensive to manufacture, should only be used in combination with solar concentrators in terrestrial applications. An essential cost reduction of electric power produced by photovoltaic (PV) installations with MJ cells, may be expected by the creation of highly-effective, but inexpensive, elements for optical concentration and sun tracking. This article is an overview of the corresponding approach under development at the Ioffe Physical Technical Institute. The approach to R&D of the solar PV modules is based on the concepts of sunlight concentration by small-aperture area Fresnel lenses and "all-glass" module design. The small-aperture area lenses are arranged as a panel with silicone-on-glass structure where the glass plate serves as the front surface of a module. In turn, high-efficiency InGaP/(In)GaAs/Ge cells are arranged on a rear module panel mounted on a glass plate which functions as a heat sink and integrated protective cover for the cells. The developed PV modules and sun trackers are characterized by simple design, and are regarded as the prototypes for further commercialization.

  14. Hot wire deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Mahan, A.H.; Iwaniczko, E.; Nelson, B.P.; Reedy, R.C. Jr.; Crandall, R.S.

    1996-05-01

    This paper details the results of a study in which low H content, high deposition rate hot wire (HW) deposited amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) has been incorporated into a substrate solar cell. The authors find that the treatment of the top surface of the HW i layer while it is being cooled from its high deposition temperature is crucial to device performance. They present data concerning these surface treatments, and correlate these treatments with Schottky device performance. The authors also present first generation HW n-i-p solar cell efficiency data, where a glow discharge (GD) {mu}c-Si(p) layer was added to complete the partial devices. No light trapping layer was used to increase the device Jsc. Their preliminary investigations have yielded efficiencies of up to 6.8% for a cell with a 4000 {Angstrom} thick HW i-layer, which degrade less than 10% after a 900 hour light soak. The authors suggest avenues for further improvement of their devices.

  15. Inverted Silicon Nanopencil Array Solar Cells with Enhanced Contact Structures

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Xiaoguang; Shu, Lei; Lin, Hao; Fang, Ming; Zhang, Heng; Dong, Guofa; Yip, SenPo; Xiu, Fei; Ho, Johnny C.

    2016-01-01

    Although three-dimensional nanostructured solar cells have attracted extensive research attention due to their superior broadband and omnidirectional light-harvesting properties, majority of them are still suffered from complicated fabrication processes as well as disappointed photovoltaic performances. Here, we employed our newly-developed, low-cost and simple wet anisotropic etching to fabricate hierarchical silicon nanostructured arrays with different solar cell contact design, followed by systematic investigations of their photovoltaic characteristics. Specifically, nano-arrays with the tapered tips (e.g. inverted nanopencils) are found to enable the more conformal top electrode deposition directly onto the nanostructures for better series and shunt conductance, but its insufficient film coverage at the basal plane would still restrict the charge carrier collection. In contrast, the low-platform contact design facilitates a substantial photovoltaic device performance enhancement of ~24%, as compared to the one of conventional top electrode design, due to the shortened current path and improved lateral conductance for the minimized carrier recombination and series resistance. This enhanced contact structure can not only maintain excellent photon-trapping behaviors of nanostructures, but also help to eliminate adverse impacts of these tapered nano-morphological features on the contact resistance, providing further insight into design consideration in optimizing the contact geometry for high-performance nanostructured photovoltaic devices. PMID:27671709

  16. Inverted Silicon Nanopencil Array Solar Cells with Enhanced Contact Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Xiaoguang; Shu, Lei; Lin, Hao; Fang, Ming; Zhang, Heng; Dong, Guofa; Yip, Senpo; Xiu, Fei; Ho, Johnny C.

    2016-09-01

    Although three-dimensional nanostructured solar cells have attracted extensive research attention due to their superior broadband and omnidirectional light-harvesting properties, majority of them are still suffered from complicated fabrication processes as well as disappointed photovoltaic performances. Here, we employed our newly-developed, low-cost and simple wet anisotropic etching to fabricate hierarchical silicon nanostructured arrays with different solar cell contact design, followed by systematic investigations of their photovoltaic characteristics. Specifically, nano-arrays with the tapered tips (e.g. inverted nanopencils) are found to enable the more conformal top electrode deposition directly onto the nanostructures for better series and shunt conductance, but its insufficient film coverage at the basal plane would still restrict the charge carrier collection. In contrast, the low-platform contact design facilitates a substantial photovoltaic device performance enhancement of ~24%, as compared to the one of conventional top electrode design, due to the shortened current path and improved lateral conductance for the minimized carrier recombination and series resistance. This enhanced contact structure can not only maintain excellent photon-trapping behaviors of nanostructures, but also help to eliminate adverse impacts of these tapered nano-morphological features on the contact resistance, providing further insight into design consideration in optimizing the contact geometry for high-performance nanostructured photovoltaic devices.

  17. Inverted Silicon Nanopencil Array Solar Cells with Enhanced Contact Structures.

    PubMed

    Liang, Xiaoguang; Shu, Lei; Lin, Hao; Fang, Ming; Zhang, Heng; Dong, Guofa; Yip, SenPo; Xiu, Fei; Ho, Johnny C

    2016-09-27

    Although three-dimensional nanostructured solar cells have attracted extensive research attention due to their superior broadband and omnidirectional light-harvesting properties, majority of them are still suffered from complicated fabrication processes as well as disappointed photovoltaic performances. Here, we employed our newly-developed, low-cost and simple wet anisotropic etching to fabricate hierarchical silicon nanostructured arrays with different solar cell contact design, followed by systematic investigations of their photovoltaic characteristics. Specifically, nano-arrays with the tapered tips (e.g. inverted nanopencils) are found to enable the more conformal top electrode deposition directly onto the nanostructures for better series and shunt conductance, but its insufficient film coverage at the basal plane would still restrict the charge carrier collection. In contrast, the low-platform contact design facilitates a substantial photovoltaic device performance enhancement of ~24%, as compared to the one of conventional top electrode design, due to the shortened current path and improved lateral conductance for the minimized carrier recombination and series resistance. This enhanced contact structure can not only maintain excellent photon-trapping behaviors of nanostructures, but also help to eliminate adverse impacts of these tapered nano-morphological features on the contact resistance, providing further insight into design consideration in optimizing the contact geometry for high-performance nanostructured photovoltaic devices.

  18. Plasmonic nanomesh sandwiches for ultrathin film silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Tongchuan; Wang, Baomin; Leu, Paul W.

    2017-02-01

    We theoretically investigate the strategy of integrating metal nanoparticles (NPs)/nanomeshes (NMs) into the top and/or bottom of crystalline silicon (c-Si) thin film solar cells for light trapping and enhanced carrier collection. C-Si thin films exhibit absorption resonances corresponding to Fabry-Pérot modes. Frontside metal NPs enhance absorption by additionally coupling light into localized surface plasmon resonances and c-Si waveguide modes, while a frontside metal NM increases absorption by coupling light into surface plasmon polaritons and c-Si waveguide modes. The frontside metal NM also functions as a flexible top electrode, which may replace conventional brittle transparent conductive oxide thin films. The backside metal NM exhibits enhanced absorption due to the coupling of light into c-Si waveguide modes and the cavity modes within the holes of metal NM. We illustrate how the optimal metal NM sandwich, consisting of NMs on both sides of a 300 nm thick c-Si with an appropriate antireflection coating (ARC), achieves a 72.9% enhancement in short-circuit current density compared with that of a 300 nm thick c-Si thin film solar cell with 100 nm thick Si3N4 ARC and 300 nm thick Ag back reflector. The current generation in the metal NM sandwich is more in the center of the thin film such that there should be less surface recombination. The uniform current generation throughout the film results in less overall recombination.

  19. Emitter formation in dendritic web silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meier, D. L.; Rohatgi, A.; Campbell, R. B.; Alexander, P.; Fonash, S. J.; Singh, R.

    1984-01-01

    The use of liquid dopants and liquid masks for p-n junction formation in dendritic web solar cells was investigated and found to be equivalent to the use of gaseous dopants and CVD SiO2 masks previously used. This results in a projected cost reduction of 0.02 1980$/Watt for a 25 MW/year production line, and makes possible junction formation processes having a higher throughput than more conventional processes. The effect of a low-energy (0.4 keV) hydrogen ion implant on dendritic web solar cells was also investigated. Such an implant was observed to improve Voc and Jsc substantially. Measurements of internal quantum efficiency suggest that it is the base of the cell, rather than the emitter, which benefits from the hydrogen implant. The diffusion length for electrons in the p-type base increased from 53 microns to 150 microns in one case, with dendritic web cell efficiency being boosted to 15.2 percent. The mechanism by which low-energy hydrogen ions can penetrate deeply into the silicon to effect the observed improvement is not known at this time.

  20. A study of efficiency in low resistivity silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dunbar, P. M.; Hauser, J. R.

    1976-01-01

    A general device-analysis program has been utilized to study the efficiency of silicon solar cells. The analysis is applied to specific geometries of both n(+)-p and n(+)-p-p(+) solar cells, and involves a numerical solution of the basic transport and continuity equations. This approach allows solutions that are free of typical limiting assumptions involved in solving the device equations as well as solutions relating to lifetime, mobility variations, and diffused-region profiles. The analysis includes available empirical information on diffusion length, mobility, and lifetime as a function of doping, as well as a Gaussian profile for the diffused region. Results are presented which illustrate the limitations of efficiency as a function of doping. It is found that the maximum efficiencies for both types of cell converge at lower resistivities to around 16% with air-mass-zero radiation and a single-layer absorbing-SiO antireflecting film. It is also found that the minority-carrier lifetime, both in the n(+) surface and p-type bulk regions, presents serious limitations to conversion efficiency, particularly in the low-resistivity cells.

  1. A comparison of light-harvesting performance of silicon nanocones and nanowires for radial-junction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yingfeng; Li, Meicheng; Fu, Pengfei; Li, Ruike; Song, Dandan; Shen, Chao; Zhao, Yan

    2015-06-01

    Silicon nanorod based radial-junction solar cells are competitive alternatives to traditional planar silicon solar cells. In various silicon nanorods, nanocone is always considered to be better than nanowire in light-absorption. Nevertheless, we find that this notion isn’t absolutely correct. Silicon nanocone is indeed significantly superior over nanowire in light-concentration due to its continuous diameters, and thus resonant wavelengths excited. However, the concentrated light can’t be effectively absorbed and converted to photogenerated carriers, since its propagation path in silicon nanocone is shorter than that in nanowire. The results provide critical clues for the design of silicon nanorod based radial-junction solar cells.

  2. A comparison of light-harvesting performance of silicon nanocones and nanowires for radial-junction solar cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Yingfeng; Li, Meicheng; Fu, Pengfei; Li, Ruike; Song, Dandan; Shen, Chao; Zhao, Yan

    2015-06-26

    Silicon nanorod based radial-junction solar cells are competitive alternatives to traditional planar silicon solar cells. In various silicon nanorods, nanocone is always considered to be better than nanowire in light-absorption. Nevertheless, we find that this notion isn't absolutely correct. Silicon nanocone is indeed significantly superior over nanowire in light-concentration due to its continuous diameters, and thus resonant wavelengths excited. However, the concentrated light can't be effectively absorbed and converted to photogenerated carriers, since its propagation path in silicon nanocone is shorter than that in nanowire. The results provide critical clues for the design of silicon nanorod based radial-junction solar cells.

  3. Reactive ion etching (RIE) technique for application in crystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Yoo, Jinsu

    2010-04-15

    Saw damage removal (SDR) and texturing by conventional wet chemical processes with alkali solution etch about 20 micron of silicon wafer on both sides, resulting in thin wafers with which solar cell processing is difficult. Reactive ion etching (RIE) for silicon surface texturing is very effective in reducing surface reflectance of thin crystalline silicon wafers by trapping the light of longer wavelength. High efficiency solar cells were fabricated during this study using optimized RIE. Saw damage removal (SDR) with acidic mixture followed by RIE-texturing showed the decrease in silicon loss by {proportional_to}67% and {proportional_to}70% compared to conventional SDR and texturing by alkaline solution. Also, the crystalline silicon solar cells fabricated by using RIE-texturing showed conversion efficiency as high as 16.7% and 16.1% compared with 16.2%, which was obtained in the case of the cell fabricated with SDR and texturing with NaOH solution. (author)

  4. New technologies for solar energy silicon - Cost analysis of BCL process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yaws, C. L.; Li, K.-Y.; Fang, C. S.; Lutwack, R.; Hsu, G.; Leven, H.

    1980-01-01

    New technologies for producing polysilicon are being developed to provide lower cost material for solar cells which convert sunlight into electricity. This article presents results for the BCL Process, which produces the solar-cell silicon by reduction of silicon tetrachloride with zinc vapor. Cost, sensitivity, and profitability analysis results are presented based on a preliminary process design of a plant to produce 1000 metric tons/year of silicon by the BCL Process. Profitability analysis indicates a sales price of $12.1-19.4 per kg of silicon (1980 dollars) at a 0-25 per cent DCF rate of return on investment after taxes. These results indicate good potential for meeting the goal of providing lower cost material for silicon solar cells.

  5. Crystal growth for high-efficiency silicon solar cells workshop: Summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dumas, K. A.

    1985-01-01

    The state of the art in the growth of silicon crystals for high-efficiency solar cells are reviewed, sheet requirements are defined, and furture areas of research are identified. Silicon sheet material characteristics that limit cell efficiencies and yields were described as well as the criteria for the ideal sheet-growth method. The device engineers wish list to the material engineer included: silicon sheet with long minority carrier lifetime that is uniform throughout the sheet, and which doesn't change during processing; and sheet material that stays flat throughout device processing, has uniform good mechanical strength, and is low cost. Impurities in silicon solar cells depreciate cell performance by reducing diffusion length and degrading junctions. The impurity behavior, degradation mechanisms, and variations in degradation threshold with diffusion length for silicon solar cells were described.

  6. Role of point defects/defect complexes in silicon device processing. Book of abstracts, fourth workshop

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-06-01

    The 41 abstracts are arranged into 6 sessions: impurities and defects in commercial substrates: their sources, effects on material yield, and material quality; impurity gettering in silicon: limits and manufacturability of impurity gettering and in silicon solar cells; impurity/defect passivation; new concepts in silicon growth: improved initial quality and thin films; and silicon solar cell design opportunities.

  7. Optimized scalable stack of fluorescent solar concentrator systems with bifacial silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Martínez Díez, Ana Luisa; Gutmann, Johannes; Posdziech, Janina; Rist, Tim; Goldschmidt, Jan Christoph; Plaza, David Gómez

    2014-10-21

    In this paper, we present a concentrator system based on a stack of fluorescent concentrators (FCs) and a bifacial solar cell. Coupling bifacial solar cells to a stack of FCs increases the performance of the system and preserves its efficiency when scaled. We used an approach to optimize a fluorescent solar concentrator system design based on a stack of multiple fluorescent concentrators (FC). Seven individual fluorescent collectors (20 mm×20 mm×2 mm) were realized by in-situ polymerization and optically characterized in regard to their ability to guide light to the edges. Then, an optimization procedure based on the experimental data of the individual FCs was carried out to determine the stack configuration that maximizes the total number of photons leaving edges. Finally, two fluorescent concentrator systems were realized by attaching bifacial silicon solar cells to the optimized FC stacks: a conventional system, where FC were attached to one side of the solar cell as a reference, and the proposed bifacial configuration. It was found that for the same overall FC area, the bifacial configuration increases the short-circuit current by a factor of 2.2, which is also in agreement with theoretical considerations.

  8. Tantalum oxide/silicon nitride: A negatively charged surface passivation stack for silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Wan, Yimao Bullock, James; Cuevas, Andres

    2015-05-18

    This letter reports effective passivation of crystalline silicon (c-Si) surfaces by thermal atomic layer deposited tantalum oxide (Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5}) underneath plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposited silicon nitride (SiN{sub x}). Cross-sectional transmission electron microscopy imaging shows an approximately 2 nm thick interfacial layer between Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5} and c-Si. Surface recombination velocities as low as 5.0 cm/s and 3.2 cm/s are attained on p-type 0.8 Ω·cm and n-type 1.0 Ω·cm c-Si wafers, respectively. Recombination current densities of 25 fA/cm{sup 2} and 68 fA/cm{sup 2} are measured on 150 Ω/sq boron-diffused p{sup +} and 120 Ω/sq phosphorus-diffused n{sup +} c-Si, respectively. Capacitance–voltage measurements reveal a negative fixed insulator charge density of −1.8 × 10{sup 12 }cm{sup −2} for the Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5} film and −1.0 × 10{sup 12 }cm{sup −2} for the Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5}/SiN{sub x} stack. The Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5}/SiN{sub x} stack is demonstrated to be an excellent candidate for surface passivation of high efficiency silicon solar cells.

  9. Surface passivation of crystalline silicon by sputtered AlOx/AlNx stacks toward low-cost high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Hyunju; Ueda, Keigo; Enomoto, Yuya; Arafune, Koji; Yoshida, Haruhiko; Satoh, Shin-ichi; Chikyow, Toyohiro; Ogura, Atsushi

    2015-08-01

    Recently, excellent surface passivation has been achieved for both p- and n-type silicon solar cells using AlOx/SiNx:H stacks deposited by atomic layer deposition and plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition. However, alternative materials and deposition methods could provide practical options for large-scale manufacturing of commercial solar cells. In this study we demonstrate that AlOx/AlNx stacks fabricated by reactive radio-frequency magnetron sputtering can provide fairly good surface passivation (Smax of ˜30 cm/s) regardless of AlOx thickness, which is found to be due to the high negative fixed charge density (Qeff of -2.8 × 1012 cm-2) and moderately low interface trap density (Dit of 2.0 × 1011 eV-1·cm-2). The stacks also show fairly good antireflection performance in the visible and near-infrared spectral region. The demonstrated surface passivation and antireflection performance of in situ reactively sputtered AlOx/AlNx stacks make them a promising candidate for a surface-passivating antireflection coating on silicon solar cells.

  10. Transparent electrodes in silicon heterojunction solar cells: Influence on contact passivation

    DOE PAGES

    Tomasi, Andrea; Sahli, Florent; Seif, Johannes Peter; ...

