Study of potential fluctuations in thin film solar cells

Published : 30 May 2017

                                                                             ED EEATS – THESIS TOPIC 2017 :
Study of potential fluctuations in thin film solar cells

Start date : October 2017
Offer n° IMEPLaHC-05242017-CMNE
PhD position 2017¬-2020
The application must be received before 2017, June 7th

CuZnSnSSe (CZTS) kesterite compounds are promising candidates for third generation thin film solar cells. Such technology is environment-friendly as only composed of earth abundant and non-toxic elements. However, up to now, contrary to more mature CdTe and CIGS devices, the conversion power efficiency of CZTS solar cells does not allow an industrial development. One of the main performance limitations could come from potential fluctuations induced by a large concentration of intrinsic defects in the CZTS alloys.

The objective of this thesis is to quantitatively analyze the potential fluctuations in these compounds and to identify their effect on the device performance. Two experimental and complementary techniques will be used: optical spectroscopy and electrical measurements. The applicant will carry out photoluminescence excitation spectra and time resolved spectroscopy in order to precisely evidence the presence of band tails and localized states. Secondly, admittance spectroscopy will be used to investigate the response of deep traps in the materials. In both cases, the data interpretation will be associated with models taking into account the potential fluctuations. Finally the results will be confronted to the performance of the solar cells.

Solid knowledge in solid-state physics and semiconductor technology
The candidate must hold a master degree (equivalent to a master M2R in France) or an equivalent university degree eligible for the EEATS Doctoral School of Université Grenoble Alpes.

Thesis advisors: Frédérique Ducroquet (IMEP-¬LaHC) – Henri Mariette  (Institut Néel/INAC)
Funding: Doctoral Grant
Thesis starting date: October/November 2017
Thesis duration: 3 years
 Keywords : Photovoltaics, solar cells, electrical measurement, optical spectroscopy
•    Laboratories : IMEP-LaHC – Grenoble
•    Contact :


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