Differences in c-Si Solar Cell Metallization and Susceptibility to Series Resistance Degradation

E. Gaulding, John Mangum, Steve Johnston, Chun-Sheng Jiang, Helio Moutinho, Mason Reed, James Rand, Robert Flottemesch, Ingrid Repins, Timothy Silverman, Michael Deceglie

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


In this case study, we investigate a degradation mode occurring at the cell level in fielded multi-Si modules. Affected cells in the module show a progressive, series-resistance-related power degradation observed in module- and cell-level IV curves along with EL and PL imaging at the module, cell, and cell core sample scale. SEM and elemental analysis via EDS reveal a difference in the oxides in the silver paste used in screen printing of the finger contacts. This suggests that the cells were screen printed with different silver paste compositions and possibly firing conditions. One of these combinations leads to degradation of the contact at the interface between the cell and contact finger, causing severe series resistance across the cell that continues to progress over time.

Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages2
StatePublished - 20 Jun 2021
Event48th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2021 - Fort Lauderdale, United States
Duration: 20 Jun 202125 Jun 2021


Conference48th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2021
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityFort Lauderdale

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 IEEE.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-5K00-81130


  • acetic acid
  • degradation
  • oxide
  • photovoltaic
  • series resistance
  • silver paste


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