    2015-10-26

    Charge carrier collection in silicon heterojunction solar cells occurs via intrinsic/doped hydrogenated amorphous silicon layer stacks deposited on the crystalline silicon wafer surfaces. Usually, both the electron and hole collecting stacks are externally capped by an n-type transparent conductive oxide, which is primarily needed for carrier extraction. Earlier, it has been demonstrated that the mere presence of such oxides can affect the carrier recombination in the crystalline silicon absorber. Here, we present a detailed investigation of the impact of this phenomenon on both the electron and hole collecting sides, including its consequences for the operating voltages of silicon heterojunction solarmore » cells. As a result, we define guiding principles for improved passivating contact design for high-efficiency silicon solar cells.« less

  11. Substrate-modified scattering properties of silicon nanostructures for solar energy applications.

    PubMed

    Fofang, N T; Luk, T S; Okandan, M; Nielson, G N; Brener, I

    2013-02-25

    Enhanced light trapping is an attractive technique for improving the efficiency of thin film silicon solar cells. In this paper, we use FDTD simulations to study the scattering properties of silicon nanostructures on a silicon substrate and their application as enhanced light trappers. We find that the scattered spectrum and angular scattering distribution strongly depend on the excitation direction, that is, from air to substrate or from substrate to air. At the dipole resonance wavelength the scattering angles tend to be very narrow compared to those of silicon nanostructures in the absence of a substrate. Based on these properties, we propose a new thin film silicon solar cell design incorporating silicon nanostructures on both the front and back surfaces for enhanced light trapping.

  12. Atomic-Layer-Deposited Transparent Electrodes for Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells

    DOE PAGES

    Demaurex, Benedicte; Seif, Johannes P.; Smit, Sjoerd; ...

    2014-11-01

    We examine damage-free transparent-electrode deposition to fabricate high-efficiency amorphous silicon/crystalline silicon heterojunction solar cells. Such solar cells usually feature sputtered transparent electrodes, the deposition of which may damage the layers underneath. Using atomic layer deposition, we insert thin protective films between the amorphous silicon layers and sputtered contacts and investigate their effect on device operation. We find that a 20-nm-thick protective layer suffices to preserve, unchanged, the amorphous silicon layers beneath. Insertion of such protective atomic-layer-deposited layers yields slightly higher internal voltages at low carrier injection levels. However, we identify the presence of a silicon oxide layer, formed during processing,more » between the amorphous silicon and the atomic-layer-deposited transparent electrode that acts as a barrier, impeding hole and electron collection.« less

  13. Atomic-Layer-Deposited Transparent Electrodes for Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Demaurex, Benedicte; Seif, Johannes P.; Smit, Sjoerd; Macco, Bart; Kessels, W. M.; Geissbuhler, Jonas; De Wolf, Stefaan; Ballif, Christophe

    2014-11-01

    We examine damage-free transparent-electrode deposition to fabricate high-efficiency amorphous silicon/crystalline silicon heterojunction solar cells. Such solar cells usually feature sputtered transparent electrodes, the deposition of which may damage the layers underneath. Using atomic layer deposition, we insert thin protective films between the amorphous silicon layers and sputtered contacts and investigate their effect on device operation. We find that a 20-nm-thick protective layer suffices to preserve, unchanged, the amorphous silicon layers beneath. Insertion of such protective atomic-layer-deposited layers yields slightly higher internal voltages at low carrier injection levels. However, we identify the presence of a silicon oxide layer, formed during processing, between the amorphous silicon and the atomic-layer-deposited transparent electrode that acts as a barrier, impeding hole and electron collection.

  14. Applications of ion implantation to high performance, radiation tolerant silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirkpatrick, A. R.; Minnucci, J. A.; Matthei, K. W.

    1979-01-01

    Progress in the development of ion implanted silicon solar cells is reported. Effective back surface preparation by implantation, junction processing to achieve high open circuit voltages in low-resistivity cells, and radiation tolerance cells are among the topics studied.

  15. Solar irradiance measurements by means of optical fibers and silicon detectors.

    PubMed

    Corrons, A; Pons, A

    1979-08-15

    An experimental system has been constructed for the continuous measurement of solar irradiance using silicon diode detectors not directly exposed to solar radiation. The received incident solar radiation is conducted from the roof of the building to the detectors by an optical fiber. An electronic computer receives the signal and processes it, introducing the necessary corrections to calculate the total solar irradiance in W m(-2). The system measures with a proved accuracy to better than 3%.

  16. The mean ionic charge of silicon in 3HE-rich solar flares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Luhn, A.; Klecker, B.; Hovestadt, E.; Moebius, E.

    1985-01-01

    Mean ionic charge of iron in 3He-rich solar flares and the average mean charge of Silicon for 23 #He-rich periods during the time interval from September 1978 to October 1979 were determined. It is indicated that the value of the mean charge state of Silicon is higher than the normal flare average by approximately 3 units and in perticular it is higher then the value predicted by resonant heating models for 3He-rich solar flares.

  17. Analysis of the Effects of Impurities in Silicon. [to determine solar cell efficiency

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wohlgemuth, J. H.; Lafky, W. M.; Burkholder, J. H.

    1979-01-01

    A solar cell fabrication and analysis program to determine the effects on the resultant solar cell efficiency of impurities incorporated into silicon is conducted. Flight quality technologies and quality assurance are employed to assure that variations in cell performance are due to the impurities incorporated in the silicon. The type and level of impurity doping in each test lot is given and the mechanism responsible for the degradation of cell performance is identified and correlated to the doped impurities.

  18. A study of improvements in silicon solar cell efficiency due to various geometrical and doping modifications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dunbar, P. M.; Hauser, J. R.

    1976-01-01

    This paper presents the results of continued studies of silicon solar cell operation and limitations. The objective of this paper is to report on geometrical and doping changes in silicon solar cells which result in predictions of high efficiencies. Efficiencies as high as 20 per cent (uncorrected for metal coverage and ohmic sheet resistance) have been calculated for optimized cells. The conditions required to achieve these efficiency values are discussed.

  19. Amorphous silicon Schottky barrier solar cells incorporating a thin insulating layer and a thin doped layer

    DOEpatents

    Carlson, David E.

    1980-01-01

    Amorphous silicon Schottky barrier solar cells which incorporate a thin insulating layer and a thin doped layer adjacent to the junction forming metal layer exhibit increased open circuit voltages compared to standard rectifying junction metal devices, i.e., Schottky barrier devices, and rectifying junction metal insulating silicon devices, i.e., MIS devices.

  20. High Pressure Chemical Vapor Deposition of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Films and Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    He, Rongrui; Day, Todd D; Sparks, Justin R; Sullivan, Nichole F; Badding, John V

    2016-07-01

    Thin films of hydrogenated amorphous silicon can be produced at MPa pressures from silane without the use of plasma at temperatures as low as 345 °C. High pressure chemical vapor deposition may open a new way to low cost deposition of amorphous silicon solar cells and other thin film structures over very large areas in very compact, simple reactors.

  1. Designing a concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) system in adjunct with a silicon photovoltaic panel for a solar competition car

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arias-Rosales, Andrés.; Barrera-Velásquez, Jorge; Osorio-Gómez, Gilberto; Mejía-Gutiérrez, Ricardo

    2014-06-01

    Solar competition cars are a very interesting research laboratory for the development of new technologies heading to their further implementation in either commercial passenger vehicles or related applications. Besides, worldwide competitions allow the spreading of such ideas where the best and experienced teams bet on innovation and leading edge technologies, in order to develop more efficient vehicles. In these vehicles, some aspects generally make the difference such as aerodynamics, shape, weight, wheels and the main solar panels. Therefore, seeking to innovate in a competitive advantage, the first Colombian solar vehicle "Primavera", competitor at the World Solar Challenge (WSC)-2013, has implemented the usage of a Concentrating Photovoltaic (CPV) system as a complementary solar energy module to the common silicon photovoltaic panel. By harvesting sunlight with concentrating optical devices, CPVs are capable of maximizing the allowable photovoltaic area. However, the entire CPV system weight must be less harmful than the benefit of the extra electric energy generated, which in adjunct with added manufacture and design complexity, has intervened in the fact that CPVs had never been implemented in a solar car in such a scale as the one described in this work. Design considerations, the system development process and implementation are presented in this document considering both the restrictions of the context and the interaction of the CPV system with the solar car setup. The measured data evidences the advantage of using this complementary system during the competition and the potential this technology has for further developments.

  2. Printable nanostructured silicon solar cells for high-performance, large-area flexible photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sung-Min; Biswas, Roshni; Li, Weigu; Kang, Dongseok; Chan, Lesley; Yoon, Jongseung

    2014-10-28

    Nanostructured forms of crystalline silicon represent an attractive materials building block for photovoltaics due to their potential benefits to significantly reduce the consumption of active materials, relax the requirement of materials purity for high performance, and hence achieve greatly improved levelized cost of energy. Despite successful demonstrations for their concepts over the past decade, however, the practical application of nanostructured silicon solar cells for large-scale implementation has been hampered by many existing challenges associated with the consumption of the entire wafer or expensive source materials, difficulties to precisely control materials properties and doping characteristics, or restrictions on substrate materials and scalability. Here we present a highly integrable materials platform of nanostructured silicon solar cells that can overcome these limitations. Ultrathin silicon solar microcells integrated with engineered photonic nanostructures are fabricated directly from wafer-based source materials in configurations that can lower the materials cost and can be compatible with deterministic assembly procedures to allow programmable, large-scale distribution, unlimited choices of module substrates, as well as lightweight, mechanically compliant constructions. Systematic studies on optical and electrical properties, photovoltaic performance in experiments, as well as numerical modeling elucidate important design rules for nanoscale photon management with ultrathin, nanostructured silicon solar cells and their interconnected, mechanically flexible modules, where we demonstrate 12.4% solar-to-electric energy conversion efficiency for printed ultrathin (∼ 8 μm) nanostructured silicon solar cells when configured with near-optimal designs of rear-surface nanoposts, antireflection coating, and back-surface reflector.

  3. Light trapping and plasmonic enhancement in silicon, dye-sensitized and titania solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nhung Tran, Hong; Hieu Nguyen, Van; Nguyen, Bich Ha; Vu, Dinh Lam

    2016-03-01

    The efficiency of a solar cell depends on both the quality of its semiconductor active layer, as well as on the presence of other dielectric and metallic structural components which improve light trapping and exploit plasmonic enhancement. The purpose of this work is to review the results of recent research on light trapping and plasmonic enhancement in three types of solar cells: thin-film silicon solar cells, dye-sensitized solar cells and solid-state titania solar cells. The results of a study on modeling and the design of light trapping components in solar cells are also presented.

  4. Development and evaluation of die and container materials. Low cost silicon solar array project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wills, R. R.; Niesx, D. E.

    1979-01-01

    Specific compositions of high purity silicon aluminum oxynitride (Sialon) and silicon beryllium oxynitride (Sibeon) solid solutions were shown to be promising refractory materials for handling and manipulating solar grade silicon into silicon ribbon. Evaulation of the interaction of these materials in contact with molten silicon indicated that solid solutions based upon beta-Si3N4 were more stable than those based on Si2N2O. Sibeon was more resistant to molten silicon attack than Sialon. Both materials should preferably be used in an inert atmosphere rather than under vacuum conditions because removal of oxygen from the silicon melt occurs as SiO enhances the dissolution of aluminum and beryllium. The wetting angles of these materials were low enough for these materials to be considered as both die and container materials.

  5. Amorphous Silicon Carbide Passivating Layers to Enable Higher Processing Temperature in Crystalline Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Boccard, Mathieu; Holman, Zachary

    2015-04-06

    "Very efficient crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells have been demonstrated when thin layers of intrinsic and doped hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) are used for passivation and carrier selectivity in a heterojunction device. One limitation of this device structure is the (parasitic) absorption in the front passivation/collection a-Si:H layers; another is the degradation of the a-Si:H-based passivation upon temperature, limiting the post-processes to approximately 200°C thus restricting the contacting possibilities and potential tandem device fabrication. To alleviate these two limitations, we explore the potential of amorphous silicon carbide (a-SiC:H), a widely studied material in use in standard a-Si:H thin-film solar cells, which is known for its wider bandgap, increased hydrogen content and stronger hydrogen bonding compared to a-Si:H. We study the surface passivation of solar-grade textured n-type c-Si wafers for symmetrical stacks of 10-nm-thick intrinsic a-SiC:H with various carbon content followed by either p-doped or n-doped a-Si:H (referred to as i/p or i/n stacks). For both doping types, passivation (assessed through carrier lifetime measurements) is degraded by increasing the carbon content in the intrinsic a-SiC:H layer. Yet, this hierarchy is reversed after annealing at 350°C or more due to drastic passivation improvements upon annealing when an a-SiC:H layer is used. After annealing at 350°C, lifetimes of 0.4 ms and 2.0 ms are reported for i/p and i/n stacks, respectively, when using an intrinsic a-SiC:H layer with approximately 10% of carbon (initial lifetimes of 0.3 ms and 0.1 ms, respectively, corresponding to a 30% and 20-fold increase, respectively). For stacks of pure a-Si:H material the lifetimes degrade from 1.2 ms and 2.0 ms for i/p and i/n stacks, respectively, to less than 0.1 ms and 1.1 ms (12-fold and 2-fold decrease, respectively). For complete solar cells using pure a-Si:H i/p and i/n stacks, the open-circuit voltage (Voc

  6. Mechanisms limiting the performance of large grain polycrystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Culik, J. S.; Alexander, P.; Dumas, K. A.; Wohlgemuth, J. W.

    1984-01-01

    The open-circuit voltage and short-circuit current of large-grain (1 to 10 mm grain diameter) polycrystalline silicon solar cells is determined by the minority-carrier diffusion length within the bulk of the grains. This was demonstrated by irradiating polycrystalline and single-crystal (Czochralski) silicon solar cells with 1 MeV electrons to reduce their bulk lifetime. The variation of short-circuit current with minority-carrier diffusion length for the polycrystalline solar cells is identical to that of the single-crystal solar cells. The open-circuit voltage versus short-circuit current characteristic of the polycrystalline solar cells for reduced diffusion lengths is also identical to that of the single-crystal solar cells. The open-circuit voltage of the polycrystalline solar cells is a strong function of quasi-neutral (bulk) recombination, and is reduced only slightly, if at all, by grain-boundary recombination.

  7. Perovskite solar cells: On top of commercial photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albrecht, Steve; Rech, Bernd

    2017-01-01

    The efficiency of single-junction solar cells is intrinsically limited and high efficiency multi-junctions are not cost effective yet. Now, semi-transparent perovskite solar cells suggest that low cost multi-junctions could be within reach.

  8. The effects of impurities on the performance of silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yamakawa, K. A.

    1981-01-01

    The major factors that determine the tolerable concentrations of impurities in silicon feedstock for solar cells used in power generation are discussed in this report. It is concluded that a solar-grade silicon can be defined only for a specific manufacturing process. It is also concluded that it is the electrical effects, efficiency and resistivity, that are dominant in determining tolerable concentrations of impurities in the silicon feedstock. Crystal growth effects may become important when faster growth rates and larger crystal diameters are developed and used.

  9. Method of mitigating titanium impurities effects in p-type silicon material for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salama, A. M. (Inventor)

    1980-01-01

    Microstructural evaluation tests performed on Cu-doped, Ti-doped and Cu/Ti doped p-type silicon single crystal wafers, before and after the solar cell fabrication, and evaluation of both dark forward and reverse I-V characteristic records for the solar cells produced from the corresponding silicon wafers, show that Cu mitigates the unfavorable effects of Ti, and thus provides for higher conversion efficiency, thereby providing an economical way to reduce the deleterious effects of titanium, one of the impurities present in metallurgical grade silicon material.

  10. Identification of some key parameters limiting the performance of high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mokashi, Anant R.; Daud, Taher; Kachare, Ram H.

    1986-01-01

    This paper presents, for the first time, a detailed sensitivity analysis of key cell parameters on silicon-cell efficiency by incorporating advanced solar cell physics in a sophisticated numerical simulation program. It delineates the true physical barriers to obtaining a high-efficiency silicon solar cell. Specific parameters presently limiting cell efficiency are identified to be the minority carrier lifetime and the recombination velocities at the front and back surfaces. Practical cell efficiencies in the vicinity of 22 percent are estimated to be attainable by using good quality silicon crystal and substantially reducing surface recombination velocities.

  11. An Investigation of the Texture Surface Silicon Solar Cell,

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1983-10-06

    silicon chip enters the solution, the etched silicon surface completely 10 absorbs a layer of molecules and an ion layer and among them the Li + , OH- and...Xide, Fang Junxin , Solid Physics, Shanghai Science and Technology Press, 1962. 14

  12. Al-Si alloy point contact formation and rear surface passivation for silicon solar cells using double layer porous silicon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moumni, Besma; Ben Jaballah, Abdelkader; Bessais, Brahim

    2012-10-01

    Lowering the rear surface recombination velocities by a dielectric layer has fascinating advantages compared with the standard fully covered Al back-contact silicon solar cells. In this work the passivation effect by double layer porous silicon (PS) (wide band gap) and the formation of Al-Si alloy in narrow p-type Si point contact areas for rear passivated solar cells are analysed. As revealed by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, we found that a thin passivating aluminum oxide (Al2O3) layer is formed. Scanning electron microscopy analysis performed in cross sections shows that with bilayer PS, liquid Al penetrates into the openings, alloying with the Si substrate at depth and decreasing the contact resistivity. At the solar cell level, the reduction in the contact area and resistivity leads to a minimization of the fill factor losses.

  13. Processing technology for high efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spitzer, M. B.; Keavney, C. J.

    1985-01-01

    Recent advances in silicon solar cell processing have led to attainment of conversion efficiency approaching 20%. The basic cell design is investigated and features of greatest importance to achievement of 20% efficiency are indicated. Experiments to separately optimize high efficiency design features in test structures are discussed. The integration of these features in a high efficiency cell is examined. Ion implantation has been used to achieve optimal concentrations of emitter dopant and junction depth. The optimization reflects the trade-off between high sheet conductivity, necessary for high fill factor, and heavy doping effects, which must be minimized for high open circuit voltage. A second important aspect of the design experiments is the development of a passivation process to minimize front surface recombination velocity. The manner in which a thin SiO2 layer may be used for this purpose is indicated without increasing reflection losses, if the antireflection coating is properly designed. Details are presented of processing intended to reduce recombination at the contact/Si interface. Data on cell performance (including CZ and ribbon) and analysis of loss mechanisms are also presented.

