3D and Multimodal X-Ray Microscopy Reveals the Impact of Voids in CIGS Solar Cells: Article No. 2301873

Giovanni Fevola, Christina Ossig, Mariana Verezhak, Jan Garrevoet, Harvey Guthrey, Martin Seyrich, Dennis Bruckner, Johannes Hagemann, Frank Seiboth, Andreas Schropp, Gerald Falkenberg, Peter Jorgensen, Azat Slyamov, Zoltan Balogh, Christian Strelow, Tobias Kipp, Alf Mews, Christian Schroer, Shiro Nishiwaki, Romain CarronJens Andreasen, Michael Stuckelberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Small voids in the absorber layer of thin-film solar cells are generally suspected to impair photovoltaic performance. They have been studied on Cu(In,Ga)Se2 cells with conventional laboratory techniques, albeit limited to surface characterization and often affected by sample-preparation artifacts. Here, synchrotron imaging is performed on a fully operational as-deposited solar cell containing a few tens of voids. By measuring operando current and X-ray excited optical luminescence, the local electrical and optical performance in the proximity of the voids are estimated, and via ptychographic tomography, the depth in the absorber of the voids is quantified. Besides, the complex network of material-deficit structures between the absorber and the top electrode is highlighted. Despite certain local impairments, the massive presence of voids in the absorber suggests they only have a limited detrimental impact on performance.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages8
JournalAdvanced Science
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2024

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5K00-88498


  • CIGS
  • multimodal X-ray imaging
  • nano-tomography
  • ptychography
  • thin film solar cells


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