National Library of Energy BETA

Sample records for multicrystalline silicon solar

  1. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Print Wednesday, 26 October 2005 00:00 Transition metals are one of the main culprits in degrading the efficiency of multicrystalline solar cells. With a suite of x-ray microprobe techniques, a multi-institutional collaboration led by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and Berkeley Lab studied the distribution of metal clusters in a

  2. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Print Transition metals are one of the main culprits in degrading the efficiency of multicrystalline solar cells. With a suite of x-ray microprobe techniques, a multi-institutional collaboration led by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and Berkeley Lab studied the distribution of metal clusters in a variety of multicrystalline solar cells before and after processing. Their discovery that the size, spatial

  3. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Print Transition metals are one of the main culprits in degrading the efficiency of multicrystalline solar cells. With a suite of x-ray microprobe techniques, a multi-institutional collaboration led by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and Berkeley Lab studied the distribution of metal clusters in a variety of multicrystalline solar cells before and after processing. Their discovery that the size, spatial

  4. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Print Transition metals are one of the main culprits in degrading the efficiency of multicrystalline solar cells. With a suite of x-ray microprobe techniques, a multi-institutional collaboration led by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and Berkeley Lab studied the distribution of metal clusters in a variety of multicrystalline solar cells before and after processing. Their discovery that the size, spatial

  5. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Print Transition metals are one of the main culprits in degrading the efficiency of multicrystalline solar cells. With a suite of x-ray microprobe techniques, a multi-institutional collaboration led by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and Berkeley Lab studied the distribution of metal clusters in a variety of multicrystalline solar cells before and after processing. Their discovery that the size, spatial

  6. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Print Transition metals are one of the main culprits in degrading the efficiency of multicrystalline solar cells. With a suite of x-ray microprobe techniques, a multi-institutional collaboration led by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and Berkeley Lab studied the distribution of metal clusters in a variety of multicrystalline solar cells before and after processing. Their discovery that the size, spatial

  7. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Print Transition metals are one of the main culprits in degrading the efficiency of multicrystalline solar cells. With a suite of x-ray microprobe techniques, a multi-institutional collaboration led by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and Berkeley Lab studied the distribution of metal clusters in a variety of multicrystalline solar cells before and after processing. Their discovery that the size, spatial

  8. Engineering Metal Impurities in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar...

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Although its current market share is small, in the last several years the solar cell ... systems decreased from the current price of approximately 16,000-25,000. One way ...

  9. Plasma texturing, etching and passivation of multicrystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ruby, D.S.; Yang, P.; Zaidi, S.; Roy, M.; Narayanan, S.

    1999-07-01

    The authors improved a self-aligned emitter etchback technique that requires only a single emitter diffusion and no alignments to form self-aligned, patterned-emitter profiles. Standard commercial screen-printed gridlines mask a plasma-etchback of the emitter. A subsequent PECVD-nitride deposition provides good surface and bulk passivation and an antireflection coating. The authors used full-size multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) cells processed in a commercial production line and performed a statistically designed multiparameter experiment to optimize the use of a hydrogenation treatment to increase performance. They obtained an improvement of almost a full percentage point in cell efficiency when the self-aligned emitter etchback was combined with an optimized 3-step PECVD-nitride surface passivation and hydrogenation treatment. They also investigated the inclusion of a plasma-etching process that results in a low-reflectance, textured surface on multicrystalline silicon cells. Preliminary results indicate reflectance can be significantly reduced without etching away the emitter diffusion.

  10. Fabrication and analysis of high efficiency multicrystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rohatgi, A.; Sana, P.; Cai, L.; Doolittle, W.A.; Kamra, S.; Doshi, P.; Krygowski, T.; Crotty, G.

    1996-01-01

    A detailed investigation of quality enhancement techniques, such as plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) of SiO{sub 2}/SiN coating, forming gas anneal (FGA) and Al gettering was conducted to improve the performance of cells fabricated on several promising multicrystalline silicon (mcs) materials. A large amount of hydrogen and positive charge in the PECVD SiN antireflection (AR) coating play an important role in passivating surface and bulk defects in silicon. Appropriate post-PECVD deposition anneal was found to be important in maximizing the benefit from PECVD AR coating. Low temperature anneal at 350{degree}C/20 min improves the short wavelength response due to surface passivation along with some increase in the long wavelength response due to bulk defect passivation in certain mcs materials. Post-PECVD rapid thermal anneals (RTA) in the range of 350 to 750{degree}C significantly improve the long wavelength response of certain materials such as EFG silicon. However, this comes at the expense of short wavelength response due to increased absorption in the SiN film. Electron beam induced current (EBIC) measurements revealed significant increase in the intragrain response of these cells after post-PECVD anneal. Al gettering of mcs showed a significant improvement in bulk lifetime and cell efficiency. Forming gas anneal, after phosphorus and Al diffusions, resulted in additional improvements in bulk lifetime in certain materials due to hydrogen passivation. Cells fabricated on cast mcs from Osaka Titanium Corporation (OTC) and Crystal Systems gave cell efficiencies in the range of 17 to 18{percent}. Without the appropriate gettering and passivation techniques these materials give cell efficiencies in the range of 14.5 to 15.5{percent}. {copyright} {ital 1996 American Institute of Physics.}

  11. A comparison of gettering in single- and multicrystalline silicon for solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B.L.; Jastrzebski, L.; Tan, T.

    1996-05-01

    The differences in the impurity gettering between single and multicrystalline silicon are discussed. These differences arise from impurity-defect interactions that occur during thermal processing of multicrystalline material. A gettering model is proposed to explain the observed behaviour of gettering in multicrystalline cells.

  12. Device Architecture and Lifetime Requirements for High Efficiency Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Wagner, H.; Hofstetter, J.; Mitchell, B.; Altermatt, P.; Buonassisi, T.

    2015-03-23

    We present a numerical simulation study of different multicrystalline silicon materials and solar cell architectures to understand today's efficiency limitations and future efficiency possibilities. We compare conventional full-area BSF and PERC solar cells to future cell designs with a gallium phosphide heteroemitter. For all designs, mc-Si materials with different excess carrier lifetime distributions are used as simulation input parameters to capture a broad range of materials. The results show that conventional solar cell designs are sufficient for generalized mean lifetimes between 40 – 90 μs, but do not give a clear advantage in terms of efficiency for higher mean lifetime mc-Si material because they are often limited by recombination in the phosphorus diffused emitter region. Heteroemitter designs instead increase in cell efficiency considerable up to generalized mean lifetimes of 380 μs because they are significantly less limited by recombination in the emitter and the bulk lifetime becomes more important. In conclusion, to benefit from increasing mc-Si lifetime, new cell designs, especially heteroemitter, are desirable.

  13. Synchrotron-based analysis of chromium distributions in multicrystalline silicon for solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Jensen, Mallory Ann; Hofstetter, Jasmin; Morishige, Ashley E.; Coletti, Gianluca; Lai, Barry; Fenning, David P.; Buonassisi, Tonio

    2015-05-18

    Chromium (Cr) can degrade silicon wafer-based solar cell efficiencies at concentrations as low as 10(10) cm(-3). In this contribution, we employ synchrotron-based X-ray fluorescence microscopy to study chromium distributions in multicrystalline silicon in as-grown material and after phosphorous diffusion. We complement quantified precipitate size and spatial distribution with interstitial Cr concentration and minority carrier lifetime measurements to provide insight into chromium gettering kinetics and offer suggestions for minimizing the device impacts of chromium. We observe that Cr-rich precipitates in as-grown material are generally smaller than iron-rich precipitates and that Cri point defects account for only one-half of the total Cr in the as-grown material. This observation is consistent with previous hypotheses that Cr transport and CrSi2 growth are more strongly diffusion-limited during ingot cooling. We apply two phosphorous diffusion gettering profiles that both increase minority carrier lifetime by two orders of magnitude and reduce [Cr-i] by three orders of magnitude to approximate to 10(10) cm(-3). Some Cr-rich precipitates persist after both processes, and locally high [Cri] after the high-temperature process indicates that further optimization of the chromium gettering profile is possible. (C) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC.

  14. Electric properties and carrier multiplication in breakdown sites in multi-crystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Schneemann, Matthias; Carius, Reinhard; Rau, Uwe; Kirchartz, Thomas

    2015-05-28

    This paper studies the effective electrical size and carrier multiplication of breakdown sites in multi-crystalline silicon solar cells. The local series resistance limits the current of each breakdown site and is thereby linearizing the current-voltage characteristic. This fact allows the estimation of the effective electrical diameters to be as low as 100 nm. Using a laser beam induced current (LBIC) measurement with a high spatial resolution, we find carrier multiplication factors on the order of 30 (Zener-type breakdown) and 100 (avalanche breakdown) as new lower limits. Hence, we prove that also the so-called Zener-type breakdown is followed by avalanche multiplication. We explain that previous measurements of the carrier multiplication using thermography yield results higher than unity, only if the spatial defect density is high enough, and the illumination intensity is lower than what was used for the LBIC method. The individual series resistances of the breakdown sites limit the current through these breakdown sites. Therefore, the measured multiplication factors depend on the applied voltage as well as on the injected photocurrent. Both dependencies are successfully simulated using a series-resistance-limited diode model.

  15. Temperature-Dependent Photoluminescence Imaging and Characterization of a Multi-Crystalline Silicon Solar Cell Defect Area: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Johnston, S.; Yan, F.; Li, J.; Romero, M. J.; Al-Jassim, M.; Zaunbrecher, K.; Sidelkheir, O.; Blosse, A.

    2011-07-01

    Photoluminescence (PL) imaging is used to detect areas in multi-crystalline silicon that appear dark in band-to-band imaging due to high recombination. Steady-state PL intensity can be correlated to effective minority-carrier lifetime, and its temperature dependence can provide additional lifetime-limiting defect information. An area of high defect density has been laser cut from a multi-crystalline silicon solar cell. Both band-to-band and defect-band PL imaging have been collected as a function of temperature from ~85 to 350 K. Band-to-band luminescence is collected by an InGaAs camera using a 1200-nm short-pass filter, while defect band luminescence is collected using a 1350-nm long pass filter. The defect band luminescence is characterized by cathodo-luminescence. Small pieces from adjacent areas within the same wafer are measured by deep-level transient spectroscopy (DLTS). DLTS detects a minority-carrier electron trap level with an activation energy of 0.45 eV on the sample that contained defects as seen by imaging.

  16. The effect of gettering on areal inhomogeneities in large-area multicrystalline-silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Gee, J.M.; Sopori, B.L.

    1997-10-01

    Multicrystalline-silicon (mc-Si) materials and cells feature large areal variations in material and junction quality. The regions with poor device quality have been predicted to have more recombination current at forward bias than a simple area-weighted average due to the parallel interconnection of the good and bad regions by the front junction. The authors have examined the effect of gettering on areal inhomogeneities in large-area mc-Si cells. Cells with large areal inhomogeneities were found to have increased non-ideal recombination current, which is in line with theoretical predictions. Phosphorus-diffusion and aluminum-alloy gettering of mc-Si was found to reduce the areal inhomogeneities and improve large-area mc-Si device performance.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

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

    2015-02-23

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

  18. New Metallization Technique Suitable for 6-MW Pilot Production of Efficient Multicrystalline Solar Cells Using Upgraded Metallurgical Silicon: Final Technical Progress Report, December 17, 2007-- June 16, 2009

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)

    This report describes CaliSolar's work as a Photovoltaic Technology Incubator awardee within the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Energy Technologies Program. The term of this subcontract with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory was two years. During this time, CaliSolar evolved from a handful of employees to over 100 scientists, engineers, technicians, and operators. On the technical side, the company transitioned from a proof-of-concept through pilot-scale to large-scale industrial production. A fully automated 60-megawatt manufacturing line was commissioned in Sunnyvale, California. The facility converts upgraded metallurgical-grade silicon feedstock to ingots, wafers, and high-efficiency multicrystalline solar cells.

  19. Multi-crystalline II-VI based multijunction solar cells and modules

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

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

    2015-06-30

    Multi-crystalline group II-VI solar cells and methods for fabrication of same are disclosed herein. A multi-crystalline group II-VI solar cell includes a first photovoltaic sub-cell comprising silicon, a tunnel junction, and a multi-crystalline second photovoltaic sub-cell. A plurality of the multi-crystalline group II-VI solar cells can be interconnected to form low cost, high throughput flat panel, low light concentration, and/or medium light concentration photovoltaic modules or devices.

  20. Effect of Front-Side Silver Metallization on Underlying n+-p Junction in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Jiang, C. S.; Li, Z. G.; Moutinho, H. R.; Liang, L.; Ionkin, A.; Al-Jassim, M. M.

    2012-06-01

    We report on the effect of front-side Ag metallization on the underlying n+-p junction of multicrystalline Si solar cells. The junction quality beneath the contacts was investigated by characterizing the uniformities of the electrostatic potential and doping concentration across the junction, using scanning Kelvin probe force microscopy and scanning capacitance microscopy. We investigated cells with a commercial Ag paste (DuPont PV159) and fired at furnace setting temperatures of 800 degrees, 840 degrees, and 930 degrees C, which results in actual cell temperatures ~100 degrees C lower than the setting temperature and the three cells being under-, optimal-, and over-fired. We found that the uniformity of the junction beneath the Ag contact was significantly degraded by the over-firing, whereas the junction retained good uniformity with the optimal- and under-fire temperatures. Further, Ag crystallites with widely distributed sizes from <100 nm to several μm were found at the Ag/Si interface of the over-fired cell. Large crystallites were imaged as protrusions into Si deeper than the junction depth. However, the junction was not broken down; instead, it was reformed on the entire front of the crystallite/Si interface. We propose a mechanism of the junction-quality degradation, based on emitter Si melting at the temperature around the Ag-Si eutectic point during firing, and subsequent recrystallization with incorporation of impurities in the Ag paste and with formation of crystallographic defects during quenching.

  1. Two-Dimensional Measurement of n+-p Asymmetrical Junctions in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells using AFM-Based Electrical Techniques with Nanometer Resolution

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Jiang, C. S.; Heath, J. T.; Moutinho, H. R.; Li, J. V.; Al-Jassim, M. M.

    2011-01-01

    Lateral inhomogeneities of modern solar cells demand direct electrical imaging with nanometer resolution. We show that atomic force microscopy (AFM)-based electrical techniques provide unique junction characterizations, giving a two-dimensional determination of junction locations. Two AFM-based techniques, scanning capacitance microscopy/spectroscopy (SCM/SCS) and scanning Kelvin probe force microscopy (SKPFM), were significantly improved and applied to the junction characterizations of multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) cells. The SCS spectra were taken pixel by pixel by precisely controlling the tip positions in the junction area. The spectra reveal distinctive features that depend closely on the position relative to the electrical junction, which allows us to indentify the electrical junction location. In addition, SKPFM directly probes the built-in potential over the junction area modified by the surface band bending, which allows us to deduce the metallurgical junction location by identifying a peak of the electric field. Our results demonstrate resolutions of 10-40 nm, depending on the techniques (SCS or SKPFM). These direct electrical measurements with nanometer resolution and intrinsic two-dimensional capability are well suited for investigating the junction distribution of solar cells with lateral inhomogeneities.

  2. Two-Dimensional Measurement of n+-p Asymmetrical Junctions in Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells Using AFM-Based Electrical Techniques with Nanometer Resolution: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Jiang, C. S.; Moutinho, H. R.; Li, J. V.; Al-Jassim, M. M.; Heath, J. T.

    2011-07-01

    Lateral inhomogeneities of modern solar cells demand direct electrical imaging with nanometer resolution. We show that atomic force microscopy (AFM)-based electrical techniques provide unique junction characterizations, giving a two-dimensional determination of junction locations. Two AFM-based techniques, scanning capacitance microscopy/spectroscopy (SCM/SCS) and scanning Kelvin probe force microscopy (SKPFM), were significantly improved and applied to the junction characterizations of multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) cells. The SCS spectra were taken pixel by pixel by precisely controlling the tip positions in the junction area. The spectra reveal distinctive features that depend closely on the position relative to the electrical junction, which allows us to indentify the electrical junction location. In addition, SKPFM directly probes the built-in potential over the junction area modified by the surface band bending, which allows us to deduce the metallurgical junction location by identifying a peak of the electric field. Our results demonstrate resolutions of 10-40 nm, depending on the techniques (SCS or SKPFM). These direct electrical measurements with nanometer resolution and intrinsic two-dimensional capability are well suited for investigating the junction distribution of solar cells with lateral inhomogeneities.

  3. Methods and apparatuses for manufacturing geometric multicrystalline cast silicon and geometric multicrystalline cast silicon bodies for photovoltaics

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Stoddard, Nathan G

    2015-02-10

    Methods and apparatuses are provided for casting silicon for photovoltaic cells and other applications. With such methods and apparatuses, a cast body of geometrically ordered multi-crystalline silicon may be formed that is free or substantially free of radially-distributed impurities and defects and having at least two dimensions that are each at least about 10 cm is provided.

  4. Gettering in multicrystalline silicon: A design-of-experiments approach

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Schubert, W.K.

    1994-07-01

    Design-of-experiment methods were used to study gettering due to phosphorus diffusion and aluminum alloying in four industrial multicrystalline silicon materials: Silicon-Film material from AstroPower, heat-exchanger method (HEM) material from Crystal Systems, edge-defined film-fed growth (EFG) material from Mobil Solar, and cast material from Solarex. Time and temperature for the diffusion and alloy processes were chosen for a four-factor quadratic interaction experiment. Simple diagnostic devices were used to evaluate the gettering. Only EFG and HEM materials exhibited statistically significant gettering effects within the ranges used for the various parameters. Diffusion and alloying temperature were significant for HEM material; also there was a second-order interaction between the diffusion time and temperature. There was no interaction between the diffusion and alloying processes in HEM material. EFG material showed a first-order dependence on diffusion temperature and a second-order interaction between the diffusion temperature and the alloying time. Gettering recommendations for the HEM material were used to produce the best-yet Sandia cells on this material, but correlation with the gettering experiment was not strong. Some of the discrepancy arises from necessary processing differences between the diagnostic devices and regular solar cells. This issue and other lessons learned concerning this type of experiment are discussed.

