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Impact of various dopant elements on the properties of kesterite compound for solar cell application: A status review

Abstract

Earth–abundant and nontoxic kesterite compounds such as Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS), Cu2ZnSnSe4 (CZTSe) and Cu2ZnSn(S,Se)4 (CZTSSe) have made tremendous progress and become one of the hottest topics in optoelectronic materials research for power generation by capturing solar energy. These compounds can be considered a possible alternative to conventional, toxic and expensive absorber layers such as crystalline silicon (c–Si), Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) and CdTe. The p–type semiconductor kesterites (CZTS, CZTSe CZTSSe) are most promising light–absorber for solar cell application and reaching record efficiency upto 12.7 % due to its unique optical properties such as variable band gap energy ranging from 1.0 eV (Cu2ZnSnSe4) to 1.5 eV (Cu2ZnSnS4), large optical absorption coefficient 104 cm–1 making kesterite a feasible option for photovoltaic technologies scalable to terawatt. Additionally, kesterite absorbers do not contain any rare metals or toxic materials; one can expect the low-cost solar cells in the near future. This review aims to present an overview of the most recent research activity on the state–of–art kesterite-based absorbers with a brief introduction to kesterite, deposition methods and improved device performance by doping of alkali, germanium and other metal elements either during the kesterite synthesis or afterwards the growth as a post–deposition treatment. As the key component for improving power conversion efficacy of kesterite absorber, doping of alkali, germanium amd other metal elements have attracted great interest and is vital to deliver the promising efficiency. Also, we will summarize what is known about doping, their impact on structural, optical and electrical properties and solar cell performance of kesterite compound. Finally, an effort to summarize important achievements that have been made in this field so far and further directions for improvement of solar cell efficiency of kesterite–based absorber have been focused.

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Publication details

The article was received on 21 Jan 2019, accepted on 01 Apr 2019 and first published on 02 Apr 2019


Article type: Review Article
DOI: 10.1039/C9SE00040B
Citation: Sustainable Energy Fuels, 2019, Accepted Manuscript

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    Impact of various dopant elements on the properties of kesterite compound for solar cell application: A status review

    D. S. Dhawale, A. Ali and A. Lokhande, Sustainable Energy Fuels, 2019, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C9SE00040B

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