  14. Surface and allied studies in silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.

    1983-01-01

    Two main results are presented. The first deals with a simple method that determines the minority-carrier lifetime and the effective surface recombination velocity of the quasi-neutral base of silicon solar cells. The method requires the observation of only a single transient, and is amenable to automation for in-process monitoring in manufacturing. This method, which is called short-circuit current decay, avoids distortion in the observed transient and consequent inacccuracies that arise from the presence of mobile holes and electrons stored in the p/n junction spacecharge region at the initial instant of the transient. The second main result consists in a formulation of the relevant boundary-value problems that resembles that used in linear two-port network theory. This formulation enables comparisons to be made among various contending methods for measuring material parameters of p/n junction devices, and enables the option of putting the description in the time domain of the transient studies in the form of an infinite series, although closed-form solutions are also possible.

  15. Study of injection effects on BSF silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Cid, M.; Ruiz, J.M.

    1989-03-01

    The behavior of p/sup +/-n-n/sup +/ and n/sup +/-p-p/sup +/ silicon solar cells in terms of short-circuit current, open-circuit voltage, fill factor, and efficiency has been studied as a function of base doping and illumination levels. A theoretical model has been used that is valid for any injection level in the base region. Experimental results are presented for cells on n-type base (in the range of 0.3 to 1000 /Omega/ . cm) and of p-type base (0.4 to 300 /Omega/ . cm). The theoretical model is able to explain phenomena such as the superlinearity of I/sub sc/ with concentration and the degradation of short-circuit current and efficiency at very high concentrations. These effects are seen as connected with the ohmic electric field in the base region. For the emitter saturation currents considered here, it can be concluded that, for p-type substrates, low base resistivities (/approx equal/1 /Omega/ . cm) are necessary to achieve high efficiencies under concentrated light (/approx equal/100 suns), while for flat-array cells a particular resistivity is not required. For n-type substrates, it is found that any resistivity level can be used for both flat-array and concentrator cells.

  16. Recombination phenomena in high efficiency silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sah, C. T.

    1985-01-01

    The dominant recombination phenomena which limit the highest efficiency attainable in silicon solar cells under terrestrial sunlight are reviewed. The ultimate achievable efficiency is limited by the two intrinsic recombination mechanisms, the interband Auger recombination and interband Radiative recombination, both of which occur in the entire cell body but principally in the base layer. It is suggested that an optimum (26%) cell design is one with lowly doped 50 to 100 micron thick base, a perfect BSF, and zero extrinsic recombination such as the thermal mechanism at recombination centers the Shockley-Read-Hall process (SRH) in the bulk, on the surface and at the interfaces. The importance of recombination at the interfaces of a high-efficiency cell is demonstrated by the ohmic contact on the back surface whose interface recombination velocity is infinite. The importance of surface and interface recombination is demonstrated by representing the auger and radiative recombination losses by effective recombination velocities. It is demonstrated that the three highest efficiency cells may all be limited by the SRH recombination losses at recombination centers in the base layer.

  17. RAPID COMMUNICATION: Application of DLTS to silicon solar cell processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reehal, H. S.; Lesniak, M. P.; Hughes, A. E.

    1996-03-01

    Deep level transient spectroscopy (DLTS) has ben employed to study the cause of minority carrier lifetime degradation observed during the development phase of a single crystal silicon solar cell production process. Results on float-zone (FZ) samples showed that this was due to Fe unintentionally introduced at low levels (close to or below the detection limit of conventional analytical techniques) during cell processing and that DLTS of FZ wafers can be used as a highly sensitive monitor of process impurities. The DLTS spectra of processed FZ wafers showed a single trap, 0.53 eV away from the band edge and with a concentration of 0022-3727/29/3/063/img5, attributable to an Fe - B complex. The feature was not present before processing. In Czochralski (CZ) wafers the situation was more complex. Two major Fe related majority carriers traps were observed in both seed-end and crucible-end wafers taken through the complete process cycle. One was consistent with the Fe - B complex whilst the other (at 0.33 eV from the band edge) was identified as an Fe - O complex. The concentrations of these traps lay in the range 0022-3727/29/3/063/img6 and showed a less marked increase after processing. The observations are again consistent with an increase in the Fe level and also the different oxygen contents of the starting wafers.

  18. Texturization of cast multicrystalline silicon for solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xi, Zhenqiang; Yang, Deren; Dan, Wu; Jun, Chen; Li, Xianhang; Que, Duanlin

    2004-03-01

    The texturization of cast multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) for solar cells with alkaline or acidic solution has been investigated, and two theoretical models were built on the basis of surface morphologies. For alkaline etching, tilted pyramid structure could be formed on the surface. It is reported that when the tilted angle, which is the angle between (100)-plane and as-cut surface, is larger than the critical angle (20°), the reflectance rapidly increases with the deviation from lang100rang orientation. For acidic etching, spherical structure was generated. If the ratio, which is the ratio of depth (h) and radius (r) of the spherical structure, is less than the critical value (0.29), the second reflection cannot take place. Therefore, improving the ratio of i and r is one effective way to decrease the reflectance of cast mc-Si, which was proved by subsequent experiment. With the addition of sodium nitrite (NaNO2) or sodium phosphate tribasic (Na3PO4 · 12H2O) into the acid etchant, it was found that the reflectance decreased remarkably. Finally the formation mechanism of spherical pits in acid etched mc-Si was discussed.

  19. Amorphous silicon cell array powered solar tracking apparatus

    DOEpatents

    Hanak, Joseph J.

    1985-01-01

    An array of an even number of amorphous silicon solar cells are serially connected between first and second terminals of opposite polarity. The terminals are connected to one input terminal of a DC motor whose other input terminal is connected to the mid-cell of the serial array. Vane elements are adjacent the end cells to selectively shadow one or the other of the end cells when the array is oriented from a desired attitude relative to the sun. The shadowing of one cell of a group of cells on one side of the mid-cell reduces the power of that group substantially so that full power from the group of cells on the other side of the mid-cell drives the motor to reorient the array to the desired attitude. The cell groups each have a full power output at the power rating of the motor. When the array is at the desired attitude the power output of the two groups of cells balances due to their opposite polarity so that the motor remains unpowered.

  20. Ultrasonic seam welding on thin silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stofel, E. J.

    1982-01-01

    The ultrathin silicon solar cell has progressed to where it is a serious candidate for future light weight or radiation tolerant spacecraft. The ultrasonic method of producing welds was found to be satisfactory. These ultrathin cells could be handled without breakage in a semiautomated welding machine. This is a prototype of a machine capable of production rates sufficiently large to support spacecraft array assembly needs. For comparative purposes, this project also welded a variety of cells with thicknesses up to 0.23 mm as well as the 0.07 mm ultrathin cells. There was no electrical degradation in any cells. The mechanical pull strength of welds on the thick cells was excellent when using a large welding force. The mechanical strength of welds on thin cells was less since only a small welding force could be used without cracking these cells. Even so, the strength of welds on thin cells appears adequate for array application. The ability of such welds to survive multiyear, near Earth orbit thermal cycles needs to be demonstrated.

  1. Titanium dioxide antireflection coating for silicon solar cells by spray deposition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kern, W.; Tracy, E.

    1980-01-01

    A high-speed production process is described for depositing a single-layer, quarter-wavelength thick antireflection coating of titanium dioxide on metal-patterned single-crystal silicon solar cells for terrestrial applications. Controlled atomization spraying of an organotitanium solution was selected as the most cost-effective method of film deposition using commercial automated equipment. The optimal composition consists of titanium isopropoxide as the titanium source, n-butyl acetate as the diluent solvent, sec-butanol as the leveling agent, and 2-ethyl-1-hexanol to render the material uniformly depositable. Application of the process to the coating of circular, large-diameter solar cells with either screen-printed silver metallization or with vacuum-evaporated Ti/Pd/Ag metallization showed increases of over 40% in the electrical conversion efficiency. Optical characteristics, corrosion resistance, and several other important properties of the spray-deposited film are reported. Experimental evidence indicates a wide tolerance in the coating thickness upon the overall efficiency of the cell. Considerations pertaining to the optimization of AR coatings in general are discussed, and a comprehensive critical survey of the literature is presented.

  2. New technologies for solar energy silicon - Cost analysis of dichlorosilane process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yaws, C. L.; Li, K.-Y.; Chu, T. C. T.; Fang, C. S.; Lutwack, R.; Briglio, A., Jr.

    1981-01-01

    A reduction in the cost of silicon for solar cells is an important objective in a project concerned with the reduction of the cost of electricity produced with solar cells. The cost goal for the silicon material is about $14 per kg (1980 dollars). The process which is currently employed to produce semiconductor grade silicon from trichlorosilane is not suited for meeting this cost goal. Other processes for producing silicon are, therefore, being investigated. A description is presented of results obtained for the DCS process which involves the production of dichlorosilane as a silicon source material for solar energy silicon. Major benefits of dichlorosilane as a silicon source material include faster reaction rates for chemical vapor deposition of silicon. The DCS process involves the reaction 2SiHCl3 yields reversibly SiH2Cl2 + SiCl4. The results of a cost analysis indicate a total product cost without profit of $1.29/kg of SiH2Cl2.

  3. Thin film polycrystalline silicon solar cells: first technical progress report, April 15, 1980-July 15, 1980

    SciTech Connect

    1980-07-01

    The objectives of this contract are to fabricate large area thin film silicon solar cells with AM1 efficiency of 10% or greater with good reproducibility and good yield and to assess the feasibility of implementing this process for manufacturing solar cells at a cost of $300/kWe. Efforts during the past quarter have been directed to the purification of metallurgical silicon, the preparation of substrates, and the fabrication and characterization of solar cells. The partial purification of metallurgical silicon by extraction with aqua regia has been investigated in detail, and the resulting silicon was analyzed by the atomic absorption technique. The unidirectional solidification of aqua regia-extracted metallurgical silicon on graphite was used for the preparation of substrates, and the impurity distribution in the substrate was also determined. Large area (> 30 cm/sup 2/) solar cells have been prepared from aqua regia-extracted metallurgical silicon substrates by the thermal reduction of trichlorosilane containing appropriate dopants. Chemically deposited tin-dioxide films were used as antireflection coatings. Solar cells with AM1 efficiencies of about 8.5% have been obtained. Their spectral response, minority carrier diffusion length, and I/sub sc/-V/sub oc/ relation have been measured.

  4. Development of processes for the production of low cost silicon dendritic web for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duncan, C. S.; Seidensticker, R. G.; Mchugh, J. P.; Hopkins, R. H.; Skutch, M. E.; Driggers, J. M.; Hill, F. E.

    1980-01-01

    High area output rates and continuous, automated growth are two key technical requirements for the growth of low-cost silicon ribbons for solar cells. By means of computer-aided furnace design, silicon dendritic web output rates as high as 27 sq cm/min have been achieved, a value in excess of that projected to meet a $0.50 per peak watt solar array manufacturing cost. The feasibility of simultaneous web growth while the melt is replenished with pelletized silicon has also been demonstrated. This step is an important precursor to the development of an automated growth system. Solar cells made on the replenished material were just as efficient as devices fabricated on typical webs grown without replenishment. Moreover, web cells made on a less-refined, pelletized polycrystalline silicon synthesized by the Battelle process yielded efficiencies up to 13% (AM1).

  5. Single-walled carbon nanotube/polyaniline/n-silicon solar cells: fabrication, characterization, and performance measurements.

    PubMed

    Tune, Daniel D; Flavel, Benjamin S; Quinton, Jamie S; Ellis, Amanda V; Shapter, Joseph G

    2013-02-01

    Carbon nanotube-silicon solar cells are a recently investigated photovoltaic architecture with demonstrated high efficiencies. Silicon solar-cell devices fabricated with a thin film of conductive polymer (polyaniline) have been reported, but these devices can suffer from poor performance due to the limited lateral current-carrying capacity of thin polymer films. Herein, hybrid solar-cell devices of a thin film of polyaniline deposited on silicon and covered by a single-walled carbon nanotube film are fabricated and characterized. These hybrid devices combine the conformal coverage given by the polymer and the excellent electrical properties of single-walled carbon nanotube films and significantly outperform either of their component counterparts. Treatment of the silicon base and carbon nanotubes with hydrofluoric acid and a strong oxidizer (thionyl chloride) leads to a significant improvement in performance.

  6. Light-trapping design for thin-film silicon-perovskite tandem solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, Stephen; John, Sajeev

    2016-09-01

    Using finite-difference time-domain simulations, we investigate the optical properties of tandem silicon/perovskite solar cells with a photonic crystal architecture, consisting of a square-lattice array of inverted pyramids with a center-to-center spacing of 2.5 μm. We demonstrate that near-perfect light-trapping and absorption can be achieved over the 300-1100 nm wavelength range with this architecture, using less than 10 μm (equivalent bulk thickness) of crystalline silicon. Using a one-diode model, we obtain projected efficiencies of over 30% for the two-terminal tandem cell under a current-matching condition, well beyond the current record for single-junction silicon solar cells. The architecture is amenable to mass fabrication through wet-etching and uses a fraction of the silicon of traditional designs, making it an attractive alternative to other silicon-perovskite tandem designs.

  7. Silicon heterojunction solar cell with passivated hole selective MoOx contact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Battaglia, Corsin; de Nicolás, Silvia Martín; De Wolf, Stefaan; Yin, Xingtian; Zheng, Maxwell; Ballif, Christophe; Javey, Ali

    2014-03-01

    We explore substoichiometric molybdenum trioxide (MoOx, x < 3) as a dopant-free, hole-selective contact for silicon solar cells. Using an intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon passivation layer between the oxide and the silicon absorber, we demonstrate a high open-circuit voltage of 711 mV and power conversion efficiency of 18.8%. Due to the wide band gap of MoOx, we observe a substantial gain in photocurrent of 1.9 mA/cm2 in the ultraviolet and visible part of the solar spectrum, when compared to a p-type amorphous silicon emitter of a traditional silicon heterojunction cell. Our results emphasize the strong potential for oxides as carrier selective heterojunction partners to inorganic semiconductors.

  8. Relationship of dislocation density of silicon to solar cell current loss at low temperature

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mandelkorn, J.; Baraona, C. R.; Lamneck, J. H., Jr.

    1972-01-01

    Large decreases in short circuit current of silicon solar cells have been reported to occur as temperature is decreased below -60 C. Experimental results are presented which relate high dislocation density of the silicon bulk material of cells to the large current loss effect. Solar cells were made by the same processes from a variety of silicon materials, namely low-dislocation-density, high-dislocation-density float-zone, and Czochralski silicon. All cells were etched in a manner which revealed the dislocation density of the cell bulk silicon. It was found that every cell made from any of the various low-dislocation starting materials obtained from three suppliers still had a low-dislocation bulk after cell processing, and that all such cells belonged to category good. Cells made from float-zone materials showed high dislocation densities in their bulk and either fell into category poor, or had intermediate losses of short-circuit current at low temperature.

  9. Back contacts for silicon-on-ceramic solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schuller, T. L.; Marquardt, S.

    1981-01-01

    Grooved substrate exposes back surface of photovoltaic cells, allowing dopant diffusion into surface and electrical contact. When substrate is coated successively with carbon and molten silicon, polycrystalline-silicon bridges form over grooves, but leave channels open. Best adhesion results when substrate grooves run perpendicular to direction of liquid-silicon layer and are closely spaced.

  10. Electron and photon degradation in aluminum, gallium and boron doped float zone silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rahilly, W. P.; Scott-Monck, J.; Anspaugh, B.; Locker, D.

    1976-01-01

    Solar cells fabricated from Al, Ga and B doped Lopex silicon over a range of resistivities were tested under varying conditions of 1 MeV electron fluence, light exposures and thermal cycling. Results indicate that Al and Ga can replace B as a P type dopant to yield improved solar cell performance.

  11. Review of physics underlying recent improvements in silicon solar-cell performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.; Fossum, J. G.

    1980-01-01

    This paper provides a unifying view of the physics of silicon solar cells, and uses it as a basis for explaining how recent improvements in the performance of these cells have been achieved. The unification is facilitated by a region-by-region analysis of the solar cell, which is also used to compare several recently proposed cell structures.

  12. Studies of silicon p-n junction solar cells. [open circuit photovoltage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindholm, F. A.

    1976-01-01

    Single crystal silicon p-n junction solar cells made with low resistivity substrates show poorer solar energy conversion efficiency than traditional theory predicts. The physical mechanisms responsible for this discrepancy are identified and characterized. The open circuit voltage in shallow junction cells of about 0.1 ohm/cm substrate resistivity is investigated under AMO (one sun) conditions.

  13. Silicon solar cells by high-speed low-temperature processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirkpatrick, A. R.; Minnucci, J. A.; Greenwald, A. C.

    1977-01-01

    A new method for silicon solar cell fabrication is being developed around ion implantation and pulsed electron beam techniques. Cells are fabricated totally in a vacuum environment at room temperature. Major reductions result in the time, energy consumption, and waste material generation associated with solar cell production. Cells to date have exhibited air mass zero efficiencies exceeding 10 percent.

  14. Evaluation and verification of epitaxial process sequence for silicon solar cell production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Redfield, D.

    1981-01-01

    The applicability of solar cell and module processing sequences, to be used on lower cost epitaxial silicon wafers was evaluated. The extent to which the process sequences perform effectively when applied to film solar cells formed by epitaxial deposition of Si on potentially inexpensive substrates of upgraded metallurgical grade Si is examined. It is concluded that these substrates are satisfactory in their cell performance.

  15. High efficiency solar cells combining a perovskite and a silicon heterojunction solar cells via an optical splitting system

    SciTech Connect

    Uzu, Hisashi E-mail: npark@skku.edu; Ichikawa, Mitsuru; Hino, Masashi; Nakano, Kunihiro; Meguro, Tomomi; Yamamoto, Kenji; Hernández, José Luis; Kim, Hui-Seon; Park, Nam-Gyu E-mail: npark@skku.edu

    2015-01-05

    We have applied an optical splitting system in order to achieve very high conversion efficiency for a full spectrum multi-junction solar cell. This system consists of multiple solar cells with different band gap optically coupled via an “optical splitter.” An optical splitter is a multi-layered beam splitter with very high reflection in the shorter-wave-length range and very high transmission in the longer-wave-length range. By splitting the incident solar spectrum and distributing it to each solar cell, the solar energy can be managed more efficiently. We have fabricated optical splitters and used them with a wide-gap amorphous silicon (a-Si) solar cell or a CH{sub 3}NH{sub 3}PbI{sub 3} perovskite solar cell as top cells, combined with mono-crystalline silicon heterojunction (HJ) solar cells as bottom cells. We have achieved with a 550 nm cutoff splitter an active area conversion efficiency of over 25% using a-Si and HJ solar cells and 28% using perovskite and HJ solar cells.

