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Appl. Sci. 2017, 7(7), 725; doi:10.3390/app7070725

Broadening of Light Coupling to Waveguide Modes in Solar Cells by Disordered Grating Textures

1
IEK5-Photovoltaik, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, 52425 Jülich, Germany
2
Institute for Microstructure Technology, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Hermann-von-Helmholtz-Platz 1, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany
3
Light Technology Institute, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Engesserstraße 13, 76131 Karlsruhe, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Chien-Hung Liu
Received: 20 June 2017 / Revised: 13 July 2017 / Accepted: 13 July 2017 / Published: 15 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Light Management for Optoelectronics)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2131 KB, uploaded 25 July 2017]   |  

Abstract

We investigated the light coupling to waveguide modes in nanophotonic thin-film solar cells exhibiting a tailored disordered grating texture by rigorous optical simulations. Such disordered nanophotonic light trapping concepts have demonstrated enhanced short-circuit current density compared to ordered nanophotonic thin-film solar cells. This observation is commonly explained by a spectral broadening of the resonant light coupling to waveguide modes. In this work, we investigated the origin of this spectral broadening. We identified two basic mechanisms that lead to a spectral broadening of the light coupling to waveguide modes: (1) the broadening of the wave vector transferred by the disordered interface texture and (2) the broadening of the waveguide mode due to the distortion of the wave guiding absorber layer. Depending on the type of disorder, the contribution from each of the mechanisms varies. View Full-Text
Keywords: Light trapping; thin-film solar cells; waveguide modes; optical simulation; FDTD; disordered gratings Light trapping; thin-film solar cells; waveguide modes; optical simulation; FDTD; disordered gratings
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Bittkau, K.; Hoffmann, A.; Paetzold, U.W.; Carius, R. Broadening of Light Coupling to Waveguide Modes in Solar Cells by Disordered Grating Textures. Appl. Sci. 2017, 7, 725.

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