Light-induced performance increase of silicon heterojunction solar cells

Eiji Kobayashi, Stefaan De Wolf, Jacques Levrat, Gabriel Christmann, Antoine Descoeudres, Sylvain Nicolay, Matthieu Despeisse, Yoshimi Watabe, Christophe Ballif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


Silicon heterojunction solar cells consist of crystalline silicon (c-Si) wafers coated with doped/intrinsic hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) bilayers for passivating-contact formation. Here, we unambiguously demonstrate that carrier injection either due to light soaking or (dark) forward-voltage bias increases the open circuit voltage and fill factor of finished cells, leading to a conversion efficiency gain of up to 0.3% absolute. This phenomenon contrasts markedly with the light-induced degradation known for thin-film a-Si:H solar cells. We associate our performance gain with an increase in surface passivation, which we find is specific to doped a-Si:H/c-Si structures. Our experiments suggest that this improvement originates from a reduced density of recombination-active interface states. To understand the time dependence of the observed phenomena, a kinetic model is presented.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153503
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number15
StatePublished - Oct 11 2016


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