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Thin Film Solar Cells. Fabrication, Characterization and Applications. Edition No. 1. Wiley Series in Materials for Electronic & Optoelectronic Applications

  • ID: 2171736
  • Book
  • September 2006
  • 502 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
Thin-film solar cells are either emerging or about to emerge from the research laboratory to become commercially available devices finding practical various applications. Currently no textbook outlining the basic theoretical background, methods of fabrication and applications currently exist. Thus, this book aims to present for the first time an in-depth overview of this topic covering a broad range of thin-film solar cell technologies including both organic and inorganic materials, presented in a systematic fashion, by the scientific leaders in the respective domains. It covers a broad range of related topics, from physical principles to design, fabrication, characterization, and applications of novel photovoltaic devices.
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown

Series Preface xiii

Preface xv

1 Epitaxial Thin Film Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells on Low Cost Silicon Carriers 1
Jef Poortmans

1.1 Introduction 1

1.2 Deposition Technologies 4

1.2.1 Thermally Assisted Chemical Vapor Deposition 5

1.2.2 Liquid Phase Epitaxy – Electrodeposition 6

1.2.3 Close Space Vapor Transport Technique 8

1.2.4 Ion Assisted Deposition 9

1.2.5 Low Energy Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition/Electron Cyclotron Resonance Chemical Vapor Deposition 10

1.3 Silicon Based Epitaxial Layer Structures for Increased Absorbance 11

1.3.1 Epitaxial Growth on Textured Substrates 11

1.3.2 Silicon–Germanium Alloys 12

1.3.3 Germanium–Silicon Structures 15

1.3.4 Epitaxial Layers on a Buried Backside Reflector 17

1.4 Epitaxial Solar Cell Results and Analysis 21

1.4.1 Laboratory Type Epitaxial Solar Cells 21

1.4.2 Industrial Epitaxial Solar Cells 22

1.4.3 Special Epitaxial Solar Cell Structures 24

1.5 High Throughput Silicon Deposition 24

1.5.1 Chemical Vapor Deposition Reactor Upscaling 25

1.5.2 Liquid Phase Epitaxy Reactor Upscaling 29

1.6 Conclusions 32

References 32

2 Crystalline Silicon Thin Film Solar Cells on Foreign Substrates by High Temperature Deposition and Recrystallization 39
Stefan Reber, Thomas Kieliba, Sandra Bau

2.1 Motivation and Introduction to Solar Cell Concept 39

2.2 Substrate and Intermediate Layer 42

2.2.1 Substrate 42

2.2.2 Intermediate Layer 44

2.3 Zone Melting Recrystallization 48

2.3.1 Introduction 48

2.3.2 Zone Melting Recrystallization Film Growth 51

2.3.3 Features of Silicon Layers Recrystallized by Zone Melting Recrystallization 53

2.3.4 Development of Lamp Heated Zone Melting Recrystallization Processors 59

2.3.5 Zone Melting Recrystallization on Ceramic Substrates 64

2.4 Silicon Deposition 66

2.4.1 Requirements of Silicon Deposition for Photovoltaics 67

2.4.2 Some Basics on Thermal Silicon Atmospheric Pressure Chemical Vapor Deposition from Chlorosilanes 68

2.4.3 R&D Trends in Silicon Atmospheric Pressure Chemical Vapor Deposition for Photovoltaics 71

2.4.4 Silicon Chemical Vapor Deposition on Ceramic Substrates 73

2.5 Solar Cells on Foreign Substrates 75

2.5.1 Options for Solar Cell Fabrication 76

2.5.2 Solar Cells on Model Substrates 78

2.5.3 Solar Cells on Low Cost Substrates 82

2.6 Summary and Outlook 85

Acknowledgments 87

References 87

3 Thin Film Polycrystalline Silicon Solar Cells 97
Guy Beaucarne, Abdellilah Slaoui

3.1 Introduction 97

3.1.1 Definition 97

3.1.2 Why Polycrystalline Thin Film Silicon Solar Cells? 98

3.2 Potential of Polysilicon Solar Cells 98

3.2.1 Light Confinement 98

3.2.2 Diffusion Length 99

3.2.3 Modeling 100

3.3 Substrates for Polysilicon Cells 101

3.4 Film Formation 103

3.4.1 Initial Step for Grain Size Enhancement 103

3.4.2 Techniques for Active Layer Formation 106

3.4.3 Defect Density and Activity 112

3.5 Solar Cell and Module Processing 115

3.5.1 Device Structure 115

3.5.2 Junction Formation 117

3.5.3 Defect Passivation 118

3.5.4 Isolation and Interconnection 118

3.6 Polysilicon Solar Cell Technologies 120

3.6.1 Solid Phase Crystallization Heterojunction with Intrinsic Thin Layer Solar Cells 120

3.6.2 Surface Texture and Enhanced Absorption with Back Reflector Solar Cells 121

3.6.3 Crystalline Silicon on Glass Technology 121

3.6.4 Other Research Efforts Around the World 122

3.7 Conclusion 123

References 123

4 Advances in Microcrystalline Silicon Solar Cell Technologies 133
Evelyne Vallat-Sauvain, Arvind Shah and Julien Bailat

4.1 Introduction 133

4.2 Microcrystalline Silicon: Material Fabrication and Characterization 134

4.2.1 Microcrystalline Silicon Deposition Techniques 134

4.2.2 Undoped Microcrystalline Layers 137

4.2.3 Doped Layers 147

4.3 Microcrystalline Silicon Solar Cells 148

4.3.1 Light Management Issues 149

4.3.2 Single Junction Microcrystalline Silicon Solar Cells 154

4.3.3 Tandem Amorphous/Microcrystalline Silicon Solar Cells: The Micromorph Concept 159

4.4 Conclusions 163

References 165

5 Advanced Amorphous Silicon Solar Cell Technologies 173
Miro Zeman

5.1 Introduction 173

5.2 Overview of Amorphous Silicon Solar Cell Technology Development and Current Issues 174

5.2.1 1970s 174

5.2.2 1980s 174

5.2.3 1990s 174

5.2.4 After 2000 175

5.2.5 Current Technology Issues 175

5.3 Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon 177

5.3.1 Atomic Structure 177

5.3.2 Density of States 179

5.3.3 Models for the Density of States and Recombination–Generation Statistics 180

5.3.4 Optical Properties 181

5.3.5 Electrical Properties 183

5.3.6 Determination of Density of States 187

5.3.7 Metastability 190

5.3.8 Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon from Hydrogen Diluted Silane 192

5.3.9 Doping of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon 194

5.3.10 Alloying of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon 196

5.4 Deposition of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon 197

5.4.1 Radio Frequency Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition 198

5.4.2 Direct Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition Techniques 200

5.4.3 Remote Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition Techniques 202

5.4.4 Hotwire Chemical Vapor Deposition 203

5.5 Amorphous Silicon Solar Cells 204

5.5.1 Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Solar Cell Structure 204

5.5.2 Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Solar Cell Configurations 207

