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Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 626; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040626

The Effects of ZnTe:Cu Back Contact on the Performance of CdTe Nanocrystal Solar Cells with Inverted Structure

1
School of Materials Science and Engineering, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China
2
Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Optical Fiber Sensing and Communications, Guangzhou Key Laboratory of Vacuum Coating Technologies and New Energy Materials, Siyuan Laboratory, Department of Physics, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China
3
Institute of Polymer Optoelectronic Materials & Devices, State Key Laboratory of Luminescent Materials & Devices, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 March 2019 / Revised: 8 April 2019 / Accepted: 12 April 2019 / Published: 17 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Synthesis and Modification of Nanostructured Thin Films)
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Abstract

CdTe nanocrystal (NC) solar cells have received much attention in recent years due to their low cost and environmentally friendly fabrication process. Nowadays, the back contact is still the key issue for further improving device performance. It is well known that, in the case of CdTe thin-film solar cells prepared with the close-spaced sublimation (CSS) method, Cu-doped CdTe can drastically decrease the series resistance of CdTe solar cells and result in high device performance. However, there are still few reports on solution-processed CdTe NC solar cells with Cu-doped back contact. In this work, ZnTe:Cu or Cu:Au back contact layer (buffer layer) was deposited on the CdTe NC thin film by thermal evaporation and devices with inverted structure of ITO/ZnO/CdSe/CdTe/ZnTe:Cu (or Cu)/Au were fabricated and investigated. It was found that, comparing to an Au or Cu:Au device, the incorporation of ZnTe:Cu as a back contact layer can improve the open circuit voltage (Voc) and fill factor (FF) due to an optimized band alignment, which results in enhanced power conversion efficiency (PCE). By carefully optimizing the treatment of the ZnTe:Cu film (altering the film thickness and annealing temperature), an excellent PCE of 6.38% was obtained, which showed a 21.06% improvement compared with a device without ZnTe:Cu layer (with a device structure of ITO/ZnO/CdSe/CdTe/Au). View Full-Text
Keywords: nanocrystal; CdTe; Cu-doped; ZnTe; solar cells; solution processed nanocrystal; CdTe; Cu-doped; ZnTe; solar cells; solution processed
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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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Chen, B.; Liu, J.; Cai, Z.; Xu, A.; Liu, X.; Rong, Z.; Qin, D.; Xu, W.; Hou, L.; Liang, Q. The Effects of ZnTe:Cu Back Contact on the Performance of CdTe Nanocrystal Solar Cells with Inverted Structure. Nanomaterials 2019, 9, 626.

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