  5. Method for processing silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  6. Imaging Study of Multi-Crystalline Silicon Wafers Throughout the Manufacturing Process: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Johnston, S.; Yan, F.; Zaunbracher, K.; Al-Jassim, M.; Sidelkheir, O.; Blosse, A.

    2011-07-01

    Imaging techniques are applied to multi-crystalline silicon bricks, wafers at various process steps, and finished solar cells. Photoluminescence (PL) imaging is used to characterize defects and material quality on bricks and wafers. Defect regions within the wafers are influenced by brick position within an ingot and height within the brick. The defect areas in as-cut wafers are compared to imaging results from reverse-bias electroluminescence and dark lock-in thermography and cell parameters of near-neighbor finished cells. Defect areas are also characterized by defect band emissions. The defect areas measured by these techniques on as-cut wafers are shown to correlate to finished cell performance.

  7. On the low carrier lifetime edge zone in multicrystalline silicon ingots

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Jiang, Tingting; Yu, Xuegong; Wang, Lei; Gu, Xin; Yang, Deren

    2014-01-07

    We have demonstrated the cause of low minority carrier lifetime corresponding to the edge zone of casting multicrystalline silicon ingots and its influence on the performance of solar cells. It is found that the concentration of substitutional carbon, interstitial oxygen, and dislocation density have no direct correlation with the low minority carrier lifetime in the edge zone. However, the distribution of interstitial iron exactly coincides with the minority carrier lifetime, indicating that iron contamination is mainly responsible for the lifetime degradation. After phosphorus diffusion gettering process, the low carrier lifetime region became narrower, and the concentration of interstitial iron is reduced by almost one order of magnitude. However, the carrier lifetime in the edge zone cannot be raised to average level. After celling process, the internal quantum efficiency map of the edge zone has a lower response to the long wavelength light, in accordance with the minority carrier lifetime distribution in this region. Therefore, the solar cells based on edge zones exhibit slightly lower efficiency than those conventional ones.

  8. Wacker Schott Solar GmbH | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Solar GmbH Place: Alzenau, Germany Sector: Solar Product: JV set up between Wacker Chemie and Schott Solar to produce multicrystalline silicon ingots and solar wafers....

  9. Self Aligned Cell: Scaling Up Manufacture of a Cost Effective Cell Architecture for Multicrystalline Silicon Photovoltaics

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Gabor, A.; van Mierlo, F.

    2010-12-01

    Two areas of technology for fabrication of higher efficiency Si-wafer solar cells were addressed: (1) the formation of structured texturing that is an improvement over the industry-standard isotexture process for multicrystalline wafers. (2) the formation of fine line (<50 micron) metallization seed layers in a self-aligned manner where the fingers can be automatically and perfectly lined up to a selective emitter and where expensive silver screen printing paste can be mostly replaced by plating up the seed layers with silver or copper. The benefits are: a) Lower reflectivity , b) Decoupling the performance of the texture from the saw damage, thus allowing for better advances in sawing and a more robust wet process. 1366 Technologies developed 2 pilot machines for 1) deposition and patterning of low-cost resist layers to enable simultaneous Honeycomb front texturing and groove formation for multicrystalline Si wafers, and 2) fine-line dispensing of materials that are self aligned to the grooves.

  10. Hydrogen passivation of interstitial iron in boron-doped multicrystalline silicon during annealing

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Liu, AnYao; Sun, Chang; Macdonald, Daniel

    2014-11-21

    Effective hydrogenation of interstitial iron in boron-doped multicrystalline silicon wafers is reported. The multicrystalline silicon wafers were annealed with plasma-enhanced chemical vapour deposited silicon nitride films, at temperatures of 400?C??900?C and for times from minutes to hours. At low temperatures where a combined effect of hydrogenation and precipitation of dissolved Fe is expected, results show that the hydrogenation process dominates the effect of precipitation. The concentrations of dissolved interstitial iron reduce by more than 90% after a 30-min anneal at temperatures between 600 and 900?C. The most effective reduction occurs at 700?C, where 99% of the initial dissolved iron is hydrogenated after 30?min. The results show that the observed reductions in interstitial Fe concentrations are not caused by the internal gettering of Fe at structural defects or by an enhanced diffusivity of Fe due to the presence of hydrogen. The hydrogenation process is conjectured to be the pairing of positively charged iron with negatively charged hydrogen, forming less recombination active Fe-H complexes in silicon.

  11. Millinet Solar Co Ltd | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Millinet Solar Co Ltd Jump to: navigation, search Name: Millinet Solar Co Ltd Place: Daegu, Daegu, Korea (Republic) Product: Korean manufacturer of multicrystalline silicon PV...

  12. High-efficiency solar cells using HEM silicon

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Khattak, C.P.; Schmid, F.; Schubert, W.K.

    1994-12-31

    Developments in Heat Exchanger Method (HEM) technology for production of multicrystalline silicon ingot production have led to growth of larger ingots (55 cm square cross section) with lower costs and reliability in production. A single reusable crucible has been used to produce 18 multicrystalline 33 cm square cross section 40 kg ingots, and capability to produce 44 cm ingots has been demonstrated. Large area solar cells of 16.3% (42 cm{sup 2}) and 15.3% (100 cm{sup 2}) efficiency have been produced without optimization of the material production and the solar cell processing.

  13. On the capability of deep level transient spectroscopy for characterizing multi-crystalline silicon

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Mchedlidze, T.; Nacke, M.; Hieckmann, E.; Weber, J.

    2014-01-07

    The suitability of the deep level transient spectroscopy (DLTS) technique in exploring locations with high and degraded carrier lifetimes containing grain-boundaries (GBs) in multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) wafers was studied. The types and locations of GBs were determined in mc-Si samples by electron backscatter diffraction. Mesa-type Schottky diodes were prepared at (along) GBs and at reference, GB-free locations. Detected DLTS signals varied strongly along the same GB. Experiments with dislocation networks, model structures for GBs, showed that GB-related traps may be explored only using special arrangement of a GB and the diode contacts. Iron-related carrier traps were detected in locations with degraded carrier lifetimes. Densities of the traps for near-GB and for GB free locations were compared to the lifetime measurement results.

  14. New Tool Quantitatively Maps Minority-Carrier Lifetime of Multicrystalline Silicon Bricks (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Not Available

    2011-11-01

    NREL's new imaging tool could provide manufacturers with insight on their processes. Scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have used capabilities within the Process Development and Integration Laboratory (PDIL) to generate quantitative minority-carrier lifetime maps of multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) bricks. This feat has been accomplished by using the PDIL's photoluminescence (PL) imaging system in conjunction with transient lifetime measurements obtained using a custom NREL-designed resonance-coupled photoconductive decay (RCPCD) system. PL imaging can obtain rapid high-resolution images that provide a qualitative assessment of the material lifetime-with the lifetime proportional to the pixel intensity. In contrast, the RCPCD technique provides a fast quantitative measure of the lifetime with a lower resolution and penetrates millimeters into the mc-Si brick, providing information on bulk lifetimes and material quality. This technique contrasts with commercially available minority-carrier lifetime mapping systems that use microwave conductivity measurements. Such measurements are dominated by surface recombination and lack information on the material quality within the bulk of the brick. By combining these two complementary techniques, we obtain high-resolution lifetime maps at very fast data acquisition times-attributes necessary for a production-based diagnostic tool. These bulk lifetime measurements provide manufacturers with invaluable feedback on their silicon ingot casting processes. NREL has been applying the PL images of lifetime in mc-Si bricks in collaboration with a U.S. photovoltaic industry partner through Recovery Act Funded Project ARRA T24. NREL developed a new tool to quantitatively map minority-carrier lifetime of multicrystalline silicon bricks by using photoluminescence imaging in conjunction with resonance-coupled photoconductive decay measurements. Researchers are not hindered by surface recombination and can look

  15. Characterization of Multicrystalline Silicon Modules with System Bias Voltage Applied in Damp Heat

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Hacke, P.; Kempe, M.; Terwilliger, K.; Glick, S.; Call, N.; Johnston, S.; Kurtz, S.

    2011-07-01

    As it is considered economically favorable to serially connect modules to build arrays with high system voltage, it is necessary to explore potential long-term degradation mechanisms the modules may incur under such electrical potential. We performed accelerated lifetime testing of multicrystalline silicon PV modules in 85 degrees C/ 85% relative humidity and 45 degrees C/ 30% relative humidity while placing the active layer in either positive or negative 600 V bias with respect to the grounded module frame. Negative bias applied to the active layer in some cases leads to more rapid and catastrophic module power degradation. This is associated with significant shunting of individual cells as indicated by electroluminescence, thermal imaging, and I-V curves. Mass spectroscopy results support ion migration as one of the causes. Electrolytic corrosion is seen occurring with the silicon nitride antireflective coating and silver gridlines, and there is ionic transport of metallization at the encapsulant interface observed with damp heat and applied bias. Leakage current and module degradation is found to be highly dependent upon the module construction, with factors such as encapsulant and front glass resistivity affecting performance. Measured leakage currents range from about the same seen in published reports of modules deployed in Florida (USA) and is accelerated to up to 100 times higher in the environmental chamber testing.

  16. Silicon solar cell assembly

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Burgess, Edward L.; Nasby, Robert D.; Schueler, Donald G.

    1979-01-01

    A silicon solar cell assembly comprising a large, thin silicon solar cell bonded to a metal mount for use when there exists a mismatch in the thermal expansivities of the device and the mount.

  17. Defect-Band Emission Photoluminescence Imaging on Multi-Crystalline Si Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Yan, F.; Johnston, S.; Zaunbrecher, K.; Al-Jassim, M.; Sidelkheir, O.; Blosse, A.

    2011-07-01

    Defect-band photoluminescence (PL) imaging with an InGaAs camera was applied to multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) wafers, which were taken from different heights of different Si bricks. Neighboring wafers were picked at six different processing steps, from as-cut to post-metallization. By using different cut-off filters, we were able to separate the band-to-band emission images from the defect-band emission images. On the defect-band emission images, the bright regions that originate from the grain boundaries and defect clusters were extracted from the PL images. The area fraction percentage of these regions at various processing stages shows a correlation with the final cell electrical parameters.

  18. Enabling Thin Silicon Solar Cell Technology

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Enabling Thin Silicon Solar Cell Technology Enabling Thin Silicon Solar Cell Technology Print Friday, 21 June 2013 10:49 Generic silicon solar cells showing +45, -45, and ...

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  20. Impact of iron contamination in multicrystalline silicon solarcells: origins, chemical states, and device impacts

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Buonassisi, Tonio; Heuer, Matthias; Istratov, Andrei A.; Marcus,Matthew A.; Jonczyk, Ralf; Lai, Barry; Cai, Zhonghou; Schindler, Roland; Weber, Eicke R.

    2004-11-08

    Synchrotron-based microprobe techniques have been applied to study the distribution, size, chemical state, and recombination activity of Fe clusters in two types of mc-Si materials: block cast mc-Si, and AstroPower Silicon Film(TM) sheet material. In sheet material, high concentrations of metals were found at recombination-active, micron-sized intragranular clusters consisting of micron and sub-micron sized particles. In addition, Fe nanoparticles were located in densities of {approx}2'107 cm-2 along recombination-active grain boundaries. In cast mc-Si,two types of particles were identified at grain boundaries: (1) micron-sized oxidized Fe particles accompanied by other metals (Cr, Mn, Ca, Ti), and (2) a higher number of sub-micron FeSi2 precipitates that exhibited a preferred orientation along the crystal growth direction. In both materials, it is believed that the larger Fe clusters are inclusions of foreign particles, from which Fe dissolves in the melt to form the smaller FeSi2 nanoprecipitates, which by virtue of their more homogeneous distribution are deemed more dangerous to solar cell device performance. Based on this understanding, strategies proposed to reduce the impact of Fe on mc-Si electrical properties include gettering, passivation, and limiting the dissolution of foreign Fe-rich particles in the melt.

  1. Properties of iron-doped multicrystalline silicon grown by the float-zone technique

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ciszek, T.F.; Wang, T.H.; Ahrenkiel, R.K.; Matson, R.

    1996-05-01

    Multicrystalline Fe-doped Si ingots were float-zoned from high-purity feed rods. Fe was introduced by pill-doping, which gives uniform impurity content for small segregation coefficients (k {approximately} 10{sup {minus}5} for Fe in Si). Fe concentrations were calculated from the initial weight of the Fe pill, the molten zone geomet and the growth parameters. Values in the range of 10{sup 12}-10{sup 16} atoms/cm{sup 3} were targeted. No additional electrically active dopants were introduced. Minority charge carrier lifetime (via YAG-laser-excited, 430-MHz ultra-high-frequency-coupled, photoconductive decay) was measured on the ingots, and wafers were cut to examine grain structure and electron-beam-induced current response of grain boundaries. Observed lifetimes decreased monotonically with increasing Fe content for similar grain sizes (from {approximately}10 {mu}s to 2 {mu}s for < 10{sup {minus}3} cm{sup 2} grains, from {approximately}30 {mu}s to 2 {mu}s for {approximately}5 x 10{sup {minus}3} cm{sup 2} grains, and from {approximately}300 {mu}s to 2 {mu}s for > 10{sup {minus}2} cm{sup 2} grains) as the Fe content increased to 1 {times} 10{sup 16} atoms/cm{sup 3}.

  2. Phosphorus and aluminum gettering - investigation of synergistic effects in single-crystal and multicrystalline silicon

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Schubert, W.K.; Gee, J.M.

    1996-06-01

    Synergistic effects from simultaneous phosphorus-diffusion/aluminium alloy gettering are investigated in three different crystalline- silicon substrates. The silicon materials, experimental design, characterization, and analysis are presented. Some evidence for synergism is observed in the finished cells on all three substrates types. These results are combined with complementary observations of the effects of oxidation on bulk properties of previously gettered substrates to suggest a high volume, low cost, process implementation which could give up to 9% relative increase in efficiency.

  3. Compensated amorphous silicon solar cell

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  4. Solar Silicon Wafers

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)

    This photograph features Hao-Chih Yuan, a scientist at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). He is reflected in a highly reflective untreated silicone wafer (left) compared to a silicone...

  5. Compensated amorphous silicon solar cell

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  6. Silicon Valley Solar Inc SV Solar | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Solar Inc SV Solar Jump to: navigation, search Name: Silicon Valley Solar Inc (SV Solar) Place: Santa Clara, California Zip: 95051 Sector: Solar Product: A US-based manufacturer of...

  7. Semi-transparent perovskite solar cells for tandems with silicon and CIGS

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    Bailie, Colin D.; Christoforo, M. Greyson; Mailoa, Jonathan P.; Bowring, Andrea R.; Unger, Eva L.; Nguyen, William H.; Burschka, Julian; Pellet, Norman; Lee, Jungwoo Z.; Grätzel, Michael; et al

    2014-12-23

    A promising approach for upgrading the performance of an established low-bandgap solar technology without adding much cost is to deposit a high bandgap polycrystalline semiconductor on top to make a tandem solar cell. We use a transparent silver nanowire electrode on perovskite solar cells to achieve a semi-transparent device. We place the semi-transparent cell in a mechanically-stacked tandem configuration onto copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) and low-quality multicrystalline silicon (Si) to achieve solid-state polycrystalline tandem solar cells with a net improvement in efficiency over the bottom cell alone. Furthermore, this work paves the way for integrating perovskites into a low-costmore » and high-efficiency (>25%) tandem cell.« less

  8. Semi-transparent perovskite solar cells for tandems with silicon and CIGS

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Bailie, Colin D.; Christoforo, M. Greyson; Mailoa, Jonathan P.; Bowring, Andrea R.; Unger, Eva L.; Nguyen, William H.; Burschka, Julian; Pellet, Norman; Lee, Jungwoo Z.; Grätzel, Michael; Noufi, Rommel; Buonassisi, Tonio; Salleo, Alberto; McGehee, Michael D.

    2014-12-23

    A promising approach for upgrading the performance of an established low-bandgap solar technology without adding much cost is to deposit a high bandgap polycrystalline semiconductor on top to make a tandem solar cell. We use a transparent silver nanowire electrode on perovskite solar cells to achieve a semi-transparent device. We place the semi-transparent cell in a mechanically-stacked tandem configuration onto copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) and low-quality multicrystalline silicon (Si) to achieve solid-state polycrystalline tandem solar cells with a net improvement in efficiency over the bottom cell alone. Furthermore, this work paves the way for integrating perovskites into a low-cost and high-efficiency (>25%) tandem cell.

  9. Cermet layer for amorphous silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Hanak, Joseph J.

    1979-01-01

    A transparent high work function metal cermet forms a Schottky barrier in a Schottky barrier amorphous silicon solar cell and adheres well to the P+ layer in a PIN amorphous silicon solar cell.

  10. Enabling Thin Silicon Solar Cell Technology

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Enabling Thin Silicon Solar Cell Technology Enabling Thin Silicon Solar Cell Technology Print Friday, 21 June 2013 10:49 Generic silicon solar cells showing +45°, -45°, and dendritic crack patterns. The effort to shift U.S. energy reliance from fossil fuels to renewable sources has spurred companies to reduce the cost and increase the reliability of their solar photovoltaics (SPVs). The use of thinner silicon in SPV technologies is being widely adopted because it significantly reduces costs;

  11. Method for processing silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  12. Laser wafering for silicon solar.

