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Title: Overcoming Carrier Concentration Limits in Polycrystalline CdTe Thin Films with In Situ Doping

Here, thin film materials for photovoltaics such as cadmium telluride (CdTe), copper-indium diselenide-based chalcopyrites (CIGS), and lead iodide-based perovskites offer the potential of lower solar module capital costs and improved performance to microcrystalline silicon. However, for decades understanding and controlling hole and electron concentration in these polycrystalline films has been extremely challenging and limiting. Ionic bonding between constituent atoms often leads to tenacious intrinsic compensating defect chemistries that are difficult to control. Device modeling indicates that increasing CdTe hole density while retaining carrier lifetimes of several nanoseconds can increase solar cell efficiency to 25%. This paper describes in-situ Sb, As, and P doping and post-growth annealing that increases hole density from historic 10 14 limits to 10 16-10 17 cm -3 levels without compromising lifetime in thin polycrystalline CdTe films, which opens paths to advance solar performance and achieve costs below conventional electricity sources.
Authors:
ORCiD logo [1] ;  [1] ; ORCiD logo [1] ;  [1] ; ORCiD logo [1] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ;  [2] ;  [2]
  1. Univ. of Delaware, Newark, DE (United States)
  2. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5K00-72611
Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Grant/Contract Number:
AC36-08GO28308
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Publisher:
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; semiconductors; solar cells; thin films; solar performance
OSTI Identifier:
1478186

McCandless, Brian E., Buchanan, Wayne A., Thompson, Christopher P., Sriramagiri, Gowri, Lovelett, Robert J., Duenow, Joel N., Albin, David, Jensen, Søren A., Colegrove, Eric M., Moseley, John, Moutinho, Helio R., Harvey, Steve P., Al-Jassim, Mowafak, and Metzger, Wyatt K.. Overcoming Carrier Concentration Limits in Polycrystalline CdTe Thin Films with In Situ Doping. United States: N. p., Web. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-32746-y.
McCandless, Brian E., Buchanan, Wayne A., Thompson, Christopher P., Sriramagiri, Gowri, Lovelett, Robert J., Duenow, Joel N., Albin, David, Jensen, Søren A., Colegrove, Eric M., Moseley, John, Moutinho, Helio R., Harvey, Steve P., Al-Jassim, Mowafak, & Metzger, Wyatt K.. Overcoming Carrier Concentration Limits in Polycrystalline CdTe Thin Films with In Situ Doping. United States. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-32746-y.
McCandless, Brian E., Buchanan, Wayne A., Thompson, Christopher P., Sriramagiri, Gowri, Lovelett, Robert J., Duenow, Joel N., Albin, David, Jensen, Søren A., Colegrove, Eric M., Moseley, John, Moutinho, Helio R., Harvey, Steve P., Al-Jassim, Mowafak, and Metzger, Wyatt K.. 2018. "Overcoming Carrier Concentration Limits in Polycrystalline CdTe Thin Films with In Situ Doping". United States. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-32746-y. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1478186.
@article{osti_1478186,
title = {Overcoming Carrier Concentration Limits in Polycrystalline CdTe Thin Films with In Situ Doping},
author = {McCandless, Brian E. and Buchanan, Wayne A. and Thompson, Christopher P. and Sriramagiri, Gowri and Lovelett, Robert J. and Duenow, Joel N. and Albin, David and Jensen, Søren A. and Colegrove, Eric M. and Moseley, John and Moutinho, Helio R. and Harvey, Steve P. and Al-Jassim, Mowafak and Metzger, Wyatt K.},
abstractNote = {Here, thin film materials for photovoltaics such as cadmium telluride (CdTe), copper-indium diselenide-based chalcopyrites (CIGS), and lead iodide-based perovskites offer the potential of lower solar module capital costs and improved performance to microcrystalline silicon. However, for decades understanding and controlling hole and electron concentration in these polycrystalline films has been extremely challenging and limiting. Ionic bonding between constituent atoms often leads to tenacious intrinsic compensating defect chemistries that are difficult to control. Device modeling indicates that increasing CdTe hole density while retaining carrier lifetimes of several nanoseconds can increase solar cell efficiency to 25%. This paper describes in-situ Sb, As, and P doping and post-growth annealing that increases hole density from historic 1014 limits to 1016-1017 cm-3 levels without compromising lifetime in thin polycrystalline CdTe films, which opens paths to advance solar performance and achieve costs below conventional electricity sources.},
doi = {10.1038/s41598-018-32746-y},
journal = {Scientific Reports},
number = 1,
volume = 8,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {9}
}

Works referenced in this record:

Time-resolved photoluminescence studies of CdTe solar cells
journal, September 2003
  • Metzger, W. K.; Albin, D.; Levi, D.
  • Journal of Applied Physics, Vol. 94, Issue 5, p. 3549-3555
  • DOI: 10.1063/1.1597974