CdTe‐Based Solar Cells with Variations in Mg Concentration in the MgZnO Emitter

Darius Kuciauskas, Ramesh Pandey, Amit Munshi, Tushar Shimpi, Akash Shah, Alexandra Bothwell, James Sites

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus Citations


The optimal fraction of Mg incorporation in sputter-deposited MgXZn1−XO (MZO) emitters for thin-film CdTe-based solar cells is evaluated by varying it over a range of x from 0 to 0.35. This range allows a variation in the conduction band offset from −0.1 eV (cliff like) to +0.32 eV (spike like). A maximum efficiency of 18.5% for cells with the bilayer CdSeTe/CdTe absorber occurs at x = 0.15, which corresponds to a spike-like band offset near 0.2 eV, as confirmed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. In addition, good cell performance is seen over a fairly broad range of x extending from 0.1 to 0.25. The MZO optical bandgap increases with the Mg fraction, consistent with an increasing conduction band offset. Temperature-dependent current−voltage measurements and time-resolved photoluminescence show improvement in the emitter/absorber interface with the incorporation of Mg. Capacitance−voltage measurements show that the depletion region extends further into the absorber with more Mg, and X-ray diffraction confirms a change from a hexagonal-dominant crystal structure toward zinc blende at x = 0.35.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number2100126
Number of pages7
JournalSolar RRL
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Wiley-VCH GmbH

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5900-79942


  • CdTe
  • MZO
  • thin-film solar cells


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