Tunnel Junction Development Using Hydride Vapor Phase Epitaxy

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We demonstrate for the first time IIÏCV tunnel junctions grown using hydride vapor phase epitaxy (HVPE) with peak tunneling currents 8 A/cm2, sufficient for operation of a multijunction device to several hundred suns of concentration. Multijunction solar cells rely on tunneling interconnects between subcells to enable series connection with minimal voltage loss, but tunnel junctions have never been shown using the HVPE growth method. HVPE has recently reemerged as a low-cost growth method for high-quality IIÏCV materials and devices, including the growth of high-efficiency IIÏCV solar cells. We previously showed singlejunction GaAs solar cells with conversion efficiencies of ∼24% with a path forward to equal or exceed the practical efficiency limits of crystalline Si. Moving to a multijunction device structure will allow for even higher efficiencies with minimal impact on cost, necessitating the development of tunnel interconnects. Here, we demonstrate the performance of both isolated HVPE-grown tunnel junctions, as well as single-junction GaAs solar cell structures with a tunnel junction incorporated into the contact region. We observe no degradation in device performance compared to a structure without the added junction.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)322-326
Number of pages5
JournalIEEE Journal of Photovoltaics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 IEEE.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5J00-68632


  • Gallium arsenide
  • Hydride vapor phase epitaxy (HVPE)
  • Photovoltaics (PV)
  • Tunnel junctions


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