Young Scientist Tutorial on "Advanced Characterization Techniques for Thin-Film Solar Cells"


As part of Symposium A: Thin film chalcogenide photovoltaic materials

Young scientist tutorial on Advanced Characterization Techniques for Thin-Film Solar Cells


Tutorial overview:

This tutorial is intended mainly for young researchers (students and post-graduates within 3 years of degree completion) who are active in the field of thin-film solar cells and would like to learn the fundamentals of characterization methods that are being used in research and development of these materials and devices. All presentations will be given by young, yet experienced researchers who are active in the characterization of Si-, III-V-, chalcogenide-, kesterite-, as well as perovskite-based solar cells. Although these materials will be discussed as model systems, the presentations will primarily focus on the characterization and simulation techniques and thus should be of interest to participants from other symposia as well. Since 2005, this tutorial has already been organized successfully at various E-MRS and MRS Spring Meetings.


Tutorial agenda:

14:00     Fundamental characterization and modeling of thin-film solar cells (Jan Keller):
First part: how to accurately characterize solar cells by current-voltage (IV) and quantum efficiency (QE) measurements; variation in temperature and/or illumination power (for IV) or the application of a voltage and/or light bias (for QE); methods to extract important solar cell parameters, like the diode ideality factor and parasitic resistances, as well as absorber properties, like the diffusion length and Urbach energy; reliability of the obtained values; conclusions about internal loss mechanisms.
Second part: benefits and limitations of numerical modelling, examples using the freeware device simulator SCAPS-1D.
15:30   Coffee break
16:00   Scanning probe microscopy (Evandro Martin Lanzoni): Basic principles of the different SPM techniques and main advantages, limitations, as well as artifacts from the tip-sample interaction; mechanism to acquire surface topography by scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) in various operation modes, as well as the electrical characterization techniques such as electrostatic force microscopy (EFM), Kelvin-probe force microscopy (KPFM), conductive AFM (c-AFM), scanning tunneling spectroscopy (STS) and piezo response; overview of novel SPM developments.
17:15   Photoluminescence characterization of photovoltaic materials and devices (José Marquez Prieto): Basic principles of photoluminescence (PL); practical aspects and setups; hyperspectral PL imaging; quantitative PL and the quasi-Fermi level splitting; results for Cu(In,Ga)Se2, kesterites, halide-perovskites and tandem devices; relationhip between open-circuit voltage, minority-carrier lifetime and PL quantum yield.
18:30   Final discussions and closing



  • Jan Keller
    Department of Material Science and Engineering, Division of Solar Cell Technology
    Uppsala University, PO Box 534, SE‐75121 Uppsala, Sweden; phone: +46 18 4716378
  • Evandro Martin Lanzoni
    University of Luxembourg, Faculté des Sciences, des Technologies et de Médecine
    162A, Avenue de la Faiencerie, 1511 Luxembourg, phone: +352 621 749 761
  • Jose Marquez-Prieto
    Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB), Department Structure and Dynamics of Energy Materials
    Hahn-Meitner-Platz 1, 14109 Berlin, Germany, phone: +49 30 8062 42235

Conference Chairpersons
Daniel ABOU-RASHelmholz Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie GmbH

Hahn-Meitner Platz 1 14109 Berlin Germany

+49 30 8062 43218