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Development of sol-gel derived gahnite anti-reflection coating for augmenting the power conversion efficiency of polycrystalline silicon solar cells

Abstract

The present research is focused on developing ZnAl2O4 (gahnite) spinel as an antireflection coating material for enhanced energy conversion of polycrystalline silicon solar cells (PSSC). ZnAl2O4 has been synthesized using dual precursors, namely aluminum nitrate nonahydrate and zinc nitrate hexahydrate in ethanol media. Diethanolamine has been used as a sol stabilizer in sol-gel process for ZnAl2O4 nanosheet fabrication. ZnAl2O4 nanosheet was deposited layer-by-layer (LBL) on PSSC by spin coating method. The effect of ZnAl2O4 coating on the physical, electrical, optical properties and temperature distribution in PSSC was investigated. The synthesized antireflection coating (ARC) material bears gahnite (ZnAl2O4) spinel crystal structure composed of two dimensional (2D) nanosheets. An increase in layer thickness proves the LBL deposition of ARC on the PSSC substrate. The ZnAl2O4 2D nanosheet comprising ARC on the PSSC was tested and it exhibited a maximum of 93 % transmittance, short-circuit photocurrent of 42.364 mA/cm2 and maximum power conversion efficiency (PCE) 23.42 % at a low cell temperature (50.2 °C) for three-layer ARC, while the reference cell exhibited 33.518 mA/cm2, 15.74 % and 59.1 °C, respectively. Based on the results, ZnAl2O4 2D nanosheets have been proven as an appropriate ARC material for increasing the PCE of PSSC.

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Development of calcium titanium oxide coated silicon solar cells for enhanced voltage generation capacity

Abstract

Depletion of fossil fuel based energy sources drive the present scenario towards development of solar based alternative energy. Polycrystalline silicon solar cells are preferred due to low cost and abundant availability. However, the power conversion efficiency of polycrystalline silicon is lesser compared to monocrystalline one. The present study aims at analyzing the effect of calcium titanium oxide (CaTiO3) antireflection (AR) coating on the power conversion of polycrystalline solar cells. CaTiO3 offers unique characteristics, such as non-radioactive and non-magnetic orthorhombic biaxial structure with bulk density of 3.91 g/cm3. CaTiO3 film deposition on the solar cell substrate has been carried out using Radio Frequency (RF) magnetron sputter coating technique under varying time durations (10 min to 45 min). Morphological studies proved the formation of CaTiO3 layer and respective elemental percentages on the coated substrate. Open circuit voltage studies were conducted on bare and coated silicon solar substrates under open and controlled atmospheric conditions. CaTiO3 coated on a solar cell substrate in a deposition time of 30 min showed 8.76 % improvement in the cell voltage compared to the bare solar cell.

Open access