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  13. Amorphous silicon solar cell allowing infrared transmission

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  14. Potential variation around grain boundaries in BaSi{sub 2} films grown on multicrystalline silicon evaluated using Kelvin probe force microscopy

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Baba, Masakazu; Tsukahara, Daichi; Toko, Kaoru; Hara, Kosuke O.; Usami, Noritaka; Sekiguchi, Takashi; Suemasu, Takashi

    2014-12-21

    Potential variations across the grain boundaries (GBs) in a 100?nm thick undoped n-BaSi{sub 2} film on a cast-grown multicrystalline Si (mc-Si) substrate are evaluated using Kelvin probe force microscopy (KFM). The ?-2? X-ray diffraction pattern reveals diffraction peaks, such as (201), (301), (410), and (411) of BaSi{sub 2}. Local-area electron backscatter diffraction reveals that the a-axis of BaSi{sub 2} is tilted slightly from the surface normal, depending on the local crystal plane of the mc-Si. KFM measurements show that the potentials are not significantly disordered in the grown BaSi{sub 2}, even around the GBs of mc-Si. The potentials are higher at GBs of BaSi{sub 2} around Si GBs that are formed by grains with a Si(111) face and those with faces that deviate slightly from Si(111). Thus, downward band bending occurs at these BaSi{sub 2} GBs. Minority carriers (holes) undergo a repelling force near the GBs, which may suppress recombination as in the case of undoped n-BaSi{sub 2} epitaxial films on a single crystal Si(111) substrate. The barrier height for hole transport across the GBs varies in the range from 10 to 55?meV. The potentials are also higher at the BaSi{sub 2} GBs grown around Si GBs composed of grains with Si(001) and Si(111) faces. The barrier height for hole transport ranges from 5 to 55?meV. These results indicate that BaSi{sub 2} GBs formed on (111)-dominant Si surfaces do not have a negative influence on the minority-carrier properties, and thus BaSi{sub 2} formed on underlayers, such as (111)-oriented Si or Ge and on (111)-oriented mc-Si, can be utilized as a solar cell active layer.

  15. Tandem junction amorphous silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Hanak, Joseph J.

    1981-01-01

    An amorphous silicon solar cell has an active body with two or a series of layers of hydrogenated amorphous silicon arranged in a tandem stacked configuration with one optical path and electrically interconnected by a tunnel junction. The layers of hydrogenated amorphous silicon arranged in tandem configuration can have the same bandgap or differing bandgaps.

  16. Solar cell with silicon oxynitride dielectric layer

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Shepherd, Michael; Smith, David D

    2015-04-28

    Solar cells with silicon oxynitride dielectric layers and methods of forming silicon oxynitride dielectric layers for solar cell fabrication are described. For example, an emitter region of a solar cell includes a portion of a substrate having a back surface opposite a light receiving surface. A silicon oxynitride (SiO.sub.xN.sub.y, 0silicon oxynitride dielectric layer.

  17. Real-Space Microscopic Electrical Imaging of n+-p Junction Beneath Front-Side Ag Contact of Multicrystalline Si Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Jiang, C. S.; Li, Z. G.; Moutinho, H. R.; Liang, L.; Ionkin, A.; Al-Jassim, M. M.

    2012-04-15

    We investigated the quality of the n+-p diffused junction beneath the front-side Ag contact of multicrystalline Si solar cells by characterizing the uniformities of electrostatic potential and doping concentration across the junction using the atomic force microscopy-based electrical imaging techniques of scanning Kelvin probe force microscopy and scanning capacitance microscopy. We found that Ag screen-printing metallization fired at the over-fire temperature significantly degrades the junction uniformity beneath the Ag contact grid, whereas metallization at the optimal- and under-fire temperatures does not cause degradation. Ag crystallites with widely distributed sizes were found at the Ag-grid/emitter-Si interface of the over-fired cell, which is associated with the junction damage beneath the Ag grid. Large crystallites protrude into Si deeper than the junction depth. However, the junction was not broken down; instead, it was reformed on the entire front of the crystallite/Si interface. We propose a mechanism of junction-quality degradation, based on emitter Si melting at the temperature around the Ag-Si eutectic point during firing, and subsequent re-crystallization with incorporation of Ag and other impurities and with formation of crystallographic defects during quenching. The effect of this junction damage on solar cell performance is discussed.

  18. Intermediate Bandgap Solar Cells From Nanostructured Silicon

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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. Fabricating solar cells with silicon nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  20. Japan Solar Silicon Co Ltd JSS | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Solar Silicon Co Ltd JSS Jump to: navigation, search Name: Japan Solar Silicon Co Ltd (JSS) Place: Tokyo, Japan Sector: Solar Product: A JV company between Chisso, Nippon Mining...

  1. Arrays of ultrathin silicon solar microcells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  2. Arrays of ultrathin silicon solar microcells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  3. Manufacture of silicon carbide using solar energy

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Glatzmaier, Gregory C. (Boulder, CO)

    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.

  4. Compensated amorphous-silicon solar cell

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  5. Three dimensional amorphous silicon/microcrystalline silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  6. Three dimensional amorphous silicon/microcrystalline silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  7. GCL Solar Energy Technology Holdings formerly GCL Silicon aka...

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    GCL Silicon aka Jiangsu Zhongneng Polysilicon Jump to: navigation, search Name: GCL Solar Energy Technology Holdings (formerly GCL Silicon, aka Jiangsu Zhongneng Polysilicon)...

  8. Plasma etching, texturing, and passivation of silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ruby, D.S.; Yang, P.; Zaidi, S.; Brueck, S.; Roy, M.; Narayanan, S.

    1998-11-01

    The authors improved a self-aligned emitter etchback technique that requires only a single emitter diffusion and no alignments to form self-aligned, patterned-emitter profiles. Standard commercial screen-printed gridlines mask a plasma-etchback of the emitter. A subsequent PECVD-nitride deposition provides good surface and bulk passivation and an antireflection coating. The authors used full-size multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) cells processed in a commercial production line and performed a statistically designed multiparameter experiment to optimize the use of a hydrogenation treatment to increase performance. They obtained an improvement of almost a full percentage point in cell efficiency when the self-aligned emitter etchback was combined with an optimized 3-step PECVD-nitride surface passivation and hydrogenation treatment. They also investigated the inclusion of a plasma-etching process that results in a low-reflectance, textured surface on multicrystalline silicon cells. Preliminary results indicate reflectance can be significantly reduced without etching away the emitter diffusion.

  9. Plasma etching, texturing, and passivation of silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ruby, D.S.; Yang, P.; Brueck, S.; Narayanan, S.

    1999-03-01

    We improved a self-aligned emitter etchback technique that requires only a single emitter diffusion and no alignments to form self-aligned, patterned-emitter profiles. Standard commercial screen-printed gridlines mask a plasma-etchback of the emitter. A subsequent PECVD-nitride deposition provides good surface and bulk passivation and an antireflection coating. We used full-size multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) cells processed in a commercial production line and performed a statistically designed multiparameter experiment to optimize the use of a hydrogenation treatment to increase performance. We obtained an improvement of almost a full percentage point in cell efficiency when the self-aligned emitter etchback was combined with an optimized 3-step PECVD-nitride surface passivation and hydrogenation treatment. We also investigated the inclusion of a plasma-etching process that results in a low-reflectance, textured surface on multicrystalline silicon cells. Preliminary results indicate reflectance can be significantly reduced without etching away the emitter diffusion. {copyright} {ital 1999 American Institute of Physics.}

  10. Inverted amorphous silicon solar cell utilizing cermet layers

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  12. Metal electrode for amorphous silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  13. Hydrogenation of Dislocation-Limited Heteroepitaxial Silicon Solar Cells:

    Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI)

    Preprint (Conference) | SciTech Connect Conference: Hydrogenation of Dislocation-Limited Heteroepitaxial Silicon Solar Cells: Preprint Citation Details In-Document Search Title: Hydrogenation of Dislocation-Limited Heteroepitaxial Silicon Solar Cells: Preprint 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

  14. Indium oxide/n-silicon heterojunction solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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%.

  15. Efficiency of silicon solar cells containing chromium

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  16. Origami-enabled deformable silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  17. Substrate for thin silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  18. Substrate for thin silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Ciszek, Theodore F. (Evergreen, CO)

    1995-01-01

    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.-3 ohm-cm.

  19. Amorphous silicon passivated contacts for diffused junction silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Bullock, J. Yan, D.; Wan, Y.; Cuevas, A.; Demaurex, B.; Hessler-Wyser, A.; De Wolf, S.

    2014-04-28

    Carrier recombination at the metal contacts is a major obstacle in the development of high-performance crystalline silicon homojunction solar cells. To address this issue, we insert thin intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon [a-Si:H(i)] passivating films between the dopant-diffused silicon surface and aluminum contacts. We find that with increasing a-Si:H(i) interlayer thickness (from 0 to 16?nm) the recombination loss at metal-contacted phosphorus (n{sup +}) and boron (p{sup +}) diffused surfaces decreases by factors of ?25 and ?10, respectively. Conversely, the contact resistivity increases in both cases before saturating to still acceptable values of ? 50 m? cm{sup 2} for n{sup +} and ?100 m? cm{sup 2} for p{sup +} surfaces. Carrier transport towards the contacts likely occurs by a combination of carrier tunneling and aluminum spiking through the a-Si:H(i) layer, as supported by scanning transmission electron microscopyenergy dispersive x-ray maps. We explain the superior contact selectivity obtained on n{sup +} surfaces by more favorable band offsets and capture cross section ratios of recombination centers at the c-Si/a-Si:H(i) interface.

  20. Amorphous silicon materials and solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Stafford, B.L. )

    1991-01-01

    An International Meeting on Stability of Amorphous Silicon Materials and Solar Cells was held in Denver, CO on February 20--22, 1991. The main objectives of the meeting were to bring to light-and stimulate discussion on-recent advances in (1) understanding the underlying mechanisms of light-induced instability and (2) engineering approaches to stable solar cells. Several of the experimental and theoretical papers presented here, particularly those regarding low-hydrogen-content materials, give cause for optimism that the performance may finally be yielding to worldwide concerted efforts to understand and mitigate it. The four main topics discussed are modeling metastability, experimental data and model verification, materials studies, and solar cell studies.

  1. Techniques of Nanoscale Silicon Texturing of Solar Cells - Energy...

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Technology Marketing SummarySandia National Laboratories has created a technology that produces an antireflective (matte) surface on a silicon photovoltaic solar cell. The process ...

  2. Thinner Film Silicon Solar Cells - Energy Innovation Portal

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    thin film silicon solar cells with a potential increase in photon energy conversion of up to 20%, a significant improvement over conventional thin film photovoltaic technologies. ...

  3. Solar Fabrik Silicon Services Ltd formerly OJAS Energy | Open...

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Energy Jump to: navigation, search Name: Solar-Fabrik Silicon Services Ltd (formerly OJAS Energy) Place: Chennai, India Product: PV wafer manufacturer, legally based in the British...

  4. Low Cost, High Efficiency Tandem Silicon Solar Cells and LEDs...

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Building Energy Efficiency Building Energy ... Return to Search Low Cost, High Efficiency Tandem Silicon Solar Cells and LEDs ... gaps will lead to efficient power conversion. ...

  5. Joint Solar Silicon GmbH Co KG JSSI | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Name: Joint Solar Silicon GmbH & Co KG (JSSI) Place: Germany Sector: Solar Product: Joint venture between Degussa and SolarWorld for the production of solar-grade silicon on...

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

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

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

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  8. Defect behavior of polycrystalline solar cell silicon

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  9. Investigation of the texture surface silicon solar cell

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rongqiang, C.; Huilan, Q.

    1983-10-01

    The optical and electrical properties of the texture surface silicon solar cell are analyzed and discussed. A new method of etching a texture surface by LiOH is presented and the mechanism of etching a texture surface is investigated.

  10. Silicon Valley Power- Solar Electric Buy Down Program

    Broader source: Energy.gov [DOE]

    Silicon Valley Power (SVP) offers incentives for the installation of new grid-connected solar electric (photovoltaic, or PV) systems. Incentive levels will step down over the life of the program...

  11. The Silicon Solar Cell Turns 50

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Daryl Chapin, Calvin Fuller, and Gerald Pearson likely never imagined inventing a solar ... Being a solar energy enthusiast, he suggested that the investi- gation include solar ...

  12. Process development for high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Gee, J.M.; Basore, P.A.; Buck, M.E.; Ruby, D.S.; Schubert, W.K.; Silva, B.L.; Tingley, J.W.

    1991-01-01

    Fabrication of high-efficiency silicon solar cells in an industrial environment requires a different optimization than in a laboratory environment. Strategies are presented for process development of high-efficiency silicon solar cells, with a goal of simplifying technology transfer into an industrial setting. The strategies emphasize the use of statistical experimental design for process optimization, and the use of baseline processes and cells for process monitoring and quality control. 8 refs.

  13. Evergreen Solar Inc | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Massachusetts Zip: 1752 Product: US manufacturer of multicrystalline silicon wafers, cells, modules and systems; uses a proprietary technology called String Ribbon for wafer...

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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 300C. 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.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

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

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    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

  17. Copper doped polycrystalline silicon solar cell

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Lovelace, Alan M. Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space; Koliwad, Krishna M.; Daud, Taher

    1981-01-01

    Photovoltaic cells having improved performance are fabricated from polycrystalline silicon containing copper segregated at the grain boundaries.

  18. Flexible Thin-Film Silicon Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Vijh, Aarohi; Cao, Simon; Mohring, Brad

    2014-01-11

    High fuel costs, environmental concerns and issues of national energy security have brought increasing attention to a distributed generation program for electricity based on solar technology. Rooftop photovoltaic (PV) systems provide distributed generation since the power is consumed at the point of production, thus eliminating the need for costly additional transmission lines. However, most current photovoltaic modules are heavy and require a significant amount of labor and accessory hardware such as mounting frames for installation on rooftops. This makes rooftop systems impractical or cost prohibitive in many instances. Under this project, Xunlight has advanced its manufacturing process for the production of lightweight, flexible thin-film silicon based photovoltaic modules, and has enhanced the reliability and performance of Xunlights products. These modules are easily unrolled and adhered directly to standard commercial roofs without mounting structures or integrated directly into roofing membrane materials for the lowest possible installation costs on the market. Importantly, Xunlight has now established strategic alliances with roofing material manufacturers and other OEMs for the development of building integrated photovoltaic roofing and other PV-enabled products, and has deployed its products in a number of commercial installations with these business partners.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  20. NREL Develops ZnSiP2 for Silicon-Based Tandem Solar Cells (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Not Available

    2014-08-01

    Combining an Earth-abundant chalcopyrite with a silicon layer could significantly boost conversion efficiency above that of single-junction silicon solar cells.

  1. CHINT Solar Co Ltd aka Astronergy | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    A subsidiary company of CHINT Group, producing multicrystalline and monocrystalline solar cells, modules, thin-film solar cells and PV application products. Coordinates:...

  2. PV Crystalox Solar AG formerly PV Silicon AG | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    PV Crystalox Solar AG formerly PV Silicon AG Jump to: navigation, search Name: PV Crystalox Solar AG (formerly PV Silicon AG) Place: Abingdon, England, United Kingdom Zip: OX14 4SE...

  3. Solar EnerTech PAIS Jin Yu Silicon Wuhai Municipal Gvrnt JV ...

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Solar EnerTech PAIS Jin Yu Silicon Wuhai Municipal Gvrnt JV Jump to: navigation, search Name: Solar EnerTech, PAIS, Jin Yu Silicon, & Wuhai Municipal Gvrnt JV Place: Inner Mongolia...

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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%.

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

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    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%.

  6. Researchers Growing Silicon Films for Solar Cells

    Broader source: Energy.gov [DOE]

    This photograph features Chaz Teplin, left, and Howard Branz, right, scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. They use a hot-wire chemical vapor deposition system to grow silicon...

  7. Solar Power Industries SPI | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Pennsylvania Zip: 15012 Product: US-based manufacturer of mono and multicrystalline PV cells, modules and systems. References: Solar Power Industries (SPI)1 This article is a...

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

    ScienceCinema (OSTI)

    Branz, Howard

    2013-05-29

    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.

  9. Modelling and fabrication of high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rohatgi, A.; Smith, A.W.; Salami, J.

    1991-10-01

    This report covers the research conducted on modelling and development of high-efficiency silicon solar cells during the period May 1989 to August 1990. First, considerable effort was devoted toward developing a ray-tracing program for the photovoltaic community to quantify and optimize surface texturing for solar cells. Second, attempts were made to develop a hydrodynamic model for device simulation. Such a model is somewhat slower than drift-diffusion type models like PC-1D, but it can account for more physical phenomena in the device, such as hot carrier effects, temperature gradients, thermal diffusion, and lattice heat flow. In addition, Fermi-Dirac statistics have been incorporated into the model to deal with heavy doping effects more accurately. Third and final component of the research includes development of silicon cell fabrication capabilities and fabrication of high-efficiency silicon cells. 84 refs., 46 figs., 10 tabs.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

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

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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%.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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

  14. Recent progress on the self-aligned, selective-emitter silicon solar cell

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ruby, D.S.; Yang, P.; Roy, M.

    1997-10-01

    We developed a self-aligned emitter etchback technique that requires only a single emitter diffusion and no alignments to form self-aligned, patterned-emitter profiles. Standard commercial, screen-printed gridlines mask a plasma-etchback of the emitter. A subsequent PECVD-nitride deposition provides good surface and bulk passivation and an antireflection coating. We succeeded in finding a set of parameters which resulted in good emitter uniformity and improved cell performance. We used full-size multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) cells processed in a commercial production line and performed a statistically designed, multiparameter experiment to optimize the use of a hydrogenation treatment to increase performance. Our initial results found a statistically significant improvement of half an absolute percentage point in cell efficiency when the self-aligned emitter etchback was combined with a 3-step PECVD-nitride surface passivation and hydrogenation treatment. 12 refs., 4 figs., 3 tabs.

