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Issue 46, 2015
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Semi-transparent silicon-rich silicon carbide photovoltaic solar cells

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All silicon-rich silicon carbide (Si-rich SixC1−x)-based single p–i–n junction photovoltaic solar cells (PVSCs) were fabricated by growing nonstoichiometric Si-rich SixC1−x films through medium-temperature hydrogen-free plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition. The Si-rich SixC1−x-based thin-film p–i–n junction PVSCs exhibit improved power conversion efficiency when an intrinsic Si-rich SixC1−x absorbing layer with a low C/Si composition ratio is added; amorphous Si (a-Si) particles are embedded in this absorbing layer. Lowering the [CH4]/[CH4 + SiH4] fluence ratio from 0.5 to 0.3 reduces the C/Si composition ratio of Si-rich SixC1−x films from 0.74 to 0.665. The absorbance of these films in the visible light region (400–800 nm) is substantially enhanced to 3.8 × 105 cm−1 by reducing the [CH4]/[CH4 + SiH4] fluence ratio, which is up to one order of magnitude larger than that of crystalline Si. The open-circuit voltage and short-circuit current density of the indium tin oxide/p-SixC1−x/i-SixC1−x/nSixC1−x/Al PVSCs are enhanced to 0.51 V and to 19.7 mA cm−2, respectively, raising the conversion efficiency and filling factor to 2.24% and 0.264, respectively. Through hydrogen-free deposition of the Si-rich SixC1−x p–i–n cells on a-Si based p–i–n cells, Si-rich SixC1−x/a-Si hybrid tandem PVSCs exhibit enhanced conversion efficiency and an enhanced filling factor of 6.47% and 0.332, respectively.

Graphical abstract: Semi-transparent silicon-rich silicon carbide photovoltaic solar cells

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Publication details

The article was received on 24 Dec 2014, accepted on 30 Mar 2015 and first published on 30 Mar 2015

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C4RA16998K
Citation: RSC Adv., 2015,5, 36262-36269
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    Semi-transparent silicon-rich silicon carbide photovoltaic solar cells

    C. Cheng, J. Chang, Chih-I. Wu and G. Lin, RSC Adv., 2015, 5, 36262
    DOI: 10.1039/C4RA16998K

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