  16. Silicon-on ceramic process: Silicon sheet growth and device development for the large-area silicon sheet task of the low-cost solar array project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grung, B. L.; Heaps, J. D.; Schmit, F. M.; Schuldt, S. B.; Zook, J. D.

    1981-01-01

    The technical feasibility of producing solar-cell-quality sheet silicon to meet the Department of Energy (DOE) 1986 overall price goal of $0.70/watt was investigated. With the silicon-on-ceramic (SOC) approach, a low-cost ceramic substrate is coated with large-grain polycrystalline silicon by unidirectional solidification of molten silicon. This effort was divided into several areas of investigation in order to most efficiently meet the goals of the program. These areas include: (1) dip-coating; (2) continuous coating designated SCIM-coating, and acronym for Silicon Coating by an Inverted Meniscus (SCIM); (3) material characterization; (4) cell fabrication and evaluation; and (5) theoretical analysis. Both coating approaches were successful in producing thin layers of large grain, solar-cell-quality silicon. The dip-coating approach was initially investigated and considerable effort was given to this technique. The SCIM technique was adopted because of its scale-up potential and its capability to produce more conventiently large areas of SOC.

  17. Analyzing periodic and random textured silicon thin film solar cells by Rigorous Coupled Wave Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Dewan, Rahul; Jovanov, Vladislav; Hamraz, Saeed; Knipp, Dietmar

    2014-01-01

    A simple and fast method was developed to determine the quantum efficiency and short circuit current of thin-film silicon solar cells prepared on periodically or randomly textured surfaces. The optics was studied for microcrystalline thin-film silicon solar cells with integrated periodic and random surface textures. Rigorous Coupled Wave Analysis (RCWA) was used to investigate the behaviour of the solar cells. The analysis of the periodic and random textured substrates allows for deriving optimal surface textures. Furthermore, light trapping in periodic and randomly textured substrates will be compared. PMID:25112301

  18. Multi-resonant absorption in ultra-thin silicon solar cells with metallic nanowires.

    PubMed

    Massiot, Inès; Colin, Clément; Sauvan, Christophe; Lalanne, Philippe; Cabarrocas, Pere Roca I; Pelouard, Jean-Luc; Collin, Stéphane

    2013-05-06

    We propose a design to confine light absorption in flat and ultra-thin amorphous silicon solar cells with a one-dimensional silver grating embedded in the front window of the cell. We show numerically that multi-resonant light trapping is achieved in both TE and TM polarizations. Each resonance is analyzed in detail and modeled by Fabry-Perot resonances or guided modes via grating coupling. This approach is generalized to a complete amorphous silicon solar cell, with the additional degrees of freedom provided by the buffer layers. These results could guide the design of resonant structures for optimized ultra-thin solar cells.

  19. Silicon sheet with molecular beam epitaxy for high efficiency solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allen, F. G.

    1983-01-01

    The capabilities of the new technique of Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE) are applied to the growth of high efficiency silicon solar cells. Because MBE can provide well controlled doping profiles of any desired arbitrary design, including doping profiles of such complexity as built-in surface fields or tandem junction cells, it would appear to be the ideal method for development of high efficiency solar cells. It was proposed that UCLA grow and characterize silicon films and p-n junctions of MBE to determine whether the high crystal quality needed for solar cells could be achieved.

  20. Recent Optical and SEM Characterization of Genesis Solar Wind Concentrator Diamond on Silicon Collector

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allton, Judith H.; Rodriquez, M. C.; Burkett, P. J.; Ross, D. K.; Gonzalez, C. P.; McNamara, K. M.

    2013-01-01

    One of the 4 Genesis solar wind concentrator collectors was a silicon substrate coated with diamond-like carbon (DLC) in which to capture solar wind. This material was designed for analysis of solar nitrogen and noble gases [1, 2]. This particular collector fractured during landing, but about 80% of the surface was recovered, including a large piece which was subdivided in 2012 [3, 4, 5]. The optical and SEM imaging and analysis described below supports the subdivision and allocation of the diamond-on-silicon (DOS) concentrator collector.

  1. Design and optimization of ultrathin crystalline silicon solar cells using an efficient back reflector

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saravanan, S.; Dubey, R. S.; Kalainathan, S.; More, M. A.; Gautam, D. K.

    2015-05-01

    Thin film solar cells are cheaper but having low absorption in longer wavelength and hence, an effective light trapping mechanism is essential. In this work, we proposed an ultrathin crystalline silicon solar cell which showed extraordinary performance due to enhanced light absorption in visible and infrared part of solar spectrum. Various designing parameters such as number of distributed Bragg reflector (DBR) pairs, anti-reflection layer thickness, grating thickness, active layer thickness, grating duty cycle and period were optimized for the optimal performance of solar cell. An ultrathin silicon solar cell with 40 nm active layer could produce an enhancement in cell efficiency ˜15 % and current density ˜23 mA/cm2. This design approach would be useful for the realization of new generation of solar cells with reduced active layer thickness.

  2. Numerical analysis of monocrystalline silicon solar cells with fine nanoimprinted textured surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshinaga, Seiya; Ishikawa, Yasuaki; Araki, Shinji; Honda, Tatsuki; Jiang, Yunjiang; Uraoka, Yukiharu

    2017-02-01

    We investigated the surface reflectance of nanoimprinted textures on silicon. Zirconium oxide, which is a wide-bandgap inorganic dielectric material, was used as the texturing material. We performed several calculations to optimize the textures for the production of high-efficiency bulk-type monocrystalline silicon solar cells. Our analysis revealed that nanoimprinted textured solar cells exhibit a lower reverse saturation current density than a solar cell with a conventional etched texture. It was also confirmed that the photocarrier generation rate for a solar cell with a submicron-scale nanoimprinted texture has little dependence on the texture shape. Furthermore, the weighted average reflectance of an optimized nanoimprinted textured solar cell was substantially reduced to 3.72%, suggesting that texture formation by nanoimprint lithography is an extremely effective technology for producing high-efficiency solar cells at a low cost.

  3. Ultraviolet Plasmonic Aluminium Nanoparticles for Highly Efficient Light Incoupling on Silicon Solar Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yinan; Cai, Boyuan; Jia, Baohua

    2016-01-01

    Plasmonic metal nanoparticles supporting localized surface plasmon resonances have attracted a great deal of interest in boosting the light absorption in solar cells. Among the various plasmonic materials, the aluminium nanoparticles recently have become a rising star due to their unique ultraviolet plasmonic resonances, low cost, earth-abundance and high compatibility with the complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) manufacturing process. Here, we report some key factors that determine the light incoupling of aluminium nanoparticles located on the front side of silicon solar cells. We first numerically study the scattering and absorption properties of the aluminium nanoparticles and the influence of the nanoparticle shape, size, surface coverage and the spacing layer on the light incoupling using the finite difference time domain method. Then, we experimentally integrate 100-nm aluminium nanoparticles on the front side of silicon solar cells with varying silicon nitride thicknesses. This study provides the fundamental insights for designing aluminium nanoparticle-based light trapping on solar cells. PMID:28335223

  4. Ultraviolet Plasmonic Aluminium Nanoparticles for Highly Efficient Light Incoupling on Silicon Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yinan; Cai, Boyuan; Jia, Baohua

    2016-05-24

    Plasmonic metal nanoparticles supporting localized surface plasmon resonances have attracted a great deal of interest in boosting the light absorption in solar cells. Among the various plasmonic materials, the aluminium nanoparticles recently have become a rising star due to their unique ultraviolet plasmonic resonances, low cost, earth-abundance and high compatibility with the complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) manufacturing process. Here, we report some key factors that determine the light incoupling of aluminium nanoparticles located on the front side of silicon solar cells. We first numerically study the scattering and absorption properties of the aluminium nanoparticles and the influence of the nanoparticle shape, size, surface coverage and the spacing layer on the light incoupling using the finite difference time domain method. Then, we experimentally integrate 100-nm aluminium nanoparticles on the front side of silicon solar cells with varying silicon nitride thicknesses. This study provides the fundamental insights for designing aluminium nanoparticle-based light trapping on solar cells.

  5. Stable, high-efficiency amorphous silicon solar cells with low hydrogen content

    SciTech Connect

    Fortmann, C.M.; Hegedus, S.S. )

    1992-12-01

    Results and conclusions obtained during a research program of the investigation of amorphous silicon and amorphous silicon based alloy materials and solar cells fabricated by photo-chemical vapor and glow discharge depositions are reported. Investigation of the effects of the hydrogen content in a-si:H i-layers in amorphous silicon solar cells show that cells with lowered hydrogen content i-layers are more stable. A classical thermodynamic formulation of the Staebler-Wronski effect has been developed for standard solar cell operating temperatures and illuminations. Methods have been developed to extract a lumped equivalent circuit from the current voltage characteristic of a single junction solar cell in order to predict its behavior in a multijunction device.

  6. Fabrication and Doping Methods for Silicon Nano- and Micropillar Arrays for Solar-Cell Applications: A Review.

    PubMed

    Elbersen, Rick; Vijselaar, Wouter; Tiggelaar, Roald M; Gardeniers, Han; Huskens, Jurriaan

    2015-11-18

    Silicon is one of the main components of commercial solar cells and is used in many other solar-light-harvesting devices. The overall efficiency of these devices can be increased by the use of structured surfaces that contain nanometer- to micrometer-sized pillars with radial p/n junctions. High densities of such structures greatly enhance the light-absorbing properties of the device, whereas the 3D p/n junction geometry shortens the diffusion length of minority carriers and diminishes recombination. Due to the vast silicon nano- and microfabrication toolbox that exists nowadays, many versatile methods for the preparation of such highly structured samples are available. Furthermore, the formation of p/n junctions on structured surfaces is possible by a variety of doping techniques, in large part transferred from microelectronic circuit technology. The right choice of doping method, to achieve good control of junction depth and doping level, can contribute to an improvement of the overall efficiency that can be obtained in devices for energy applications. A review of the state-of-the-art of the fabrication and doping of silicon micro and nanopillars is presented here, as well as of the analysis of the properties and geometry of thus-formed 3D-structured p/n junctions.

  7. Amorphous silicon enhanced metal-insulator-semiconductor contacts for silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    Bullock, J. Cuevas, A.; Yan, D.; Demaurex, B.; Hessler-Wyser, A.; De Wolf, S.

    2014-10-28

    Carrier recombination at the metal-semiconductor contacts has become a significant obstacle to the further advancement of high-efficiency diffused-junction silicon solar cells. This paper provides the proof-of-concept of a procedure to reduce contact recombination by means of enhanced metal-insulator-semiconductor (MIS) structures. Lightly diffused n{sup +} and p{sup +} surfaces are passivated with SiO{sub 2}/a-Si:H and Al{sub 2}O{sub 3}/a-Si:H stacks, respectively, before the MIS contacts are formed by a thermally activated alloying process between the a-Si:H layer and an overlying aluminum film. Transmission/scanning transmission electron microscopy (TEM/STEM) and energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy are used to ascertain the nature of the alloy. Idealized solar cell simulations reveal that MIS(n{sup +}) contacts, with SiO{sub 2} thicknesses of ∼1.55 nm, achieve the best carrier-selectivity producing a contact resistivity ρ{sub c} of ∼3 mΩ cm{sup 2} and a recombination current density J{sub 0c} of ∼40 fA/cm{sup 2}. These characteristics are shown to be stable at temperatures up to 350 °C. The MIS(p{sup +}) contacts fail to achieve equivalent results both in terms of thermal stability and contact characteristics but may still offer advantages over directly metallized contacts in terms of manufacturing simplicity.

  8. A 31%-efficient GaAs/silicon mechanically stacked, multijunction concentrator solar cell

    SciTech Connect

    Gee, J.M.; Virshup, G.F.

    1988-01-01

    Development and demonstration of a GaAs/silicon mechanically stacked, multi-junction (MSMJ) solar concentrator cell with an efficiency in excess of 30% is reported. This is the highest efficiency ever reported for a solar cell and this is the first solar cell to ever achieve an efficiency in excess of 30%. Our preliminary analysis suggests that an efficiency approaching 35% is possible with GaAs-based MSMJ cells. (22 refs., 2 tabs.)

  9. Silicon Materials Task of the Low Cost Solar Array Project, Phase 3. Effect of Impurities and Processing on Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, R. H.; Davis, J. R.; Blais, P. D.; Rohatgi, A.; Campbell, R. B.; Rai-Choudhury, P.; Stapleton, R. E.; Mollenkopf, H. C.; Mccormick, J. R.

    1979-01-01

    The effects of impurities, various thermochemical processes, and any impurity process interactions on the performance of terrestrial silicon solar cells are defined. Determinations of the segregation coefficients of tungsten, tantalum, and cobalt for the Czochralski pulling of silicon single crystals are reported. Sensitive neutron activation analysis was used to determine the metal impurity content of the silicon while atomic absorption was used to measure the metal content of the residual liquid from which the doped crystals were grown. Gettering of Ti doped silicon wafers improved cell performance by one to two percent for the highest temperatures and longest times. The HCl is more effective than POCl3 treatments for deactivating Ti but POCl3 and HCl produced essentially identical results for Mo or Fe.

  10. Dip-coating process: Silicon sheet growth development for the large-area silicon sheet task of the low-cost silicon solar array project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zook, J. D.; Heaps, J. D.; Maciolek, R. B.; Koepke, B. G.; Gutter, C. D.; Schuldt, S. B.

    1977-01-01

    The objective of this research program is to investigate the technical and economic feasibility of producing solar-cell-quality sheet silicon by coating one surface of carbonized ceramic substrates with a thin layer of large-grain polycrystalline silicon from the melt. The past quarter demonstrated significant progress in several areas. Seeded growth of silicon-on-ceramic (SOC) with an EFG ribbon seed was demonstrated. Different types of mullite were successfully coated with silicon. A new method of deriving minority carrier diffusion length, L sub n from spectral response measurements was evaluated. ECOMOD cost projections were found to be in good agreement with the interim SAMIS method proposed by JPL. On the less positive side, there was a decrease in cell performance which we believe to be due to an unidentified source of impurities.

  11. National commercial solar heating and cooling demonstration: purposes, program activities, and implications for future programs

    SciTech Connect

    Koontz, R.; Genest, M.; Bryant, B.

    1980-05-01

    The Solar Heating and Cooling Demonstration Act of 1974 created a set of activities to demonstrate the potential use of solar heating within a three-year period and of combined solar heating and cooling within a five-year period. This study assesses the Commercial Demonstration Program portion of the activity in terms of its stated goals and objectives. The primary data base was DOE contractor reports on commercial demonstration projects. It was concluded that the program did not provide data to support a positive decision for the immediate construction or purchase of commercial solar systems. However, the program may have contributed to other goals in the subsequent legislation; i.e., research and development information, stimulation of the solar industry, and more informed policy decisions.

  12. Toward a National Plan for the Accelerated Commercialization of Solar Energy: residential/commercial buildings market sector workbook

    SciTech Connect

    Taul, Jr., J. W.; de Jong, D. L.

    1980-01-01

    This workbook contains preliminary data and assumptions used during the preparation of inputs to a National Plan for the Accelerated Commercialization of Solar Energy (NPAC). The workbook indicates the market potential, competitive position, market penetration, and technological characteristics of solar technologies for this market sector over the next twenty years. The workbook also presents projections of the mix of solar technologies by US Census Regions. In some cases, data have been aggregated to the national level. Emphasis of the workbook is on a mid-price fuel scenario, Option II, that meets about a 20% solar goal by the year 2000. The energy demand for the mid-price scenario is projected at 115 quads in the year 2000. The workbook, prepared in April 1979, represents government policies and programs anticipated at that time.

  13. Ink jet printable silver metallization with zinc oxide for front side metallization for micro crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jurk, Robert; Fritsch, Marco; Eberstein, Markus; Schilm, Jochen; Uhlig, Florian; Waltinger, Andreas; Michaelis, Alexander

    2015-12-01

    Ink jet printable water based inks are prepared by a new silver nanoparticle synthesis and the addition of nanoscaled ZnO particles. For the formation of front side contacts the inks are ink jet printed on the front side of micro crystalline silicon solar cells, and contact the cell directly during the firing step by etching through the wafers’ anti-reflection coating (ARC). In terms of Ag dissolution and precipitation the mechanism of contact formation can be compared to commercial glass containing thick film pastes. This avoids additional processing steps, like laser ablation, which are usually necessary to open the ARC prior to ink jet printing. As a consequence process costs can be reduced. In order to optimize the ARC etching and contact formation during firing, zinc oxide nanoparticles are investigated as an ink additive. By utilization of in situ contact resistivity measurements the mechanism of contacting was explored. Our results show that silver inks containing ZnO particles realize a specific contact resistance below 10 mΩṡcm2. By using a multi-pass ink jet printing and plating process a front side metallization of commercial 6  ×  6 inch2 standard micro crystalline silicone solar cells with emitter resistance of 60 Ω/◽ was achieved and showed an efficiency of 15.7%.

  14. Improved performance of silicon nanowire/cadmium telluride quantum dots/organic hybrid solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ge, Zhaoyun; Xu, Ling; Zhang, Renqi; Xue, Zhaoguo; Wang, Hongyu; Xu, Jun; Yu, Yao; Su, Weining; Ma, Zhongyuan; Chen, Kunji

    2015-04-01

    We fabricated silicon nanowire/cadmium telluride quantum dots (CdTe QDs)/organic hybrid solar cells and investigated their structure and electrical properties. Transmission electron microscope revealed that CdTe QDs were uniformly distributed on the surface of the silicon nanowires, which made PEDOT:PSS easily filled the space between SiNWs. The current density-voltage (J-V) characteristics of hybrid solar cells were investigated both in dark and under illumination. The result shows that the performance of the hybrid solar cells with CdTe QDs layer has an obvious improvement. The optimal short-circuit current density (Jsc) of solar cells with CdTe QDs layer can reach 33.5 mA/cm2. Compared with the solar cells without CdTe QDs, Jsc has an increase of 15.1%. Power conversion efficiency of solar cells also increases by 28.8%. The enhanced performance of the hybrid solar cells with CdTe QDs layers are ascribed to down-shifting effect of CdTe QDs and the modification of the silicon nanowires surface with CdTe QDs. The result of our experiments suggests that hybrid solar cells with CdTe QDs modified are promising candidates for solar cell application.

