Front contact optimization of industrial scale CIGS solar cells for low solar concentration using 2D physical modeling

Highlights

CIGS solar cell at large scale modified to operate under Low Concentration.

2D modeling for front-grid design.

Limitations of CIGS technology for Low Concentration.

Abstract

Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) technology is one of the best absorber materials with record efficiencies among photovoltaic thin-film technologies (22.3% at lab scale and 16% at large commercial module). Although research on this material was originally motivated by low-cost, glass-glass applications focusing to fixed photovoltaic structures, the high efficiency values make CIGS an interesting alternative for low concentration systems. In this paper a 2D model for Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) solar cells under low solar concentration is described and contrasted with experimental data. Using simulation, the effect of front electric contact design parameters: finger width, finger separation, and number of buses are analyzed for solar concentrations from 1 up to 10 suns. Efficiency maps allowing front contact grid optimization are shown and analyzed for each concentration factor (Cx), assessing the viability of CIGS solar cells for low concentration applications, where commercial CIGS solar cells may exhibit 35% of electrical power increases with proper front grid optimization under low concentration respect to conventional grid design.

Keywords

  • Concentrating solar power;
  • Concentrator;
  • Thin-film;
  • Solar energy;
  • Photovoltaic cells;
  • Semiconductor device modeling

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