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Title: Surface plasmon polariton enhanced ultrathin nano-structured CdTe solar cell

Abstract

Here, we demonstrate numerically that two-dimensional arrays of ultrathin CdTe nano-cylinders on Ag can serve as an effective broadband anti-reflection structure for solar cell applications. Such devices exhibit strong absorption properties, mainly in the CdTe semiconductor regions, and can produce short-circuit current densities of 23.4 mA/cm 2, a remarkable number in the context of solar cells given the ultrathin dimensions of our nano-cylinders. The strong absorption is enabled via excitation of surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) under plane wave incidence. In particular, we identified the key absorption mechanism as enhanced fields of the SPP standing waves residing at the interface of CdTe nano-cylinders and Ag. We compare the performance of Ag, Au, and Al substrates, and observe significant improvement when using Ag, highlighting the importance of using low-loss metals. Although we use CdTe here, the proposed approach is applicable to other solar cell materials with similar absorption properties.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [2];  [1];  [1]
  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States). Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies
  2. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22). Scientific User Facilities Division
OSTI Identifier:
1426875
Report Number(s):
SAND-2014-17872J
Journal ID: ISSN 1094-4087; OPEXFF; 537633
DOE Contract Number:
AC04-94AL85000
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Optics Express; Journal Volume: 22; Journal Issue: S5
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 77 NANOSCIENCE AND NANOTECHNOLOGY; 36 MATERIALS SCIENCE

Citation Formats

Luk, Ting S., Fofang, Nche T., Cruz-Campa, Jose L., Frank, Ian, and Campione, Salvatore. Surface plasmon polariton enhanced ultrathin nano-structured CdTe solar cell. United States: N. p., 2014. Web. doi:10.1364/OE.22.0A1372.
Luk, Ting S., Fofang, Nche T., Cruz-Campa, Jose L., Frank, Ian, & Campione, Salvatore. Surface plasmon polariton enhanced ultrathin nano-structured CdTe solar cell. United States. doi:10.1364/OE.22.0A1372.
Luk, Ting S., Fofang, Nche T., Cruz-Campa, Jose L., Frank, Ian, and Campione, Salvatore. Thu . "Surface plasmon polariton enhanced ultrathin nano-structured CdTe solar cell". United States. doi:10.1364/OE.22.0A1372. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1426875.
@article{osti_1426875,
title = {Surface plasmon polariton enhanced ultrathin nano-structured CdTe solar cell},
author = {Luk, Ting S. and Fofang, Nche T. and Cruz-Campa, Jose L. and Frank, Ian and Campione, Salvatore},
abstractNote = {Here, we demonstrate numerically that two-dimensional arrays of ultrathin CdTe nano-cylinders on Ag can serve as an effective broadband anti-reflection structure for solar cell applications. Such devices exhibit strong absorption properties, mainly in the CdTe semiconductor regions, and can produce short-circuit current densities of 23.4 mA/cm2, a remarkable number in the context of solar cells given the ultrathin dimensions of our nano-cylinders. The strong absorption is enabled via excitation of surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) under plane wave incidence. In particular, we identified the key absorption mechanism as enhanced fields of the SPP standing waves residing at the interface of CdTe nano-cylinders and Ag. We compare the performance of Ag, Au, and Al substrates, and observe significant improvement when using Ag, highlighting the importance of using low-loss metals. Although we use CdTe here, the proposed approach is applicable to other solar cell materials with similar absorption properties.},
doi = {10.1364/OE.22.0A1372},
journal = {Optics Express},
number = S5,
volume = 22,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Aug 21 00:00:00 EDT 2014},
month = {Thu Aug 21 00:00:00 EDT 2014}
}