Dependence of the minority-carrier lifetime on the stoichiometry of CdTe using time-resolved photoluminescence and first-principles calculations

Jie Ma, Darius Kuciauskas, David Albin, Raghu Bhattacharya, Matthew Reese, Teresa Barnes, Jian V. Li, Timothy Gessert, Su Huai Wei

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88 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

CdTe is one of the most promising materials for thin-film solar cells. However, further improvement of its performance is hindered by its relatively short minority-carrier lifetime. Combining theoretical calculations and experimental measurements, we find that for both intrinsic CdTe and CdTe solar cell devices, longer minority-carrier lifetimes can be achieved under Cd-rich conditions, in contrast to the previous belief that Te-rich conditions are more beneficial. First-principles calculations suggest that the dominant recombination centers limiting the minority-carrier lifetime are the Te antisite and Te interstitial. Therefore, we propose that to optimize the solar cell performance, extrinsic p-type doping (e.g., N, P, or As substitution on Te sites) in CdTe under Cd-rich conditions should be a good approach to simultaneously increase both the minority-carrier lifetime and hole concentration.

Original languageEnglish
Article number067402
JournalPhysical review letters
Volume111
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Aug 7

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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