Choice of Substrate Material for Epitaxial CdTe Solar Cells

Ana Kanevce, Tao Song, James Sites

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

3 Scopus Citations


Epitaxial CdTe with high quality, low defect density, and high carrier concentration should in principle yield high-efficiency photovoltaic devices. However, insufficient effort has been given to explore the choice of substrate for high-efficiency epitaxial CdTe solar cells. In this paper, we use numerical simulations to investigate three crystalline substrates: silicon (Si), InSb, and CdTe itself. Potential problems, especially the non-ideal band alignment of Si and InSb substrates with a CdTe absorber, are found to be a limitation on cell performance. In addition, commercially available CdTe substrates have excessive series resistance leading to a FF loss, and Si has a significant lattice mismatch with CdTe, creating interfacial traps. Possible solutions to overcome the drawbacks of each substrate material are generally discussed.

Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages4
StatePublished - 2015
Event42nd IEEE Photovoltaic Specialist Conference, PVSC 2015 - New Orleans, United States
Duration: 14 Jun 201519 Jun 2015


Conference42nd IEEE Photovoltaic Specialist Conference, PVSC 2015
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew Orleans

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 IEEE.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-5J00-64397


  • cadmium compounds
  • elemental semiconductors
  • epitaxial layers
  • II-VI semiconductors
  • indium compounds
  • silicon
  • solar cells


Dive into the research topics of 'Choice of Substrate Material for Epitaxial CdTe Solar Cells'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this