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Title: Imaging Lateral Drift Kinetics to Understand Causes of Outdoor Degradation in Silicon Heterojunction Photovoltaic Modules

Abstract

Lateral drift currents caused by partial or patterned illumination of photovoltaic cells have important implications for laser-based screening methods and luminescence imaging of fielded and lab-stressed modules. This study investigates the kinetics of carrier drift and bulk recombination following patterned illumination in commercial silicon heterojunctions with intrinsic thin layer (HIT) modules, comparing the kinetics between a ten-year field-weathered module versus a control module that is stored indoors. The measurement of the microwave photoconductance decay (uPCD) transients in the modules, both coincident with the photoexcitation and in nonilluminated cell regions, reveals carrier drift on the 100 us timescale, followed by millisecond bulk lifetimes. Importantly, the uPCD transients are consistent with luminescence spreading over the cell, which is imaged using a time-gated InGaAs array camera. The weathered HIT module shows slower lateral drift and faster bulk lifetimes compared with the control, suggesting increased series resistance and accelerated nonradiative recombination in this module, attributable to degradation of the transparent conductive oxide and degradation of the passivation layer, respectively. These results provide a novel example of using time-resolved measurements directly on full photovoltaic modules to reveal causes of degradation, providing insight for further development of module imaging and screening capabilities.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Solar Energy Technologies Office (EE-4S)
OSTI Identifier:
1545003
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1514724
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5K00-73528
Journal ID: ISSN 2367-198X
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Solar RRL
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 3; Journal Issue: 8; Journal ID: ISSN 2367-198X
Publisher:
Wiley
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; lateral drift; luminescence imaging; microwave photoconductance decay; photovoltaic modules; silicon heterojunction

Citation Formats

Sulas, Dana B., Johnston, Steve, and Jordan, Dirk C. Imaging Lateral Drift Kinetics to Understand Causes of Outdoor Degradation in Silicon Heterojunction Photovoltaic Modules. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1002/solr.201900102.
Sulas, Dana B., Johnston, Steve, & Jordan, Dirk C. Imaging Lateral Drift Kinetics to Understand Causes of Outdoor Degradation in Silicon Heterojunction Photovoltaic Modules. United States. doi:10.1002/solr.201900102.
Sulas, Dana B., Johnston, Steve, and Jordan, Dirk C. Tue . "Imaging Lateral Drift Kinetics to Understand Causes of Outdoor Degradation in Silicon Heterojunction Photovoltaic Modules". United States. doi:10.1002/solr.201900102.
@article{osti_1545003,
title = {Imaging Lateral Drift Kinetics to Understand Causes of Outdoor Degradation in Silicon Heterojunction Photovoltaic Modules},
author = {Sulas, Dana B. and Johnston, Steve and Jordan, Dirk C.},
abstractNote = {Lateral drift currents caused by partial or patterned illumination of photovoltaic cells have important implications for laser-based screening methods and luminescence imaging of fielded and lab-stressed modules. This study investigates the kinetics of carrier drift and bulk recombination following patterned illumination in commercial silicon heterojunctions with intrinsic thin layer (HIT) modules, comparing the kinetics between a ten-year field-weathered module versus a control module that is stored indoors. The measurement of the microwave photoconductance decay (uPCD) transients in the modules, both coincident with the photoexcitation and in nonilluminated cell regions, reveals carrier drift on the 100 us timescale, followed by millisecond bulk lifetimes. Importantly, the uPCD transients are consistent with luminescence spreading over the cell, which is imaged using a time-gated InGaAs array camera. The weathered HIT module shows slower lateral drift and faster bulk lifetimes compared with the control, suggesting increased series resistance and accelerated nonradiative recombination in this module, attributable to degradation of the transparent conductive oxide and degradation of the passivation layer, respectively. These results provide a novel example of using time-resolved measurements directly on full photovoltaic modules to reveal causes of degradation, providing insight for further development of module imaging and screening capabilities.},
doi = {10.1002/solr.201900102},
journal = {Solar RRL},
number = 8,
volume = 3,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {5}
}

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