Today's thin film photovoltaic technologies comprising CuInS 2 (CIS), CuInGaSe 2 (CIGS) and CdTe rely on elements that are costly and rare in the earth's crust (e.g. In, Ga, Te) and are toxic (e.g. Cd). Hence, in future cost reduction and increased production, using abundantly available non-toxic elements, seem to be the main issues. Cu 2ZnSnS 4 (CZTS), having the kesterite structure, is one of the most promising absorber layer candidates for low cost thin film solar cells, because of its suitable direct band gap between 1.4 and 1.5 eV and large absorption coefficient, over 10 4 cm -1. Also it is composed of earth abundant and non-toxic elements, promising price reductions in future. Recently, research in this area has gained momentum due to the desirability of producing Ga, In and Cd free absorber layers and the potential to obtain new insights. Hence, a review of recent literature is urgently warranted. The CZTS progress and present status of CZTS thin film solar cells has been reviewed, with the hope of identifying new paths for productive research.
- Absorber layer
- CZTS thin film solar cells
- Conversion efficiency
- Cu ZnSnS
- Optical absorption coefficient
- Vacuum and non-vacuum based approaches