5.5.3 Design Approaches for Highly Efficient Solar Cells 208

5.5.4 Light Trapping and Transparent Conductive Oxides 209

5.5.5 Degradation of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Solar Cells 211

5.5.6 Multijunction Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Solar Cells 212

5.6 Performance and Fabrication of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Based Modules 219

5.6.1 Energy Yield 221

5.6.2 Fabrication of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon Based Modules 223

5.6.3 Plasma enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition Systems 223

5.7 Applications 227

5.8 Outlook 229

Acknowledgments 230

References 230

6 Chalcopyrite Based Solar Cells 237
Reiner Klenk, Martha Ch. Lux-Steiner

6.1 Introduction 237

6.2 Potential of Chalcopyrite Photovoltaic Modules 237

6.3 Technology for the Preparation of Chalcopyrite Solar Cells and Modules 239

6.3.1 Absorber 240

6.3.2 Contacts 244

6.4 Characterization and Modeling 247

6.4.1 Cell Concept 248

6.4.2 Carrier Density and Transport 250

6.4.3 Loss Mechanisms 251

6.5 Scaling Up and Production 254

6.5.1 Cost Estimations 257

6.5.2 Module Performance 258

6.5.3 Sustainability 259

6.6 Developing Future Chalcopyrite Technology 260

6.6.1 Lightweight and Flexible Substrates 260

6.6.2 Cadmium Free Cells 261

6.6.3 Indium Free Absorbers 263

6.6.4 Novel Back Contacts 263

6.6.5 Bifacial Cells and Superstrate Cells 263

6.6.6 Nonvacuum Processing 264

6.6.7 Wide Gap and Tandem Cells 265

References 266

7 Cadmium Telluride Thin Film Solar Cells: Characterization, Fabrication and Modeling 277
Marc Burgelman

7.1 Introduction 277

7.2 Materials and Cell Concepts for Cadmium Telluride Based Solar Cells 278

7.2.1 Optical Properties of Cadmium Telluride 279

7.2.2 Electrical Properties of Cadmium Telluride 281

7.2.3 The Buffer Material: Cadmium Sulfide 283

7.2.4 Window Materials for Cadmium Telluride Based Solar Cells 285

7.3 Research Areas and Trends in Cadmium Telluride Solar Cells 286

7.3.1 The Activation Treatment of Cadmium Telluride 286

7.3.2 The Back Contact Structure 288

7.3.3 Environmental Issues 290

7.3.4 Other Research Areas and Trends 291

7.4 Fabrication of Cadmium Telluride Cells and Modules 294

7.4.1 Deposition Methods for Cadmium Telluride Based Solar Cells 294

7.4.2 Design of Series Integrated Cadmium Telluride Modules 296

7.4.3 Production of Cadmium Telluride Solar Modules 297

7.5 Advanced Characterization and Modeling of Cadmium Telluride Solar Cells 298

7.5.1 Characterization and Modeling: Introduction 298

7.5.2 Characterization Methods for Cadmium Telluride Materials and Cells 298

7.5.3 Modeling of Thin Film Cadmium Telluride Solar Cells 303

7.6 Conclusions 314

Acknowledgments 314

References 314

8 Charge Carrier Photogeneration in Doped and Blended Organic Semiconductors 325
Vladimir I. Arkhipov, Heinz Bässler

8.1 Introduction 325

8.2 Exciton Dissociation in Neat and Homogeneously Doped Random Organic Semiconductors 326

8.2.1 Intrinsic Photogeneration in Conjugated Polymers 326

8.2.2 Sensitized Photogeneration of Charge Carriers in Homogenously Doped Conjugated Polymers 328

8.2.3 Photogeneration of Charge Carriers at a Donor–Acceptor Interface 335

8.3 Models of Exciton Dissociation in Homogeneously Doped Conjugated Polymers and in Polymer Based Donor/Acceptor Blends 349

8.3.1 The Onsager–Braun Model 349

8.3.2 Exciton Dissociation in Conjugated Polymers Homogeneously Doped with Electron Scavengers 351

8.3.3 Exciton Dissociation at a Polymer Donor/Acceptor Interface 353

8.4 Conclusions 357

References 358

9 Nanocrystalline Injection Solar Cells 363
Michael Grätzel

9.1 Introduction 363

9.2 Band Diagram and Operational Principle of the Dye Sensitized Solar Cell 364

9.3 The Importance of the Nanostructure 365

9.3.1 Light Harvesting by a Sensitizer Monolayer Adsorbed on a Mesoscopic Semiconductor Film 366

9.3.2 Enhanced Red and Near Infrared Response by Light Containment 368

9.3.3 Light Induced Charge Separation and Conversion of Photons to Electric Current 369

9.3.4 Charge Carrier Collection 371

9.3.5 Quantum Dot Sensitizers 374

9.4 Photovoltaic Performance of the Dye Sensitized Solar Cell 375

9.4.1 Photocurrent Action Spectra 375

9.4.2 Overall Conversion Efficiency Under Global AM1.5 Standard Reporting Conditions 376

9.4.3 Increasing the Open Circuit Photovoltage 377

9.5 Development of New Sensitizers and Redox Systems 378

9.6 Solid State Dye Sensitized Solar Cells 379

9.7 Dye Sensitized Solar Cell Stability 379

9.7.1 Criteria for Long Term Stability of the Dye 379

9.7.2 Kinetic Measurements 380

9.7.3 Recent Experimental Results on Dye Sensitized Solar Cell Stability 381

9.7.4 First Large Scale Field Tests and Commercial Developments 382

9.8 Future Prospects 384

Acknowledgments 384

References 384

10 Charge Transport and Recombination in Donor–Acceptor Bulk Heterojunction Solar Cells 387
A. J. Mozer, N. S. Sariciftci

10.1 Introduction 387

10.2 Development of Bulk Heterojunction Solar Cells 388

10.3 Bulk Heterojunction Solar Cells 391

10.3.1 Operational Principles 391

10.3.2 Nanomorphology–Property Relations 394

10.3.3 Improving the Photon Harvesting 397

10.4 Charge Carrier Mobility and Recombination 399

10.4.1 Measurement Techniques 399

10.4.2 Charge Transport in Conjugated Polymers 401

10.4.3 Charge Transport and Recombination in Bulk Heterojunction Solar Cells 412

10.5 Summary 421

Acknowledgments 421

References 422

11 The Terawatt Challenge for Thin Film Photovoltaics 427
Ken Zweibel

11.1 Prologue 427

11.2 ‘The Only Big Number Out There – 125 000 TW’ (Quote, Nate Lewis, 2004) 428

11.3 Low Cost and the Idea of Thin Films 431

11.4 A Bottom Up Analysis of Thin Film Module Costs 431

11.4.1 Approach 432

11.4.2 Results 435

11.5 Other Aspects of the ‘Terawatt Challenge’ 455

11.6 Risks and Perspective 458

Acknowledgments 459

Appendix 11.1 459

Appendix 11.2 460

References 460

Index 463

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
Jef Poortmans IMEC, Belgium.

Vladimir Arkhipov IMEC, Belgium.
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
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