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Title: Structural and chemical characterization of the back contact region in high efficiency CdTe solar cells
Authors: Abbas, Ali
Meysing, Daniel M.
Li, Jiaojiao
Beach, Joseph D.
Barnes, Teresa M.
Wolden, Colin A.
Keywords: CdTe solar cells
Back contact
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: © IEEE
Citation: ABBAS, A. ... et al, 2015. Structural and chemical characterization of the back contact region in high efficiency CdTe solar cells. IN: Proceedings of the 2015 IEEE 42nd Photovoltaic Specialist Conference (PVSC), New Orleans.
Abstract: Cadmium telluride (CdTe) is the leading commercialized thin-film photovoltaic technology. Copper is commonly used in back contacts to obtain high efficiency, but has also been implicated as a harmful factor for device stability. T hus it is critical to understand its composition and distribution within complete devices. In this work the composition and structure of the back contact region was examined in high efficiency devices (-16%) contacted using a ZnTe:Cu buffer layer followed by gold metallization. T he microstructure was examined in the asdeposited state and after rapid thermal processing (RTP) using high resolution transmission electron microscopy and EDX chemical mapping. After RTP the ZnTe exhibits a bilayer structure with polycrystalline, twinned grains adjacent to Au and an amorphous region adjacent to CdTe characterized by extensive Cd-Zn interdiffusion. T he copper that is co-deposited uniformly within ZnTe is found to segregate dramatically after RTP activation, either collecting near the ZnTe/Au interface or forming CUxTe clusters in CdTe at defects or grain boundaries near the interface with ZnTe. Chlorine, present throughout CdTe and concentrated at grain boundaries, does not penetrate significantly into the back contact region during RTP activation.
Description: © 2015 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. Permission from IEEE must be obtained for all other uses, in any current or future media, including reprinting/republishing this material for advertising or promotional purposes, creating new collective works, for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or reuse of any copyrighted component of this work in other works.
Sponsor: We gratefully acknowledge the Bay Area Photovoltaic Consortium for their support of the work performed at CSM under U.S. Department of Energy Award number DEEE0004946. Work at NREL was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Foundational Program to Advance Cell Efficiency (F-PACE) under Contract No. DEAC36- 08-G028308. The Loughborough research was funded by UKERC through the EPSRC Supergen SuperSolar Hub.
Version: Accepted for publication
DOI: 10.1109/PVSC.2015.7355622
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/20467
Publisher Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/PVSC.2015.7355622
ISBN: 9781479979448
Appears in Collections:Conference Papers and Contributions (CREST)

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