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Investigation into efficiency-limiting defects in mc-Si solar cells

Lookup NU author(s): Oras Al-Ani, Dr Ahmed Sabaawi, Professor Jon Goss, Professor Nick Cowern, Professor Patrick Briddon, Dr Mark Rayson


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First-principles quantum-chemical simulations are combined with TCAD device modelling to examine the impact of the intrinsic stacking faults and Sigma5-(001) twist grain-boundaries on the performance of solar cell efficiency. We find from the combination of these computational methods, the optical properties of ideal stacking faults are similar to those of pure Si, whereas the optimised grainboundary leads to a clear change in the real and imaginary parts of refractive index, increasing the solar-cell current density, and thus the solar cell efficiency. The impact at a device level is dependent upon the areal density of such material. So far as the optically absorption and carrier generation is concerned, segregation of diffusing iron at these planar defects has a negligible impact on device characteristics, but non-radiative recombination processes and carrier traps due to iron are expected to significantly affect efficiency in these regions.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Al-Ani OA, Sabaawi AMA, Goss JP, Cowern NEB, Briddon PR, Rayson MJ

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Solid State Phenomena

Year: 2016

Volume: 242

Pages: 96-101

Online publication date: 23/10/2015

Acceptance date: 28/05/2015

ISSN (print): 1012-0394

ISSN (electronic): 1662-9779

Publisher: Trans Tech Publications


DOI: 10.4028/


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