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

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  16. Junction Transport in Epitaxial Film Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

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

    2011-01-01

    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{sup ++} Si wafers show space-charge-region recombination, tunneling or diffusive transport depending on both epitaxial Si quality and the applied forward voltage.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  18. Modeling of Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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

  19. Silicon Ink for High-Efficiency Solar Cells Captures a Share of the Market (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Not Available

    2011-08-01

    Fact sheet on 2011 R&D 100 Award winner Silicon Ink. Liquid silicon has arrived, and with it comes a power boost for solar cells and dramatic cost savings for cell manufacturers.

  20. Texas school district enlightens students with solar | Department...

    Broader source: Energy.gov (indexed) [DOE]

    will include three different photovoltaic solar cell technologies. The projects will use multi-crystalline cells, thin-film amorphous cells and cylindrical cells, and they ...

  1. Silicon Ink Technology Offers Path to Higher Efficiency Solar Cells at Lower Cost

    Broader source: Energy.gov [DOE]

    EERE supported the development of the first liquid silicon on the market that offers a novel path to producing more efficient solar cells at lower cost.

  2. Material requirements for the adoption of unconventional silicon crystal and wafer growth techniques for high-efficiency solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Hofstetter, Jasmin; del Cañizo, Carlos; Wagner, Hannes; Castellanos, Sergio; Buonassisi, Tonio

    2015-10-15

    Silicon wafers comprise approximately 40% of crystalline silicon module cost and represent an area of great technological innovation potential. Paradoxically, unconventional wafer-growth techniques have thus far failed to displace multicrystalline and Czochralski silicon, despite four decades of innovation. One of the shortcomings of most unconventional materials has been a persistent carrier lifetime deficit in comparison to established wafer technologies, which limits the device efficiency potential. In this perspective article, we review a defect-management framework that has proven successful in enabling millisecond lifetimes in kerfless and cast materials. Control of dislocations and slowly diffusing metal point defects during growth, coupled to effective control of fast-diffusing species during cell processing, is critical to enable high cell efficiencies. As a result, to accelerate the pace of novel wafer development, we discuss approaches to rapidly evaluate the device efficiency potential of unconventional wafers from injection-dependent lifetime measurements.

  3. Material requirements for the adoption of unconventional silicon crystal and wafer growth techniques for high-efficiency solar cells

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    Hofstetter, Jasmin; del Cañizo, Carlos; Wagner, Hannes; Castellanos, Sergio; Buonassisi, Tonio

    2015-10-15

    Silicon wafers comprise approximately 40% of crystalline silicon module cost and represent an area of great technological innovation potential. Paradoxically, unconventional wafer-growth techniques have thus far failed to displace multicrystalline and Czochralski silicon, despite four decades of innovation. One of the shortcomings of most unconventional materials has been a persistent carrier lifetime deficit in comparison to established wafer technologies, which limits the device efficiency potential. In this perspective article, we review a defect-management framework that has proven successful in enabling millisecond lifetimes in kerfless and cast materials. Control of dislocations and slowly diffusing metal point defects during growth, coupled tomore » effective control of fast-diffusing species during cell processing, is critical to enable high cell efficiencies. As a result, to accelerate the pace of novel wafer development, we discuss approaches to rapidly evaluate the device efficiency potential of unconventional wafers from injection-dependent lifetime measurements.« less

  4. High-performance porous silicon solar cell development. Final report, October 1, 1993--September 30, 1995

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Maruska, P.

    1996-09-01

    The goal of the program was to demonstrate use of porous silicon in new solar cell structures. Porous silicon technology has been developed at Spire for producing visible light-emitting diodes (LEDs). The major aspects that they have demonstrated are the following: porous silicon active layers have been made to show photovoltaic action; porous silicon surface layers can act as antireflection coatings to improve the performance of single-crystal silicon solar cells; and porous silicon surface layers can act as antireflection coatings on polycrystalline silicon solar cells. One problem with the use of porous silicon is to achieve good lateral conduction of electrons and holes through the material. This shows up in terms of poor blue response and photocurrents which increase with increasing reverse bias applied to the diode.

  5. Spectral and temperature correction of silicon photovoltaic solar radiation detectors

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Michalsky, J.J.; Perez, R.; Harrison, L. ); LeBaron, B.A. )

    1991-01-01

    Silicon photovoltaic sensors are an inexpensive alternative to standard thermopile sensors for the measurement of solar radiation. However, their temperature and spectral response render them less accurate for global horizontal irradiance and unsuitable for direct beam and diffuse horizontal irradiance unless they can be reliably corrected. A correction procedure for the rotating shadowband radiometer, which measures all three components, based on a three-way parameterization of the solar position and sky conditions is proposed. After correction, root-mean-square errors for the global and diffuse horizontal irradiance and the direct normal irradiance are about 10, 12, and 13 W/m{sup 2} in comparison with coincident, 5-minute thermopile measurements. While the numerical results are specific to the rotating shadowband instrument, the correction algorithm should apply universally.

  6. EERE Success Story-California: TetraCell Silicon Solar Cell Improves

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Indexed Site

    Efficiency, Wins R&D 100 Award | Department of Energy TetraCell Silicon Solar Cell Improves Efficiency, Wins R&D 100 Award EERE Success Story-California: TetraCell Silicon Solar Cell Improves Efficiency, Wins R&D 100 Award August 16, 2013 - 10:41am Addthis EERE Success Story—California: TetraCell Silicon Solar Cell Improves Efficiency, Wins R&D 100 Award TetraSun, in partnership with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, developed a novel crystalline silicon

  7. Amorphous silicon solar cells techniques for reactive conditions

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Shimizu, Satoshi; Okawa, Kojiro; Kamiya, Toshio; Fortmann, C.M.; Shimizu, Isamu

    1999-07-01

    The preparation of amorphous silicon films and solar cells using SiH{sub 2}Cl{sub 2} source gas and electron cyclotron resonance assisted chemical vapor deposition (ECR-CVD) was investigated. By using buffer layers to protect previously deposited layers improved a-Si:H(Cl) solar cells were prepared and studied. The high quality a-Si:H(Cl) films used in this study exhibited low defect densities ({approximately}10{sup 15} cm{sup {minus}3}) and high stability under illumination even when the deposition rate was increased to {approximately} 15A/s. The solar cells were deposited in the n-i-p sequence. These solar cells achieved V{sub oc} values of {approximately}0.89V and {approximately}3.9% efficiency on Ga doped ZnO (GZO) coated specular substrate. The a-Si:H(Cl) electron and hole {mu}{tau} products were {approximately}10{sup {minus}8} cm{sup 2}/V.

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

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

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

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  10. PROJECT PROFILE: Silicon-Based Tandem Solar Cells | Department of Energy

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Indexed Site

    Silicon-Based Tandem Solar Cells PROJECT PROFILE: Silicon-Based Tandem Solar Cells Funding Opportunity: SuNLaMP SunShot Subprogram: Photovoltaics Location: National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO Amount Awarded: $1,500,000 The project will demonstrate bonded gallium indium phosphide (GaInP) on silicon tandem cells, evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of this method of forming higher-efficiency tandem cells, and compare two- and three-terminal device configurations. APPROACH In

  11. Defect Engineering, Cell Processing, and Modeling for High-Performance, Low-Cost Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Buonassisi, Tonio

    2013-02-26

    The objective of this project is to close the efficiency gap between industrial multicrystalline silicon (mc-Si) and monocrystalline silicon solar cells, while preserving the economic advantage of low-cost, high-volume substrates inherent to mc-Si. Over the course of this project, we made significant progress toward this goal, as evidenced by the evolution in solar-cell efficiencies. While most of the benefits of university projects are diffuse in nature, several unique contributions can be traced to this project, including the development of novel characterization methods, defect-simulation tools, and novel solar-cell processing approaches mitigate the effects of iron impurities ("Impurities to Efficiency" simulator) and dislocations. In collaboration with our industrial partners, this project contributed to the development of cell processing recipes, specialty materials, and equipment that increased cell efficiencies overall (not just multicrystalline silicon). Additionally, several students and postdocs who were either partially or fully engaged in this project (as evidenced by the publication record) are currently in the PV industry, with others to follow.

  12. Development of Black Silicon Antireflection Control and Passivation Technology for Commercial Application: Cooperative Research and Development Final Report, CRADA Number CRD-12-475

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Yuan, H. C.

    2014-06-01

    The work involves the development of a commercial manufacturing process for both multicrystalline and monocrystalline solar cells that combines Natcore's patent pending passivation technology.

  13. X-ray Study Reveals How Silver-to-Silicon Contacts Form for Solar Cells |

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource X-ray Study Reveals How Silver-to-Silicon Contacts Form for Solar Cells Saturday, April 30, 2016 Solar energy must be one of the primary energy sources as society transitions away from predominantly fossil fuels based economy. Currently, the overwhelming majority (>90%) of the photovoltaic (PV) market consists of silicon solar cells. While relatively inexpensive, this technology depends predominately on a screen-printed silver electrical

  14. National solar technology roadmap: Film-silicon PV

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Keyes, Brian

    2007-06-01

    Silicon photovoltaic (PV) technologies are addressed in two different technology roadmaps: Film-Silicon PV and Wafer-Silicon PV. This Film-Silicon PV roadmap applies to all silicon-film technologies that rely on a supporting substrate such as glass, polymer, aluminum, stainless steel, or metallurgical-grade silicon. Such devices typically use amorphous, nanocrystalline, fine-grained polycrystalline, or epitaxial silicon layers that are 1–20 μm thick.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  16. 22.5% efficient silicon heterojunction solar cell with molybdenum oxide hole collector

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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%.

  17. Metal catalyst technique for texturing silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Ruby, Douglas S.; Zaidi, Saleem H.

    2001-01-01

    Textured silicon solar cells and techniques for their manufacture utilizing metal sources to catalyze formation of randomly distributed surface features such as nanoscale pyramidal and columnar structures. These structures include dimensions smaller than the wavelength of incident light, thereby resulting in a highly effective anti-reflective surface. According to the invention, metal sources present in a reactive ion etching chamber permit impurities (e.g. metal particles) to be introduced into a reactive ion etch plasma resulting in deposition of micro-masks on the surface of a substrate to be etched. Separate embodiments are disclosed including one in which the metal source includes one or more metal-coated substrates strategically positioned relative to the surface to be textured, and another in which the walls of the reaction chamber are pre-conditioned with a thin coating of metal catalyst material.

  18. Solar Grade Silicon from Agricultural By-products

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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

  19. Hot wire deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  20. Hot wire deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Mahan, A.H.; Iwaniczko, E.; Nelson, B.P.; Reedy, R.C., Jr.; Unold, T.; Crandall, R.S.; Guha, S.; Yang, J. |

    1997-02-01

    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. We find that the treatment of the top surface of the HW i-layer while it is cooled from its high deposition temperature is crucial to device performance. We present data concerning these surface treatments, and correlate these treatments with Schottky device performance. We also present first generation HW n-i-p solar cell data, where a glow discharge (GD) {mu}c-Si(p) layer completes the partial devices. No light trapping layer is used to increase the device Jsc. Our preliminary results yield efficiencies of up to 6.8{percent} for a cell with a 4000 {Angstrom} thick HW i-layer, which degrade less than 10{percent} after a 900h AM1 light soak. We suggest areas for further improvement of our devices. {copyright} {ital 1997 American Institute of Physics.}

  1. Hot wire deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

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

    1996-09-01

    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 they correlate these treatments with Schottky device performance. They 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. The preliminary investigations have yielded efficiencies of up to 6.8% for a cell with a 4,000 {angstrom} thick HW i-layer, which degrade less than 10% after a 900 hour light soak. They suggest avenues for further improvement of the devices.

  2. The effects of concentrated ultraviolet light on high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ruby, D.S.; Schubert, W.K.

    1991-01-01

    The importance of stability in the performance of solar cells is clearly recognized as fundamental. Some of the highest efficiency silicon solar cells demonstrated to date, such as the Point Contact solar cell and the Passivated Emitter solar cell, rely upon the passivation of cell surfaces in order to minimize recombination, which reduces cell power output. Recently, it has been shown that exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light of wavelengths present in the terrestrial solar spectrum can damage a passivating silicon-oxide interface and increase recombination. In this study, we compared the performance of Point Contact and Passivated Emitter solar cells after exposure to UV light. We also examined the effect of UV exposure on oxide-passivated silicon wafers. We found that current Passivated Emitter designs are stable at both one-sun and under concentrated sunlight. The evolution of Point Contact concentrator cell performance shows a clear trend towards more stable cells. 15 refs., 18 figs.

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

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    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; et al

    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

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

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    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,more » between the amorphous silicon and the atomic-layer-deposited transparent electrode that acts as a barrier, impeding hole and electron collection.« less

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  6. Record Makes Thin-Film Solar Cell Competitive with Silicon Efficiency...

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Record Makes Thin-Film Solar Cell Competitive with Silicon Efficiency March 24, 2008 Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory have moved ...

  7. GaP/Silicon Tandem Solar Cell with Extended Temperature Range - Energy

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Innovation Portal Vehicles and Fuels Vehicles and Fuels Solar Photovoltaic Solar Photovoltaic Find More Like This Return to Search GaP/Silicon Tandem Solar Cell with Extended Temperature Range NASA Glenn Research Center (http://www.nasa.gov/centers/glenn/home/index.html) National Aeronautics and Space Administration Contact NASA About This Technology Technology Marketing SummaryNASA Glenn Research Center (GRC) innovators have developed unique, tandem photovoltaic cells (or "solar

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

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  9. Silicon Solar Cells with Front Hetero-Contact and Aluminum Alloy Back Junction: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Yuan, H.-C.; Page, M. R.; Iwaniczko, E.; Xu, Y.; Roybal, L.; Wang, Q.; Branz, H. M.; Meier, D. L.

    2008-05-01

    We prototype an alternative n-type monocrystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cell structure that utilizes an n/i-type hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) front hetero-contact and a back p-n junction formed by alloying aluminum (Al) with the n-type Si wafer.

  10. Amorphous silicon enhanced metal-insulator-semiconductor contacts for silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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 ?{sub c} of ?3 m? 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.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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

  12. Amorphous silicon cell array powered solar tracking apparatus

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    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.

  13. Hot wire deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

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

    1996-01-01

    This paper details preliminary results obtained in incorporating low H content, high substrate temperature hot wire (HW) deposited amorphous silicon material into a substrate solar cell structure. By necessity, since the learning curve for this complete structure involves metal/{ital n}-{ital i}/Schottky barrier structure optimization, a large part of the results are focused on this (partial) structure. We have found that the treatment of the top surface of the HW {ital i} layer during cooling is crucial to device performance. Without any particular attention paid to the treatment of this surface while the sample is cooling from its high deposition temperature, a significant amount of H diffuses out of the sample during the cooling process, particularly near the surface, resulting in devices with very poor photovoltaic properties. By designing a surface treatment to address this problem, we have been able to deposit HW Schottky structures with device characteristics as good as the best glow discharge devices produced in our laboratory. We present data concerning these surface treatments, and how they influence the H content at the {ital i}/Pd interface. {copyright} {ital 1996 American Institute of Physics.}

  14. High efficiency solar cells combining a perovskite and a silicon heterojunction solar cells via an optical splitting system

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  15. Stable, high-efficiency amorphous silicon solar cells with low hydrogen content

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  16. Titanium dioxide/silicon hole-blocking selective contact to enable double-heterojunction crystalline silicon-based solar cell

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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. California: TetraCell Silicon Solar Cell Improves Efficiency...

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Indexed Site

    TetraSun, in partnership with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, developed a novel crystalline silicon photovoltaic (PV) cell architecture and manufacturing process that ...

  18. Beyond Silicon: Cutting the Costs of Solar Power

    DOE R&D Accomplishments [OSTI]

    Ahlberg, Liz

    2011-04-15

    New method of fabricating semiconductors from gallium arsenide promises more affordable solar power, improved semiconductor devices.

  19. Thin Single Crystal Silicon Solar Cells on Ceramic Substrates: November 2009 - November 2010

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  20. Fundamental understanding and development of low-cost, high-efficiency silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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)

  2. Development of Novel Front Contract Pastes for Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  3. Fabrication of back-contacted silicon solar cells using thermomigration to create conductive vias

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Gee, James M; Schmit, Russell R.

    2007-01-30

    Methods of manufacturing back-contacted silicon solar cells fabricated using a gradient-driven solute transport process, such as thermomigration or electromigration, to create n-type conductive vias connecting the n-type emitter layer on the front side to n-type ohmic contacts located on the back side.

  4. Liquid-phase-deposited siloxane-based capping layers for silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Veith-Wolf, Boris; Wang, Jianhui; Hannu-Kuure, Milja; Chen, Ning; Hadzic, Admir; Williams, Paul; Leivo, Jarkko; Karkkainen, Ari; Schmidt, Jan

    2015-02-02

    We apply non-vacuum processing to deposit dielectric capping layers on top of ultrathin atomic-layer-deposited aluminum oxide (AlO{sub x}) films, used for the rear surface passivation of high-efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells. We examine various siloxane-based liquid-phase-deposited (LPD) materials. Our optimized AlO{sub x}/LPD stacks show an excellent thermal and chemical stability against aluminum metal paste, as demonstrated by measured surface recombination velocities below 10 cm/s on 1.3 Ωcm p-type silicon wafers after firing in a belt-line furnace with screen-printed aluminum paste on top. Implementation of the optimized LPD layers into an industrial-type screen-printing solar cell process results in energy conversion efficiencies of up to 19.8% on p-type Czochralski silicon.