  15. Impact of interstitial oxygen trapped in silicon during plasma growth of silicon oxy-nitride films for silicon solar cell passivation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saseendran, Sandeep S.; Saravanan, S.; Raval, Mehul C.; Kottantharayil, Anil

    2016-03-01

    Low temperature oxidation of silicon in plasma ambient is a potential candidate for replacing thermally grown SiO2 films for surface passivation of crystalline silicon solar cells. In this work, we report the growth of silicon oxy-nitride (SiOxNy) film in N2O plasma ambient at 380 °C. However, this process results in trapping of interstitial oxygen within silicon. The impact of this trapped interstitial oxygen on the surface passivation quality is investigated. The interstitial oxygen trapped in silicon was seen to decrease for larger SiOxNy film thickness. Effective minority carrier lifetime (τeff) measurements on n-type float zone silicon wafers passivated by SiOxNy/silicon nitride (SiNv:H) stack showed a decrease in τeff from 347 μs to 68 μs, for larger SiOxNy film thickness due to degradation in interface properties. From high frequency capacitance-voltage measurements, it was concluded that the surface passivation quality was governed by the interface parameters (fixed charge density and interface state density). High temperature firing of the SiOxNy/SiNv:H stack resulted in a severe degradation in τeff due to migration of oxygen across the interface into silicon. However, on using the SiOxNy/SiNv:H stack for emitter surface passivation in screen printed p-type Si solar cells, an improvement in short wavelength response was observed in comparison to the passivation by SiNv:H alone, indicating an improvement in emitter surface passivation quality.

  16. Titanium dioxide/silicon hole-blocking selective contact to enable double-heterojunction crystalline silicon-based solar cell

    SciTech Connect

    Nagamatsu, Ken A. Man, Gabriel; Jhaveri, Janam; Berg, Alexander H.; Kahn, Antoine; Wagner, Sigurd; Sturm, James C.; Avasthi, Sushobhan; Sahasrabudhe, Girija; Schwartz, Jeffrey

    2015-03-23

    In this work, we use an electron-selective titanium dioxide (TiO{sub 2}) heterojunction contact to silicon to block minority carrier holes in the silicon from recombining at the cathode contact of a silicon-based photovoltaic device. We present four pieces of evidence demonstrating the beneficial effect of adding the TiO{sub 2} hole-blocking layer: reduced dark current, increased open circuit voltage (V{sub OC}), increased quantum efficiency at longer wavelengths, and increased stored minority carrier charge under forward bias. The importance of a low rate of recombination of minority carriers at the Si/TiO{sub 2} interface for effective blocking of minority carriers is quantitatively described. The anode is made of a poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) heterojunction to silicon which forms a hole selective contact, so that the entire device is made at a maximum temperature of 100 °C, with no doping gradients or junctions in the silicon. A low rate of recombination of minority carriers at the Si/TiO{sub 2} interface is crucial for effective blocking of minority carriers. Such a pair of complementary carrier-selective heterojunctions offers a path towards high-efficiency silicon solar cells using relatively simple and near-room temperature fabrication techniques.

  17. Analysis of copper-rich precipitates in silicon: chemical state,gettering, and impact on multicrystalline silicon solar cellmaterial

    SciTech Connect

    Buonassisi, Tonio; Marcus, Matthew A.; Istratov, Andrei A.; Heuer, Matthias; Ciszek, Theodore F.; Lai, Barry; Cai, Zhonghou; Weber,Eicke R.

    2004-11-08

    In this study, synchrotron-based x-ray absorption microspectroscopy (mu-XAS) is applied to identifying the chemical states of copper-rich clusters within a variety of silicon materials, including as-grown cast multicrystalline silicon solar cell material with high oxygen concentration and other silicon materials with varying degrees of oxygen concentration and copper contamination pathways. In all samples, copper silicide (Cu3Si) is the only phase of copper identified. It is noted from thermodynamic considerations that unlike certain metal species, copper tends to form a silicide and not an oxidized compound because of the strong silicon-oxygen bonding energy; consequently the likelihood of encountering an oxidized copper particle in silicon is small, in agreement with experimental data. In light of these results, the effectiveness of aluminum gettering for the removal of copper from bulk silicon is quantified via x-ray fluorescence microscopy (mu-XRF),and a segregation coefficient is determined from experimental data to beat least (1-2)'103. Additionally, mu-XAS data directly demonstrates that the segregation mechanism of Cu in Al is the higher solubility of Cu in the liquid phase. In light of these results, possible limitations for the complete removal of Cu from bulk mc-Si are discussed.

  18. Analysis of copper-rich precipitates in silicon: Chemical state, gettering, and impact on multicrystalline silicon solar cell material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buonassisi, Tonio; Marcus, Matthew A.; Istratov, Andrei A.; Heuer, Matthias; Ciszek, Theodore F.; Lai, Barry; Cai, Zhonghou; Weber, Eicke R.

    2005-03-01

    In this study, synchrotron-based x-ray absorption microspectroscopy (μ-XAS) is applied to identify the chemical states of copper-rich clusters within a variety of silicon materials, including as-grown cast multicrystalline silicon solar cell material with high oxygen concentration and other silicon materials with varying degrees of oxygen concentration and copper contamination pathways. In all samples, copper silicide (Cu3Si) is the only phase of copper identified. It is noted from thermodynamic considerations that unlike certain metal species, copper tends to form a silicide and not an oxidized compound because of the strong silicon-oxygen bonding energy; consequently the likelihood of encountering an oxidized copper particle in silicon is small, in agreement with experimental data. In light of these results, the effectiveness of aluminum gettering for the removal of copper from bulk silicon is quantified via x-ray fluorescence microscopy, and a segregation coefficient is determined from experimental data to be at least (1-2)×103. Additionally, μ-XAS data directly demonstrate that the segregation mechanism of Cu in Al is the higher solubility of Cu in the liquid phase. In light of these results, possible limitations for the complete removal of Cu from bulk mc-Si are discussed.

  19. Black silicon solar cells with interdigitated back-contacts achieve 22.1% efficiency.

    PubMed

    Savin, Hele; Repo, Päivikki; von Gastrow, Guillaume; Ortega, Pablo; Calle, Eric; Garín, Moises; Alcubilla, Ramon

    2015-07-01

    The nanostructuring of silicon surfaces--known as black silicon--is a promising approach to eliminate front-surface reflection in photovoltaic devices without the need for a conventional antireflection coating. This might lead to both an increase in efficiency and a reduction in the manufacturing costs of solar cells. However, all previous attempts to integrate black silicon into solar cells have resulted in cell efficiencies well below 20% due to the increased charge carrier recombination at the nanostructured surface. Here, we show that a conformal alumina film can solve the issue of surface recombination in black silicon solar cells by providing excellent chemical and electrical passivation. We demonstrate that efficiencies above 22% can be reached, even in thick interdigitated back-contacted cells, where carrier transport is very sensitive to front surface passivation. This means that the surface recombination issue has truly been solved and black silicon solar cells have real potential for industrial production. Furthermore, we show that the use of black silicon can result in a 3% increase in daily energy production when compared with a reference cell with the same efficiency, due to its better angular acceptance.

  20. Amorphous and crystalline silicon based heterojunction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schüttauf, J. A.

    2011-10-01

    In this thesis, research on amorphous and crystalline silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells is described. Probably the most important feature of SHJ solar cells is a thin intrinsic amorphous silicion (a-Si:H) layer that is deposited before depositing the doped emitter and back surface field. The passivation properties of such intrinsic layers made by three different chemical vapor deposition (CVD) techniques have been investigated. For layers deposited at 130°C, all techniques show a strong reduction in surface recombination velocity (SRV) after annealing. Modelling indicates that dangling bond saturation by atomic hydrogen is the predominant mechanism. We obtain outstanding carrier lifetimes of 10.3 ms, corresponding to SRVs of 0.56 cm/s. For a-Si:H films made at 250°C, an as-deposited minority carrier lifetime of 2.0 ms is observed. In contrast to a-Si:H films fabricated at 130°C, however, no change in passivation quality upon thermal annealing is observed. These films were fabricated for the first time using a continuous in-line HWCVD mode. Wafer cleaning before a-Si:H deposition is a crucial step for c-Si surface passivation. We tested the influence of an atomic hydrogen treatment before a-Si:H deposition on the c-Si surface. The treatments were performed in a new virgin chamber to exclude Si deposition from the chamber walls. Subsequently, we deposited a-Si:H layers onto the c-Si wafers and measured the lifetime for different H treatment times. We found that increasing hydrogen treatment times led to lower effective lifetimes. Modelling of the measured minority carrier lifetime data shows that the decreased passivation quality is caused by an increased defect density at the amorphous-crystalline interface. Furtheremore, the passivation of different a-Si:H containing layers have been tested. For intrinsic films and intrinsic/n-type stacks, an improvement in passivation up to 255°C and 270°C is observed. This improvement is attributed to dangling bond

  1. Light trapping by backside diffraction gratings in silicon solar cells revisited.

    PubMed

    Wellenzohn, Markus; Hainberger, Rainer

    2012-01-02

    This numerical study investigates the influence of rectangular backside diffraction gratings on the efficiency of silicon solar cells. Backside gratings are used to diffract incident light to large propagation angles beyond the angle of total internal reflection, which can significantly increase the interaction length of long wavelength photons inside the silicon layer and thus enhance the efficiency. We investigate the influence of the silicon thickness on the optimum grating period and modulation depth by a simulation method which combines a 2D ray tracing algorithm with rigorous coupled wave analysis (RCWA) for calculating the grating diffraction efficiencies. The optimization was performed for gratings with period lengths ranging from 0.25 µm to 1.5 µm and modulation depths ranging from 25 nm to 400 nm under the assumption of normal light incidence. This study shows that the achievable efficiency improvement of silicon solar cells by means of backside diffraction gratings strongly depends on the proper choice of the grating parameters for a given silicon thickness. The relationship between the optimized grating parameters resulting in maximum photocurrent densities and the silicon thickness is determined. Moreover, the thicknesses of silicon solar cells with and without optimized backside diffraction gratings providing the same photocurrent densities are compared.

  2. Plasmonic enhancement of amorphous silicon solar photovoltaic cells with hexagonal silver arrays made with nanosphere lithography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, C.; Guney, D. O.; Pearce, J. M.

    2016-10-01

    Nanosphere lithography (NSL) provides an opportunity for a low-cost and scalable method to optically engineer solar photovoltaic (PV) cells. For PV applications, NSL is widely used in rear contact scenarios to excite surface plasmon polariton and/or high order diffractions, however, the top contact scenarios using NSL are rare. In this paper a systematic simulation study is conducted to determine the capability of achieving efficiency enhancement in hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cells using NSL as a top contact plasmonic optical enhancer. The study focuses on triangular prism and sphere arrays as they are the most commonly and easily acquired through direct deposition or low-temperature annealing, respectively. For optical enhancement, a characteristic absorption profile is generated and analyzed to determine the effects of size, shape and spacing of plasmonic structures compared to an un-enhanced reference cell. The factors affecting NSL-enhanced PV performance include absorption, shielding effects, diffraction, and scattering. In the triangular prism array, parasitic absorption of the silver particles proves to be problematic, and although it can be alleviated by increasing the particle spacing, no useful enhancement was observed in the triangular prism arrays that were simulated. Sphere arrays, on the other hand, have broad scattering cross-sections that create useful scattering fields at several sizes and spacing intervals. For the simulated sphere arrays the highest enhancement found was 7.4%, which was fabricated with a 250 nm radius nanosphere and a 50 nm silver thickness, followed by annealing in inert gas. These results are promising and provide a path towards the commercialization of plasmonic a-Si:H solar cells using NSL fabrication techniques.

  3. A review on plasma-assisted VLS synthesis of silicon nanowires and radial junction solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misra, Soumyadeep; Yu, Linwei; Chen, Wanghua; Foldyna, Martin; Cabarrocas, Pere Roca i.

    2014-10-01

    Incorporation of nanostructures is a recent trend in the photovoltaic community, aimed at improving light absorption and consequently cell efficiency. In this regard, semiconductor nanowires provide an attractive research platform for a new generation of cost-effective and efficient solar cells. Thanks to their unique geometry, silicon nanowires enhance light trapping and anti-reflection effects by means of multiple scattering between individual nanowires, and by coupling the light into confined eigenmodes over a broad range of the solar spectrum. Moreover, radial junction solar cells built around nanowires decouple the light absorption and carrier collection directions, which allows for a higher internal field and better carrier collection. Thus, arrays of radial junction solar cells bring advantages of high efficiency with reduced material amount. This is particularly attractive for devices based on hydrogenated amorphous and microcrystalline silicon thin films. In this paper, after reviewing different approaches to fabricate silicon nanowires, we focus on nanowires grown using the plasma-assisted vapour-liquid-solid method because of the simplicity and compatibility with current silicon thin-film technology. Their application to a-Si : H based radial junction solar cells has already resulted in ˜8% of stable devices with an absorber layer thickness of only 100 nm. Moreover, current challenges and perspectives such as the use of a microcrystalline silicon absorber are also reviewed.

  4. Nano-Photonic Structures for Light Trapping in Ultra-Thin Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Pathi, Prathap; Peer, Akshit; Biswas, Rana

    2017-01-13

    Thick wafer-silicon is the dominant solar cell technology. It is of great interest to develop ultra-thin solar cells that can reduce materials usage, but still achieve acceptable performance and high solar absorption. Accordingly, we developed a highly absorbing ultra-thin crystalline Si based solar cell architecture using periodically patterned front and rear dielectric nanocone arrays which provide enhanced light trapping. The rear nanocones are embedded in a silver back reflector. In contrast to previous approaches, we utilize dielectric photonic crystals with a completely flat silicon absorber layer, providing expected high electronic quality and low carrier recombination. This architecture creates a dense mesh of wave-guided modes at near-infrared wavelengths in the absorber layer, generating enhanced absorption. For thin silicon (<2 μm) and 750 nm pitch arrays, scattering matrix simulations predict enhancements exceeding 90%. Absorption approaches the Lambertian limit at small thicknesses (<10 μm) and is slightly lower (by ~5%) at wafer-scale thicknesses. Parasitic losses are ~25% for ultra-thin (2 μm) silicon and just 1%-2% for thicker (>100 μm) cells. There is potential for 20 μm thick cells to provide 30 mA/cm² photo-current and >20% efficiency. This architecture has great promise for ultra-thin silicon solar panels with reduced material utilization and enhanced light-trapping.

  5. Nano-Photonic Structures for Light Trapping in Ultra-Thin Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    PubMed Central

    Pathi, Prathap; Peer, Akshit; Biswas, Rana

    2017-01-01

    Thick wafer-silicon is the dominant solar cell technology. It is of great interest to develop ultra-thin solar cells that can reduce materials usage, but still achieve acceptable performance and high solar absorption. Accordingly, we developed a highly absorbing ultra-thin crystalline Si based solar cell architecture using periodically patterned front and rear dielectric nanocone arrays which provide enhanced light trapping. The rear nanocones are embedded in a silver back reflector. In contrast to previous approaches, we utilize dielectric photonic crystals with a completely flat silicon absorber layer, providing expected high electronic quality and low carrier recombination. This architecture creates a dense mesh of wave-guided modes at near-infrared wavelengths in the absorber layer, generating enhanced absorption. For thin silicon (<2 μm) and 750 nm pitch arrays, scattering matrix simulations predict enhancements exceeding 90%. Absorption approaches the Lambertian limit at small thicknesses (<10 μm) and is slightly lower (by ~5%) at wafer-scale thicknesses. Parasitic losses are ~25% for ultra-thin (2 μm) silicon and just 1%–2% for thicker (>100 μm) cells. There is potential for 20 μm thick cells to provide 30 mA/cm2 photo-current and >20% efficiency. This architecture has great promise for ultra-thin silicon solar panels with reduced material utilization and enhanced light-trapping. PMID:28336851

  6. Improved amorphous/crystalline silicon interface passivation for heterojunction solar cells by low-temperature chemical vapor deposition and post-annealing treatment.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fengyou; Zhang, Xiaodan; Wang, Liguo; Jiang, Yuanjian; Wei, Changchun; Xu, Shengzhi; Zhao, Ying

    2014-10-07

    In this study, hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) thin films are deposited using a radio-frequency plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (RF-PECVD) system. The Si-H configuration of the a-Si:H/c-Si interface is regulated by optimizing the deposition temperature and post-annealing duration to improve the minority carrier lifetime (τeff) of a commercial Czochralski (Cz) silicon wafer. The mechanism of this improvement involves saturation of the microstructural defects with hydrogen evolved within the a-Si:H films due to the transformation from SiH2 into SiH during the annealing process. The post-annealing temperature is controlled to ∼180 °C so that silicon heterojunction solar cells (SHJ) could be prepared without an additional annealing step. To achieve better performance of the SHJ solar cells, we also optimize the thickness of the a-Si:H passivation layer. Finally, complete SHJ solar cells are fabricated using different temperatures for the a-Si:H film deposition to study the influence of the deposition temperature on the solar cell parameters. For the optimized a-Si:H deposition conditions, an efficiency of 18.41% is achieved on a textured Cz silicon wafer.

  7. High efficiency polycrystalline silicon solar cells using low temperature PECVD process

    SciTech Connect

    Elgamel, H.E.A.

    1998-10-01

    Conventionally directionally solidified (DS) and silicon film (SF) polycrystalline silicon solar cells are fabricated using gettering and low temperature plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) passivation. Thin layer ({approximately}10 nm) of PECVD SiO{sub 2} is used to passivate the emitter of the solar cell, while direct hydrogen rf plasma and PECVD silicon nitride (Si{sub 3}N{sub 4}) are implemented to provide emitter and bulk passivation. It is found in this work that hydrogen rf plasma can significantly improve the solar cell blue and long wavelength responses when it is performed through a thin layer of PECVD Si{sub 3}N{sub 4}. High efficiency DS and SF polycrystalline silicon solar cells have been achieved using a simple solar cell process with uniform emitter, Al/POCL{sub 3} gettering, hydrogen rf plasma/PECVD Si{sub 3}N{sub 4} and PECVD SiO{sub 2} passivation. On the other hand, a comprehensive experimental study of the characteristics of the PECVD Si{sub 3}N{sub 4} layer and its role in improving the efficiency of polycrystalline silicon solar cells is carried out in this paper. For the polycrystalline silicon used in this investigation, it is found that the PECVD Si{sub 3}N{sub 4} layer doesn`t provide a sufficient cap for the out diffusion of hydrogen at temperatures higher than 500 C. Low temperature ({le}400 C) annealing of the PECVD Si{sub 3}N{sub 4} provides efficient hydrogen bulk passivation, while higher temperature annealing relaxes the deposition induced stress and improves mainly the short wavelength (blue) response of the solar cells.

