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Cadmium Chloride Assisted Re-Crystallization of CdTe: The Effect of Varying the Annealing Time

  • A. Abbas (a1) (a2), G. D. West (a1), J.W. Bowers (a2), P. M. Kaminski (a2), B. Maniscalco (a2), J.M. Walls (a2), Kurt L. Barth (a3) and W.S. Sampath (a3)...

Abstract

Although the cadmium chloride treatment is an essential process for high efficiency thin film cadmium telluride photovoltaic devices, the precise mechanisms involved that improve the cadmium telluride layer are not well understood. In this investigation we apply advanced micro-structural characterization techniques to study the effect of varying the time of the cadmium chloride annealing treatment on the micro-structure of cadmium telluride solar cells deposited by close spaced sublimation (CSS) and relate this to cell performance. A range of techniques has been used to observe the morphological changes to the micro-structure as well as the chemical and crystallographic changes as a function of treatment parameters. Electrical tests that link the device performance with the micro-structural properties of the cells have also been undertaken. Techniques used include Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) for sub-grain analysis and XPS for composition-depth profiling. The study provides a new insight in to the mechanisms involved in the initiation and the subsequent complete re-crystallization of the cadmium telluride layer.

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1. Green, M. A., Emery, K., Hishikawa, Y., Warta, W. and, Dunlop, E. D., (2013), Solar cell efficiency tables (version 42). Prog. Photovolt: Res. Appl., 21: 827837.
2. Abbas, A., West, G.D., Bowers, J.W., Isherwood, P., Kaminski, P.M., Maniscalco, B., Rowley, P., Walls, J.M., Barricklow, K., Sampath, W.S., Barth, K.L., “The Effect of Cadmium Chloride Treatment on Close-Spaced Sublimated Cadmium Telluride Thin-Film Solar Cells,” Photovoltaics, IEEE Journal of, vol. 3, no.4, pp.1361, 1366, Oct. 2013 doi:10.1109/JPHOTOV.2013.2264995
3. McCandless, B. E., Moulton, L. V. and Birkmire, R. W. (1997), Recrystallization and sulfur diffusion in CdCl2-treated CdTe/CdS thin films. Prog. Photovolt: Res. Appl., 5: 249260. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1099-159X(199707/08)5:4<249::AID-PIP178>3.0.CO;2-S
4. Walls, J.M., Abbas, A., West, G. D., Bowers, J.W., Isherwood, P.J.M., Kaminski, P.M., Maniscalco, B., Sampath, W.S. and Barth, K.L., “The Effect of Annealing Treatments on Close Spaced Sublimated Cadmium Telluride Thin Film Solar Cells,” MRS Online Proceedings Library, Volume 1493, mrsf12-1493-e04-02, January 2012.
5. Abbas, A., West, G.D., Bowers, J.W., Kaminski, P. M., Maniscalco, B., Walls, J.M., Sampath, W.S. and Barth, K.L., “Cadmium Chloride Assisted Re-Crystallization of CdTe: The Effect of the Annealing TemperatureIEEE PVSC proceedings pp356361, 2013.
6. Abbas, A., Maniscalco, B., West, G.D., Bowers, J.W., Kaminski, P. M., Walls, J.M., “Initiation of the cadmium chloride assisted re-crystallization process of magnetron sputtered thin film CdTeIEEE PVSC proceedings pp 19301934, 2013
7. Barth, K.L., Enzenroth, R.A., Sampath, W.S, “Advances in continuous, in-line processing of stable CdS/CdTe devices,” IEEE PVSC proceedings, 2002. vol, no. pp. 551554, 2002.
8. Barth, K.L., Enzenroth, R.A., Sampath, W.S, “Apparatus and Processes for the Mass Production of Photovoltaic ModulesUS patent 6,423,565, July 23, 2002.

Keywords

Cadmium Chloride Assisted Re-Crystallization of CdTe: The Effect of Varying the Annealing Time

  • A. Abbas (a1) (a2), G. D. West (a1), J.W. Bowers (a2), P. M. Kaminski (a2), B. Maniscalco (a2), J.M. Walls (a2), Kurt L. Barth (a3) and W.S. Sampath (a3)...

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