  5. Amorphous/crystalline silicon interface passivation: Ambient-temperature dependence and implications for solar cell performance

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    Seif, Johannes P.; Krishnamani, Gopal; Demaurex, Benedicte; Ballif, Christophe; Wolf, Stefaan De

    2015-03-02

    Silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells feature amorphous silicon passivation films, which enable very high voltages. We report how such passivation increases with operating temperature for amorphous silicon stacks involving doped layers and decreases for intrinsic-layer-only passivation. We discuss the implications of this phenomenon on the solar cell's temperature coefficient, which represents an important figure-of-merit for the energy yield of devices deployed in the field. We show evidence that both open-circuit voltage (Voc) and fill factor (FF) are affected by these variations in passivation and quantify these temperature-mediated effects, compared with those expected from standard diode equations. We confirm that devicesmore » with high Voc values at 25°C show better high-temperature performance. Thus, we also argue that the precise device architecture, such as the presence of charge-transport barriers, may affect the temperature-dependent device performance as well.« less

  6. Amorphous/crystalline silicon interface passivation: Ambient-temperature dependence and implications for solar cell performance

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Seif, Johannes P.; Krishnamani, Gopal; Demaurex, Benedicte; Ballif, Christophe; Wolf, Stefaan De

    2015-03-02

    Silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells feature amorphous silicon passivation films, which enable very high voltages. We report how such passivation increases with operating temperature for amorphous silicon stacks involving doped layers and decreases for intrinsic-layer-only passivation. We discuss the implications of this phenomenon on the solar cell's temperature coefficient, which represents an important figure-of-merit for the energy yield of devices deployed in the field. We show evidence that both open-circuit voltage (Voc) and fill factor (FF) are affected by these variations in passivation and quantify these temperature-mediated effects, compared with those expected from standard diode equations. We confirm that devices with high Voc values at 25C show better high-temperature performance. Thus, we also argue that the precise device architecture, such as the presence of charge-transport barriers, may affect the temperature-dependent device performance as well.

  7. Amorphous/crystalline silicon interface passivation: Ambient-temperature dependence and implications for solar cell performance

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Seif, Johannes P.; Krishnamani, Gopal; Demaurex, Benedicte; Ballif, Christophe; Wolf, Stefaan De

    2015-03-02

    Silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells feature amorphous silicon passivation films, which enable very high voltages. We report how such passivation increases with operating temperature for amorphous silicon stacks involving doped layers and decreases for intrinsic-layer-only passivation. We discuss the implications of this phenomenon on the solar cell's temperature coefficient, which represents an important figure-of-merit for the energy yield of devices deployed in the field. We show evidence that both open-circuit voltage (Voc) and fill factor (FF) are affected by these variations in passivation and quantify these temperature-mediated effects, compared with those expected from standard diode equations. We confirm that devices with high Voc values at 25°C show better high-temperature performance. Thus, we also argue that the precise device architecture, such as the presence of charge-transport barriers, may affect the temperature-dependent device performance as well.

  8. Transmissive metallic contact for amorphous silicon solar cells

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Madan, A.

    1984-11-29

    A transmissive metallic contact for amorphous silicon semiconductors includes a thin layer of metal, such as aluminum or other low work function metal, coated on the amorphous silicon with an antireflective layer coated on the metal. A transparent substrate, such as glass, is positioned on the light reflective layer. The metallic layer is preferably thin enough to transmit at least 50% of light incident thereon, yet thick enough to conduct electricity. The antireflection layer is preferably a transparent material that has a refractive index in the range of 1.8 to 2.2 and is approximately 550A to 600A thick.

  9. Evaluation of transition metal oxide as carrier-selective contacts for silicon heterojunction solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ding, L.; Boccard, Matthieu; Holman, Zachary; Bertoni, M.

    2015-04-06

    "Reducing light absorption in the non-active solar cell layers, while enabling the extraction of the photogenerated minority carriers at quasi-Fermi levels are two key factors to improve current generation and voltage, and therefore efficiency of silicon heterojunction solar devices. To address these two critical aspects, transition metal oxide materials have been proposed as alternative to the n- and p-type amorphous silicon used as electron and hole selective contacts, respectively. Indeed, transition metal oxides such as molybdenum oxide, titanium oxide, nickel oxide or tungsten oxide combine a wide band gap typically over 3 eV with a band structure and theoretical band alignment with silicon that results in high transparency to the solar spectrum and in selectivity for the transport of only one carrier type. Improving carrier extraction or injection using transition metal oxide has been a topic of investigation in the field of organic solar cells and organic LEDs; from these pioneering works a lot of knowledge has been gained on materials properties, ways to control these during synthesis and deposition, and their impact on device performance. Recently, the transfer of some of this knowledge to silicon solar cells and the successful application of some metal oxide to contact heterojunction devices have gained much attention. In this contribution, we investigate the suitability of various transition metal oxide films (molybdenum oxide, titanium oxide, and tungsten oxide) deposited either by thermal evaporation or sputtering as transparent hole or electron selective transport layer for silicon solar cells. In addition to systematically characterize their optical and structural properties, we use photoemission spectroscopy to relate compound stoichiometry to band structure and characterize band alignment to silicon. The direct silicon/metal oxide interface is further analyzed by quasi-steady state photoconductance decay method to assess the quality of surface

  10. Schottky barrier amorphous silicon solar cell with thin doped region adjacent metal Schottky barrier

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Carlson, David E.; Wronski, Christopher R.

    1979-01-01

    A Schottky barrier amorphous silicon solar cell incorporating a thin highly doped p-type region of hydrogenated amorphous silicon disposed between a Schottky barrier high work function metal and the intrinsic region of hydrogenated amorphous silicon wherein said high work function metal and said thin highly doped p-type region forms a surface barrier junction with the intrinsic amorphous silicon layer. The thickness and concentration of p-type dopants in said p-type region are selected so that said p-type region is fully ionized by the Schottky barrier high work function metal. The thin highly doped p-type region has been found to increase the open circuit voltage and current of the photovoltaic device.

  11. Cost-Effective Silicon Wafers for Solar Cells: Direct Wafer Enabling Terawatt Photovoltaics

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    2010-01-15

    Broad Funding Opportunity Announcement Project: 1366 is developing a process to reduce the cost of solar electricity by up to 50% by 2020from $0.15 per kilowatt hour to less than $0.07. 1366s process avoids the costly step of slicing a large block of silicon crystal into wafers, which turns half the silicon to dust. Instead, the company is producing thin wafers directly from molten silicon at industry-standard sizes, and with efficiencies that compare favorably with todays state-of-the-art technologies. 1366s wafers could directly replace wafers currently on the market, so there would be no interruptions to the delivery of these products to market. As a result of 1366s technology, the cost of silicon wafers could be reduced by 80%.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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

  13. High-Intensity Silicon Vertical Multi-Junction Solar Cells |...

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Indexed Site

    ... Versatility Can be used in ground-mounted and roof-mounted deployments. Contact Information Mico Perales (216) 535-9200 mico.perales@greenfieldsolar.com GreenField Solar ...

  14. And the Award Goes to... Silicon Ink Solar Technology Supported...

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Indexed Site

    a novel path to producing solar cells with higher conversion efficiencies at lower cost. ... Often referred to as the "Oscars of Innovation," the awards are given to the top 100 ...

  15. Silicon Ink Technology Offers Path to Higher Efficiency Solar...

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Indexed Site

    Since 2007, EERE's SunShot Incubator program has invested 92 million in 54 solar startups that have attracted more than 1.7 billion in venture capital and private equity ...

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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.

  17. 14th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells& Modules: Materials and Processes; Summary of Discussion Sessions

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B.; Tan, T.; Sinton, R.; Swanson, D.

    2004-10-01

    The 14th Workshop discussion sessions addressed funding needs for Si research and for R&D to enhance U.S. PV manufacturing. The wrap-up session specifically addressed topics for the new university silicon program. The theme of the workshop, Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells: Leapfrogging the Barriers, was selected to reflect the astounding progress in Si PV technology during last three decades, despite a host of barriers and bottlenecks. A combination of oral, poster, and discussion sessions addressed recent advances in crystal growth technology, new cell structures and doping methods, silicon feedstock issues, hydrogen passivation and fire through metallization, and module issues/reliability. The following oral/discussion sessions were conducted: (1) Technology Update; (2) Defects and Impurities in Si/Discussion; (3) Rump Session; (4) Module Issues and Reliability/Discussion; (5) Silicon Feedstock/Discussion; (6) Novel Doping, Cells, and Hetero-Structure Designs/Discussion; (7) Metallization/Silicon Nitride Processing/Discussion; (8) Hydrogen Passivation/Discussion; (9) Characterization/Discussion; and (10) Wrap-Up. This year's workshop lasted three and a half days and, for the first time, included a session on Si modules. A rump session was held on the evening of August 8, which addressed efficiency expectations and challenges of c Si solar cells/modules. Richard King of DOE and Daren Dance of Wright Williams& Kelly (formerly of Sematech) spoke at two of the luncheon sessions. Eleven students received Graduate Student Awards from funds contributed by the PV industry.

  18. Methods for manufacturing geometric multi-crystalline cast materials

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Stoddard, Nathan G

    2013-11-26

    Methods are provided for casting one or more of a semi-conductor, an oxide, and an intermetallic material. With such methods, a cast body of a geometrically ordered multi-crystalline form of the one or more of a semiconductor, an oxide, and an intermetallic material may be formed that is free or substantially free of radially-distributed impurities and defects and having at least two dimensions that are each at least about 10 cm.

  19. And the Award Goes to… Silicon Ink Solar Technology Supported by SunShot’s PV Incubator

    Broader source: Energy.gov [DOE]

    Pioneering startup Innovalight partnered with NREL to invent the first liquid silicon on the market. When paired with Innovalight’s industrial screen printing process, this silicon ink technology offers a novel path to producing solar cells with higher conversion efficiencies at lower cost.

  20. Polycrystalline GaAs solar cells on low-cost Silicon-Film{trademark} substrates

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Mauk, M.G.; Feyock, B.W.; Hall, R.B.; Cavanaugh, K.D.; Cotter, J.E.

    1997-12-31

    The authors assess the potential of a low-cost, large-area Silicon-Film{trademark} sheet as a substrate for thin-film polycrystalline GaAs solar cells. Silicon-Film is a relatively inexpensive material on which large-grain (>2 mm) polycrystalline GaAs films can be formed. The GaAs epitaxial layers are grown by a simple close-spaced vapor transport (CSVT) technique using water vapor as a transport agent. A recrystallized Ge{sub 1{minus}x}Si{sub x} buffer layer between the GaAs epilayer and Silicon-Film substrate can facilitate growth of the GaAs. Selective epitaxy on patterned, oxide-masked substrates is effective in reducing thermal stress effects.

  1. Solar cells utilizing pulsed-energy crystallized microcrystalline/polycrystalline silicon

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Kaschmitter, J.L.; Sigmon, T.W.

    1995-10-10

    A process for producing multi-terminal devices such as solar cells wherein a pulsed high energy source is used to melt and crystallize amorphous silicon deposited on a substrate which is intolerant to high processing temperatures, whereby the amorphous silicon is converted into a microcrystalline/polycrystalline phase. Dopant and hydrogenation can be added during the fabrication process which provides for fabrication of extremely planar, ultra shallow contacts which results in reduction of non-current collecting contact volume. The use of the pulsed energy beams results in the ability to fabricate high efficiency microcrystalline/polycrystalline solar cells on the so-called low-temperature, inexpensive plastic substrates which are intolerant to high processing temperatures.

  2. Eighth Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cell Materials and Processes; Summary Discussion Sessions

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B.; Swanson, D.; Sinton, R.; Stavola, M.; Tan, T.

    1998-12-08

    This report is a summary of the panel discussions included with the Eighth Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cell Materials and Processes. The theme of the workshop was ''Supporting the Transition to World Class Manufacturing.'' This workshop provided a forum for an informal exchange of information between researchers in the photovoltaic and nonphotovoltaic fields on various aspects of impurities and defects in silicon, their dynamics during device processing, and their application in defect engineering. This interaction helped establish a knowledge base that can be used for improving device-fabrication processes to enhance solar-cell performance and reduce cell costs. It also provided an excellent opportunity for researchers from industry and universities to recognize mutual needs for future joint research.

  3. Multi-Layer Inkjet Printed Contacts for Silicon Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Curtis, C. J.; van hest, M.; Miedaner, A.; Kaydanova, T.; Smith, L.; Ginley, D. S.

    2006-05-01

    Ag, Cu, and Ni metallizations were inkjet printed with near vacuum deposition quality. The approach developed can be easily extended to other conductors such as Pt, Pd, Au, etc. Thick highly conducting lines of Ag and Cu demonstrating good adhesion to glass, Si, and printed circuit board (PCB) have been printed at 100-200 C in air and N2 respectively. Ag grids were inkjet-printed on Si solar cells and fired through the silicon nitride AR layer at 850 C, resulting in 8% cells. Next generation inks, including an ink that etches silicon nitride, have now been developed. Multi-layer inkjet printing of the etching ink followed by Ag ink produced contacts under milder conditions and gave solar cells with efficiencies as high as 12%.

  4. Solar cells utilizing pulsed-energy crystallized microcrystalline/polycrystalline silicon

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Kaschmitter, James L. (Pleasanton, CA); Sigmon, Thomas W. (Beaverton, OR)

    1995-01-01

    A process for producing multi-terminal devices such as solar cells wherein a pulsed high energy source is used to melt and crystallize amorphous silicon deposited on a substrate which is intolerant to high processing temperatures, whereby to amorphous silicon is converted into a microcrystalline/polycrystalline phase. Dopant and hydrogenization can be added during the fabrication process which provides for fabrication of extremely planar, ultra shallow contacts which results in reduction of non-current collecting contact volume. The use of the pulsed energy beams results in the ability to fabricate high efficiency microcrystalline/polycrystalline solar cells on the so-called low-temperature, inexpensive plastic substrates which are intolerant to high processing temperatures.

  5. Highly efficient ultrathin-film amorphous silicon solar cells on top of imprinted periodic nanodot arrays

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Yan, Wensheng Gu, Min; Tao, Zhikuo; Ong, Thiam Min Brian

    2015-03-02

    The addressing of the light absorption and conversion efficiency is critical to the ultrathin-film hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cells. We systematically investigate ultrathin a-Si:H solar cells with a 100 nm absorber on top of imprinted hexagonal nanodot arrays. Experimental evidences are demonstrated for not only notable silver nanodot arrays but also lower-cost ITO and Al:ZnO nanodot arrays. The measured external quantum efficiency is explained by the simulation results. The J{sub sc} values are 12.1, 13.0, and 14.3 mA/cm{sup 2} and efficiencies are 6.6%, 7.5%, and 8.3% for ITO, Al:ZnO, and silver nanodot arrays, respectively. Simulated optical absorption distribution shows high light trapping within amorphous silicon layer.

  6. Silicon solar cells made by a self-aligned, selective-emitter, plasma-etchback process

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Ruby, D.S.; Schubert, W.K.; Gee, J.M.

    1999-02-16

    A potentially low-cost process for forming and passivating a selective emitter. The process uses a plasma etch of the heavily doped emitter to improve its performance. The grids of the solar cell are used to mask the plasma etch so that only the emitter in the region between the grids is etched, while the region beneath the grids remains heavily doped for low contact resistance. This process is potentially low-cost because it requires no alignment. After the emitter etch, a silicon nitride layer is deposited by plasma-enhanced, chemical vapor deposition, and the solar cell is annealed in a forming gas. 5 figs.

  7. Light Trapping for Thin Silicon Solar Cells by Femtosecond Laser Texturing: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Lee, B. G.; Lin, Y. T.; Sher, M. J.; Mazur, E.; Branz, H. M.

    2012-06-01

    Femtosecond laser texturing is used to create nano- to micron-scale surface roughness that strongly enhances light-trapping in thin crystalline silicon solar cells. Light trapping is crucial for thin solar cells where a single light-pass through the absorber is insufficient to capture the weakly absorbed red and near-infrared photons, especially with an indirect-gap semiconductor absorber layer such as crystalline Si which is less than 20 um thick. We achieve enhancement of the optical absorption from light-trapping that approaches the Yablonovitch limit.

  8. Graphene as transparent and current spreading electrode in silicon solar cell

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Behura, Sanjay K. Nayak, Sasmita; Jani, Omkar; Mahala, Pramila

    2014-11-15

    Fabricated bi-layer graphene (BLG) has been studied as transparent and current spreading electrode (TCSE) for silicon solar cell, using TCAD-Silvaco 2D simulation. We have carried out comparative study using both Ag grids and BLG as current spreading electrode (CSE) and TCSE, respectively. Our study reveals that BLG based solar cell shows better efficiency of 24.85% than Ag-based cell (21.44%), in all of the critical aspects, including generation rate, recombination rate, electric field, potential and quantum efficiency. Further BLG based cell exhibits pronounce rectifying behavior, low saturation current, and good turn-on voltage while studying in dark.

  9. Silicon solar cells made by a self-aligned, selective-emitter, plasma-etchback process

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Ruby, Douglas S.; Schubert, William K.; Gee, James M.

    1999-01-01

    A potentially low-cost process for forming and passivating a selective emitter. The process uses a plasma etch of the heavily doped emitter to improve its performance. The grids of the solar cell are used to mask the plasma etch so that only the emitter in the region between the grids is etched, while the region beneath the grids remains heavily doped for low contact resistance. This process is potentially low-cost because it requires no alignment. After the emitter etch, a silicon nitride layer is deposited by plasma-enhanced, chemical vapor deposition, and the solar cell is annealed in a forming gas.

  10. Optimization of oxidation processes to improve crystalline silicon solar cell emitters

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Shen, L.; Liang, Z. C. Liu, C. F.; Long, T. J.; Wang, D. L.

    2014-02-15

    Control of the oxidation process is one key issue in producing high-quality emitters for crystalline silicon solar cells. In this paper, the oxidation parameters of pre-oxidation time, oxygen concentration during pre-oxidation and pre-deposition and drive-in time were optimized by using orthogonal experiments. By analyzing experimental measurements of short-circuit current, open circuit voltage, series resistance and solar cell efficiency in solar cells with different sheet resistances which were produced by using different diffusion processes, we inferred that an emitter with a sheet resistance of approximately 70 ?/? performed best under the existing standard solar cell process. Further investigations were conducted on emitters with sheet resistances of approximately 70 ?/? that were obtained from different preparation processes. The results indicate that emitters with surface phosphorus concentrations between 4.96 10{sup 20} cm{sup ?3} and 7.78 10{sup 20} cm{sup ?3} and with junction depths between 0.46 ?m and 0.55 ?m possessed the best quality. With no extra processing, the final preparation of the crystalline silicon solar cell efficiency can reach 18.41%, which is an increase of 0.4%{sub abs} compared to conventional emitters with 50 ?/? sheet resistance.