  8. High-Efficiency, Commercial Ready CdTe Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Sites, James R.

    2015-11-19

    Colorado State’s F-PACE project explored several ways to increase the efficiency of CdTe solar cells and to better understand the device physics of those cells under study. Increases in voltage, current, and fill factor resulted in efficiencies above 17%. The three project tasks and additional studies are described in detail in the final report. Most cells studied were fabricated at Colorado State using an industry-compatible single-vacuum closed-space-sublimation (CSS) chamber for deposition of the key semiconductor layers. Additionally, some cells were supplied by First Solar for comparison purposes, and a small number of modules were supplied by Abound Solar.

  9. Automated assembly of Gallium Arsenide and 50-micron thick silicon solar cell modules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mesch, H. G.

    1984-01-01

    The TRW automated solar array assembly equipment was used for the module assembly of 300 GaAs solar cells and 300 50 micron thick silicon solar cells (2 x 4 cm in size). These cells were interconnected with silver plated Invar tabs by means of welding. The GaAs cells were bonded to Kapton graphite aluminum honeycomb graphite substrates and the thin silicon cells were bonded to 0.002 inch thick single layer Kapton substrates. The GaAs solar cell module assembly resulted in a yield of 86% and the thin cell assembly produced a yield of 46% due to intermittent sticking of weld electrodes during the front cell contact welding operation. (Previously assembled thin cell solar modules produced an overall assembly yield of greater than 80%).

  10. Significant light absorption enhancement in silicon thin film tandem solar cells with metallic nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Cai, Boyuan; Li, Xiangping; Zhang, Yinan; Jia, Baohua

    2016-05-13

    Enhancing the light absorption in microcrystalline silicon bottom cell of a silicon-based tandem solar cell for photocurrent matching holds the key to achieving the overall solar cell performance breakthroughs. Here, we present a concept for significantly improving the absorption of both subcells simultaneously by simply applying tailored metallic nanoparticles both on the top and at the rear surfaces of the solar cells. Significant light absorption enhancement as large as 56% has been achieved in the bottom subcells. More importantly the thickness of the microcrystalline layer can be reduced by 57% without compromising the optical performance of the tandem solar cell, providing a cost-effective strategy for high performance tandem solar cells.

  11. Plasmonic effects in amorphous silicon thin film solar cells with metal back contacts.

    PubMed

    Palanchoke, Ujwol; Jovanov, Vladislav; Kurz, Henning; Obermeyer, Philipp; Stiebig, Helmut; Knipp, Dietmar

    2012-03-12

    Plasmonic effects in amorphous silicon thin film solar cells with randomly textured metal back contact were investigated experimentally and numerically. The influence of different metal back contacts with and without ZnO interlayer was studied and losses in the individual layers of the solar cell were quantified. The amorphous silicon thin film solar cells were prepared on randomly textured substrates using large area production equipment and exhibit conversion efficiencies approaching 10%. The optical wave propagation within the solar cells was studied by Finite Difference Time Domain simulations. The quantum efficiency of solar cells with and without ZnO interlayer was simulated and the interplay between the reflection, quantum efficiency and absorption in the back contact will be discussed.

  12. Silicon solar cells reaching the efficiency limits: from simple to complex modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kowalczewski, Piotr; Redorici, Lisa; Bozzola, Angelo; Andreani, Lucio Claudio

    2016-05-01

    Numerical modelling is pivotal in the development of high efficiency solar cells. In this contribution we present different approaches to model the solar cell performance: the diode equation, a generalization of the well-known Hovel model, and a complete device modelling. In all three approaches we implement a Lambertian light trapping, which is often considered as a benchmark for the optical design of solar cells. We quantify the range of parameters for which all three approaches give the same results, and highlight the advantages and limitations of different models. Using these methods we calculate the efficiency limits of single-junction crystalline silicon solar cells in a wide range of cell thickness. We find that silicon solar cells close to the efficiency limits operate in the high-injection (rather than in the low-injection) regime. In such a regime, surface recombination can have an unexpectedly large effect on cells with the absorber thickness lower than a few tens of microns. Finally, we calculate the limiting efficiency of tandem silicon-perovskite solar cells, and we determine the optimal thickness of the bottom silicon cell for different band gaps of the perovskite material.

  13. Performance Analysis of Ultra-Thin Silicon Based Tunnel Junctions for Tandem Solar Cell Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heidarzadeh, H.; Rostami, A.; Dolatyari, M.; Rostami, G.

    Nowadays silicon solar cells have an efficiency of up to 20 % and in order to increase the efficiency of them, fabrication of multi-junction thin film solar cells with different band gaps is one of the most promising approaches. The silicon based tandem solar cells are third generation new style solar cells with ultra-high efficiency. The sub-cells in a tandem solar cell have different energy band gaps. In order to match the currents between sub-cells, tunnel junctions are used to connect the sub-cells. This work will concentrate on simulating the tunnel junction for application as part of multi-junction solar cell. In this way dopant concentration is changed and the tunnel junction current-voltage characteristics and their Energy band diagram in different dopant levels under equilibrium condition for moderate and usual doping have been calculated. An n++-Si/p++-Si tunnel junction is selected to simulate the overall characteristics of cell by numerical finite element method. We have simulated a symmetric silicon tunnel junction with thickness of 25 nm for n-type and 25 nm for p-type silicon by changing doping value from 1 × 10e20 cm-3 to 2 × 10e20 cm-3. The simulation results show that the doping concentration of 2 × 10e20 cm-3 is suitable for both sides.

  14. RIE surface texturing for optimum light trapping in multicrystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoo, Jinsu; Cho, Junsik; Han, Kyumin; Yi, Junsin

    2012-06-01

    Optical losses by reflection and transmission of the incident light should be reduced to improve the efficiency of solar cells. Compared with antireflection coatings, surface texturing is a more persistent and effective solution aiming at reducing light reflection losses. Alkali (NaOH, KOH) or acidic (HF, HNO3, CH3COOH) chemicals are used in conventional solar cell production lines for wet chemical texturing. However, Surface texturing is too difficult to apply to solar cell fabrication with thinner wafers due to the large amount of silicon loss caused by saw damage removal (SDR) and the texturing process for multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si). In order to solve the problems, reactive ion etching (RIE) has been applied for surface texturing of solar cell wafers. The RIE method can be effective in the reducing surface reflection with low silicon loss. In this study, we, therefore, fabricated a large-area (243.3 cm2) mc-Si solar cell by maskless surface texturing using a SF6/O2 RIE process. Also, we achieved a conversion efficiency (Eff), open circuit voltage (Voc), short circuit current density (Jsc) and fill factor (FF) as high as 17.2%, 616 mV, 35.1 mA/cm2, and 79.6%, respectively, which are suitable for fabricating thin crystalline silicon solar cells at low cost and with high efficiency.

  15. Status of Reconstruction of Fragmented Diamond-on-Silicon Collector From Genesis Spacecraft Solar Wind Concentrator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rodriquez, Melissa C.; Calaway, M. C.; McNamara, K. M.; Hittle, J. D.

    2009-01-01

    In addition to passive solar wind collector surfaces, the Genesis Discovery Mission science canister had on board an electrostatic concave mirror for concentrating the solar wind ions, known as the concentrator . The 30-mm-radius collector focal point (the target) was comprised of 4 quadrants: two of single crystal SiC, one of polycrystalline 13C diamond and one of diamond-like-carbon (DLC) on a silicon substrate. [DLC-on-silicon is also sometimes referenced as Diamond-on-silicon, DOS.] Three of target quadrants survived the hard landing intact, but the DLC-on-silicon quadrant fractured into numerous pieces (Fig. 1). This abstract reports the status of identifying the DLC target fragments and reconstructing their original orientation.

  16. Pyramidal surface textures for light trapping and antireflection in perovskite-on-silicon tandem solar cells.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Bennett W; Lal, Niraj N; Baker-Finch, Simeon; White, Thomas P

    2014-10-20

    Perovskite-on-silicon tandem solar cells show potential to reach > 30% conversion efficiency, but require careful optical control. We introduce here an effective light-management scheme based on the established pyramidal texturing of crystalline silicon cells. Calculations show that conformal deposition of a thin film perovskite solar cell directly onto the textured front surface of a high efficiency silicon cell can yield front surface reflection losses as low as 0.52mA/cm(2). Combining this with a wavelength-selective intermediate reflector between the cells additionally provides effective light-trapping in the high-bandgap top cell, resulting in calculated absolute efficiency gains of 2 - 4%. This approach provides a practical and effective method to adapt existing high efficiency silicon cell designs for use in tandem cells, with conversion efficiencies approaching 35%.

  17. Proceedings of the Flat-plate Solar Array Project Research Forum on High-efficiency Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kachare, R.

    1985-01-01

    The high-efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells research forum addressed high-efficiency concepts, surface-interface effects, bulk effects, modeling and device processing. The topics were arranged into six interactive sessions, which focused on the state-of-the-art of device structures, identification of barriers to achieve high-efficiency cells and potential ways to overcome these barriers.

  18. Silicon-Light: a European project aiming at high efficiency thin film silicon solar cells on foil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soppe, W.; Krc, J.; Leitner, K.; Haug, F.-J.; Duchamp, M.; Sanchez Plaza, G.; Wang, Q.-K.

    2014-07-01

    In the European project Silicon-Light we developed concepts and technologies to increase conversion efficiencies of thin film silicon solar cells on foil. Main focus was put on improved light management, using NIL for creating light scattering textures, improved TCOs using sputtering, and improved silicon absorber material made by PECVD. On foil we achieved initial cell efficiencies of 11% and on rigid substrates stable efficiencies of 11.6% were achieved. Finally, the project demonstrated the industrial scale feasibility of the developed technologies and materials. Cost of ownership calculations showed that implementation of these technologies on large scale would enable the production of these high efficiency solar modules at manufacturing cost of 0.65 €/Wp with encapsulation costs (0.20 €/Wp) being the dominant costs. Life cycle analysis showed that large scale production of modules based on the technologies developed in Silicon-Light would have an energy payback time of 0.85 years in Central European countries.

  19. Post passivation light trapping back contacts for silicon heterojunction solar cells.

    PubMed

    Smeets, M; Bittkau, K; Lentz, F; Richter, A; Ding, K; Carius, R; Rau, U; Paetzold, U W

    2016-11-10

    Light trapping in crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells is an essential building block for high efficiency solar cells targeting low material consumption and low costs. In this study, we present the successful implementation of highly efficient light-trapping back contacts, subsequent to the passivation of Si heterojunction solar cells. The back contacts are realized by texturing an amorphous silicon layer with a refractive index close to the one of crystalline silicon at the back side of the silicon wafer. As a result, decoupling of optically active and electrically active layers is introduced. In the long run, the presented concept has the potential to improve light trapping in monolithic Si multijunction solar cells as well as solar cell configurations where texturing of the Si absorber surfaces usually results in a deterioration of the electrical properties. As part of this study, different light-trapping textures were applied to prototype silicon heterojunction solar cells. The best path length enhancement factors, at high passivation quality, were obtained with light-trapping textures based on randomly distributed craters. Comparing a planar reference solar cell with an absorber thickness of 280 μm and additional anti-reflection coating, the short-circuit current density (JSC) improves for a similar solar cell with light-trapping back contact. Due to the light trapping back contact, the JSC is enhanced around 1.8 mA cm(-2) to 38.5 mA cm(-2) due to light trapping in the wavelength range between 1000 nm and 1150 nm.

  20. National solar technology roadmap: Wafer-silicon PV

    SciTech Connect

    Sopori, Bhushan

    2007-06-01

    This report applies to all bulk-silicon-based PV technologies, including those based on Czochralski, multicrystalline, float-zone wafers, and melt-grown crystals that are 100 μm or thicker, such as ribbons, sheet, or spheral silicon.

  1. Ab initio design of nanostructures for solar energy conversion: a case study on silicon nitride nanowire.

    PubMed

    Pan, Hui

    2014-01-01

    Design of novel materials for efficient solar energy conversion is critical to the development of green energy technology. In this work, we present a first-principles study on the design of nanostructures for solar energy harvesting on the basis of the density functional theory. We show that the indirect band structure of bulk silicon nitride is transferred to direct bandgap in nanowire. We find that intermediate bands can be created by doping, leading to enhancement of sunlight absorption. We further show that codoping not only reduces the bandgap and introduces intermediate bands but also enhances the solubility of dopants in silicon nitride nanowires due to reduced formation energy of substitution. Importantly, the codoped nanowire is ferromagnetic, leading to the improvement of carrier mobility. The silicon nitride nanowires with direct bandgap, intermediate bands, and ferromagnetism may be applicable to solar energy harvesting.

  2. Coupled optical and electrical modeling of solar cell based on conical pore silicon photonic crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deinega, Alexei; Eyderman, Sergey; John, Sajeev

    2013-06-01

    We compare the efficiency of thin film photonic crystal solar cells consisting of conical pores and nanowires. Solving both Maxwell's equations and the semiconductor drift-diffusion in each geometry, we identify optimal junction and contact positions and study the influence of bulk and surface recombination losses on solar cell efficiency. We find that using only 1 μm of silicon, sculpted in the form of an inverted slanted conical pore photonic crystal film, and using standard contact recombination velocities, solar power conversion efficiency of 17.5% is obtained when the carrier diffusion length exceeds 10 μm. Reducing the contact recombination velocity to 100 cm s-1 yields efficiency up to 22.5%. Further efficiency improvements are possible (with 1 μm of silicon) in a tandem cell with amorphous silicon at the top.

  3. The properties of polycrystalline silicon solar cells with controlled titanium additions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rohatgi, A.; Hopkins, R. H.; Davis, J. R., Jr.

    1981-01-01

    By coupling the results of electrical measurements, such as spectral response, lighted and dark I-V determinations, and deep-level-transient spectroscopy with optical and laser scan photomicroscopy, the effects of grain boundaries and impurities on silicon solar cells were evaluated. Titanium, which produces two deep levels in silicon, degrades cell performance by reducing bulk lifetime and thus cell short-circuit current. Electrically active grain boundaries induce carrier recombination in the bulk and depletion regions of the solar cell. Experimental data imply a small but measurable segregation of titanium into some grain boundaries of the polycrystalline silicon containing high Ti concentration. However, for the titanium-contaminated polycrystalline material used in this study, solar cell performance is dominated by the electrically active titanium concentration in the grains. Microstructural impacts on the devices are of secondary importance

  4. Development of processes for the production of solar grade silicon from halides and alkali metals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dickson, C. R.; Gould, R. K.

    1980-01-01

    High temperature reactions of silicon halides with alkali metals for the production of solar grade silicon in volume at low cost were studied. Experiments were performed to evaluate product separation and collection processes, measure heat release parameters for scaling purposes, determine the effects of reactants and/or products on materials of reactor construction, and make preliminary engineering and economic analyses of a scaled-up process.

  5. Black silicon solar cell: analysis optimization and evolution towards a thinner and flexible future.

    PubMed

    Roy, Arijit Bardhan; Dhar, Arup; Choudhuri, Mrinmoyee; Das, Sonali; Hossain, S Minhaz; Kundu, Avra

    2016-07-29

    Analysis and optimization of silicon nano-structured geometry (black silicon) for photovoltaic applications has been reported. It is seen that a unique class of geometry: micro-nanostructure has the potential to find a balance between the conflicting interests of reduced reflection for wide angles of incidence, reduced surface area enhancement due to the nano-structuring of the substrate and reduced material wastage due to the etching of the silicon substrate to realize the geometry itself. It is established that even optimally designed micro-nanostructures would not be useful for conventional wafer based approaches. The work presents computational studies on how such micro-nanostructures are more potent for future ultra-thin monocrystalline silicon absorbers. For such ultra-thin absorbers, the optimally designed micro-nanostructures provide additional advantages of advanced light management capabilities as it behaves as a lossy 2D photonic crystal making the physically thin absorber optically thick along with the ability to collect photo-generated carriers orthogonal to the direction of light (radial junction) for unified photon-electron harvesting. Most significantly, the work answers the key question on how thin the monocrystalline solar absorber should be so that optimum micro-nanostructure would be able to harness the incident photons ensuring proper collection so as to reach the well-known Shockley-Queisser limit of solar cells. Flexible ultra-thin monocrystalline silicon solar cells have been fabricated using nanosphere lithography and MacEtch technique along with a synergistic association of crystalline and amorphous silicon technologies to demonstrate its physical and technological flexibilities. The outcomes are relevant so that nanotechnology may be seamlessly integrated into the technology roadmap of monocrystalline silicon solar cells as the silicon thickness should be significantly reduced without compromising the efficiency within the next decade.

  6. Black silicon solar cell: analysis optimization and evolution towards a thinner and flexible future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bardhan Roy, Arijit; Dhar, Arup; Choudhuri, Mrinmoyee; Das, Sonali; Minhaz Hossain, S.; Kundu, Avra

    2016-07-01

    Analysis and optimization of silicon nano-structured geometry (black silicon) for photovoltaic applications has been reported. It is seen that a unique class of geometry: micro-nanostructure has the potential to find a balance between the conflicting interests of reduced reflection for wide angles of incidence, reduced surface area enhancement due to the nano-structuring of the substrate and reduced material wastage due to the etching of the silicon substrate to realize the geometry itself. It is established that even optimally designed micro-nanostructures would not be useful for conventional wafer based approaches. The work presents computational studies on how such micro-nanostructures are more potent for future ultra-thin monocrystalline silicon absorbers. For such ultra-thin absorbers, the optimally designed micro-nanostructures provide additional advantages of advanced light management capabilities as it behaves as a lossy 2D photonic crystal making the physically thin absorber optically thick along with the ability to collect photo-generated carriers orthogonal to the direction of light (radial junction) for unified photon-electron harvesting. Most significantly, the work answers the key question on how thin the monocrystalline solar absorber should be so that optimum micro-nanostructure would be able to harness the incident photons ensuring proper collection so as to reach the well-known Shockley-Queisser limit of solar cells. Flexible ultra-thin monocrystalline silicon solar cells have been fabricated using nanosphere lithography and MacEtch technique along with a synergistic association of crystalline and amorphous silicon technologies to demonstrate its physical and technological flexibilities. The outcomes are relevant so that nanotechnology may be seamlessly integrated into the technology roadmap of monocrystalline silicon solar cells as the silicon thickness should be significantly reduced without compromising the efficiency within the next decade.

