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Patent

High-efficiency photovoltaic back-contact solar cell structures and manufacturing methods using three-dimensional semiconductor absorbers

TL;DR: The back contact back junction solar cell as discussed by the authors comprises a substrate having a light capturing frontside surface with a passivation layer, a doped base region, and an doped backside emitter region with a polarity opposite the doped ground region.
Abstract: Back contact back junction solar cell and methods for manufacturing are provided. The back contact back junction solar cell comprises a substrate having a light capturing frontside surface with a passivation layer, a doped base region, and a doped backside emitter region with a polarity opposite the doped base region. A backside passivation layer and patterned reflective layer on the emitter form a light trapping backside mirror. An interdigitated metallization pattern is positioned on the backside of the solar cell and a permanent reinforcement provides support to the cell.
Citations
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Patent
17 Sep 2010
TL;DR: In this paper, photosensitive devices and associated methods are provided, for example, a photosensitive imager device can include a semiconductor substrate having multiple doped regions forming at least one junction, a textured region coupled to the semiconductor substrategies and positioned to interact with electromagnetic radiation, and an electrical transfer element coupled to an electrical substrate and operable to transfer an electrical signal from the at least 1 junction.
Abstract: Photosensitive devices and associated methods are provided. In one aspect, for example, a photosensitive imager device can include a semiconductor substrate having multiple doped regions forming at least one junction, a textured region coupled to the semiconductor substrate and positioned to interact with electromagnetic radiation, and an electrical transfer element coupled to the semiconductor substrate and operable to transfer an electrical signal from the at least one junction. In one aspect, the textured region is operable to facilitate generation of an electrical signal from the detection of infrared electromagnetic radiation. In another aspect, interacting with electromagnetic radiation further includes increasing the semiconductor substrate's effective absorption wavelength as compared to a semiconductor substrate lacking a textured region.

113 citations

Patent
04 Feb 2010
TL;DR: In this paper, a solar cell and a method for manufacturing the same is described, which includes a substrate of a first conductive type, an anti-reflection layer that is positioned on the substrate and is formed of a transparent conductive oxide material.
Abstract: A solar cell and a method for manufacturing the same are disclosed. The solar cell includes a substrate of a first conductive type, an anti-reflection layer that is positioned on the substrate and is formed of a transparent conductive oxide material, a plurality of emitter layers on the substrate, the plurality of emitter layers being of a second conductive type opposite the first conductive type, a plurality of first electrodes on the plurality of emitter layers, and a plurality of second electrodes that are electrically connected to the substrate and are positioned to be spaced apart from the plurality of first electrodes. The first electrodes and the second electrodes are positioned on the same surface of the substrate.

112 citations

Patent
04 Feb 2009
TL;DR: In this article, a silicon photodetector with a surface layer that is doped with sulfur inclusions with an average concentration in a range of about 0.5 atom percent to about 1 5 atom percent was presented.
Abstract: In one aspect, the present invention provides a silicon photodetector having a surface layer that is doped with sulfur inclusions with an average concentration in a range of about 0.5 atom percent to about 1.5 atom percent. The surface layer forms a diode junction with an underlying portion of the substrate. A plurality of electrical contacts allow application of a reverse bias voltage to the junction in order to facilitate generation of an electrical signal, e.g., a photocurrent, in response to irradiation of the surface layer. The photodetector exhibits a responsivity greater than about 1 A/W for incident wavelengths in a range of about 250 nm to about 1050 nm, and a responsivity greater than about 0.1 A/W for longer wavelengths, e.g., up to about 3.5 microns.

102 citations

Patent
07 Sep 2009
TL;DR: In this paper, a solar cell with a substrate of a first conductive type having at least one via hole and an emitter layer only on at least a portion of the via hole is described.
Abstract: A solar cell and a method of manufacturing the same are disclosed. The solar cell includes a substrate of a first conductive type having at least one via hole; an emitter layer only on at least a portion of the via hole and at least one selected from a group consisting of an incident surface and side surfaces of the substrate, the emitter layer having a second conductive type opposite the first conductive type; at least one first electrode on the incident surface, the first electrode being electrically connected to the emitter layer; a second electrode connected to an opposite surface to the incident surface; and at least one first electrode current collector on the opposite surface, the at least one first electrode current collector being insulated from the second electrode and being electrically connected to the at least one first electrode through the via hole.

91 citations

Patent
04 Feb 2011
TL;DR: In this paper, a method of processing a semiconductor substrate is disclosed that includes placing at least a portion of a surface of the substrate in contact with a fluid, and exposing that surface portion to one or more femtosecond pulses so as to modify the topography of that portion.
Abstract: The present invention generally provides semiconductor substrates having submicron-sized surface features generated by irradiating the surface with ultra short laser pulses. In one aspect, a method of processing a semiconductor substrate is disclosed that includes placing at least a portion of a surface of the substrate in contact with a fluid, and exposing that surface portion to one or more femtosecond pulses so as to modify the topography of that portion. The modification can include, e.g., generating a plurality of submicron-sized spikes in an upper layer of the surface.

