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dc.contributor.advisorSites, James R.
dc.contributor.authorZaunbrecher, Katherine
dc.contributor.committeememberGelfand, Martin
dc.contributor.committeememberBuchanan, Kristen
dc.contributor.committeememberSampath, W. S.
dc.date.accessioned2007-01-03T06:40:58Z
dc.date.available2007-01-03T06:40:58Z
dc.date.submitted2014
dc.description2014 Spring.
dc.description.abstractThe goal of increasing the efficiency of solar cell devices is a universal one. Increased photovoltaic (PV) performance means an increase in competition with other energy technologies. One way to improve PV technologies is to develop rapid, accurate characterization tools for quality control. Imaging techniques developed over the past decade are beginning to fill that role. Electroluminescence (EL), photoluminescence (PL), and lock-in thermography are three types of imaging implemented in this study to provide a multifaceted approach to studying imaging as applied to thin-film CdTe solar cells. Images provide spatial information about cell operation, which in turn can be used to identify defects that limit performance. This study began with developing EL, PL, and dark lock-in thermography (DLIT) for CdTe. Once imaging data were acquired, luminescence and thermography signatures of non-uniformities that disrupt the generation and collection of carriers were identified and cataloged. Additional data acquisition and analysis were used to determine luminescence response to varying operating conditions. This includes acquiring spectral data, varying excitation conditions, and correlating luminescence to device performance. EL measurements show variations in a cell's local voltage, which include inhomogeneities in the transparent-conductive oxide (TCO) front contact, CdS window layer, and CdTe absorber layer. EL signatures include large gradients, local reduction of luminescence, and local increases in luminescence on the interior of the device as well as bright spots located on the cell edges. The voltage bias and spectral response were analyzed to determine the response of these non-uniformities and surrounding areas. PL images of CdTe have not shown the same level of detail and features compared to their EL counterparts. Many of the signatures arise from reflections and severe inhomogeneities, but the technique is limited by the external illumination source used to excite carriers. Measurements on unfinished CdS and CdTe films reveal changes in signal after post-deposition processing treatments. DLIT images contained heat signatures arising from defect-related current crowding. Forward- and reverse-bias measurements revealed hot spots related to shunt and weak-diode defects. Modeling and previous studies done on Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin-film solar cells aided in identifying the physical causes of these thermographic and luminescence signatures. Imaging data were also coupled with other characterization techniques to provide a more comprehensive examination of nonuniform features and their origins and effects on device performance. These techniques included light-beam-induced-current (LBIC) measurements, which provide spatial quantum efficiency maps of the cell at varying resolutions, as well as time-resolved photoluminescence and spectral PL mapping. Local drops in quantum efficiency seen in LBIC typically corresponded with reductions in EL signal while minority-carrier lifetime values acquired by time-resolved PL measurements correlate with PL intensity.
dc.format.mediumborn digital
dc.format.mediumdoctoral dissertations
dc.identifierZaunbrecher_colostate_0053A_12276.pdf
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10217/82577
dc.languageEnglish
dc.publisherColorado State University. Libraries
dc.relation.ispartof2000-2019 - CSU Theses and Dissertations
dc.rightsCopyright of the original work is retained by the author.
dc.subjectphotoluminescence
dc.subjectelectroluminescence
dc.subjectphotovoltaics
dc.subjectcadmium telluride
dc.subjectcharacterization
dc.titleImaging as characterization techniques for thin-film cadmium telluride photovoltaics
dc.typeText
dcterms.rights.dplaThe copyright and related rights status of this item has not been evaluated (https://rightsstatements.org/vocab/CNE/1.0/). Please refer to the organization that has made the Item available for more information.
thesis.degree.disciplinePhysics
thesis.degree.grantorColorado State University
thesis.degree.levelDoctoral
thesis.degree.nameDoctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


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