  7. High-Performance TiO2 -Based Electron-Selective Contacts for Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xinbo; Bi, Qunyu; Ali, Haider; Davis, Kristopher; Schoenfeld, Winston V; Weber, Klaus

    2016-07-01

    Thin TiO2 films are demonstrated to be an excellent electron-selective contact for crystalline silicon solar cells. An efficiency of 21.6% is achieved for crystalline silicon solar cells featuring a full-area TiO2 -based electron-selective contact.

  8. Novel low cost chemical texturing for very large area industrial multi-crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gangopadhyay, U.; Dhungel, S. K.; Kim, K.; Manna, U.; Basu, P. K.; Kim, H. J.; Karunagaran, B.; Lee, K. S.; Yoo, J. S.; Yi, J.

    2005-09-01

    Multi-crystalline silicon surface etching without grain-boundary delineation is a challenging task for the fabrication of high efficiency solar cells. The use of sodium hydroxide-sodium hypochlorite (NaOH-NaOCl) solution for texturing a multi-crystalline silicon wafer surface in a solar cell fabrication line is reported in this paper. The optimized etching solution of NaOH-NaOCl does not have any effect on multi-crystalline silicon grain boundaries and it also has excellent isotropic etch characteristics, which ultimately helps to achieve higher values of performance parameters, especially the open circuit voltage (Voc) and fill factor (FF), than those in the case of conventional silicon texturing. Easy control over the reaction of the NaOH-NaOCl solution is also one of the major advantages due to which sophistication in controlling the temperature of the etching bath is not required for the industrial batch process. The FTIR analysis of the silicon surface after etching with the current approach shows the formation of Si-Cl bonds, which improves the quality of the diffused junction due to chlorine gettering during diffusion. We are the first to report 14-14.5% efficiency of very large area (150 mm × 150 mm) multi-crystalline silicon solar cells using a NaOH-NaOCl texturing approach in an industrial production line with a yield greater than 95%.

  9. Optoelectronic properties of Black-Silicon generated through inductively coupled plasma (ICP) processing for crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hirsch, Jens; Gaudig, Maria; Bernhard, Norbert; Lausch, Dominik

    2016-06-01

    The optoelectronic properties of maskless inductively coupled plasma (ICP) generated black silicon through SF6 and O2 are analyzed by using reflection measurements, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and quasi steady state photoconductivity (QSSPC). The results are discussed and compared to capacitively coupled plasma (CCP) and industrial standard wet chemical textures. The ICP process forms parabolic like surface structures in a scale of 500 nm. This surface structure reduces the average hemispherical reflection between 300 and 1120 nm up to 8%. Additionally, the ICP texture shows a weak increase of the hemispherical reflection under tilted angles of incidence up to 60°. Furthermore, we report that the ICP process is independent of the crystal orientation and the surface roughness. This allows the texturing of monocrystalline, multicrystalline and kerf-less wafers using the same parameter set. The ICP generation of black silicon does not apply a self-bias on the silicon sample. Therefore, the silicon sample is exposed to a reduced ion bombardment, which reduces the plasma induced surface damage. This leads to an enhancement of the effective charge carrier lifetime up to 2.5 ms at 1015 cm-3 minority carrier density (MCD) after an atomic layer deposition (ALD) with Al2O3. Since excellent etch results were obtained already after 4 min process time, we conclude that the ICP generation of black silicon is a promising technique to substitute the industrial state of the art wet chemical textures in the solar cell mass production.

  10. Graphene Quantum Dot Layers with Energy-Down-Shift Effect on Crystalline-Silicon Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kyung D; Park, Myung J; Kim, Do-Yeon; Kim, Soo M; Kang, Byungjun; Kim, Seongtak; Kim, Hyunho; Lee, Hae-Seok; Kang, Yoonmook; Yoon, Sam S; Hong, Byung H; Kim, Donghwan

    2015-09-02

    Graphene quantum dot (GQD) layers were deposited as an energy-down-shift layer on crystalline-silicon solar cell surfaces by kinetic spraying of GQD suspensions. A supersonic air jet was used to accelerate the GQDs onto the surfaces. Here, we report the coating results on a silicon substrate and the GQDs' application as an energy-down-shift layer in crystalline-silicon solar cells, which enhanced the power conversion efficiency (PCE). GQD layers deposited at nozzle scan speeds of 40, 30, 20, and 10 mm/s were evaluated after they were used to fabricate crystalline-silicon solar cells; the results indicate that GQDs play an important role in increasing the optical absorptivity of the cells. The short-circuit current density was enhanced by about 2.94% (0.9 mA/cm(2)) at 30 mm/s. Compared to a reference device without a GQD energy-down-shift layer, the PCE of p-type silicon solar cells was improved by 2.7% (0.4 percentage points).

  11. Molecular Monolayers for Electrical Passivation and Functionalization of Silicon-Based Solar Energy Devices.

    PubMed

    Veerbeek, Janneke; Firet, Nienke J; Vijselaar, Wouter; Elbersen, Rick; Gardeniers, Han; Huskens, Jurriaan

    2017-01-11

    Silicon-based solar fuel devices require passivation for optimal performance yet at the same time need functionalization with (photo)catalysts for efficient solar fuel production. Here, we use molecular monolayers to enable electrical passivation and simultaneous functionalization of silicon-based solar cells. Organic monolayers were coupled to silicon surfaces by hydrosilylation in order to avoid an insulating silicon oxide layer at the surface. Monolayers of 1-tetradecyne were shown to passivate silicon micropillar-based solar cells with radial junctions, by which the efficiency increased from 8.7% to 9.9% for n(+)/p junctions and from 7.8% to 8.8% for p(+)/n junctions. This electrical passivation of the surface, most likely by removal of dangling bonds, is reflected in a higher shunt resistance in the J-V measurements. Monolayers of 1,8-nonadiyne were still reactive for click chemistry with a model catalyst, thus enabling simultaneous passivation and future catalyst coupling.

  12. Black silicon solar cells with interdigitated back-contacts achieve 22.1% efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savin, Hele; Repo, Päivikki; von Gastrow, Guillaume; Ortega, Pablo; Calle, Eric; Garín, Moises; Alcubilla, Ramon

    2015-07-01

    The nanostructuring of silicon surfaces—known as black silicon—is a promising approach to eliminate front-surface reflection in photovoltaic devices without the need for a conventional antireflection coating. This might lead to both an increase in efficiency and a reduction in the manufacturing costs of solar cells. However, all previous attempts to integrate black silicon into solar cells have resulted in cell efficiencies well below 20% due to the increased charge carrier recombination at the nanostructured surface. Here, we show that a conformal alumina film can solve the issue of surface recombination in black silicon solar cells by providing excellent chemical and electrical passivation. We demonstrate that efficiencies above 22% can be reached, even in thick interdigitated back-contacted cells, where carrier transport is very sensitive to front surface passivation. This means that the surface recombination issue has truly been solved and black silicon solar cells have real potential for industrial production. Furthermore, we show that the use of black silicon can result in a 3% increase in daily energy production when compared with a reference cell with the same efficiency, due to its better angular acceptance.

  13. Silicon-core glass fibres as microwire radial-junction solar cells.

    PubMed

    Martinsen, F A; Smeltzer, B K; Nord, M; Hawkins, T; Ballato, J; Gibson, U J

    2014-09-04

    Vertically aligned radial-junction solar cell designs offer potential improvements over planar geometries, as carrier generation occurs close to the junction for all absorption depths, but most production methods still require a single crystal substrate. Here, we report on the fabrication of such solar cells from polycrystalline, low purity (99.98%) p-type silicon starting material, formed into silicon core, silica sheath fibres using bulk glass draw techniques. Short segments were cut from the fibres, and the silica was etched from one side, which exposed the core and formed a conical cavity around it. We then used vapour deposition techniques to create p-i-n junction solar cells. Prototype cells formed from single fibres have shown conversion efficiencies up to 3.6%, despite the low purity of the starting material. This fabrication method has the potential to reduce the energy cost and the silicon volume required for solar cell production. Simulations were performed to investigate the potential of the conical cavity around the silicon core for light collection. Absorption of over 90% of the incident light was predicted, over a wide range of wavelengths, using these structures in combination with a 10% volume fraction of silicon.

  14. Carbon/Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells: State of the Art and Prospects.

    PubMed

    Li, Xinming; Lv, Zheng; Zhu, Hongwei

    2015-11-01

    In the last few decades, advances and breakthroughs of carbon materials have been witnessed in both scientific fundamentals and potential applications. The combination of carbon materials with traditional silicon semiconductors to fabricate solar cells has been a promising field of carbon science. The power conversion efficiency has reached 15-17% with an astonishing speed, and the diversity of systems stimulates interest in further research. Here, the historical development and state-of-the-art carbon/silicon heterojunction solar cells are covered. Firstly, the basic concept and mechanism of carbon/silicon solar cells are introduced with a specific focus on solar cells assembled with carbon nanotubes and graphene due to their unique structures and properties. Then, several key technologies with special electrical and optical designs are introduced to improve the cell performance, such as chemical doping, interface passivation, anti-reflection coatings, and textured surfaces. Finally, potential pathways and opportunities based on the carbon/silicon heterojunction are envisaged. The aspects discussed here may enable researchers to better understand the photovoltaic effect of carbon/silicon heterojunctions and to optimize the design of graphene-based photodevices for a wide range of applications.

  15. The automated array assembly task of the low-cost silicon solar array project, phase 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Coleman, M. G.; Pryor, R. A.; Sparks, T. G.; Legge, R.; Saltzman, D. L.

    1980-01-01

    Several specific processing steps as part of a total process sequence for manufacturing silicon solar cells were studied. Ion implantation was identified as the preferred process step for impurity doping. Unanalyzed beam ion implantation was shown to have major cost advantages over analyzed beam implantation. Further, high quality cells were fabricated using a high current unanalyzed beam. Mechanically masked plasma patterning of silicon nitride was shown to be capable of forming fine lines on silicon surfaces with spacings between mask and substrate as great as 250 micrometers. Extensive work was performed on advances in plated metallization. The need for the thick electroless palladium layer was eliminated. Further, copper was successfully utilized as a conductor layer utilizing nickel as a barrier to copper diffusion into the silicon. Plasma etching of silicon for texturing and saw damage removal was shown technically feasible but not cost effective compared to wet chemical etching techniques.

  16. The importance of Soret transport in the production of high purity silicon for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Srivastava, R.

    1985-01-01

    Temperature-gradient-driven diffusion, or Soret transport, of silicon vapor and liquid droplets is analyzed under conditions typical of current production reactors for obtaining high purity silicon for solar cells. Contrary to the common belief that Soret transport is negligible, it is concluded that some 15-20 percent of the silicon vapor mass flux to the reactor walls is caused by the high temperature gradients that prevail inside such reactors. Moreover, since collection of silicon is also achieved via deposition of silicon droplets onto the walls, the Soret transport mechanism becomes even more crucial due to size differences between diffusing species. It is shown that for droplets in the 0.01 to 1 micron diameter range, collection by Soret transport dominates both Brownian and turbulent mechanisms.

  17. Use of low energy hydrogen ion implants in high efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fonash, S. J.; Singh, R.

    1985-01-01

    This program is a study of the use of low energy hydrogen ion implantation for high efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells. The first quarterly report focuses on two tasks of this program: (1) an examination of the effects of low energy hydrogen implants on surface recombination speed; and (2) an examination of the effects of hydrogen on silicon regrowth and diffusion in silicon. The first part of the project focussed on the measurement of surface properties of hydrogen implanted silicon. Low energy hydrogen ions when bombarded on the silicon surface will create structural damage at the surface, deactivate dopants and introduce recombination centers. At the same time the electrically active centers such as dangling bonds will be passivated by these hydrogen ions. Thus hydrogen is expected to alter properties such as the surface recombination velocity, dopant profiles on the emitter, etc. In this report the surface recombination velocity of a hydrogen emplanted emitter was measured.

  18. Slicing of Silicon into Sheet Material. Silicon Sheet Growth Development for the Large Area Silicon Sheet Task of the Low Cost Solar Array Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleming, J. R.; Holden, S. C.; Wolfson, R. G.

    1979-01-01

    The use of multiblade slurry sawing to produce silicon wafers from ingots was investigated. The commercially available state of the art process was improved by 20% in terms of area of silicon wafers produced from an ingot. The process was improved 34% on an experimental basis. Economic analyses presented show that further improvements are necessary to approach the desired wafer costs, mostly reduction in expendable materials costs. Tests which indicate that such reduction is possible are included, although demonstration of such reduction was not completed. A new, large capacity saw was designed and tested. Performance comparable with current equipment (in terms of number of wafers/cm) was demonstrated.

  19. Characterization by thermoelectric power of a commercial aluminum-iron-silicon alloy (8011) during isothermal precipitation

    SciTech Connect

    Luiggi A., N.J.

    1998-11-01

    The author has characterized a commercial 8011 (Al-Fe-Si) alloy by studying samples under different initial states of strain hardening and iron and silicon supersaturation using thermoelectric power as a measurement technique. Isothermal kinetics of precipitation are obtained in the temperature range between 225 C and 600 C. He has determined the atom fraction precipitated for each microstructural condition, identifying the dominant alloying additions and evaluating the typical parameters of the precipitated phases, such as, for example, the apparent activation energy. Finally, he determined the time-temperature-transformation (TTT) diagrams. These results prove that iron is the alloying addition that controls the precipitation kinetics of the 8011 alloy in the temperature range studied.

  20. Silylation of cellulose nanocrystals and their reinforcement of commercial silicone rubber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Hou-Yong; Chen, Rui; Chen, Guo-Yin; Liu, Lin; Yang, Xiao-Gang; Yao, Ju-Ming

    2015-09-01

    Poor interfacial compatibility between unmodified cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) and rubber restricts the property enhancement of matrix materials. In this study, according to structural similarity, the silylated CNC (SCNC) with diameter of 5-30 nm were prepared and incorporated into commercial silicone rubber (SR) via two-roll mill-compounding and vulcanization processes. As expected, at the same loading levels, SCNC had stronger reinforcing effect on the SR matrix than CNC. Compared to neat SR, with only 0.3 wt% (0.3 phr) SCNC1 incorporated, the tensile strength, Young's modulus, storage tensile modulus, and maximum decomposition temperature ( T max) of the nanocomposite were improved by 72, 125, 66 %, and 110.8 °C, respectively. Meanwhile the nanocomposites showed an obvious decrease in water vapor permeability (67 %). These enhancements were attributed to good dispersion of SCNC within SR matrix, improved interfacial interaction, and high crosslinking density.

  1. Enhanced light absorption in thin film silicon solar cells with Fourier-series based periodic nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Guo, Xiaowei; Wang, Dashuai; Liu, Bang; Li, Shaorong; Sheng, Xing

    2016-01-25

    We proposed a Fourier-series based periodic nanostructure(FSPN) for light trapping in thin film silicon solar cells. By globally optimizing the Fourier coefficients across entire silicon absorption spectrum, we obtained a FSPN structure with short circuit current density greater than 24 mA/cm(2) for a 1μm real silicon absorption layer. The spectral analysis shows at normal incidence the FSPN exhibits a collection effect of periodic gratings and performs over 84.6% better than random texture. The angular analysis shows that the FSPN outperforms grating and random textures within 70 °.

  2. Fundamental understanding and development of low-cost, high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect

    ROHATGI,A.; NARASIMHA,S.; MOSCHER,J.; EBONG,A.; KAMRA,S.; KRYGOWSKI,T.; DOSHI,P.; RISTOW,A.; YELUNDUR,V.; RUBY,DOUGLAS S.

    2000-05-01

    The overall objectives of this program are (1) to develop rapid and low-cost processes for manufacturing that can improve yield, throughput, and performance of silicon photovoltaic devices, (2) to design and fabricate high-efficiency solar cells on promising low-cost materials, and (3) to improve the fundamental understanding of advanced photovoltaic devices. Several rapid and potentially low-cost technologies are described in this report that were developed and applied toward the fabrication of high-efficiency silicon solar cells.

  3. Antireflective submicrometer gratings on thin-film silicon solar cells for light-absorption enhancement.

    PubMed

    Song, Young Min; Yu, Jae Su; Lee, Yong Tak

    2010-02-01

    This study reports highly efficient light-absorbing structures based on submicrometer gratings (SMGs) for thin-film crystalline silicon solar cells. The integration of SMGs into the cell structure leads to superior broadband antireflection properties compared to conventional antireflection coatings. With careful design optimization, an improvement of the cell efficiency of nearly 25.1% was obtained compared to double-layer coated solar cells. Optimized SMG structures were fabricated on a silicon substrate using interference lithography and a lenslike shape transfer process. The fabricated SMG structures exhibited low reflectivity in the wavelength range of 300-1200 nm, indicating good agreement with the simulated results.

  4. Proceedings of the Flat-Plate Solar Array Project Workshop on Crystal Gowth for High-Efficiency Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dumas, K. A. (Editor)

    1985-01-01

    A Workshop on Crystal Growth for High-Efficiency Silicon Solar Cells was held December 3 and 4, 1984, in San Diego, California. The Workshop offered a day and a half of technical presentations and discussions and an afternoon session that involved a panel discussion and general discussion of areas of research that are necessary to the development of materials for high-efficiency solar cells. Topics included the theoretical and experimental aspects of growing high-quality silicon crystals, the effects of growth-process-related defects on photovoltaic devices, and the suitability of various growth technologies as cost-effective processes. Fifteen invited papers were presented, with a discussion period following each presentation. The meeting was organized by the Flat-Plate Solar Array Project of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. These Proceedings are a record of the presentations and discussions, edited for clarity and continuity.

