Aluminum oxide-n-Si field effect inversion layer solar cells with organic top contact

A. S. Erickson, N. K. Kedem, A. E. Haj-Yahia, D. Cahen

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We demonstrate a solar cell that uses fixed negative charges formed at the interface of n-Si with Al2O3 to generate strong inversion at the surface of n-Si by electrostatic repulsion. Built-in voltages of up to 755 mV are found at this interface. In order to harness this large built-in voltage, we present a photovoltaic device where the photocurrent generated in this inversion layer is extracted via an inversion layer induced by a high work function transparent organic top contact, deposited on top of a passivating and dipole-inducing molecular monolayer. Results of the effect of the molecular monolayer on device performance yield open-circuit voltages of up to 550 mV for moderately doped Si, demonstrating the effectiveness of this contact structure in removing the Fermi level pinning that has hindered past efforts in developing this type of solar cell with n-type Si.

Original languageEnglish
Article number233901
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number23
StatePublished - 3 Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes


We thank the Helmsley trust, the Wolfson family trust, and the Grand Center for Sensors and Security for partial support. We thank K. L. Narasimhan (TIFR, India) for support with C-V measurement and analysis, Ellen Moons (Karlstad University, Sweden) and Rotem Har-Lavan (Weizmann Institute of Science) for instructive conversations and the reviewer for suggesting the reflectivity experiment. A.S.E. acknowledges a Weizmann Institute dean's postdoctoral fellowship. D.C. holds the Schaefer Chair in Energy Research.

FundersFunder number
Weizmann Institute dean's


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