Special Issue "Advanced Surface Passivation Processes for Solar Cells"

A special issue of Coatings (ISSN 2079-6412).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 March 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Denis Flandre

Institute of Information and Communication Technologies, Electronics and Applied Mathematics (ICTEAM), Université Catholique de Louvain, 1, Place de l'Université, B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium
Website | E-Mail
Interests: SOI MOS devices; digital and analog circuits; sensors; MEMS and solar cells; high-speed, ultra low-voltage low-power, microwave, biomedical, radiation-hardened and high-temperature electronics and microsystems
Guest Editor
Dr. Ratan Kotipalli

Institute of Information and Communication Technologies, Electronics and Applied Mathematics (ICTEAM), Université Catholique de Louvain, 1, Place de l'Université, B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We would like to invite you to submit your work to this Special Issue on "Advanced Surface Passivation Processes for Solar Cells". Surface and interface recombination in silicon imposes a fundamental limit to the performance of solar cells. At the core of solar energy research is the understanding of charge dynamics at, or near the surfaces and interfaces in silicon solar cells. As cells become thinner, their optical and electronic properties are more strongly affected by internal interfaces. A great deal of interest has been sparked recently on the processing techniques by which charge dynamics can be controlled at interfaces, specially passivation techniques that prevent carrier recombination at the surface of silicon solar cells. This has led to a new appreciation for surface phenomena and an extensive development of dielectric materials and their deposition techniques. Dielectrics ranging from SiOx and SiNx, to AlOx, HfOx, MoOx and TiOx have been shown to effectively passivate the silicon surface. Vast scientific and technological progress has been achieved on this topic by universities and research institutes all around the world. This progress has been supported by the industrial development of novel characterization and deposition tools. The aim of this Special Issue is to present the latest experimental and theoretical developments in the field, through a combination of original research papers and review articles from leading groups around the world.

In particular, the topic of interest includes, but is not limited to

  • Fundamentals and new concepts of silicon surface passivation;
  • Novel thin film dielectrics and deposition technology;
  • Modeling and characterization methods of surface charge dynamics;
  • Implementation of passivation technology into solar cells;
  • Passivated hole and electron selective contacts.

Prof. Dr. Denis Flandre
Dr. Ratan Kotipalli
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Coatings is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Electronic Structure Characterization of Hydrogen Terminated n-type Silicon Passivated by Benzoquinone-Methanol Solutions
Coatings 2018, 8(3), 108; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings8030108
Received: 10 January 2018 / Revised: 14 March 2018 / Accepted: 16 March 2018 / Published: 17 March 2018
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Abstract
The electrical passivation mechanism of benzoquinone-methanol solutions on silicon has been examined through the study of the silicon surface electronic structure. Surface photovoltage (SPV) measurements using both X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and scanning Kelvin probe microscopy (SKPM) indicate a downward band bending of [...] Read more.
The electrical passivation mechanism of benzoquinone-methanol solutions on silicon has been examined through the study of the silicon surface electronic structure. Surface photovoltage (SPV) measurements using both X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and scanning Kelvin probe microscopy (SKPM) indicate a downward band bending of H-Si and benzoquinone (BQ) and methanol (ME) treated samples. This suggests the creation of an accumulation layer of majority carriers near the surface, with a significant field-effect contribution to the observed surface passivation. The highest SPV values recorded for the ME-Si and BQ-Si samples of about −220 mV are approaching the Fermi level—conduction band crossover. Density functional theory (DFT) calculations show that a dipole is formed upon bonding of BQ radicals on the surface, decreasing the surface electron affinity and work function. Considering the 0.07 eV shift due to the dipole and the 0.17 eV downward band bending, the work function of BQ-Si is found to be 4.08 eV. Both the dipole and downward band bending contribute to the formation of surface electron accumulation, and decrease the minority carrier density of n-Si passivated by BQ. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Surface Passivation Processes for Solar Cells)
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Open AccessArticle Tunnel Oxides Formed by Field-Induced Anodisation for Passivated Contacts of Silicon Solar Cells
Received: 5 January 2018 / Revised: 15 February 2018 / Accepted: 19 February 2018 / Published: 23 February 2018
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Abstract
Tunnel silicon oxides form a critical component for passivated contacts for silicon solar cells. They need to be sufficiently thin to allow carriers to tunnel through and to be uniform both in thickness and stoichiometry across the silicon wafer surface, to ensure uniform [...] Read more.
Tunnel silicon oxides form a critical component for passivated contacts for silicon solar cells. They need to be sufficiently thin to allow carriers to tunnel through and to be uniform both in thickness and stoichiometry across the silicon wafer surface, to ensure uniform and low recombination velocities if high conversion efficiencies are to be achieved. This paper reports on the formation of ultra-thin silicon oxide layers by field-induced anodisation (FIA), a process that ensures uniform oxide thickness by passing the anodisation current perpendicularly through the wafer to the silicon surface that is anodised. Spectroscopical analyses show that the FIA oxides contain a lower fraction of Si-rich sub-oxides compared to wet-chemical oxides, resulting in lower recombination velocities at the silicon and oxide interface. This property along with its low temperature formation highlights the potential for FIA to be used to form low-cost tunnel oxide layers for passivated contacts of silicon solar cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Surface Passivation Processes for Solar Cells)
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