Bifacial CuInGaS2 thin film solar cells by a low cost paste coating method

Bifacial CuInGaS2 thin film solar cells by a low cost paste coating method
bifacial solar cell; CuInGaS2; CIGS; solar cell
Issue Date
245th ACS National Meeting
Solution processed chalcopyrite compound film (CuInGaS2, CIGS) was synthesized on transparent conducting oxide substrates (tin-doped indium oxide, ITO) aiming at fabrication of bifacial inorganic thin film solar cells by a low cost and printable method. Simple paste coating method was applied to prepare CIGS thin films using a methanol based precursor solution under ambient conditions followed by two-step heat treatment process (oxidation and sulfurization). According to the solar cell performance of the CIGS solar cell devices with the CIGS thin films of three different thickness (400, 800, and 1200 nm) the solar cell device with the thickest film (1200 nm) resulted in the highest power conversion efficiency for front side illumination (5.61%) while the 800 nm thick film revealed the best solar to electricity conversion performance for rear side illumination (1.01%). In order to mimic outdoor applications, in which sunlight can reach both the front and rear sides (due to possible reflected light from the ground) of solar cell devices, either the front or rear sides of the bifacial devices were irradiated simultaneously with two solar simulators. Compared to the simple sum of the efficiencies of the front and rear side illumination only, the bifacial illumination resulted in an extra increase of the apparent power conversion efficiency in the range of 0.1~0.5 %, depending on the CIGS film thickness. We also confirmed that this extra output power acquisition due to bifacial irradiation was not apparently influenced by the light intensity of the rear side illumination, implying that reflected light from the ground (weak light) can be efficiently utilized for improving the overall solar cell efficiency of bifacial devices. This was further confirmed by power conversion efficiency measurement in an outdoor test.
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