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Energies 2016, 9(3), 218;

Advances in Thin-Film Si Solar Cells by Means of SiOx Alloys

Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA), Portici Research Center, P.le E. Fermi 1, Portici 80055, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Narottam Das
Received: 14 January 2016 / Revised: 4 March 2016 / Accepted: 10 March 2016 / Published: 18 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Key Developments in Thin Film Solar Cells)
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The conversion efficiency of thin-film silicon solar cells needs to be improved to be competitive with respect to other technologies. For a more efficient use of light across the solar spectrum, multi-junction architectures are being considered. Light-management considerations are also crucial in order to maximize light absorption in the active regions with a minimum of parasitic optical losses in the supportive layers. Intrinsic and doped silicon oxide alloys can be advantageously applied within thin-film Si solar cells for these purposes. Intrinsic a-SiOx:H films have been fabricated and characterized as a promising wide gap absorber for application in triple-junction solar cells. Single-junction test devices with open circuit voltage up to 950 mV and ~1 V have been demonstrated, in case of rough and flat front electrodes, respectively. Doped silicon oxide alloys with mixed-phase structure have been developed, characterized by considerably lower absorption and refractive index with respect to standard Si-based films, accompanied by electrical conductivity above 10−5 S/cm. These layers have been successfully applied both into single-junction and micromorph tandem solar cells as superior doped layers with additional functionalities. View Full-Text
Keywords: solar cells; thin-film Si; silicon oxide; mixed-phase materials; plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) solar cells; thin-film Si; silicon oxide; mixed-phase materials; plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD)

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Mercaldo, L.V.; Usatii, I.; Delli Veneri, P. Advances in Thin-Film Si Solar Cells by Means of SiOx Alloys. Energies 2016, 9, 218.

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