78 citations

References
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Patent
20 Jun 2006
TL;DR: In this paper, the UV photoexcitation process is used to remove native oxides prior to deposition, removing volatiles from deposited films, increasing surface energy of the deposited films and increasing the excitation energy of precursors.
Abstract: Embodiments of the invention generally provide a method for depositing films or layers using a UV source during a photoexcitation process. The films are deposited on a substrate and usually contain a material, such as silicon (e.g., epitaxy, crystalline, microcrystalline, polysilicon, or amorphous), silicon oxide, silicon nitride, silicon oxynitride, or other silicon-containing materials. The photoexcitation process may expose the substrate and/or gases to an energy beam or flux prior to, during, or subsequent a deposition process. Therefore, the photoexcitation process may be used to pre-treat or post-treat the substrate or material, to deposit the silicon-containing material, and to enhance chamber cleaning processes. Attributes of the method that are enhanced by the UV photoexcitation process include removing native oxides prior to deposition, removing volatiles from deposited films, increasing surface energy of the deposited films, increasing the excitation energy of precursors, reducing deposition time, and reducing deposition temperature.

404 citations

Patent
03 Dec 2001
TL;DR: Using phase separation technique perforated as well as non-perforated polymeric structures can be made with high aspect ratios (>5) by varying the phase separation process the properties (e.g. porous, non-porous, dense, open skin) of the moulded product can be tuned as mentioned in this paper.
Abstract: Using phase separation technique perforated as well as non-perforated polymeric structures can be made with high aspect ratios (>5). By varying the phase separation process the properties (e.g. porous, non-porous, dense, open skin) of the moulded product can be tuned. Applications are described in the field of micro fluidics (e.g. micro arrays, electrophoretic boards), optics, polymeric solar cells, ball grid arrays, and tissue engineering.

399 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the theoretical and experimental performance of an interdigitated back contact solar cell is described, and the results of a computer study are presented showing the effects of bulk lifetime, surface recombination velocity, device thickness, contact dimensions, and illumination intensity on the conversion efficiency and general device operation.
Abstract: The theoretical and experimental performance of an interdigitated back contact solar cell is described. This type of cell is shown to have significant advantages over a conventional solar cell design when used at high concentration levels, namely, reduced internal series resistance, nonsaturating open-circuit voltage, and an absence of shadowing by front surface contacting fingers. The results of a computer study are presented showing the effects of bulk lifetime, surface recombination velocity, device thickness, contact dimensions, and illumination intensity on the conversion efficiency and general device operation. Experimental results are presented for solar illumination intensities up to 28 W/cm2.

320 citations

Patent
29 Jun 1999
TL;DR: In this paper, a method of making contacts on solar cells is disclosed, where the front surface of a substrate is coated with a dielectric or surface masking layer or layers that contains dopants of the opposite polarity to those used in the surface of the substrate material.
Abstract: A method of making contacts on solar cells is disclosed. The front surface (41) of a substrate (11) is coated with a dielectric or surface masking layer or layers (12) that contains dopants of the opposite polarity to those used in the surface of the substrate material (11). The dielectric layer or layers (12) not only acts as a diffusion source for forming the emitter for the underlying substrate (11) when heat treated, but also acts as a metallization mask during the subsequent electroless plating with solutions such as nickel and copper. The mask may be formed by laser scribing (14) which melts the layer or layers (12), thereby more heavily doping and exposing zones (15) where metallization is required.

292 citations

Patent
21 Apr 1999
TL;DR: In this paper, an electroplating cell for face-up processing of semiconductor substrates is presented. But the authors do not provide a method for electro-chemically depositing a uniform metal layer onto a substrate.
Abstract: The invention generally provides an apparatus and a method for electro-chemically depositing a uniform metal layer onto a substrate. More specifically, the invention provides an electro-chemical deposition cell for face-up processing of semiconductor substrates comprising a substrate support member, a cathode connected to the substrate plating suface, an anode disposed above the substrate support member and an electroplating solution inlet supplying an electroplating solution fluidly connecting the anode and the substrate plating surface. Preferably, the anode comprises a consumable metal source disposed in a liquid permeable structure, and the anode and a cavity ring define a cavity for holding and distributing the electroplating solution to the substrate plating surface. Preferably, the substrate support member comprises a vacuum chuck having vacuum ports disposed on the substrate supporting surface that serves to provide suction during processing and to provide a blow-off gas flow to prevent backside contamination during substrate transfers. The substrate support member also rotates and vibrates during processing to enhance the electro-deposition onto the substrate plating surface. Another aspect of the invention provides a dual catch-cup system comprising an electroplating solution catch-cup and a rinse catch-cup. The dual catch-cup system provides separation of the electroplating solution and the rinse solutions during processing and provides re-circulating systems for the different solutions of the electroplating system. The invention also provides an apparatus for delivering an electrical power to a substrate surface comprising an annular ring electrically connected to a power supply, the annular ring having a contact portion to electrically contact a peripheral portion of the substrate surface. Preferably, the contact portion comprises annular surface, such as a metal impregnated elastomer ring, to provide continuous electrical contact with the peripheral portion of the substrate. Another aspect of the invention provides an apparatus for holding a substrate for electro-chemical deposition comprising a substrate holder having a substrate support surface and an annular ring electrically connected to a power supply, the annular ring having a contact portion to electrically contact a peripheral portion of the substrate surface.

286 citations