Does the local built-in potential on grain boundaries of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin films benefit photovoltaic performance of the device?

Jiang, C.-S.; Noufi, R.; Ramanathan, K.; AbuShama, J. A.; Moutinho, H. R.; Al-Jassim, M. M.
September 2004
Applied Physics Letters;9/27/2004, Vol. 85 Issue 13, p2625
Academic Journal
In a previous paper [C.-S. Jiang et al., Appl. Phys. Lett. 84, 3477 (2004)], we reported the existence of a local built-in potential on grain boundaries (GBs) of photovoltaic Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin films. However, whether the built-in potential benefits photovoltaic properties of the device has not been proven. Using a scanning Kelvin probe microscope, we found that, with increasing Ga content in the CIGS film, the built-in potential on the GB drops sharply in a Ga range of 28%–38%. Comparing the changes in the built-in potential, the device efficiency, and the CIGS band gap, we conclude that the built-in potential on the GB plays a significant role in the device conversion efficiency of NREL's three-stage CIGS device.


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