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Journal of Photonics for Energy • Open Access

Laser processing for thin film chalcogenide photovoltaics: a review and prospectus
Author(s): Brian J. Simonds; Helen J. Meadows; Sudhajit Misra; Christos Ferekides; Phillip J. Dale; Michael A. Scarpulla

Paper Abstract

We review prior and on-going works in using laser annealing (LA) techniques in the development of chalcogenide-based [CdTe and Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2] solar cells. LA can achieve unique processing regimes as the wavelength and pulse duration can be chosen to selectively heat particular layers of a thin film solar cell or even particular regions within a single layer. Pulsed LA, in particular, can achieve non-steady-state conditions that allow for stoichiometry control by preferential evaporation, which has been utilized in CdTe solar cells to create Ohmic back contacts. Pulsed lasers have also been used with Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2 to improve device performance by surface-defect annealing as well as bulk deep-defect annealing. Continuous-wave LA shows promise for use as a replacement for furnace annealing as it almost instantaneously supplies heat to the absorbing film without wasting time or energy to bring the much thicker substrate to temperature. Optimizing and utilizing such a technology would allow production lines to increase throughput and thus manufacturing capacity. Lasers have also been used to create potentially low-cost chalcogenide thin films from precursors, which is also reviewed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 January 2015
PDF: 20 pages
J. Photon. Energy. 5(1) 050999 doi: 10.1117/1.JPE.5.050999
Published in: Journal of Photonics for Energy Volume 5, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Brian J. Simonds, The Univ. of Utah (United States)
Helen J. Meadows, Univ. du Luxembourg (Luxembourg)
Sudhajit Misra, The Univ. of Utah (United States)
Christos Ferekides, Univ. of South Florida (United States)
Phillip J. Dale, Univ. du Luxembourg (Luxembourg)
Michael A. Scarpulla, The Univ. of Utah (United States)

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