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10. junij 2009 ob 12:00, Kolarjeva predavalnica

 

Materials for active and passive solar technologies: from CuInS2 thin film polycristalline solar cells to CuS solar control coatings


Alberto Bollero

Dep. of Energy, CIEMAT, Av. Complutense 22, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Abstract:

Making buildings energy efficient by using passive elements is as important as integrating active elements to use renewable energy for building needs. Proper architectural glazing can significantly reduce energy use for space conditioning. In addition, the incorporation of photovoltaic solar panels can provide enough electric power for specific applications.

Solar cells based on polycrystalline thin films have become in recent years an interesting alternative to the widely used silicon based cells; this is due to the high conversion efficiencies achieved in combination with their stability and optimist production costs. The structure of this type of cells is basically constituted by a substrate (typically glass), a back contact layer, an absorber film (active photovoltaic layer in the cell), a window layer and a front contact layer. CuInS2 is an excellent candidate to be used as absorber film due to its direct band energy gap of 1.5 eV. Considering that CuInS2 is a direct semiconductor, solar cells with a total thickness of just a few micrometres are enough to ensure an optimum performance of the photovoltaic device. The possibility of producing coevaporated Cu-rich and Cu-poor CuInS2 films by proper modulation of the elemental evaporation fluxes and the associated advantages/disadvantages will be discussed.

The second part of the presentation will focus on copper sulphide (CuS) thin films to be used as effective solar control glazing. In particular, the influence of the thickness on the morphology and the optical properties of coevaporated CuS films will be analyzed. The results show near ideal optical properties for application as window coatings, especially in warm climates where cooler rooms are preferred.

 

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