  11. 17th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells and Modules: Materials and Processes; Workshop Proceedings

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B. L.

    2007-08-01

    The National Center for Photovoltaics sponsored the 17th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells & Modules: Materials and Processes, held in Vail, CO, August 5-8, 2007. This meeting provided a forum for an informal exchange of technical and scientific information between international researchers in the photovoltaic and relevant non-photovoltaic fields. The theme of this year's meeting was 'Expanding Technology for a Future Powered by Si Photovoltaics.'

  12. Enabling unassisted solar water splitting by iron oxide and silicon

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    Jang, Ji-Wook; Du, Chun; Ye, Yifan; Lin, Yongjing; Yao, Xiahui; Thorne, James; Liu, Erik; McMahon, Gregory; Zhu, Junfa; Javey, Ali; et al

    2015-06-16

    A solution for large-scale solar energy storage is photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting. However, its development has been impeded by the poor performance of photoanodes, particularly in their capability for photovoltage generation. Many examples employing photovoltaic modules to correct the deficiency for unassisted solar water splitting have been reported to-date. We show that, by using the prototypical photoanode material of haematite as a study tool, structural disorders on or near the surfaces are important causes of the low photovoltages. We develop a facile re-growth strategy to reduce surface disorders and as a consequence, a turn-on voltage of 0.45 V (versus reversiblemore » hydrogen electrode) is achieved. In conclusion, this result permits us to construct a photoelectrochemical device with a haematite photoanode and Si photocathode to split water at an overall efficiency of 0.91%, with NiFeOx and TiO2/Pt overlayers, respectively.« less

  13. Approach towards high efficiency polycrystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rohatgi, A.; Sana, P.; Chen, Z.; Salami, J. )

    1992-12-01

    A combination of theoretical modelling, gettering and passivation, and cell fabrication is presented in this paper to provide guidelines for improving efficiency of polycrystalline solar cells. Theoretical modelling was performed to show that grain boundary barrier height decreases and carrier diffusion length increases with illumination level ([le]50 suns) in those polycrystalline materials where grain boundary dominates the recombination. Model calculations show that the efficiency spread due to grain boundary defect density ([ital N][sub [ital st

  14. Low temperature front surface passivation of interdigitated back contact silicon heterojunction solar cell

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Shu, Brent; Das, Ujjwal; Jani, Omkar; Hegedus, Steve; Birkmire, Robert

    2009-06-08

    The interdigitated back contact silicon heterojunction (IBC-SHJ) solar cell requires a low temperature front surface passivation/anti-reflection structure. Conventional silicon surface passivation using SiO2 or a-SiNx is performed at temperature higher than 400C, which is not suitable for the IBC-SHJ cell. In this paper, we propose a PECVD a-Si:H/a-SiNx:H/a-SiC:H stack structure to passivate the front surface of crystalline silicon at low temperature. The optical properties and passivation quality of this structure are characterized and solar cells using this structure are fabricated. With 2 nm a-Si:H layer, the stack structure exhibits stable passivation with effective minority carrier lifetime higher than 2 ms, and compatible with IBC-SHJ solar cell processing. A critical advantage of this structure is that the SiC allows it to be HF resistant, thus it can be deposited as the first step in the process. This protects the a-Si/c-Si interface and maintains a low surface recombination velocity.

  15. GaNPAs Solar Cells that Can Be Lattice-Matched to Silicon

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Geisz, J. F.; Friedman, D. J.; McMahon, W. E.; Ptak, A. J.; Kibbler, A. E.; Olson, J. M.; Kurtz, S.; Kramer, C.; Young, M.; Duda, A.; Reedy, R. C.; Keyes, B. M.; Dippo, P.; Metzger, W. K.

    2003-05-01

    III-V semiconductors grown on silicon substrates are very attractive for lower-cost, high-efficiency multijunction solar cells, but lattice-mismatched alloys that result in high dislocation densities have been unable to achieve satisfactory performance. GaNxP1-x-yAsy is a direct-gap III-V alloy that can be grown lattice-matched to Si when y= 4.7x - 0.1. We have proposed the use of lattice-matched GaNPAs on silicon for high-efficiency multijunction solar cells. We have grown GaNxP1-x-yAsy on GaP (with a similar lattice constant to silicon) by metal-organic chemical vapor phase epitaxy with direct bandgaps in the range of 1.5 to 2.0 eV. We have demonstrated the performance of single-junction GaNxP1-x-yAsy solar cells grown on GaP substrates and shown improvements in material quality by reducing carbon and hydrogen impurities through optimization of growth conditions. We have achieved quantum efficiencies (QE) in these cells as high as 60% and PL lifetimes as high as 3.0 ns.

  16. Phase 2 of the array automated assembly task for the low cost silicon solar array project. Final report

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Petersen, R.C.

    1980-11-01

    Studies were conducted on several fundamental aspects of electroless nickel/solder metallization for silicon solar cells. A process proposed by Motorola, which precedes the electroless nickel plating with several steps of palladium plating and heat treatment, was compared directly with single step electroless nickel plating. Work has directed toward answering specific questions concerning the effect of silicon surface oxide on nickel plating, effects of thermal stresses on the metallization, sintering of nickel plated on silicon, and effects of exposure to the plating solution on solar cell characteristics. The Motorola process was compared with simple electroless nickel plating in a series of parallel experiments. Results are presented. (WHK)

  17. Review of Back Contact Silicon Solar Cells for Low-Cost Application

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Smith, David D.

    1999-08-04

    Back contact solar cells hold significant promise for increased performance in photovoltaics for the near future. Two major advantages which these cells possess are a lack of grid shading loss and coplanar interconnection. Front contacted cells can have up to 10% shading loss when using screen printed metal grids. A front contact cell must also use solder connections which run from the front of one cell to the back of the next for series interconnection. This procedure is more difficult to automate than the case of co-planar contacts. The back contact cell design is not a recent concept. The earliest silicon solar cell developed by Bell Labs was a back contact device. There have been many design modifications to the basic concept over the years. To name a few, there is the Interdigitated Back Contact (IBC) cell, the Stanford Point contact solar cell, the Emitter Wrap Through (EWT), and its many variations. A number of these design concepts have demonstrated high efficiency. The SunPower back contact solar cell holds the efficiency record for silicon concentrator cells. The challenge is to produce a high efficiency cell at low cost using high throughput techniques. This has yet to be achieved with a back contact cell design. The focus of this paper will be to review the relevant features of back contact cells and progress made toward the goal of a low cost version of this device.

  18. Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells: Temperature Impact on Passivation and Performance

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Seif, J.; Krishnamani, G.; Demaurex, B.; Martin de Nicholas, S.; Holm, N.; Ballif, C.; De Wolf, S.

    2015-03-23

    Photovoltaic devices deployed in the field can reach operation temperatures (T) as high as 90 °C [1]. Hence, their temperature coefficients (TC1) are of great practical importance as they determine their energy yield. In this study we concentrate on T-related lifetime variations of amorphous/crystalline interfaces and study their influence on the TCs of the individual solar cell parameters. We find that both the open-circuit voltage (Voc) and fill factor (FF) are influenced by these lifetime variations. However, this is only a minor effect compared to the dominant increase of the intrinsic carrier density and the related increase in dark saturation current density. Additionally, in this paper we will show that the TCVoc does not depend solely on the initial value of the Voc [2, 3], but that the structure of the device has to be considered as well.

  19. Polycrystalline silicon passivated tunneling contacts for high...

    Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI)

    efficiency silicon solar cells Citation Details In-Document Search Title: Polycrystalline silicon passivated tunneling contacts for high efficiency silicon solar cells Authors: ...

  20. Development of large-area monolithically integrated Silicon-Film photovoltaic modules. Annual subcontract report, 16 November 1991--31 December 1992

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rand, J.A.; Cotter, J.E.; Ingram, A.E.; Ruffins, T.R.; Shreve, K.P.; Hall, R.B.; Barnett, A.M.

    1993-06-01

    This report describes work to develop Silicon-Film{trademark} Product III into a low-cost, stable solar cell for large-scale terrestrial power applications. The Product III structure is a thin (< 100-{mu}m) polycrystalline layer of silicon on a durable, insulating, ceramic substrate. The insulating substrate allows the silicon layer to be isolated and metallized to form a monolithically interconnected array of solar cells. High efficiency is achievable with the use of light trapping and a passivated back surface. The long-term goal for the product is a 1200-cm{sup 2}, 18%-efficient, monolithic array. The short-term objectives are to improve material quality and to fabricate 100 cm{sup 2} monolithically interconnected solar cell arrays. Low minority-carrier diffusion length in the silicon film and series resistance in the interconnected device structure are presently limiting device performance. Material quality is continually improving through reduced impurity contamination. Metallization schemes, such as a solder-dipped interconnection process, have been developed that will allow low-cost production processing and minimize R{sub s} effects. Test data for a nine-cell device (16 cm{sup 2}) indicated a V{sub oc} of 3.72 V. These first-reported monolithically interconnected multicrystalline silicon-on-ceramic devices show low shunt conductance (< 0.1 mA/cm{sup 2}) due to limited conduction through the ceramic and no process-related metallization shunts.

  1. Optimization of the antireflection coating of thin epitaxial crystalline silicon solar cells

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    Selj, Josefine K.; Young, David; Grover, Sachit

    2015-08-28

    In this study we use an effective weighting function to include the internal quantum efficiency (IQE) and the effective thickness, Te, of the active cell layer in the optical modeling of the antireflection coating (ARC) of very thin crystalline silicon solar cells. The spectrum transmitted through the ARC is hence optimized for efficient use in the given cell structure and the solar cell performance can be improved. For a 2-μm thick crystalline silicon heterojunction solar cell the optimal thickness of the Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) ARC is reduced by ~8 nm when IQE data and effective thickness are taken intomore » account compared to the standard ARC optimization, using the AM1.5 spectrum only. The reduced ARC thickness will shift the reflectance minima towards shorter wavelengths and hence better match the absorption of very thin cells, where the short wavelength range of the spectrum is relatively more important than the long, weakly absorbed wavelengths. For this cell, we find that the optimal thickness of the ITO starts at 63 nm for very thin (1 μm) active Si layer and then increase with increasing Te until it saturates at 71 nm for Te > 30 μm.« less

  2. Optimization of the antireflection coating of thin epitaxial crystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Selj, Josefine K.; Young, David; Grover, Sachit

    2015-08-28

    In this study we use an effective weighting function to include the internal quantum efficiency (IQE) and the effective thickness, Te, of the active cell layer in the optical modeling of the antireflection coating (ARC) of very thin crystalline silicon solar cells. The spectrum transmitted through the ARC is hence optimized for efficient use in the given cell structure and the solar cell performance can be improved. For a 2-μm thick crystalline silicon heterojunction solar cell the optimal thickness of the Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) ARC is reduced by ~8 nm when IQE data and effective thickness are taken into account compared to the standard ARC optimization, using the AM1.5 spectrum only. The reduced ARC thickness will shift the reflectance minima towards shorter wavelengths and hence better match the absorption of very thin cells, where the short wavelength range of the spectrum is relatively more important than the long, weakly absorbed wavelengths. For this cell, we find that the optimal thickness of the ITO starts at 63 nm for very thin (1 μm) active Si layer and then increase with increasing Te until it saturates at 71 nm for Te > 30 μm.

  3. Combined impurity gettering and defect passivation in polycrystalline silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Verhoef, L.A.; Michiels, P.; Sinke, W.C. ); Denisse, C.M.M.; Hendriks, M. ); van Zolingen, R.J.C. )

    1990-12-17

    Polycrystalline silicon wafers have been subjected to annealing (700 {degree}C, 1 h) and to a hydrogen plasma (350 {degree}C, 30 min) during the processing of solar cells. The annealing treatment enhances the bulk minority-carrier recombination lifetime by 19%, presumably by impurity gettering. The plasma treatment improves the lifetime by 26%; hydrogen passivation accounts for at least 2/3 of this improvement. Gettering and passivation are found to be complementary: application of both treatments results in a 43% increase in lifetime compared to standard.

  4. Exceptional gettering response of epitaxially grown kerfless silicon

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    Powell, D. M.; Markevich, V. P.; Hofstetter, J.; Jensen, M. A.; Morishige, A. E.; Castellanos, S.; Lai, B.; Peaker, A. R.; Buonassisi, T.

    2016-02-08

    The bulk minority-carrier lifetime in p- and n-type kerfless epitaxial (epi) crystalline silicon wafers is shown to increase >500 during phosphorus gettering. We employ kinetic defect simulations and microstructural characterization techniques to elucidate the root cause of this exceptional gettering response. Simulations and deep-level transient spectroscopy (DLTS) indicate that a high concentra- tion of point defects (likely Pt) is “locked in” during fast (60 C/min) cooling during epi wafer growth. The fine dispersion of moderately fast-diffusing recombination-active point defects limits as-grown lifetime but can also be removed during gettering, confirmed by DLTS measurements. Synchrotron-based X-ray fluorescence microscopy indicates metal agglomeratesmore » at structural defects, yet the structural defect density is sufficiently low to enable high lifetimes. Consequently, after phosphorus diffusion gettering, epi silicon exhibits a higher lifetime than materials with similar bulk impurity contents but higher densities of structural defects, including multicrystalline ingot and ribbon silicon materials. As a result, device simulations suggest a solar-cell efficiency potential of this material >23%.« less

  5. Ninth workshop on crystalline silicon solar cell materials and processes: Summary discussion sessions

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B.; Tan, T.; Swanson, D.; Rosenblum, M.; Sinton, R.

    1999-11-23

    This report is a summary of the panel discussions included with the Ninth Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cell Materials and Processes. The theme for the workshop was ``R and D Challenges and Opportunities in Si Photovoltaics.'' This theme was chosen because it appropriately reflects a host of challenges that the growing production of Si photovoltaics will be facing in the new millennium. The anticipated challenges will arise in developing strategies for cost reduction, increased production, higher throughput per manufacturing line, new sources of low-cost Si, and the introduction of new manufacturing processes for cell production. At the same time, technologies based on CdTe and CIS will come on line posing new competition. With these challenges come new opportunities for Si PV to wean itself from the microelectronics industry, to embark on a more aggressive program in thin-film Si solar cells, and to try new approaches to process monitoring.

  6. Silicon sheet with molecular beam epitaxy for high efficiency solar cells. Final technical report, March 22, 1982-April 30, 1984

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Not Available

    1984-01-01

    A two-year program has been carried out for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in which the UCLA silicon MBE facility has been used to attempt to grow silicon solar cells of high efficiency. MBE ofers the potential of growing complex and arbitrary doping profiles with 10 A depth resolution. It is the only technique taht can readily grow built-in front and back surface fields of any desired depth and value in silicon solar cells, or the more complicated profiles needed for a double junction cascade cell, all in silicon, connected in series by a tunnel junction. Although the dopant control required for such structures has been demonstrated in silicon by UCLA, crystal quality at the p-n junctions is still too poor to allow the other advantages to be exploited. Results from other laboratories indicate that this problem will soon be overcome. A computer analysis of the double cascade all in silicon shows that efficiencies can be raised over that of any single silicon cell by 1 or 2%, and that open circuit voltage of almost twice that of a single cell should be possible.

  7. 17.1%-Efficient Multi-Scale-Textured Black Silicon Solar Cells without Dielectric Antireflection Coating

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Toor, F.; Page, M. R.; Branz, H. M.; Yuan, H. C.

    2011-01-01

    In this work we present 17.1%-efficient p-type single crystal Si solar cells with a multi-scale-textured surface and no dielectric antireflection coating. Multi-scale texturing is achieved by a gold-nanoparticle-assisted nanoporous etch after conventional micron scale KOH-based pyramid texturing (pyramid black etching). By incorporating geometric enhancement of antireflection, this multi-scale texturing reduces the nanoporosity depth required to make silicon `black' compared to nanoporous planar surfaces. As a result, it improves short-wavelength spectral response (blue response), previously one of the major limiting factors in `black-Si' solar cells. With multi-scale texturing, the spectrum-weighted average reflectance from 350- to 1000-nm wavelength is below 2% with a 100-nm deep nanoporous layer. In comparison, roughly 250-nm deep nanopores are needed to achieve similar reflectance on planar surface. Here, we characterize surface morphology, reflectivity and solar cell performance of the multi-scale textured solar cells.

  8. Field collapse due to band-tail charge in amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Wang, Qi; Crandall, R.S.; Schiff, E.A.

    1996-05-01

    It is common for the fill factor to decrease with increasing illumination intensity in hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells. This is especially critical for thicker solar cells, because the decrease is more severe than in thinner cells. Usually, the fill factor under uniformly absorbed red light changes much more than under strongly absorbed blue light. The cause of this is usually assumed to arise from space charge trapped in deep defect states. The authors model this behavior of solar cells using the Analysis of Microelectronic and Photonic Structures (AMPS) simulation program. The simulation shows that the decrease in fill factor is caused by photogenerated space charge trapped in the band-tail states rather than in defects. This charge screens the applied field, reducing the internal field. Owing to its lower drift mobility, the space charge due to holes exceeds that due to electrons and is the main cause of the field screening. The space charge in midgap states is small compared with that in the tails and can be ignored under normal solar-cell operating conditions. Experimentally, the authors measured the photocapacitance as a means to probe the collapsed field. They also explored the light intensity dependence of photocapacitance and explain the decrease of FF with the increasing light intensity.

