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Optical properties of gold and aluminium nanoparticles for silicon solar cell applications

Optical properties of gold and aluminium nanoparticles for silicon solar cell applications
Optical properties of gold and aluminium nanoparticles for silicon solar cell applications
The optical properties of metal nanoparticles are explored as a function of lateral size, shape,aspect-ratio and metal type. Simulations based on the discrete dipole approximation are compared with experimental measurements of arrays of metal nanoparticles fabricated by electron-beam lithography. Careful selection of experimental parameters ensures minimization of far-field and near-field coupling, and inhomogeneous broadening, thus allowing comparison with single particle simulations. The optical properties of Au nanoparticles are compared with similar Al nanoparticles for each particle type. For solar cell light-trapping applications, we require metal nanoparticles that exhibit extinction peaks near the band-edge region of the absorbing material, as well as low absorption and large optical cross-sections. Al nanoparticles are shown to be of interest for amorphous silicon solar cells, but their applications for polycrystalline solar cells is limited by the presence of an interband region in the near-infrared. The opposite is found for Au nanoparticles, which feature an interband threshold region in the visible that makes their optical properties unsuitable for amorphous silicon but very suitable for crystalline and polycrystalline silicon solar cells.
0021-8979
84343
Temple, Tristan
07b14f72-7405-411b-80c4-3b774b75aafb
Bagnall, Darren
5d84abc8-77e5-43f7-97cb-e28533f25ef1
Temple, Tristan
07b14f72-7405-411b-80c4-3b774b75aafb
Bagnall, Darren
5d84abc8-77e5-43f7-97cb-e28533f25ef1

Temple, Tristan and Bagnall, Darren (2011) Optical properties of gold and aluminium nanoparticles for silicon solar cell applications. Journal of Applied Physics, 109 (8), 84343. (doi:10.1063/1.3574657).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The optical properties of metal nanoparticles are explored as a function of lateral size, shape,aspect-ratio and metal type. Simulations based on the discrete dipole approximation are compared with experimental measurements of arrays of metal nanoparticles fabricated by electron-beam lithography. Careful selection of experimental parameters ensures minimization of far-field and near-field coupling, and inhomogeneous broadening, thus allowing comparison with single particle simulations. The optical properties of Au nanoparticles are compared with similar Al nanoparticles for each particle type. For solar cell light-trapping applications, we require metal nanoparticles that exhibit extinction peaks near the band-edge region of the absorbing material, as well as low absorption and large optical cross-sections. Al nanoparticles are shown to be of interest for amorphous silicon solar cells, but their applications for polycrystalline solar cells is limited by the presence of an interband region in the near-infrared. The opposite is found for Au nanoparticles, which feature an interband threshold region in the visible that makes their optical properties unsuitable for amorphous silicon but very suitable for crystalline and polycrystalline silicon solar cells.

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Published date: 27 April 2011
Organisations: Nanoelectronics and Nanotechnology

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 272290
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/272290
ISSN: 0021-8979
PURE UUID: 27e56192-4ae6-4c3a-a0fd-10cee71f25be

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Date deposited: 17 May 2011 13:05
Last modified: 11 Nov 2019 21:04

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