Chapter 2

Basics of Thin Film Solar Cells

Marco Ficcadenti and Roberto Murri

Abstract

The chapter presents a short review of the general principles of photovoltaic conversion and different types of thin films solar cells. The aim is to present how a device can evolve from the classical Si p-n junction, with its physical constraints limiting the conversion efficiency, to devices where higher absorption of the light and improved structural design result in higher conversion efficiency. It is now well recognized that these devices have to be based on thin film structures. As a consequence, we have to be able to design the whole stacked thin film structure, and within this, each film must be deposited with well-defined properties. Several deposition techniques can be used, and we will shortly discuss the so-called Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapour Deposition (PECVD), considering the evolution of the film structure.

Total Pages: 3-28 (26)

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