Pneumatically sprayed Cu2ZnSnS4 films under Ar and Ar–H2 atmosphere.

11 November 2014


Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin films have been deposited by pneumatic spray pyrolysis onto soda-lime glass and Mo-coated glass substrates by using a special reactor designed for working under controlled atmospheres. The films were grown using both Ar and Ar–H2 as the carrier gas and atmosphere, aiming to eliminate the oxygen-containing atmosphere from the classical spray pyrolysis configuration that uses air as the carrier gas. Thin films with different compositions were prepared and thermally annealed to investigate its compositional and physical properties and its performance as absorber layers in solar cells.

To know the impact of the thermal annealing, two different annealing temperatures were used: 550 and 580 °C, both for 30 min. The last temperature showed a great improvement in the crystallinity and allowed a better incorporation of Sn into the films. The optical band gap of the annealed films was found to be around 1.45 eV. Cu–S and ZnO were found as contaminant phases in the as-grown Ar-sprayed samples, but were effectively transformed after annealing.

ZnS was detected in both the as-grown and annealed films as the main secondary phase. Solar cells free of scarce elements were fabricated showing an improved conversion efficiency of 1.4%, evidencing the higher potential of this approach for the synthesis of device-grade films.


Rodriguez, M.E., Sylla, D., Sanchez, Y., López-Marino, S., Fontané, X., López-García, J., Placidi, M., Pérez-Rodríguez, A., Vigil-Galán, O. and Saucedo, E., 2014. Pneumatically sprayed Cu2ZnSnS4 films under Ar and Ar–H2 atmosphere. Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, 47(24), p.245101.

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Category: Solar & Photovoltaics

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