Role of n-type seed-layers in microstructural evolution of intrinsic nanocrystalline silicon and solar cell performance

Ji Eun Lee, Seungkyu Ahn, Joo Hyung Park, Jinsu Yoo, Kyung Hoon Yoon, Donghwan Kim, Jun Sik Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si:H) thin-film n-i-p solar cells were constructed on flexible stainless steel substrates by plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition. Influence of the n-type seed-layer on the microstructural evolution of the subsequent intrinsic nc-Si:H absorbers and the resultant performance of nc-Si:H solar cells was investigated. The crystalline volume fraction of the seed-layer can be effectively controlled by varying the hydrogen (H2) to silane (SiH4) gas flow ratio. Defect-dense amorphous regions were observed at the initial growth stage of the i-layers deposited on low crystalline volume fraction (Xcn) n-type seed-layers. Increasing the Xcn reduced the amorphous region at the n/i interface of the i nc-Si:H layers, evidenced by Raman scattering and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) measurements. Elimination of the defect-rich amorphous region within the i-layer by depositing the nc-Si:H solar cells on highly crystalline seed-layer caused significant improvements in the short circuit current density (Jsc) and fill factor (FF). This is mainly due to the enhancement of long-wavelength light response and extraction efficiency of photo-carrier charges. The nc-Si:H solar cells prepared on a highly crystalline seed-layer (Xcn = 73%) exhibited a 65.6% higher conversion efficiency than those on the n-type amorphous layers (Xcn = 0%).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1344-1349
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Applied Physics
Volume13
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Keywords

  • Crystallinity
  • Flexible substrate
  • Nanocrystalline silicon
  • Seed-layer
  • Solar cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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