The Influence of Conduction Band Offset on CdTe Solar Cells

Yunfei Chen, Xuehai Tan, Shou Peng, Cao Xin, Alan E. Delahoy, Ken K. Chin, Chuanjun Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Numerical modeling of conduction band offset (ΔEC) between an n-type CdSO window layer and a p-type CdTe absorption layer on the effect of the cadmium telluride (CdTe) solar cells was studied through simulation. The simulation results show that a slightly positive ΔEC yields high efficiency because the surface recombination rate at the CdSO/CdTe interface can be substantially reduced, leading to higher open-circuit voltage (VOC) and fill factor. Further increase in ΔEC (≥ 0.4 eV) will impose an energy barrier against the photo-generated electrons under forward bias. We demonstrated the mechanistic picture of this effect using thermionic emission. However, if intra-band tunneling is considered in the simulation, a large ΔEC shows negligible influence on the performance of CdTe solar cells. Our simulation results suggest that an ΔEC of 0.3 eV is an optimal conduction band offset for high-efficiency CdTe solar cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1201-1207
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Electronic Materials
Volume47
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry

Keywords

  • CdTe solar cell
  • conduction band offset
  • intra-band tunneling
  • surface recombination rate
  • thermionic emission

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