Inserting a Low-Refractive-Index Dielectric Rear Reflector into PERC Cells: Challenges and Opportunities

Jonathan L. Bryan, Lejo Joseph Koduvelikulathu, Zih Wei Peng, Joe V. Carpenter, Michael G. Deceglie, Timothy J. Silverman, Zachary C. Holman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations


One of the simplest and most effective ways to reduce the operating temperature of photovoltaic systems in the field is to reflect unusable, "sub-bandgap" light with energies below the cell absorber's bandgap energy. In this work, low-refractive index SiO2 nanoparticle films inserted between c-Si wafers and metal electrodes significantly increase the reflectance of sub-bandgap light in fabricated test structures. These films are then integrated into the standard PERC fabrication sequence, revealing that the reflection benefits remains after some processing steps but are lost in certain conditions. The SiO2 nanoparticle films are easily ablated during laser contact opening, but are undesirably etched during post-laser cleaning. After Al metallization, the fully fabricated devices show enhanced sub-bandgap reflection when annealed at moderate temperatures, but energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy shows that high-temperature firing causes unwanted Al penetration into the SiO2 nanoparticle film, compromising reflection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2019 IEEE 46th Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2019
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781728104942
StatePublished - Jun 2019
Event46th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2019 - Chicago, United States
Duration: Jun 16 2019Jun 21 2019

Publication series

NameConference Record of the IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference
ISSN (Print)0160-8371


Conference46th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, PVSC 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • PERC solar cell
  • crystalline silicon
  • energy yield
  • module temperature
  • optics
  • photovoltaic cells
  • photovoltaic systems
  • thermal management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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