Thin Films of Tin Sulphide for Application in Photovoltaic Solar Cells

Ramakrishna Reddy, Kotte, Prathap, Pathi and Miles, Robert (2010) Thin Films of Tin Sulphide for Application in Photovoltaic Solar Cells. In: Photovoltaics: Developments, Applications and Impact. Energy Science, Engineering and Technology . Nova Science Publishers, New York, pp. 37-62. ISBN 978-1608760220

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Tin sulphide (SnS) is a promising new material for use in photovoltaic solar cells. With a direct energy band gap of about 1.3 eV, and a high optical absorption coefficient, only a few microns of SnS are needed to absorb most of the incident light. Not only is SnS made of abundant, environmentally acceptable elements, it is also amphoteric giving flexibility to device design. Structures that can be envisioned include p-type SnS (absorber layer) / n-type (window layer) heterojunction devices, buried p-n junction devices made using SnS and p-i-n structure devices where the i-layer is SnS. It is most likely that the grain boundaries in SnS can be passivated either by counter-doping the grain boundaries, or by oxidizing the grain boundaries to form wide energy bandgap n-type SnO2 within p-type SnS, as dopants or oxygen will diffuse preferentially down the grain boundaries and react first at the grain boundary surfaces. Thin film solar cell devices based on the use of SnS have now been produced with efficiencies > 2 %; these and other promising results indicate that it is most likely that devices with efficiencies > 10% will be produced in the near future. Given that tin layers are routinely coated in industry over large area substrates and that industrial sulphidization processes are also well established, the industrialization of this technology should be more straightforward than that encountered with the already commercialised cadmium telluride and copper indium gallium diselenide thin film technologies. This review discusses the chemical and physical properties of SnS, the methods of producing both bulk crystals and thin films of SnS, the literature available on studies of SnS2 based photovoltaic solar cell devices, and progress made so far in developing this exciting new material.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: H800 Chemical, Process and Energy Engineering
H900 Others in Engineering
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Mathematics, Physics and Electrical Engineering
Depositing User: EPrint Services
Date Deposited: 05 Feb 2010 15:27
Last Modified: 17 Dec 2023 16:04

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