Awardee: PLANT PV
Location: Oakland, CA
SubprogramPhotovoltaics
Funding ProgramNext Generation 2
Principal Investigator: Brian Hardin

Multijunction solar cells have theoretical power conversion efficiencies in excess of 29% under one sun illumination and could become a highly disruptive technology if fabricated using low cost processing techniques to epitaxially grow defect tolerant, thin films on silicon. The PLANT PV/Molecular Foundry team studied the feasibility of using cadmium selenide (CdSe) as the wide band-gap, top cell and Si as the bottom cell in monolithically integrated tandem architecture. The greatest challenge in developing tandem solar cells is depositing wide band gap semiconductors that are both highly doped and have minority carrier lifetimes greater than 1 ns. The proposed research was to determine whether it is possible to rapidly grow CdSe films with sufficient minority carrier lifetimes and doping levels required to produce an open-circuit voltage (Voc) greater than 1.1V using close-space sublimation (CSS).