Research Papers/Topics in Material Science

Dependence of open circuit voltage in protocrystalline Si:H solar cells on carrier recombination in p/i interface and bulk regions

Contribution of carrier recombination from the p/i interface regions and the bulk to the dark current–voltage (JD–V) and short-circuit current–open-circuit voltage (Jsc–Voc) characteristics of hydrogenated amorphous-silicon (a-Si:H) p–i–n and n–i–p solar cells have been separated, identified, and quantified. Results are presented and discussed here which show that a maximum 1 sun Voc for a given bulk material can be validly extrapolated from bulk dominated Jsc–Voc characteri...

Quantitative Correlation of High Quality a-Si:H p-i-n Solar Cell Characteristics with Properties of the Bulk and p/i Interface Region

Studies have been carried out on high quality hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) p-i-n solar cells with protocrystalline i-layers to establish the nature of p/i interfaces and to quantify their contributions to various solar cell characteristics. The p-a-SiC:H,B/i-a-Si:H/n-μcSi:H,P cell structures used had the a-Si:H i-layers deposited from hydrogen diluted silane with R≡[H2 ]/[SiH4]=10. The high quality p/i interface regions obtained with R=10, indicated by the high and stable open c...

The Role of Phase Transitions in Protocrystalline Si:H on the Performance their of Solar Cells

A systematic study has been carried out to quantify the effect of microcrystallite nucleation in the intrinsic layer of protocrystalline Si:H p-i-n solar cells prepared by rf plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). Real-time spectroscopic ellipsometry (RTSE) results that have previously identified the transitions from amorphous to microcrystalline phase were confirmed with atomic force microscopy (AFM) images. The effects of the phase transitions in the bulk intrinsic layer, as wel...

Evolution of the Mobility Gap with Thickness in Hydrogen-Diluted Intrinsic Si:H Materials in the Phase Transition Region and Its Effect on p-i-n Solar Cell Characteristics

Insights into the growth processes and evolution of microstructure in intrinsic hydrogenated silicon (Si:H) films obtained from real-time spectroscopic ellipsometry (RTSE) are extended to the characterization of the optoelectronic properties of the corresponding solar cells. To assess the effects of transition regions from the amorphous to mixed microcrystalline phases, cell structures with and without such regions at different depths in the i-layer from the p-contact have been investigated. ...

Progress in Amorphous Silicon Based Solar Cell Technology

As the negative environmental effects of the current use of non-renewable energy sources have become apparent, hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cell technology has advanced to provide a means of powering a future sustainable society. Over the last 25 years, a-Si:H solar cell technology has matured to a stage where there is currently a production of 30 MWpeak/year; and this production capacity continues to increase. The progress is due to the continuous advances made in new materi...

Stable a-Si: H-Based Multijunction Solar Cells with Guidance from Real-Time Optics

Phase diagrams that characterize plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition of Si thin films at low substrate temperature (200 C) have been established using real time spectroscopic ellipsometry as a probe of thin film microstructural evolution and optical properties. These deposition phase diagrams describe the regimes over which predominantly amorphous and microcrystalline Si phases are obtained as a function of the accumulated film thickness and the hydrogen-to-silane gas flow ratio R=[H2]/...

Analytical model for the optical functions of amorphous semiconductors from the near-infrared to ultraviolet: Applications in thin film photovoltaics

We have developed a Kramers–Kronig consistent analytical expression to fit the measured optical functions of hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) based alloys, i.e., the real and imaginary parts of the dielectric function (ϵ1,ϵ2) (or the index of refraction n and absorption coefficient α) versus photon energy E for the alloys. The alloys of interest include amorphous silicon–germanium (a-Si1−xGex:H) and silicon–carbon (a-Si1−xCx:H), with band gaps ranging continuously from ∼...

Thickness Evolution of the Microstructural and Optical Properties of Si:H Films in the Amorphous-to-Microcrystalline Phase Transition Region

The ability to characterize the phase of the intrinsic (i) layers incorporated into amorphous silicon [a-Si:H] and microcrystalline silicon [μc-Si:H] thin film solar cells is critically important for cell optimization. In this research, a new method has been developed to extract the thickness evolution of the μc-Si:H volume fraction in mixed phase amorphous + microcrystalline silicon [(a+μc)-Si:H] i-layers. This method is based on real time spectroscopic ellipsometry measurements performed...

Mobility gap profiles in Si: H intrinsic layers prepared by H2-dilution of SiH4: effects on the performance of p–i–n solar cells

Insights into the growth processes and microstructural evolution for intrinsic (i) hydrogenated silicon (Si: H) films obtained from real-time spectroscopic ellipsometry (RTSE) are extended to the characterization of the optoelectronic properties of the corresponding solar cells. Numerical modeling of the J–V characteristics and their temperature dependences support the RTSE results and provide new information about the optoelectronic properties of the i-layer materials.

Intrinsic and light induced gap states in aSi:H materials and solar cells—effects of microstructure

Thin Solid Films, Jan 1, 2004The effects of microstructure on the gap states of hydrogen diluted and undiluted hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) thin film materials and their solar cells have been investigated. In characterizing the films the commonly used methodology of relating just the magnitudes of photocurrents and subgap absorption, α(E), was expanded to take into account states other than those due to dangling bond defects. The electron mobility-lifetime products were characteri...

Optimization of protocrystalline silicon p-type layers for amorphous silicon n–i–p solar cells

Real time spectroscopic ellipsometry has been applied to develop deposition phase diagrams for p-type hydrogenated silicon (Si: H) films prepared at low temperature (200° C) by rf plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition using gas mixtures of SiH4, H2, and BF3.

Room Temperature Annealing of Fast States from 1 sun Illumination in Protocrystalline Si:H Materials and Solar Cells

In order to obtain more insight into the nature of the recovery in the light induced changes at room temperature in hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cells the relaxation of the photocurrents in the light induced changes in protocrystalline a-Si:H thin films were investigated. Immediately upon the removal of 1 sun illumination recoveries in the photocurrents are found like those present in the currents in the dark current- voltage characteristics in corresponding p-i-n solar cells...

A New Approach to the Analysis of Forward Bias Dark Current Characteristics of a-Si:H Solar Cells

Generally the dark forward bias current voltage (JD-V) characteristics of a-Si:H solar cells are analyzed without clearly separating their contributions due to carrier recombination in the bulk from that at the p/i interface regions nor those imposed by carrier injection from the p and n contacts. Furthermore their exponential regimes are interpreted and fitted with constant diode quality factor n with modeling which is based on many fitting parameters that have not been reliably established....

Evolution of microstructure and phase in amorphous, protocrystalline, and microcrystalline silicon studied by real time spectroscopic ellipsometry

Real time spectroscopic ellipsometry has been applied to develop deposition phase diagrams that can guide the fabrication of hydrogenated silicon (Si: H) thin films at low temperatures (< 300° C) for highest performance electronic devices such as solar cells. The simplest phase diagrams incorporate a single transition from the amorphous growth regime to the mixed-phase (amorphous+ microcrystalline) growth regime versus accumulated film thickness [the a→(a+ μc) transition].

Effects of Substrate Temperature on Indium Gallium Nitride Nanocolumn Crystal Growth

Indium gallium nitride films with nanocolumnar microstructure were deposited with varying indium content and substrate temperatures using plasma-enhanced evaporation on amorphous SiO2 substrates. FESEM and XRD results are presented, showing that more crystalline nanocolumnar microstructures can be engineered at lower indium compositions. Nanocolumn diameter and packing factor (void fraction) was found to be highly dependent on substrate temperature, with thinner and more closely packed nanoco...


1 - 15 Of 88 Results