Silicon and germanium nanocrystal inks for low cost solar cells

Xiaodong Pi, Zachary Holman, Uwe Kortshagen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Silicon is the most widely used material in the microelectronics and photovoltaics industry. Currently it is used in one of two forms: as wafers of single-or polycrystalline material or as CVD deposited thin film material. While crystalline silicon solar cells achieve high efficiencies, the silicon wafer contributes significantly to the module cost. Thin film silicon solar cells can be produced at much lower cost, but they also feature lower efficiencies. In this presentation, we discuss an alternate route to forming silicon (Si) or germanium (Ge) thin films from solution on flexible substrates. Silicon (germanium) nanocrystals are formed in a nonthermal plasma. In the plasma environment a Si/Ge precursor is broken down by electron impact, leading to the nucleation and growth of Si or Ge crystals. By adding dopant precursors, p- and n-doped as well as intrinsic crystals can be formed. Organic ligands can be attached in the plasma such that nanocrystals become soluble in organic solvents. These "nanocrystal inks" can be used to form Si or Ge films with ultra-low-cost printing or coating techniques. Film properties of Si/Ge-ink processed films will be discussed. Proof-of-concept demonstrations of solar cells produced from silicon inks will be presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationASME 2010 4th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, ES 2010
Pages471-474
Number of pages4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventASME 2010 4th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, ES 2010 - Phoenix, AZ, United States
Duration: May 17 2010May 22 2010

Publication series

NameASME 2010 4th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, ES 2010
Volume2

Other

OtherASME 2010 4th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, ES 2010
CountryUnited States
CityPhoenix, AZ
Period5/17/105/22/10

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment

Cite this

Pi, X., Holman, Z., & Kortshagen, U. (2010). Silicon and germanium nanocrystal inks for low cost solar cells. In ASME 2010 4th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, ES 2010 (pp. 471-474). (ASME 2010 4th International Conference on Energy Sustainability, ES 2010; Vol. 2). https://doi.org/10.1115/ES2010-90445