High Efficiency Solution Processed Sintered CdTe Nanocrystal Solar Cells: The Role of Interfaces

Joseph Luther, Ryan Crisp, Matthew Panthani, J. Kurley, Travis Dietz, Taha Ezzyat, Dmitri Talapin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

145 Scopus Citations


Solution processing of photovoltaic semiconducting layers offers the potential for drastic cost reduction through improved materials utilization and high device throughput. One compelling solution-based processing strategy utilizes semiconductor layers produced by sintering nanocrystals into large-grain semiconductors at relatively low temperatures. Using n-ZnO/p-CdTe as a model system, we fabricate sintered CdTe nanocrystal solar cells processed at 350 C with power conversion efficiencies (PCE) as high as 12.3%. JSC of over 25 mA cm-2 are achieved, which are comparable or higher than those achieved using traditional, close-space sublimated CdTe. We find that the VOC can be substantially increased by applying forward bias for short periods of time. Capacitance measurements as well as intensity- and temperature-dependent analysis indicate that the increased VOC is likely due to relaxation of an energetic barrier at the ITO/CdTe interface.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)670-675
Number of pages6
JournalNano Letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - 12 Feb 2014

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5900-60700


  • CdTe
  • Nanocrystals
  • optoelectronic materials
  • photovoltaics
  • sintering


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