Overcoming Carrier Concentration Limits in Polycrystalline CdTe Thin Films with In Situ Doping: Article No. 14519

Joel Duenow, David Albin, Eric Colegrove, John Moseley, Helio Moutinho, Steven Harvey, Mowafak Al-Jassim, Wyatt Metzger, Brian McCandless, Wayne Buchanan, Christopher Thompson, Gowri Sriramagiri, Robert Lovelett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus Citations

Abstract

Thin film materials for photovoltaics such as cadmium telluride (CdTe), copper-indium diselenide-based chalcopyrites (CIGS), and lead iodide-based perovskites offer the potential of lower solar module capital costs and improved performance to microcrystalline silicon. However, for decades understanding and controlling hole and electron concentration in these polycrystalline films has been extremely challenging and limiting. Ionic bonding between constituent atoms often leads to tenacious intrinsic compensating defect chemistries that are difficult to control. Device modeling indicates that increasing CdTe hole density while retaining carrier lifetimes of several nanoseconds can increase solar cell efficiency to 25%. This paper describes in-situ Sb, As, and P doping and post-growth annealing that increases hole density from historic 1014 limits to 1016-1017 cm-3 levels without compromising lifetime in thin polycrystalline CdTe films, which opens paths to advance solar performance and achieve costs below conventional electricity sources.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages13
JournalScientific Reports
Volume8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2018

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5K00-72611

Keywords

  • semiconductors
  • solar cells
  • solar performance
  • thin films

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