PROJECT PROFILE: University of Oregon (PVRD-SIPS)

You are here

--This project is inactive--

Project Name: Low-Cost III-V Photovoltaic Materials by Chloride Vapor Transport Deposition Using Safe Solid Precursors
Funding Opportunity: PVRD-SIPS
SETO Subprogram: Photovoltaics
Location: Eugene, OR
Award Amount: $225,000
Awardee Cost Share: $56,486
Project Investigator: Shannon Boettcher

This project focuses on increasing manufacturability of multi-junction III-V photovoltaics (PV) through the use of a new carrier gas in a close-space vapor transport deposition system. Through the use of safe, inexpensive sources, precursors to the absorber material will be generated in the growth chamber, which will produce a system that is anticipated to deliver a process with high materials utilization and fast growth of III-V materials.

Approach

The research team will build off of its previous award under the BRIDGE funding program where they used closed-space sublimation with a water gas as the carrier to grow thin-film III-V silicon substrates. The new system for closed-space sublimation instead uses a chloride gas, which will eliminate undesirable surface oxide formation that results from a water gas carrier. The absence of an oxide layer will allow the team to improve the quality of the epitaxy films. 

Innovation

The growth mechanism developed by this project will allow for approximately 90% of the precursor materials used in the process to be transferred into the film. This is a high utilization rate compared to the current 30% utilization rate with the materials used today. This, combined with a high growth rate and low-cost precursor materials, allows for multi-junction III-V PV cells to be manufactured in a more cost-effective manner, making them competitive with traditional silicon PV.