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Proceedings Paper

Efficient light-trapping nanostructures in thin silicon solar cells
Author(s): Sang Eon Han; Anastassios Mavrokefalos; Matthew Sanders Branham; Gang Chen
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Paper Abstract

We examine light-trapping in thin crystalline silicon periodic nanostructures for solar cell applications. Using group theory, we show that light-trapping can be improved over a broad band when structural mirror symmetry is broken. This finding allows us to obtain surface nanostructures with an absorptance exceeding the Lambertian limit over a broad band at normal incidence. Further, we demonstrate that the absorptance of nanorod arrays with symmetry breaking not only exceeds the Lambertian limit over a range of spectrum but also closely follows the limit over the entire spectrum of interest for isotropic incident radiation. These effects correspond to a reduction in silicon mass by two orders of magnitude, pointing to the promising future of thin crystalline silicon solar cells.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 May 2011
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 8031, Micro- and Nanotechnology Sensors, Systems, and Applications III, 80310T (13 May 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.881047
Show Author Affiliations
Sang Eon Han, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Anastassios Mavrokefalos, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
The Cypress Institute (Cyprus)
Matthew Sanders Branham, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Gang Chen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8031:
Micro- and Nanotechnology Sensors, Systems, and Applications III
Thomas George; M. Saif Islam; Achyut K. Dutta, Editor(s)

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