  5. Carbon concentration and particle precipitation during directional solidification of multicrystalline silicon for solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Lijun; Nakano, Satoshi; Kakimoto, Koichi

    2008-04-01

    The content and uniformity of carbon and silicon carbide (SiC) precipitates have an important impact on the efficiency of solar cells made of multicrystalline silicon. We established a dynamic model of SiC particle precipitation in molten silicon based on the Si-C phase diagram. Coupling with a transient global model of heat transfer, computations were carried out to clarify the characteristics of carbon segregation and particle formation in a directional solidification process for producing multicrystalline silicon for solar cells. The effects of impurity level in silicon feedstock and solidification process conditions on the distributions of substitutional carbon and SiC precipitates in solidified silicon ingots were investigated. It was shown that the content of SiC particles precipitated in solidified ingots increases markedly in magnitude as well as in space with increase in carbon concentration in silicon feedstock when it exceeds 1.26×10 17 atoms/cm 3. The distribution of SiC precipitates can be controlled by optimizing the process conditions. SiC precipitates are clustered at the center-upper region in an ingot solidified in a fast-cooling process but at the periphery-upper region for a slow-cooling process.

  6. 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.

  7. Thin Single Crystal Silicon Solar Cells on Ceramic Substrates: November 2009 - November 2010

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, A.; Ravi, K. V.

    2011-06-01

    In this program we have been developing a technology for fabricating thin (< 50 micrometres) single crystal silicon wafers on foreign substrates. We reverse the conventional approach of depositing or forming silicon on foreign substrates by depositing or forming thick (200 to 400 micrometres) ceramic materials on high quality single crystal silicon films ~ 50 micrometres thick. Our key innovation is the fabrication of thin, refractory, and self-adhering 'handling layers or substrates' on thin epitaxial silicon films in-situ, from powder precursors obtained from low cost raw materials. This 'handling layer' has sufficient strength for device and module processing and fabrication. Successful production of full sized (125 mm X 125 mm) silicon on ceramic wafers with 50 micrometre thick single crystal silicon has been achieved and device process flow developed for solar cell fabrication. Impurity transfer from the ceramic to the silicon during the elevated temperature consolidation process has resulted in very low minority carrier lifetimes and resulting low cell efficiencies. Detailed analysis of minority carrier lifetime, metals analysis and device characterization have been done. A full sized solar cell efficiency of 8% has been demonstrated.

  8. New Mexico's Pioneering Steps in Commercializing Solar Power

    SciTech Connect

    Hill, R.R.

    1999-04-09

    Over the past two years, New Mexico has been engaged in a significant new approach to implement large purchases of solar power. This effort followed a regulatory process that treated solar power generation similar to conventional generation obtained by an investor-owned utility under the regulation of a public utility commission. In 1997, Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) gained approval to purchase power from a 100-MW combustion turbine facility that would be owned and operated by a wholesale generator. At the same time it issued the approval, and following discussions with the utility, the New Mexico Public Utility Commission (NMPUC) also required PNM to issue a request for proposal for a 5-MW central station solar facility, a major step for solar technologies in the state, in what would be the world's largest of its technology type. In cooperation with the staff of the NMPUC, PNM reviewed the proposals received, and Applied Power Corporation was selected for the photovoltaic portion of the proposed plan; retaining ownership of the plant, assuming the risks connected with the technology, and operating the plant in exchange for a power purchase agreement in a first-of-its-kind contract for photovoltaics. During the NMPUC hearings, various parties raised significant opposition to the cost-recovery mechanism that was proposed and voiced issues about the type of solar plant, its size, cost and the tiding approaches to building it. Because of these issues, alternative proposals were put forth that reduced the size and costs of the plant and had implied changes in ownership and risks. The order issued by the NMPUC on October 21, 1998, requires PNM to impose a charge of 0.5% on its retail electric customers' monthly bills to be used to acquire the solar facilities, but also to obtain other renewable electric power resources, both on a pay-as-you-go basis. This paper identifies the issues and their resolution that similar projects are expected to encounter.

  9. Photogating effect as a defect probe in hydrogenated nanocrystalline silicon solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Hongbo B. T.; Schropp, Ruud E. I.; Rubinelli, Francisco A.

    2010-07-01

    The measurement of the spectrally resolved collection efficiency is of great importance in solar cell characterization. Under standard conditions the bias light is a solar simulator or a light source with a similar broadband irradiation spectrum. When a colored blue or red bias light is used instead, an enhanced collection efficiency effect, in the literature known as the photogating effect, can be observed under certain conditions. While most of the published reports on such effect were on solar cells with amorphous silicon based absorber layers, we have shown that the enhanced collection efficiency could be also present in thin film silicon solar cells where hydrogenated nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si:H) is used as the absorber layer. In this article we present detailed experimental results and simulations aiming at a better understanding of this phenomenon. We show that the collection efficiency is strongly dependent on the intensity of bias light and the intensity of the monochromatic light. These experimental results are consistent with the computer predictions made by our code. We also show that the photogating effect is greatly enhanced when nanocrystalline silicon cells are built with an improperly doped p-layer or with a defective p/i interface region due to the reduced internal electric field present in such cells. The existence of this effect further proves that carrier transport in a nc-Si:H solar cell with an i-layer made close to the phase transition regime is influenced to a large extent by drift transport. The study of this effect is proposed as an alternative approach to gain a deeper understanding about the carrier transport scenarios in thin film solar cells, especially nanocrystalline silicon solar cells.

  10. A candidate low-cost processing sequence for terrestrial silicon solar cell panel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bickler, D. B.; Gallagher, B. D.; Sanchez, L. E.

    1978-01-01

    Manufacturing sequence for silicon solar cells using Czochralsky crystal growing techniques in order to produce at a rate of 20 MW per year on a 24-hour per day basis is discussed. Cost analysis of the manufacturing is presented and consideration is given to the following processing decision categories of the manufacturing of an unencapsulated solar cell from a silicon wafer: (1) treatment of the optical surface; (2) formation of the junction(s); and (3) metallization of electrical collectors. The manufacturing of encapsulated solar modules from solar cells, using two glass plates, a low iron front surface, and a standard float glass back plate, is described. Totaling the three major activities of wafer making, cell manufacturing, and module fabrication, the resulting contribution to module price will be 1.945 $/watt.

  11. High efficiency silicon nanowire/organic hybrid solar cells with two-step surface treatment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Jianxiong; Wang, Hao; Prakoso, Ari Bimo; Togonal, Alienor Svietlana; Hong, Lei; Jiang, Changyun; Rusli, Affa Affc

    2015-02-01

    A simple two-step surface treatment process is proposed to boost the efficiency of silicon nanowire/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells. The Si nanowires (SiNWs) are first subjected to a low temperature ozone treatment to form a surface sacrificial oxide, followed by a HF etching process to partially remove the oxide. TEM investigation demonstrates that a clean SiNW surface is achieved after the treatment, in contrast to untreated SiNWs that have Ag nanoparticles left on the surface from the metal-catalyzed etching process that is used to form the SiNWs. The cleaner SiNW surface achieved and the thin layer of residual SiO2 on the SiNWs have been found to improve the performance of the hybrid solar cells. Overall, the surface recombination of the hybrid SiNW solar cells is greatly suppressed, resulting in a remarkably improved open circuit voltage of 0.58 V. The power conversion efficiency has also increased from about 10% to 12.4%. The two-step surface treatment method is promising in enhancing the photovoltaic performance of the hybrid silicon solar cells, and can also be applied to other silicon nanostructure based solar cells.A simple two-step surface treatment process is proposed to boost the efficiency of silicon nanowire/PEDOT:PSS hybrid solar cells. The Si nanowires (SiNWs) are first subjected to a low temperature ozone treatment to form a surface sacrificial oxide, followed by a HF etching process to partially remove the oxide. TEM investigation demonstrates that a clean SiNW surface is achieved after the treatment, in contrast to untreated SiNWs that have Ag nanoparticles left on the surface from the metal-catalyzed etching process that is used to form the SiNWs. The cleaner SiNW surface achieved and the thin layer of residual SiO2 on the SiNWs have been found to improve the performance of the hybrid solar cells. Overall, the surface recombination of the hybrid SiNW solar cells is greatly suppressed, resulting in a remarkably improved open circuit voltage of 0

  12. One step lithography-less silicon nanomanufacturing for low cost high-efficiency solar cell production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yi; Liu, Logan

    2014-03-01

    To improve light absorption, previously various antireflection material layers were created on solar wafer surface including multilayer dielectric film, nanoparticle sludges, microtextures, noble metal plasmonic nanoparticles and 3D silicon nanostructure arrays. All of these approaches involve nanoscale prepatterning, surface-area-sensitive assembly processes or extreme fabrication conditions; therefore, they are often limited by the associated high cost and low yield as well as the consequent industry incompatibility. In comparison, our nanomanufacturing, an unique synchronized and simultaneous top-down and bottom-up nanofabrication approach called simultaneous plasma enhanced reactive ion synthesis and etching (SPERISE), offers a better antireflection solution along with the potential to increase p-n junction surface area. High density and high aspect ratio anechoic nanocone arrays are repeatedly and reliably created on the entire surface of single and poly crystalline silicon wafers as well as amorphous silicon thin films within 5 minutes under room temperature. The nanocone surface had lower than 5% reflection over the entire solar spectrum and a desirable omnidirectional absorption property. Using the nanotextured solar wafer, a 156mm × 156mm 18.1%-efficient black silicon solar cell was fabricated, which was an 18.3% enhancement over the cell fabricated by standard industrial processes. This process also reduces silicon loss during the texturing step and enables tighter process control by creating more uniform surface structures. Considering all the above advantages, the demonstrated nanomanufacturing process can be readily translated into current industrial silicon solar cell fabrication lines to replace the costly and ineffective wet chemical texturing and antireflective coatings.

  13. Tandem solar cells made from amorphous silicon and polymer bulk heterojunction sub-cells.

    PubMed

    Park, Sung Heum; Shin, Insoo; Kim, Kwang Ho; Street, Robert; Roy, Anshuman; Heeger, Alan J

    2015-01-14

    A tandem solar cell based on a combination of an amorphous silicon (a-Si) and polymer solar cell (PSC) is demonstrated. As these tandem devices can be readily fabricated by low-cost methods, they require only a minor increase in the total manufacturing cost. Therefore, a combination of a-Si and PSC provides a compelling solution to reduce the cost of electricity produced by photovoltaics.

  14. The establishment of a production-ready manufacturing process utilizing thin silicon substrates for solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pryor, R. A.

    1980-01-01

    Three inch diameter Czochralski silicon substrates sliced directly to 5 mil, 8 mil, and 27 mil thicknesses with wire saw techniques were procured. Processing sequences incorporating either diffusion or ion implantation technologies were employed to produce n+p or n+pp+ solar cell structures. These cells were evaluated for performance, ease of fabrication, and cost effectiveness. It was determined that the use of 7 mil or even 4 mil wafers would provide near term cost reductions for solar cell manufacturers.

  15. Effect of Nanotube Film Thickness on the Performance of Nanotube-Silicon Hybrid Solar Cells

    PubMed Central

    Tune, Daniel D.; Shapter, Joseph G.

    2013-01-01

    The results of measurements on solar cells made from randomly aligned thin films of single walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) on n-type monocrystalline silicon are presented. The films are made by vacuum filtration from aqueous TritonX-100 suspensions of large diameter arc-discharge SWCNTs. The dependence of the solar cell performance on the thickness of the SWCNT film is shown in detail, as is the variation in performance due to doping of the SWCNT film with SOCl2.

  16. Straw man trade between multi-junction, gallium arsenide, and silicon solar cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaddy, Edward M.

    1995-01-01

    Multi-junction (MJ), gallium arsenide (GaAs), and silicon (Si) solar cells have respective test efficiencies of approximately 24%, 18.5% and 14.8%. Multi-junction and gallium arsenide solar cells weigh more than silicon solar cells and cost approximately five times as much per unit power at the cell level. A straw man trade is performed for the TRMM spacecraft to determine which of these cell types would have offered an overall performance and price advantage to the spacecraft. A straw man trade is also performed for the multi-junction cells under the assumption that they will cost over ten times that of silicon cells at the cell level. The trade shows that the TRMM project, less the cost of the instrument, ground systems and mission operations, would spend approximately $552 thousand dollars per kilogram to launch and service science in the case of the spacecraft equipped with silicon solar cells. If these cells are changed out for gallium arsenide solar cells, an additional 31 kilograms of science can be launched and serviced at a price of approximately $90 thousand per kilogram. The weight reduction is shown to derive from the smaller area of the array and hence reductions in the weight of the array substrate and supporting structure. If the silicon solar cells are changed out for multi-junction solar cells, an additional 45 kilograms of science above the silicon base line can be launched and serviced at a price of approximately $58 thousand per kilogram. The trade shows that even if the multi-junction arrays are priced over ten times that of silicon cells, a price that is much higher than projected, that the additional 45 kilograms of science are launched and serviced at $182 thousand per kilogram. This is still much less than original $552 thousand per kilogram to launch and service the science. Data and qualitative factors are presented to show that these figures are subject to a great deal of uncertainty. Nonetheless, the benefit of the higher efficiency

  17. Cost Trade Between Multi-Junction, Gallium Arsenide, and Silicon Solar Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaddy, Edward M.

    1995-01-01

    Multi-junction (MJ), gallium arsenide (GaAs), and silicon (Si) solar cells have respective test efficiencies of approximately 24%, 18.5% and 14.8%. Multi-junction and gallium arsenide solar cells weigh more than silicon solar 2 cells and cost approximately five times as much per unit power at the cell level. A trade is performed for the TRMM spacecraft to determine which of these cell types would have offered an overall performance and price advantage to the spacecraft. A trade is also performed for the multi-junction cells under the assumption that they will cost over ten times that of silicon cells at the cell level. The trade shows that the TRMM project, less the cost of the instrument, ground systems and mission operations, would spend approximately $552,000 dollars per kilogram to launch and suppon3science in the case of the spacecraft equipped with silicon solar cells. If these cells are changed out for gallium arsenide solar cells, an additional 31 kilograms of science can be launched and serviced at a price of approximately $90 thousand per kilogram. The weight reduction is shown to derive from the smaller area of the array and hence reductions in the weight of the array substrate and supporting structure. ff the silicon solar cells are changed out for multi-junction solar cells, an additional 45 kilograms of science above the silicon base line can be launched and supported at a price of approximately $58,000 per kilogram. The trade shows that even if the multi-junction cells are priced over ten times that of silicon cells, a price that is much higher than projected, that the additional 45 kilograms of science are launched and serviced at $180,000 per kilogram. This is still much less than the original $552,000 per kilogram to launch and service the science. Data and qualitative factors are presented to show that these figures are subject to a great deal of uncertainty. Nonetheless, the benefit of the higher efficiency solar cells for TRMM is far greater

  18. Study of the effects of impurities on the properties of silicon materials and performance of silicon solar cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sah, C. T.

    1980-01-01

    Zinc is a major residue impurity in the preparation of solar grade silicon material by the zinc vapor reduction of silicon tetrachloride. It was found that in order to get a 17 percent AMl cell efficiency, the concentration of the zinc recombination centers in the base region of silicon solar cells must be less than 4 x 10 to the 11th power Zn/cu cm in the p-base n+/p/p+ cell and 7 x 10 to the 11th power Zn/cu cm in the n-base p+/n/n+ cell for a base dopant impurity concentration of 5 x 10 to the 14th power atoms/cu cm. If the base dopant impurity concentration is increased by a factor of 10 to 5 x 10 to the 15th power atoms/cu cm, then the maximum allowable zinc concentration is increased by a factor of about two for a 17 percent AMl efficiency. The thermal equilibrium electron and hole recombination and generation rates at the double acceptor zinc cancers were obtained from previous high field measurements as well as new measurements at zero field. The rates were used in the exact d.c. circuit model to compute the projections.

  19. Development of Novel Front Contract Pastes for Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Duty, C.; Jellison, D. G.E. P.; Joshi, P.

    2012-04-05

    In order to improve the efficiencies of silicon solar cells, paste to silicon contact formation mechanisms must be more thoroughly understood as a function of paste chemistry, wafer properties and firing conditions. Ferro Corporation has been involved in paste development for over 30 years and has extensive expertise in glass and paste formulations. This project has focused on the characterization of the interface between the top contact material (silver paste) and the underlying silicon wafer. It is believed that the interface between the front contact silver and the silicon wafer plays a dominant role in the electrical performance of the solar cell. Development of an improved front contact microstructure depends on the paste chemistry, paste interaction with the SiNx, and silicon (“Si”) substrate, silicon sheet resistivity, and the firing profile. Typical front contact ink contains silver metal powders and flakes, glass powder and other inorganic additives suspended in an organic medium of resin and solvent. During fast firing cycles glass melts, wets, corrodes the SiNx layer, and then interacts with underlying Si. Glass chemistry is also a critical factor in the development of an optimum front contact microstructure. Over the course of this project, several fundamental characteristics of the Ag/Si interface were documented, including a higher-than-expected distribution of voids along the interface, which could significantly impact electrical conductivity. Several techniques were also investigated for the interfacial analysis, including STEM, EDS, FIB, EBSD, and ellipsometry.

  20. Optimization of interdigitated back contact silicon heterojunction solar cells by two-dimensional numerical simulation

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Meijun; Das, Ujjwal; Bowden, Stuart; Hegedus, Steven; Birmire, Robert

    2009-06-09

    In this paper, two-dimensional (2D) simulation of interdigitated back contact silicon heterojunction (IBC-SHJ) solar cells is presented using Sentaurus Device, a software package of Synopsys TCAD. A model is established incorporating a distribution of trap states of amorphous-silicon material and thermionic emission across the amorphous-silicon / crystalline-silicon heterointerface. The 2D nature of IBC-SHJ device is evaluated and current density-voltage (J-V) curves are generated. Optimization of IBC-SHJ solar cells is then discussed through simulation. It is shown that the open circuit voltage (VOC) and short circuit current density (JSC) of IBC-SHJ solar cells increase with decreasing front surface recombination velocity. The JSC improves further with the increase of relative coverage of p-type emitter contacts, which is explained by the simulated and measured position dependent laser beam induced current (LBIC) line scan. The S-shaped J-V curves with low fill factor (FF) observed in experiments are also simulated, and three methods to improve FF by modifying the intrinsic a-Si buffer layer are suggested: (i) decreased thickness, (ii) increased conductivity, and (iii) reduced band gap. With all these optimizations, an efficiency of 26% for IBC-SHJ solar cells is potentially achievable.