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A High Purity Sputtering Target Material for Solar Thin Film Cells

2023-04-28

Thin film solar cells are the second generation of solar cells, made by depositing a thin or thin film (TF) of photovoltaic materials on a substrate (such as glass, plastic, or metal). Sputtered targets, sometimes evaporation pellets, are important source materials during the deposition process. Thin film solar cells are commercially used in various technologies, including cadmium telluride (CdTe) thin films, copper indium gallium selenium (CIGS) thin films, and gallium arsenide (GaTe) thin films, Cadmium telluride sputtering target, copper indium gallium selenium sputtering target, and gallium arsenide sputtering target are essential
What is a 'thin' film?
Thin film, as the name implies, has a very thin film thickness. The film thickness of thin film solar cells varies from several nanometers to tens of microns, which is much thinner than the rival technology of thin film and the traditional first generation crystalline silicon solar cells (c-Si), with a maximum thickness of 200 μ M's wafer. This makes thin film solar cells more flexible and lightweight. It is used for building integrated photovoltaics and as a semi transparent photovoltaic glass material that can be laminated onto windows. Other commercial applications use rigid thin film solar cell panels (sandwiched between two glass panels) in some of the world's largest photovoltaic power plants
Advantages of Thin Film Technology
Thin film technology has always been cheaper but less efficient than traditional c-Si technology. This is why people are more focused on the development of sputtering materials and thin film coating technology. However, over the years, it has made significant improvements. The laboratory cell efficiency of CdTe and CIGS has now exceeded 21%, surpassing the main material used in most solar photovoltaic systems, polycrystalline silicon. Compared to traditional PV, Accelerated life testing of thin film modules under laboratory conditions revealed a slightly faster degradation rate, with a typical expected life of 20 years or more
Sputtering target material for solar cell thin film coating
As mentioned earlier, cadmium telluride targets, copper indium gallium selenium sputtering targets, and silicon sputtering targets are important participants in solar cell thin film coating. Next, we will continue to elaborate on the applications of each sputtering target in the solar energy industry
Cadmium telluride sputtering target material for the solar energy industry
This cadmium telluride sputtering target material has a significant market share in the solar energy market. This type of substrate is most commonly used in the manufacturing of thin film solar panels, with a 50% market share. On the basis of its lifecycle, CdTe PV has the smallest carbon footprint, lowest water consumption, and shortest energy recovery time among all solar technologies. CdTe's energy recovery period is less than one year, which can reduce carbon emissions faster, And there will be no short-term energy shortage. The application of CIGS sputtering targets in the solar energy industry
Application of CIGS sputtering target material in the solar energy industry
CIGS sputtering target material is a representative of sputtering target material used in solar energy applications. It is composed of four metal elements, namely copper (Cu), indium (In), gallium (Ga), and selenium (Se). The CIGS thin film sputtered on solar cells has advantages such as strong light absorption, good power generation stability, and high conversion efficiency, which can enable solar cells to generate electricity for a long time in the daytime and generate a large amount of electricity. During the coating process, the purity and quality of CIGS target material will directly affect the quality of the produced thin film, Therefore, when choosing, it is important to consider purchasing high-purity CIGS targets
CIGS has great advantages in the integration of photovoltaic building applications. At the same time, with the improvement of CIGS conversion efficiency, the self-sufficiency rate of CIGS as a photovoltaic building power supply for glass curtain wall construction is also continuously increasing
Gallium arsenide sputtering target material for the solar energy industry
Thin film solar cells made from gallium arsenide sputtering targets are considered to have the highest efficiency among all thin films, reaching up to 28.8%. Gallium arsenide has a lower temperature coefficient, so the efficiency loss at higher temperatures is minimal. In most solar cells, the energy available in weak lighting (low light) leaks, But it will not leak in high-quality GaAs. Broadband gaps and low defect crystal structures also lead to lower leakage current and faster accumulation of lighting voltage. Therefore, even in office or warehouse environments, GaAs can be used to generate solar energy. Gallium arsenide naturally resists damage from moisture, radiation, and ultraviolet radiation. These characteristics make GaAs an excellent choice for aerospace applications with increased ultraviolet radiation