  9. The boron-tailing myth in hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Stuckelberger, M. Bugnon, G.; Despeisse, M.; Schüttauf, J.-W.; Haug, F.-J.; Ballif, C.; Park, B.-S.

    2015-11-16

    The boron-tailing effect in hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cells describes the reduced charge collection specifically in the blue part of the spectrum for absorber layers deposited above a critical temperature. This effect limits the device performance of state-of-the art solar cells: For enhanced current density (reduced bandgap), the deposition temperature should be as high as possible, but boron tailing gets detrimental above 200 °C. To investigate this limitation and to show potential paths to overcome it, we deposited high-efficiency a-Si:H solar cells, varying the deposition temperatures of the p-type and the intrinsic absorber (i) layers between 150 and 250 °C. Using secondary ion mass spectroscopy, we study dedicated stacks of i-p-i layers deposited at different temperatures. This allows us to track boron diffusion at the p-i and i-p interfaces as they occur in the p-i-n and n-i-p configurations of a-Si:H solar cells for different deposition conditions. Finally, we prove step-by-step that the common explanation for boron tailing—boron diffusion from the p layer into the i layer leading to enhanced recombination—is not generally true and propose an alternative explanation for the experimentally observed drop in the external quantum efficiency at short wavelengths.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    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

  11. Silicon materials task of the low cost solar array project (Phase III). Effects of impurities and processing on silicon solar cells. Phase III summary and seventeenth quarterly report, Volume 2: analysis of impurity behavior

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

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

    1980-01-23

    The object of this phase of the program has been to investigate the effects of various processes, metal contaminants and contaminant-process interactions on the properties of silicon and on the performance of terrestrial silicon solar cells. The study encompassed topics including thermochemical (gettering) treatments, base doping concentration, base doping type (n vs. p), grain boundary-impurity interaction, non-uniformity of impurity distribution, long term effects of impurities, as well as synergic and complexing phenomena. The program approach consists in: (1) the growth of doubly and multiply-doped silicon single crystals containing a baseline boron or phosphorus dopant and specific impurities which produce deep levels in the forbidden band gap; (2) assessment of these crystals by chemical, microstructural, electrical and solar cell tests; (3) correlation of the impurity type and concentration with crystal quality and device performance; and (4) delineation of the role of impurities and processing on subsequent silicon solar cell performance. The overall results reported are based on the assessment of nearly 200 silicon ingots. (WHK)

  12. Microscopic Measurements of Electrical Potential in Hydrogenated Nanocrystalline Silicon Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Jiang, C. S.; Moutinho, H. R.; Reedy, R. C.; Al-Jassim, M. M.; Yan, B.; Yue, G.; Sivec, L.; Yang, J.; Guha, S.; Tong, X.

    2012-04-01

    We report on a direct measurement of electrical potential and field profiles across the n-i-p junction of hydrogenated nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si:H) solar cells, using the nanometer-resolution potential imaging technique of scanning Kelvin probe force microscopy (SKPFM). It was observed that the electric field is nonuniform across the i layer. It is much higher in the p/i region than in the middle and the n/i region, illustrating that the i layer is actually slightly n-type. A measurement on a nc-Si:H cell with a higher oxygen impurity concentration shows that the nonuniformity of the electric field is much more pronounced than in samples having a lower O impurity, indicating that O is an electron donor in nc-Si:H materials. This nonuniform distribution of electric field implies a mixture of diffusion and drift of carrier transport in the nc-Si:H solar cells. The composition and structure of these nc-Si:H cells were further investigated by using secondary-ion mass spectrometry and Raman spectroscopy, respectively. The effects of impurity and structural properties on the electrical potential distribution and solar cell performance are discussed.

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

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Fonash, S.J.

    1995-08-01

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

  14. Optimization of the optical properties of nanostructured silicon surfaces for solar cell applications

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Zhou, Di; Pennec, Y.; Djafari-Rouhani, B.; Lambert, Y.; Deblock, Y.; Stiévenard, D.; Cristini-Robbe, O.; Xu, T.; Faucher, M.

    2014-04-07

    Surface nanostructuration is an important challenge for the optimization of light trapping in solar cell. We present simulations on both the optical properties and the efficiency of micro pillars—MPs—or nanocones—NCs—silicon based solar cells together with measurements on their associated optical absorption. We address the simulation using the Finite Difference Time Domain method, well-adapted to deal with a periodic set of nanostructures. We study the effect of the period, the bottom diameter, the top diameter, and the height of the MPs or NCs on the efficiency, assuming that one absorbed photon induces one exciton. This allows us to give a kind of abacus involving all the geometrical parameters of the nanostructured surface with regard to the efficiency of the associated solar cell. We also show that for a given ratio of the diameter over the period, the best efficiency is obtained for small diameters. For small lengths, MPs are extended to NCs by changing the angle between the bottom surface and the vertical face of the MPs. The best efficiency is obtained for an angle of the order of 70°. Finally, nanostructures have been processed and allow comparing experimental results with simulations. In every case, a good agreement is found.

  15. 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 (OSTI)

    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.

  16. Picosecond and nanosecond laser annealing and simulation of amorphous silicon thin films for solar cell applications

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Theodorakos, I.; Zergioti, I.; Tsoukalas, D.; Raptis, Y. S.; Vamvakas, V.

    2014-01-28

    In this work, a picosecond diode pumped solid state laser and a nanosecond Nd:YAG laser have been used for the annealing and the partial nano-crystallization of an amorphous silicon layer. These experiments were conducted as an alternative/complementary to plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition method for fabrication of micromorph tandem solar cell. The laser experimental work was combined with simulations of the annealing process, in terms of temperature distribution evolution, in order to predetermine the optimum annealing conditions. The annealed material was studied, as a function of several annealing parameters (wavelength, pulse duration, fluence), as far as it concerns its structural properties, by X-ray diffraction, SEM, and micro-Raman techniques.

  17. Eighth workshop on crystalline silicon solar cell materials and processes: Extended abstracts and papers

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    1998-08-01

    The theme of this workshop is Supporting the Transition to World Class Manufacturing. This workshop provides a forum for an informal exchange of information between researchers in the photovoltaic and non-photovoltaic fields on various aspects of impurities and defects in silicon, their dynamics during device processing, and their application in defect engineering. This interaction helps establish a knowledge base that can be used for improving device fabrication processes to enhance solar-cell performance and reduce cell costs. It also provides an excellent opportunity for researchers from industry and universities to recognize mutual needs for future joint research. The workshop format features invited review presentations, panel discussions, and two poster sessions. The poster sessions create an opportunity for both university and industrial researchers to present their latest results and provide a natural forum for extended discussions and technical exchanges.

  18. Electrodeposited copper front metallization for silicon heterojunction solar cells: materials and processes

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Geissbühler, J.; Martin de Nicolas, S.; Faes, A.; Lachowicz, A.; Tomasi, A.; Paviet-Salomon, B.; Lachenal, D.; Papet, P.; Badel, N.; Barraud, L.; Descoeudres, A.; Despeisse, M.; De Wolf, S.; Ballif, C.

    2014-10-20

    Even though screen-printing of low-temperature silver paste remains the state-of-the-art technique for the front-metallization of SHJ solar cells, recent studies have demonstrated large efficiency improvements when copper-electroplated contacts are used instead of screen-printed ones. However, due to the new materials and the new processes introduced by this technique, it is crucial to individually investigate their compatibility with the SHJ cell structure. In this study, we present a detailed analysis of how the performances of SHJ devices may be modified by these new materials and processes. First, effects on the amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) passivation have been studied for various processes such as DI water rinsing, dips in a copper removal solution and direct evaporation of copper on the a-Si:H. Finally, copper electroplating technique has been adapted in order to be applied to more complex cell structures such as high-efficiency IBC-SHJ.

  19. Large-area Silicon-Film{trademark} panels and solar cells. Final technical report, July 1995--March 1998

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rand, J.A.; Bai, Y.; Barnett, A.M.; Culik, J.S.; Ford, D.H.; Hall, R.B.; Kendall, C.L.

    1998-09-01

    This report will detail substantial improvements in each of the task areas. A number of new products were developed, including a 130 kW array built using a new panel design. Improvements in laboratory-scale solar cell processing resulted in a confirmed efficiency of 16.6%. A new Silicon-Film{trademark} production sheet machine was built which increased throughput by 70%. Three solar cell fabrication processes were converted from low throughout batch processes to high throughput, continuous, belt processes. These new processes are capable of processing sheet over 31 cm in width. Finally, a new Silicon-Film{trademark} sheet machine was built that demonstrated a sheet width of 38 cm. This tool enabled AstroPower to demonstrate a wide range of solar cell sizes, many of which have generated considerable market interest.

  20. Laser annealing of ion implanted CZ silicon for solar cell junction formation. Quarterly report No. 1

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Katzeff, J. S.

    1980-07-01

    A project to evaluate the merits of large spot size pulsed laser annealing of ion implanted silicon wafers for junction formation on solar cells is described. A Q-switched Nd:Glass laser system is used operating in the 1064 (regular) and 532 (with frequency doubler) nm wavelengths. The laser output is in excess of 30 joules with a 20 to 50 ns pulse duration. Material used in this investigation is 3-inch diameter CZ silicon, P-type 0.014 inches thick, 10..cap omega..-cm resistivity, <100> orientation. Three wafer surface conditions are being evaluated in this pulse annealing investigation: chem-polished, texture etched, and flash etched. Annealing was performed with and without beam homogenization. Both modes showed excellent lattice recovery from the implant-induced damage as analyzed using Rutherford backscattering techniques. Homogenization of the beam was performed using a fused silica rod configured with a 90/sup 0/ bend. The unhomogenized annealing was performed using a plano-concave lens. Fabrication of laser annealed cells using both modes is forthcoming.

  1. Low-temperature high-mobility amorphous IZO for silicon heterojunction solar cells

    DOE Public Access Gateway for Energy & Science Beta (PAGES Beta)

    Morales-Masis, Monica; Martin De Nicolas, Silvia; Holovsky, Jakub; De Wolf, Stefaan; Ballif, Christophe

    2015-07-13

    Parasitic absorption in the transparent conductive oxide (TCO) front electrode is one of the limitations of silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells efficiency. To avoid such absorption while retaining high conductivity, TCOs with high electron mobility are preferred over those with high carrier density. Here, we demonstrate improved SHJ solar cell efficiencies by applying high-mobility amorphous indium zinc oxide (a-IZO) as the front TCO. We sputtered a-IZO at low substrate temperature and low power density and investigated the optical and electrical properties, as well as subband tail formation-quantified by the Urbach energy (EU)-as a function of the sputtering oxygen partial pressure.more » We obtain an EU as low as 128 meV for films with the highest Hall mobility of 60 cm2/Vs. When comparing the performance of a-IZO films with indium tin oxide (ITO) and hydrogenated indium oxide (IO:H), we find that IO:H (115 cm2/Vs) exhibits a similar EU of 130 meV, while ITO (25 cm2/Vs) presents a much larger EU of up to 270 meV. The high film quality, indicated by the low EU, the high mobility, and low free carrier absorption of the developed a-IZO electrodes, result in a significant current improvement, achieving conversion efficiencies over 21.5%, outperforming those with standard ITO.« less

  2. Large-area Silicon-Film{trademark} panels and solar cells. Phase 2 technical report, January 1996--December 1996

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rand, J.A.; Barnett, A.M.; Checchi, J.C.; Culik, J.S.; Collins, S.R.; Ford, D.H.; Hall, R.B.; Jackson, E.L.; Kendall, C.L.

    1997-03-01

    The Silicon-Film{trademark} process is on an accelerated path to large-scale manufacturing. A key element in that development is optimizing the specific geometry of both the Silicon-Film{trademark} sheet and the resulting solar cell. That decision has been influenced by cost factors, engineering concerns, and marketing issues. The geometry investigation has focused first on sheet nominally 15 cm wide. This sheet generated solar cells with areas of 240 cm{sup 2} and 675 cm{sup 2}. Most recently, a new sheet fabrication machine was constructed that produces Silicon-Film{trademark} with a width in excess of 30 cm. Test results have indicated that there is no limit to the width of sheet generated by this process. The new wide material has led to prototype solar cells with areas of 300, 400, and 1,800 cm{sup 2}. Significant advances in solar-cell processing have been developed in support of fabricating large-area devices, including uniform emitter diffusion and anti-reflection coatings.

  3. Efficient nanorod-based amorphous silicon solar cells with advanced light trapping

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Kuang, Y.; Lare, M. C. van; Polman, A.; Veldhuizen, L. W.; Schropp, R. E. I.; Rath, J. K.

    2015-11-14

    We present a simple, low-cost, and scalable approach for the fabrication of efficient nanorod-based solar cells. Templates with arrays of self-assembled ZnO nanorods with tunable morphology are synthesized by chemical bath deposition using a low process temperature at 80 °C. The nanorod templates are conformally coated with hydrogenated amorphous silicon light absorber layers of 100 nm and 200 nm thickness. An initial efficiency of up to 9.0% is achieved for the optimized design. External quantum efficiency measurements on the nanorod cells show a substantial photocurrent enhancement both in the red and the blue parts of the solar spectrum. Key insights in the light trapping mechanisms in these arrays are obtained via a combination of three-dimensional finite-difference time-domain simulations, optical absorption, and external quantum efficiency measurements. Front surface patterns enhance the light incoupling in the blue, while rear side patterns lead to enhanced light trapping in the red. The red response in the nanorod cells is limited by absorption in the patterned Ag back contact. With these findings, we develop and experimentally realize a further advanced design with patterned front and back sides while keeping the Ag reflector flat, showing significantly enhanced scattering from the back reflector with reduced parasitic absorption in the Ag and thus higher photocurrent generation. Many of the findings in this work can serve to provide insights for further optimization of nanostructures for thin-film solar cells in a broad range of materials.

  4. Silicon materials task of the low cost solar array project (Phase III). Effect of impurities and processing on silicon solar cells. Phase III summary and seventeenth quarterly report, Volume 1: characterization methods for impurities in silicon and impurity effects data base

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

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

    1980-01-01

    The object of Phase III of the program has been to investigate the effects of various processes, metal contaminants and contaminant-process interactions on the performance of terrestrial silicon solar cells. The study encompassed a variety of tasks including: (1) a detailed examination of thermal processing effects, such as HCl and POCl/sub 3/ gettering on impurity behavior, (2) completion of the data base and modeling for impurities in n-base silicon, (3) extension of the data base on p-type material to include elements likely to be introduced during the production, refining, or crystal growth of silicon, (4) effects on cell performance on anisotropic impurity distributions in large CZ crystals and silicon webs, and (5) a preliminary assessment of the permanence of the impurity effects. Two major topics are treated: methods to measure and evaluate impurity effects in silicon and comprehensive tabulations of data derived during the study. For example, discussions of deep level spectroscopy, detailed dark I-V measurements, recombination lifetime determination, scanned laser photo-response, and conventional solar cell I-V techniques, as well as descriptions of silicon chemical analysis are included. Considerable data are tabulated on the composition, electrical, and solar cell characteristics of impurity-doped silicon.

  5. Large-area silicon-film{sup {trademark}} panels and solar cells. Phase I annual technical report, July 1, 1995--December 31, 1995

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rand, J.A.; Barnett, A.M.; Checchi, J.C.; Culik, J.S.

    1996-06-01

    AstroPower is establishing a low cost manufacturing process for Silicon-Film{trademark} solar cells and panels by taking advantage of the continuous nature of the Silicon-Film{trademark} technology. Under this effort, each step used in Silicon-Film{trademark} panel fabrication is being developed into a continuous/in-line manufacturing process. The following benefits are expected: an accelerated reduction of PV manufacturing cost for installed systems; a foundation for significantly increased production capacity; and a reduction in handling and waste streams. The process development will be based on a new 31-cm wide continuous Silicon-Film{trademark} sheet. Long-term goals include the development of a 24W, 30 cm x 60 cm Silicon-Film{trademark} solar cell and a manufacturing capability for a 384W, 4 inches x 8 inches Silicon-Film{trademark} panel for deployment in utility-scale applications.

  6. NREL Develops ZnSiP2 for Silicon-Based Tandem Solar Cells (Fact Sheet), NREL Highlights in Research & Development, NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory)

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    Combining an Earth-abundant chalcopyrite with a silicon layer could significantly boost conversion efficiency above that of single-junction silicon solar cells. A current technological challenge in photovoltaics (PV) is to implement a lattice-matched, optically efficient material to be used in conjunction with silicon for tandem PV cells. III-V materials currently hold the world-record conver- sion efficiencies for both single- and multijunction cells. Researchers at the National Renewable

  7. NREL: Photovoltaics Research - Ryan France

    Broader source: All U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office Webpages (Extended Search)

    physics from Washington University in St. Louis, after which he researched single- and multi-crystalline silicon solar cells at the University of New South Wales. He then...

  8. New Metallization Technique Suitable for 6-MW Pilot Production...

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Indexed Site

    Metallization Technique Suitable for 6-MW Pilot Production of Efficient Multicrystalline Solar Cells Using Upgraded Metallurgical Silicon: Final Technical Progress Report, December ...

  9. Spatially resolved determination of the short-circuit current density of silicon solar cells via lock-in thermography

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Fertig, Fabian Greulich, Johannes; Rein, Stefan

    2014-05-19

    We present a spatially resolved method to determine the short-circuit current density of crystalline silicon solar cells by means of lock-in thermography. The method utilizes the property of crystalline silicon solar cells that the short-circuit current does not differ significantly from the illuminated current under moderate reverse bias. Since lock-in thermography images locally dissipated power density, this information is exploited to extract values of spatially resolved current density under short-circuit conditions. In order to obtain an accurate result, one or two illuminated lock-in thermography images and one dark lock-in thermography image need to be recorded. The method can be simplified in a way that only one image is required to generate a meaningful short-circuit current density map. The proposed method is theoretically motivated, and experimentally validated for monochromatic illumination in comparison to the reference method of light-beam induced current.

