Introduction to Photovoltaics

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Konagai Makoto 
Lecture2  Exercise0  Experiment0
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Fall Semester

Outline of lecture


Purpose of lecture

This lecture provides descriptions of the basic operating principles and design of solar cells, of the technology used currently to produce cells and the improved technology soon to be in operation, and of considerations of importance in the design of systems utilizing these cells.

Plan of lecture

01.Review of semiconductor properties
Crystal structure, energy bandgap, electrons and holes, doping and Fermi-level, carrier transport
02.Generation, recombination, and the basic equations of device physics
Absorption of light, recombination processes, basic equations of semiconductor devices junction
carrier injection, dark characteristics, illuminated characteristics, solar cell output parameters
04.Efficiency limits, losses, and measurement
Efficiency limits, effect of temperature, efficiency losses, efficiency measurement
05.Standard Silicon solar cell technology
Si wafers to solar cells, solar cells to solar cell modules
06.Improved Silicon solar cell technology
Back surface field, passivation technology, PERL cell
07.Thin film solar cells
Amorphous Si, nano-silicon, Cu(InGa)Se2
08.Other device structures
III-V compound, dye-sensitized cell, organic semiconductor cells
09.Photovoltaic systems: Components and applications

Textbook and reference

M.Green: 窶彜olar Cells, Operating Principles,Technology, and System Applications窶, Prentice-HallInc.,
K.Takahashi and M.Konagai: 窶廣morphous Silicon Solar Cells窶, North Oxford Academic.
Others may be specified as the need arises.

Related and/or prerequisite courses

Basic knowledge of semiconductors would be helpful.


Evaluation will be based on the term and examination and the exercises carried out during the classes.

Comments from lecturer

Exercise will be held as the need arises.

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