Development of emerging materials for non-conventional energy generation and storage devices

The main Research activity of CIEMAT in this project is the development of materials for innovation in (i) selective contacts, (ii) transparent electrodes free of crytical raw materials, and (iii) alternative active layers for applications in non-conventional energy generation and storage devices.

The Photovoltaic Solar Energy Group at the Centro de Investigaciones Energéticas Medioambientales y Tecnológicas (CIEMAT) is pioneering, together with the University of Barcelona, in the research of silicon-based solar cells in Spain. The group has a lot of experience in developing a complete silicon heterojunction solar cell technology. In this Project, CIEMAT investigates about non-conventional materials fabricated at low-temperature and by low-cost processes for silicon-based solar devices. Among them, it is worth mentioning transition-metal-oxides and organic compounds as novel selective contactsmetal nitrides as alternative light absorbers; and graphene to be implemented in the front electrode architecture. In addition, CIEMAT also takes part in the evaluation of the researched materials as possible solution for anodes of lithium batteries; and it is also involved in the creation of the environment needed for the exchange of information within the consortium and for the dissemination of results to the society.
Finally, CIEMAT coordinates the work package associated with the development of alternative absorbers and the improvement of the electrodes through the graphene incorporation.


Sputtered Non-Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon as Alternative Absorber for Silicon Photovoltaic Technology

Non-hydrogenated amorphous-silicon films were deposited on glass substrates by Radio Frequency magnetron sputtering with the aim of being used as precursor of a low-cost absorber to replace the conventional silicon absorber in solar cells. Two Serie of samples were deposited varying the substrate temperature and the working gas pressure, ranged from 0.7 to 4.5 Pa. The first Serie was deposited at room temperature, and the second one, at 325 °C. Relatively high deposition rates above 10 Å/s were reached by varying both deposition temperature and working Argon gas pressure to ensure high manufacturing rates. After deposition, the precursor films were treated with a continuous-wave diode laser to achieve a crystallized material considered as the alternative light absorber. Firstly, the structural and optical properties of non-hydrogenated amorphous silicon precursor films were investigated by Raman spectroscopy, atomic force microscopy, X-ray diffraction, reflectance, and transmittance, respectively. Structural changes were observed in the as-deposited films at room temperature, suggesting an orderly structure within an amorphous silicon matrix; meanwhile, the films deposited at higher temperature pointed out an amorphous structure. Lastly, the effect of the precursor material’s deposition conditions, and the laser parameters used in the crystallization process on the quality and properties of the subsequent crystallized material was evaluated. The results showed a strong influence of deposition conditions used in the amorphous silicon precursor.

Título y autores

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Título y autores

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Título y autores

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