Application of quasi-steady-state photoconductance technique to lifetime measurements on crystalline germanium substrates
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ProjectCELULAS SOLARES CON CONTACTOS POSTERIORES BASADAS EN SUBSTRATOS DELGADOS DE SILICIO CRISTALINO (AEI-TEC2017-82305-R)
Similar to other high quality crystalline absorbers, an accurate knowledge of surface passivation of crystalline germanium (c-Ge) substrates is crucial for a straightforward improvement of photovoltaic device performance. For crystalline silicon devices, this information is typically obtained by quasi-steady-state photoconductance (QSS-PC) technique using Sinton WCT-120 tool. In this article, we explore the conditions to adapt this measurement technique to c-Ge substrates. Based on PC-1D simulations, we deduce that a minimum effective lifetime is needed corresponding to an effective diffusion length equal to the substrate thickness. Apart from this, an accurate estimation of the total photogeneration inside the c-Ge sample is also mandatory. This condition implies that the light intensity that impinges onto the sample must be measured with a c-Ge sensor, although the integrated c-Si sensor can be used for high flash intensities. Additionally, the optical factor used to evaluate sample reflectance must be also known, which is determined by measuring robust effective lifetime values under photoconductance decay conditions. Finally, knowledge about carrier mobility in c-Ge is also necessary to translate the measured photoconductance to the corresponding excess carrier density values. Lifetime measurements of passivated c-Ge substrates done by QSS-PC technique are validated by comparing them with the ones obtained by microwave photoconductance technique.
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CitationMartin, I. [et al.]. Application of quasi-steady-state photoconductance technique to lifetime measurements on crystalline germanium substrates. "IEEE journal of photovoltaics", 1 Juliol 2020, vol. 10, núm. 4, p. 1068-1075.