Infoscience

Journal article

Unlinking absorption and haze in thin film silicon solar cells front electrodes

We study the respective influence of haze and free carrier absorption (FCA) of transparent front electrodes on the photogenerated current of micromorph thin film silicon solar cells. To decouple the haze and FCA we develop bi-layer front electrodes: a flat indium tin oxide layer assures conduction and allows us to tune FCA while the haze is adjusted by varying the thickness of a highly transparent rough ZnO layer. We show how a minimum amount of FCA leads only to a few percents absorption for a single light path but to a strong reduction of the cell current in the infrared part of the spectrum. Conversely, a current enhancement is shown with increasing front electrode haze up to a saturation of the current gain. This saturation correlates remarkably well with the haze of the front electrode calculated in silicon. This allows us to clarify the requirements for the front electrodes of micromorph cells.

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