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Title: High Aspect Ratio Semiconductor Heterojunction Solar Cells

Abstract

The project focused on the development of high aspect ratio silicon heterojunction (HARSH) solar cells. The solar cells developed in this study consisted of high density vertical arrays of radial junction silicon microwires/pillars formed on Si substrates. Prior studies have demonstrated that vertical Si wire/pillar arrays enable reduced reflectivity and improved light trapping characteristics compared to planar solar cells. In addition, the radial junction structure offers the possibility of increased carrier collection in solar cells fabricated using material with short carrier diffusion lengths. However, the high junction and surface area of radial junction Si wire/pillar array devices can be problematic and lead to increased diode leakage and enhanced surface recombination. This study investigated the use of amorphous hydrogenated Si in the form of a heterojunction-intrinsic-thin layer (HIT) structure as a junction formation method for these devices. The HIT layer structure has widely been employed to reduce surface recombination in planar crystalline Si solar cells. Consequently, it was anticipated that it would also provide significant benefits to the performance of radial junction Si wire/pillar array devices. The overall goals of the project were to demonstrate a HARSH cell with a HIT-type structure in the radial junction Si wire/pillar array configuration andmore » to develop potentially low cost pathways to fabricate these devices. Our studies demonstrated that the HIT structure lead to significant improvements in the open circuit voltage (V oc>0.5) of radial junction Si pillar array devices compared to devices fabricated using junctions formed by thermal diffusion or low pressure chemical vapor deposition (LPCVD). In addition, our work experimentally demonstrated that the radial junction structure lead to improvements in efficiency compared to comparable planar devices for devices fabricated using heavily doped Si that had reduced carrier diffusion lengths. Furthermore, we made significant advances in employing the bottom-up vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) growth technique for the fabrication of the Si wire arrays. Our work elucidated the effects of growth conditions and substrate pattern geometry on the growth of large area Si microwire arrays grown with SiCl4. In addition, we also developed a process to grow p-type Si nanowire arrays using aluminum as the catalyst metal instead of gold. Finally, our work demonstrated the feasibility of growing vertical arrays of Si wires on non-crystalline glass substrates using polycrystalline Si template layers. The accomplishments demonstrated in this project will pave the way for future advances in radial junction wire array solar cells.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [3]
  1. Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States). Dept. of Material Science and Engineering
  2. Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States). Dept. of Chemistry
  3. Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States). Dept. of Electrical Engineering
  4. Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States). Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Solar Energy Technologies Office (EE-4S)
OSTI Identifier:
1350042
Report Number(s):
Final Report:DOE-PSU-18010
DOE Contract Number:  
FG36-08GO18010
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 36 MATERIALS SCIENCE

Citation Formats

Redwing, Joan, Mallouk, Tom, Mayer, Theresa, Dickey, Elizabeth, and Wronski, Chris. High Aspect Ratio Semiconductor Heterojunction Solar Cells. United States: N. p., 2013. Web. doi:10.2172/1350042.
Redwing, Joan, Mallouk, Tom, Mayer, Theresa, Dickey, Elizabeth, & Wronski, Chris. High Aspect Ratio Semiconductor Heterojunction Solar Cells. United States. doi:10.2172/1350042.
Redwing, Joan, Mallouk, Tom, Mayer, Theresa, Dickey, Elizabeth, and Wronski, Chris. Fri . "High Aspect Ratio Semiconductor Heterojunction Solar Cells". United States. doi:10.2172/1350042. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1350042.
@article{osti_1350042,
title = {High Aspect Ratio Semiconductor Heterojunction Solar Cells},
author = {Redwing, Joan and Mallouk, Tom and Mayer, Theresa and Dickey, Elizabeth and Wronski, Chris},
abstractNote = {The project focused on the development of high aspect ratio silicon heterojunction (HARSH) solar cells. The solar cells developed in this study consisted of high density vertical arrays of radial junction silicon microwires/pillars formed on Si substrates. Prior studies have demonstrated that vertical Si wire/pillar arrays enable reduced reflectivity and improved light trapping characteristics compared to planar solar cells. In addition, the radial junction structure offers the possibility of increased carrier collection in solar cells fabricated using material with short carrier diffusion lengths. However, the high junction and surface area of radial junction Si wire/pillar array devices can be problematic and lead to increased diode leakage and enhanced surface recombination. This study investigated the use of amorphous hydrogenated Si in the form of a heterojunction-intrinsic-thin layer (HIT) structure as a junction formation method for these devices. The HIT layer structure has widely been employed to reduce surface recombination in planar crystalline Si solar cells. Consequently, it was anticipated that it would also provide significant benefits to the performance of radial junction Si wire/pillar array devices. The overall goals of the project were to demonstrate a HARSH cell with a HIT-type structure in the radial junction Si wire/pillar array configuration and to develop potentially low cost pathways to fabricate these devices. Our studies demonstrated that the HIT structure lead to significant improvements in the open circuit voltage (Voc>0.5) of radial junction Si pillar array devices compared to devices fabricated using junctions formed by thermal diffusion or low pressure chemical vapor deposition (LPCVD). In addition, our work experimentally demonstrated that the radial junction structure lead to improvements in efficiency compared to comparable planar devices for devices fabricated using heavily doped Si that had reduced carrier diffusion lengths. Furthermore, we made significant advances in employing the bottom-up vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) growth technique for the fabrication of the Si wire arrays. Our work elucidated the effects of growth conditions and substrate pattern geometry on the growth of large area Si microwire arrays grown with SiCl4. In addition, we also developed a process to grow p-type Si nanowire arrays using aluminum as the catalyst metal instead of gold. Finally, our work demonstrated the feasibility of growing vertical arrays of Si wires on non-crystalline glass substrates using polycrystalline Si template layers. The accomplishments demonstrated in this project will pave the way for future advances in radial junction wire array solar cells.},
doi = {10.2172/1350042},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2013},
month = {5}
}