Silicon photovoltaics (PV) dominates the PV industry and the cost of the silicon PV cells has been recently dropped from tens of $/W to sub$/W. However, the cost of bulk silicon is still close to half of the module cost. Silicon solar cells fabricated using few tens of microns can decrease the cost of PV substantially. Additionally, thin c-Si is very flexible which is beneficial for reducing the balance of system cost. There are three main challenges to realize thin film c-Si PV: thin film c-Si fabrication, enhancing Si absorption, and design and development of solar cells using thin (~20 mm) c-Si films. During the course of this project, we are working on all three challenges described above. Figure shows thin silicon solar cell with a photonics light trapping texture and a contact on top.
H. Emrah Ünalan