  10. 15th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells and Modules: Materials and Processes; Extended Abstracts and Papers

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B. L.

    2005-11-01

    The National Center for Photovoltaics sponsored the 15th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells & Modules: Materials and Processes, held in Vail, CO, August 7-10, 2005. This meeting provided a forum for an informal exchange of technical and scientific information between international researchers in the photovoltaic and relevant non-photovoltaic fields. The workshop addressed the fundamental properties of PV silicon, new solar cell designs, and advanced solar cell processing techniques. A combination of oral presentations by invited speakers, poster sessions, and discussion sessions reviewed recent advances in crystal growth, new cell designs, new processes and process characterization techniques, and cell fabrication approaches suitable for future manufacturing demands. The theme of this year's meeting was 'Providing the Scientific Basis for Industrial Success.' Specific sessions during the workshop included: Advances in crystal growth and material issues; Impurities and defects in Si; Advanced processing; High-efficiency Si solar cells; Thin Si solar cells; and Cell design for efficiency and reliability module operation. The topic for the Rump Session was ''Si Feedstock: The Show Stopper'' and featured a panel discussion by representatives from various PV companies.

  11. Longwei Silicon Co Ltd | Open Energy Information

    Open Energy Info (EERE)

    Silicon Co Ltd Place: Liancheng, Fujian Province, China Sector: Solar Product: A Chinese sillicon metal producer who also produce 4N-6N silicon for solar use. Coordinates:...

  12. Well-Passivated a-Si:H Back Contacts for Double-Heterojunction Silicon Solar Cells: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Page, M. R.; Iwaniczko, E.; Xu, Y.; Wang, Q.; Yan, Y.; Roybal, L.; Branz, H. M.; Wang, T. H.

    2006-05-01

    We have developed hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a Si:H) back contacts to both p- and n-type silicon wafers, and employed them in double-heterojunction solar cells. These contacts are deposited entirely at low temperature (<250 C) and replace the standard diffused or alloyed back-surface-field contacts used in single-heterojunction (front-emitter only) cells. High-quality back contacts require excellent surface passivation, indicated by a low surface recombination velocity of minority-carriers (S) or a high open-circuit voltage (Voc). The back contact must also provide good conduction for majority carriers to the external circuit, as indicated by a high light I-V fill factor. We use hot-wire chemical vapor deposition (HWCVD) to grow a-Si:H layers for both the front emitters and back contacts. Our improved a-Si:H back contacts contribute to our recent achievement of a confirmed 18.2% efficiency in double-heterojunction silicon solar cells on p type textured silicon wafers.

  13. Development of Thin Film Silicon Solar Cell Using Inkjet Printed Silicon and Other Inkjet Processes: Cooperative Research and Development Final Report, CRADA Number CRD-07-260

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B.

    2012-04-01

    The cost of silicon photovoltaics (Si-PV) can be greatly lowered by developing thin-film crystalline Si solar cells on glass or an equally lower cost substrate. Typically, Si film is deposited by thermal evaporation, plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition, and sputtering. NREL and Silexos have worked under a CRADA to develop technology to make very low cost solar cells using liquid organic precursors. Typically, cyclopentasilane (CPS) is deposited on a glass substrate and then converted into an a-Si film by UV polymerization followed by low-temperature optical process that crystallizes the amorphous layer. This technique promises to be a very low cost approach for making a Si film.

  14. Towards high efficiency thin-film crystalline silicon solar cells: The roles of light trapping and non-radiative recombinations

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Bozzola, A. Kowalczewski, P.; Andreani, L. C.

    2014-03-07

    Thin-film solar cells based on silicon have emerged as an alternative to standard thick wafers technology, but they are less efficient, because of incomplete absorption of sunlight, and non-radiative recombinations. In this paper, we focus on the case of crystalline silicon (c-Si) devices, and we present a full analytic electro-optical model for p-n junction solar cells with Lambertian light trapping. This model is validated against numerical solutions of the drift-diffusion equations. We use this model to investigate the interplay between light trapping, and bulk and surface recombination. Special attention is paid to surface recombination processes, which become more important in thinner devices. These effects are further amplified due to the textures required for light trapping, which lead to increased surface area. We show that c-Si solar cells with thickness of a few microns can overcome 20% efficiency and outperform bulk ones when light trapping is implemented. The optimal device thickness in presence of light trapping, bulk and surface recombination, is quantified to be in the range of 1080??m, depending on the bulk quality. These results hold, provided the effective surface recombination is kept below a critical level of the order of 100?cm/s. We discuss the possibility of meeting this requirement, in the context of state-of-the-art techniques for light trapping and surface passivation. We show that our predictions are within the capability of present day silicon technologies.

  15. Low-temperature high-mobility amorphous IZO for silicon heterojunction solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Morales-Masis, Monica; Martin De Nicolas, Silvia; Holovsky, Jakub; De Wolf, Stefaan; Ballif, Christophe

    2015-07-13

    Parasitic absorption in the transparent conductive oxide (TCO) front electrode is one of the limitations of silicon heterojunction (SHJ) solar cells efficiency. To avoid such absorption while retaining high conductivity, TCOs with high electron mobility are preferred over those with high carrier density. Here, we demonstrate improved SHJ solar cell efficiencies by applying high-mobility amorphous indium zinc oxide (a-IZO) as the front TCO. We sputtered a-IZO at low substrate temperature and low power density and investigated the optical and electrical properties, as well as subband tail formation-quantified by the Urbach energy (EU)-as a function of the sputtering oxygen partial pressure. We obtain an EU as low as 128 meV for films with the highest Hall mobility of 60 cm2/Vs. When comparing the performance of a-IZO films with indium tin oxide (ITO) and hydrogenated indium oxide (IO:H), we find that IO:H (115 cm2/Vs) exhibits a similar EU of 130 meV, while ITO (25 cm2/Vs) presents a much larger EU of up to 270 meV. The high film quality, indicated by the low EU, the high mobility, and low free carrier absorption of the developed a-IZO electrodes, result in a significant current improvement, achieving conversion efficiencies over 21.5%, outperforming those with standard ITO.

  16. NREL's Black Silicon Increases Solar Cell Efficiency by Reducing Reflected Sunlight (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Not Available

    2010-11-01

    A fact sheet detailing the R&D 100 Award-winning Black Silicon Nanocatalytic Wet-Chemical Etch technology.

  17. Characterization of Epitaxial Film Silicon Solar Cells Grown on Seeded Display Glass: Preprint

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Young, D. L.; Grover, S.; Teplin, C.; Stradins, P.; LaSalvia, V.; Chuang, T. K.; Couillard, J. G.; Branz, H. M.

    2012-06-01

    We report characterizations of epitaxial film crystal silicon (c-Si) solar cells with open-circuit voltages (Voc) above 560 mV. The 2-um absorber cells are grown by low-temperature (<750 degrees C) hot-wire CVD (HWCVD) on Corning EAGLE XG display glass coated with a layer-transferred (LT) Si seed. The high Voc is a result of low-defect epitaxial Si (epi-Si) growth and effective hydrogen passivation of defects. The quality of HWCVD epitaxial growth on seeded glass substrates depends on the crystallographic quality of the seed and the morphology of the epitaxial growth surface. Heterojunction devices consist of glass/c-Si LT seed/ epi n+ Si:P/epi n- Si:P/intrinsic a-Si:H/p+ a-Si:H/ITO. Similar devices grown on electronically 'dead' n+ wafers have given Voc {approx}630 mV and {approx}8% efficiency with no light trapping features. Here we study the effects of the seed surface polish on epi-Si quality, how hydrogenation influences the device character, and the dominant junction transport physics.

  18. Technology Development for High-Efficiency Solar Cells and Modules Using Thin (<80 um) Single-Crystal Silicon Wafers Produced by Epitaxy: June 11, 2011 - April 30, 2013

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Ravi, T. S.

    2013-05-01

    Final technical progress report of Crystal Solar subcontract NEU-31-40054-01. The objective of this 18-month program was to demonstrate the viability of high-efficiency thin (less than 80 um) monocrystalline silicon (Si) solar cells and modules with a low-cost epitaxial growth process.

  19. Forming high efficiency silicon solar cells using density-graded anti-reflection surfaces

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Yuan, Hao-Chih; Branz, Howard M.; Page, Matthew R.

    2014-09-09

    A method (50) is provided for processing a graded-density AR silicon surface (14) to provide effective surface passivation. The method (50) includes positioning a substrate or wafer (12) with a silicon surface (14) in a reaction or processing chamber (42). The silicon surface (14) has been processed (52) to be an AR surface with a density gradient or region of black silicon. The method (50) continues with heating (54) the chamber (42) to a high temperature for both doping and surface passivation. The method (50) includes forming (58), with a dopant-containing precursor in contact with the silicon surface (14) of the substrate (12), an emitter junction (16) proximate to the silicon surface (14) by doping the substrate (12). The method (50) further includes, while the chamber is maintained at the high or raised temperature, forming (62) a passivation layer (19) on the graded-density silicon anti-reflection surface (14).

  20. Forming high-efficiency silicon solar cells using density-graded anti-reflection surfaces

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Yuan, Hao-Chih; Branz, Howard M.; Page, Matthew R.

    2015-07-07

    A method (50) is provided for processing a graded-density AR silicon surface (14) to provide effective surface passivation. The method (50) includes positioning a substrate or wafer (12) with a silicon surface (14) in a reaction or processing chamber (42). The silicon surface (14) has been processed (52) to be an AR surface with a density gradient or region of black silicon. The method (50) continues with heating (54) the chamber (42) to a high temperature for both doping and surface passivation. The method (50) includes forming (58), with a dopant-containing precursor in contact with the silicon surface (14) of the substrate (12), an emitter junction (16) proximate to the silicon surface (14) by doping the substrate (12). The method (50) further includes, while the chamber is maintained at the high or raised temperature, forming (62) a passivation layer (19) on the graded-density silicon anti-reflection surface (14).

  1. 16th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells and Modules: Materials and Processes; Program, Extended Abstracts, and Papers

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B. L.

    2006-08-01

    The National Center for Photovoltaics sponsored the 16th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells and Modules: Materials and Processes held August 6-9, 2006 in Denver, Colorado. The workshop addressed the fundamental properties of PV-Si, new solar cell designs, and advanced solar cell processing techniques. It provided a forum for an informal exchange of technical and scientific information between international researchers in the photovoltaic and relevant non-photovoltaic fields. The Workshop Theme was: "Getting more (Watts) for Less ($i)". A combination of oral presentations by invited speakers, poster sessions, and discussion sessions reviewed recent advances in crystal growth, new cell structures, new processes and process characterization techniques, and cell fabrication approaches suitable for future manufacturing demands. The special sessions included: Feedstock Issues: Si Refining and Purification; Metal-impurity Engineering; Thin Film Si; and Diagnostic Techniques.

  2. Development of processes for the production of solar grade silicon from halides and alkali metals, Phase 1 and Phase 2. Final report, October 1979 - February 1981

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Dickson, C.R.; Gould, R.K.; Felder, W.

    1981-03-01

    High temperature reactions of silicon halides with alkali metals for the production of solar grade silicon are described. Product separation and collection processes were evaluated, measure heat release parameters for scaling purposes and effects of reactants and/or products on materials of reactor construction were determined, and preliminary engineering and economic analysis of a scaled up process were made. The feasibility of the basic process to make and collect silicon was demonstrated. The jet impaction/separation process was demonstrated to be a purification process. The rate at which gas phase species from silicon particle precursors, the time required for silane decomposition to produce particles, and the competing rate of growth of silicon seed particles injected into a decomposing silane environment were determined. The extent of silane decomposition as a function of residence time, temperature, and pressure was measured by infrared absorption spectroscopy. A simplistic model is presented to explain the growth of silicon in a decomposing silane enviroment.

  3. Toward a Monolithic Lattice-Matched III-V on Silicon Tandem Solar Cell

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Geisz, J. F.; Olson, J. M.; Friedman, D. J.

    2004-09-01

    A two-junction device consisting of a 1.7-eV GaNPAs junction on a 1.1-eV silicon junction has the theoretical potential to achieve nearly optimal efficiency for a two-junction tandem cell. We have demonstrated some of the key components toward realizing such a cell, including GaNPAs top cells grown on silicon substrates, GaP-based tunnel junctions grown on silicon substrates, and diffused silicon junctions formed during the epitaxial growth of GaNP on silicon. These components have required the development of techniques for the growth of high crystalline quality GaNPAs on silicon by metal-organic vapor-phase epitaxy.

  4. EERE Success Story-California: TetraCell Silicon Solar Cell Improves...

    Broader source: Energy.gov (indexed) [DOE]

    Crystalline silicon PV cell architecture and manufacturing process increases efficiency, lowers costs. Received Innovation Award and 2013 R&D 100 Award. Locations California ...

  5. Method of fabricating conducting oxide-silicon solar cells utilizing electron beam sublimation and deposition of the oxide

    DOE Patents [OSTI]

    Feng, Tom; Ghosh, Amal K.

    1979-01-01

    In preparing tin oxide and indium tin oxide-silicon heterojunction solar cells by electron beam sublimation of the oxide and subsequent deposition thereof on the silicon, the engineering efficiency of the resultant cell is enhanced by depositing the oxide at a predetermined favorable angle of incidence. Typically the angle of incidence is between 40.degree. and 70.degree. and preferably between 55.degree. and 65.degree. when the oxide is tin oxide and between 40.degree. and 70.degree. when the oxide deposited is indium tin oxide. gi The Government of the United States of America has rights in this invention pursuant to Department of Energy Contract No. EY-76-C-03-1283.

  6. High Volume Manufacturing of Silicon-Film Solar Cells and Modules; Final Subcontract Report, 26 February 2003 - 30 September 2003

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Rand, J. A.; Culik, J. S.

    2005-10-01

    The objective of the PV Manufacturing R&D subcontract was to continue to improve AstroPower's technology for manufacturing Silicon-Film* wafers, solar cells, and modules to reduce costs, and increase production yield, throughput, and capacity. As part of the effort, new technology such as the continuous back metallization screen-printing system and the laser scribing system were developed and implemented. Existing processes, such as the silicon nitride antireflection coating system and the fire-through process were optimized. Improvements were made to the statistical process control (SPC) systems of the major manufacturing processes: feedstock preparation, wafer growth, surface etch, diffusion, and the antireflection coating process. These process improvements and improved process control have led to an increase of 5% relative power, and nearly 15% relative improvement in mechanical and visual yield.

  7. Application of ITO/Al reflectors for increasing the efficiency of single-crystal silicon solar cells

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Kopach, V. R.; Kirichenko, M. V. Khrypunov, G. S.; Zaitsev, R. V.

    2010-06-15

    It is shown that an increase in the efficiency and manufacturability of single-junction single-crystal silicon photoelectric converters of solar energy requires the use of a back-surface reflector based on conductive transparent indium-tin oxide (ITO) 0.25-2 {mu}m thick. To increase the efficiency and reduce the sensitivity to the angle of light incidence on the photoreceiving surface of multijunction photoelectric converters with vertical diode cells based on single-crystal silicon, ITO/Al reflectors with an ITO layer >1 {mu}m thick along vertical boundaries of diode cells should be fabricated. The experimental study of multijunction photoelectric converters with ITO/Al reflectors at diode cell boundaries shows the necessity of modernizing the used technology of ITO layers to achieve their theoretically calculated thickness.

  8. Large-Scale PV Module Manufacturing Using Ultra-Thin Polycrystalline Silicon Solar Cells: Final Subcontract Report, 1 April 2002--28 February 2006

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Wohlgemuth, J.; Narayanan, M.

    2006-07-01

    The major objectives of this program were to continue advances of BP Solar polycrystalline silicon manufacturing technology. The Program included work in the following areas. (1) Efforts in the casting area to increase ingot size, improve ingot material quality, and improve handling of silicon feedstock as it is loaded into the casting stations. (2) Developing wire saws to slice 100-..mu..m-thick silicon wafers on 290-..mu..m-centers. (3) Developing equipment for demounting and subsequent handling of very thin silicon wafers. (4) Developing cell processes using 100-..mu..m-thick silicon wafers that produce encapsulated cells with efficiencies of at least 15.4% at an overall yield exceeding 95%. (5) Expanding existing in-line manufacturing data reporting systems to provide active process control. (6) Establishing a 50-MW (annual nominal capacity) green-field Mega-plant factory model template based on this new thin polycrystalline silicon technology. (7) Facilitating an increase in the silicon feedstock industry's production capacity for lower-cost solar-grade silicon feedstock..

  9. Study of the processes of degradation of the optical properties of mesoporous and macroporous silicon upon exposure to simulated solar radiation

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Levitskii, V. S.; Lenshin, A. S. Seredin, P. V.; Terukov, E. I.

    2015-11-15

    The effect of solar radiation on the surface composition of mesoporous and macroporous silicon is studied by infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and photoluminescence measurements in order to analyze the possibility of using these materials as a material for solar-power engineering. The studies are conducted in the laboratory environment, with the use of a solar-radiation simulator operating under conditions close to the working conditions of standard silicon solar cells. The studies show that, in general, the materials meet the requirements of solar-power engineering, if it is possible to preclude harmful effects associated with the presence of heat-sensitive and photosensitive bonds at the nanomaterial surface by standard processing methods.

  10. 18th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells and Modules: Materials and Processes; Workshop Proceedings, 3-6 August 2008, Vail, Colorado

    SciTech Connect (OSTI)

    Sopori, B. L.

    2008-09-01

    The National Center for Photovoltaics sponsored the 18th Workshop on Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells & Modules: Materials and Processes, held in Vail, CO, August 3-6, 2008. This meeting provided a forum for an informal exchange of technical and scientific information between international researchers in the photovoltaic and relevant non-photovoltaic fields. The theme of this year's meeting was 'New Directions for Rapidly Growing Silicon Technologies.'