Design considerations for plasmonic photovoltaics

Vivian E. Ferry, Jeremy N. Munday, Harry A. Atwater

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

575 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper reviews the recent research progress in the incorporation of plasmonic nanostructures with photovoltaic devices and the potential for surface plasmon enhanced absorption. We first outline a variety of cell architectures incorporating metal nanostructures. We then review the experimental fabrication methods and measurements to date, as well as systematic theoretical studies of the optimal nanostructure shapes. Finally we discuss photovoltaic absorber materials that could benefit from surface plasmon enhanced absorption. Plasmonic nanostructures can be used to enhance absorption in a variety of solar cells, including c-Si, a-Si:H, GaAs, and various organic devices. This review discusses the variety of geometries for plasmonic nanostructure incorporation, including top structures, back-contact structures, and embedded structures. The article focuses on the reduction in cell thickness achievable via coupling to waveguide modes, and on the potential for enhanced absorption in other material systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4794-4808
Number of pages15
JournalAdvanced Materials
Volume22
Issue number43
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 16 2010

Keywords

  • photovoltaic devices
  • solar cells
  • surface plasmon resonance
  • thin films

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