MANIPULATION OF RADICALS AND IONS IN LFICP-AIDED FABRICATION OF HIGH EFFICIENCY SOLAR CELLS
Plasma Sources and Applications Center, NIE, Nanyang Technological University, 637616, Singapore
Abstract. In this talk, we report on the development and diagnostics of low frequency inductively coupled plasma (LFICP) reactor for fabrication of high efficiency silicon solar cells. Chemically active, thermally non-equilibrium plasma possess unique advantages for manipulation of plasma-generated radicals/ions and overall control of growth and self-organization processes that are crucial for fabrication of photovoltaic materials and solar cells. In low frequency inductively coupled plasmas, generation, selection and control of densities and fluxes of the radicals and ions can easily be controlled by the electron energy distributions and other plasma parameters. The electric field and thermal forces guide selective delivery of the radicals to the surface. Specific substrate activation and temperature determine the ion/heat fluxes from the gas phase to the charged surfaces. Detailed discussion includes the inter-connection between in-situ plasma diagnostics (Optical Emission Spectroscopy, Langmuir Probe diagnostics, and Quadruple Mass Spectrometry) and ex-situ material characterization (XRD, Raman, FTIR EDX, UV/Vis, SEM, Hall-effect and others). Special emphasis is paid to the identification and control strategies of the plasma-generated radicals/ions existed in both the ionized gas phase and on the deposition surfaces. We will show how radicals and ions can be manipulated to meet the structural, optical and electronic requirements for high efficiency photovoltaic cells. Solar cell fabricated by the LFICP plasma exhibits an extraordinarily photovoltaic performance with energy conversion efficiency exceeding 18%.