CIS-Type PV Device Fabrication by Novel Techniques: Phase I Annual Technical Report, 1 July 1998 - 30 June 1999

    Research output: NRELSubcontract Report


    This report describes work performed by International Solar Electric Technology, Inc. (ISET) during phase I of the R&D partnership subcontract titled 'CIS-Type PV Device Fabrication by Novel Techniques.' The objective of this program is to bring ISET's novel non-vacuum CIS technology closer to commercialization by concentrating on issues such as device-efficiency improvement, larger-bandgapabsorber growth, and module fabrication. Advances made in CIS and related compound solar cell fabrication processes have clearly shown that these materials and device structures can yield power conversion efficiencies in the 15%-20% range. However, many of the laboratory results on CIS-type devices have been obtained using relatively high-cost vacuum-based deposition techniques. The presentproject was specifically geared toward developing a low-cost, non-vacuum 'particle deposition' method for CIS-type absorber growth. There are four major processing steps in this technique: i) preparation of a starting powder containing all or some of the chemical species constituting CIS, ii) preparation of an ink using the starting powder, iii) deposition of the ink on a substrate in the formof a thin precursor layer, and iv) conversion of the precursor layer into a fused photovoltaic absorber through annealing steps. During this Phase I program, ISET worked on tasks that were geared toward the following goals: i) elimination of back-contact problems, ii) growth of large-bandgap absorbers, and iii) fabrication of mini-modules. As a result of the Phase I research, a Mo back-contactstructure was developed that eliminated problems that resulted in poor mechanical integrity of the absorber layers. Sulfur inclusion into CIS films through high-temperature sulfurization in H2S gas was also studied. It was determined that S diffusion was a strong function of the stoichiometry of the CIS layer. Sulfur was found to diffuse rapidly through the Cu-rich films, whereas the diffusionconstant was at least three orders of magnitude smaller in Cu-poor layers. Additionally, S profiles in sulfurized CIS films were correlated with the distribution of the grain size through the film. Absorbers containing large concentrations of Ga near the Mo contact interface also had large S content in that same region due to the small grain size of the Ga-containing material. New work onmonolithic integration procedures overcame the problem of low shunt resistance and yielded CuIn(S,Se)2 (CISS) mini-modules of about 64-cm2 area with close to 7% efficiency.
    Original languageAmerican English
    Number of pages26
    StatePublished - 1999

    Bibliographical note

    Work performed by International Solar Electric Technology, Inc., Inglewood, California

    NREL Publication Number

    • NREL/SR-520-26930


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