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

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.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA (United States)
  2. Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Madrid (Spain)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Progress in Photovoltaics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 24; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 1062-7995
Research Org:
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Country of Publication:
United States
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; silicon; lifetime; silicon solar cell; crystal and wafer growth techniques; defects
OSTI Identifier: