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Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission

Dan Lamb Orcid Logo, Stuart Irvine Orcid Logo, Mark A. Baker, Craig I. Underwood, Simran Mardhani

Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications, Volume: 29, Issue: 9, Pages: 1000 - 1007

Swansea University Authors: Dan Lamb Orcid Logo, Stuart Irvine Orcid Logo

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DOI (Published version): 10.1002/pip.3423

Abstract

This paper details 3 years of cadmium telluride (CdTe) photovoltaic performance onboard the AlSat‐1N CubeSat in low earth orbit. These are the first CdTe solar cells to yield I–V measurements from space and help to strengthen the argument for further development of this technology for space applicat...

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Published in: Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications
ISSN: 1062-7995 1099-159X
Published: Wiley 2021
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URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa56859
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spelling 2021-08-09T16:39:20.0085592 v2 56859 2021-05-13 Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission decd92a653848a357f0c6f8e38e0aea0 0000-0002-4762-4641 Dan Lamb Dan Lamb true false 1ddb966eccef99aa96e87f1ea4917f1f 0000-0002-1652-4496 Stuart Irvine Stuart Irvine true false 2021-05-13 MTLS This paper details 3 years of cadmium telluride (CdTe) photovoltaic performance onboard the AlSat‐1N CubeSat in low earth orbit. These are the first CdTe solar cells to yield I–V measurements from space and help to strengthen the argument for further development of this technology for space application. The data have been collected over some 17 000 orbits by the CubeSat with the cells showing no signs of delamination, no deterioration in short circuit current or series resistance. The latter indicating that the aluminium‐doped zinc oxide transparent front electrode performance remained stable over the duration. Effects of temperature on open circuit voltage (Voc) were observed with a calculated temperature coefficient for Voc of −0.19%/°C. Light soaking effects were also observed to increase the Voc. The fill factor decreased over the duration of the mission with a major contribution being a decrease in shunt resistance of all four of the cells. The decrease in shunt resistance is speculated to result from gold diffusion from the rear contacts into the absorber and through to the front interface. This has likely resulted in the formation of a deep trap state within the CdTe and micro shunts formed between the rear and front contact. Further development of this technology should therefore utilise more stable back contacting methodologies more commonly employed for terrestrial CdTe modules. Journal Article Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications 29 9 1000 1007 Wiley 1062-7995 1099-159X cadmium telluride; cadmium telluride; cover glass; MOCVD; space solar cells 1 9 2021 2021-09-01 10.1002/pip.3423 COLLEGE NANME Materials Science and Engineering COLLEGE CODE MTLS Swansea University 2021-08-09T16:39:20.0085592 2021-05-13T09:51:41.7526614 College of Engineering Engineering Dan Lamb 0000-0002-4762-4641 1 Stuart Irvine 0000-0002-1652-4496 2 Mark A. Baker 3 Craig I. Underwood 4 Simran Mardhani 5 56859__19862__e845351656254df49fb84c66e563b335.pdf 56859.pdf 2021-05-13T09:53:15.6598926 Output 1608539 application/pdf Version of Record true © 2021 The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License true eng http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
title Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission
spellingShingle Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission
Dan Lamb
Stuart Irvine
title_short Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission
title_full Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission
title_fullStr Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission
title_full_unstemmed Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission
title_sort Thin film cadmium telluride solar cells on ultra‐thin glass in low earth orbit—3 years of performance data on the AlSat‐1N CubeSat mission
author_id_str_mv decd92a653848a357f0c6f8e38e0aea0
1ddb966eccef99aa96e87f1ea4917f1f
author_id_fullname_str_mv decd92a653848a357f0c6f8e38e0aea0_***_Dan Lamb
1ddb966eccef99aa96e87f1ea4917f1f_***_Stuart Irvine
author Dan Lamb
Stuart Irvine
author2 Dan Lamb
Stuart Irvine
Mark A. Baker
Craig I. Underwood
Simran Mardhani
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institution Swansea University
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description This paper details 3 years of cadmium telluride (CdTe) photovoltaic performance onboard the AlSat‐1N CubeSat in low earth orbit. These are the first CdTe solar cells to yield I–V measurements from space and help to strengthen the argument for further development of this technology for space application. The data have been collected over some 17 000 orbits by the CubeSat with the cells showing no signs of delamination, no deterioration in short circuit current or series resistance. The latter indicating that the aluminium‐doped zinc oxide transparent front electrode performance remained stable over the duration. Effects of temperature on open circuit voltage (Voc) were observed with a calculated temperature coefficient for Voc of −0.19%/°C. Light soaking effects were also observed to increase the Voc. The fill factor decreased over the duration of the mission with a major contribution being a decrease in shunt resistance of all four of the cells. The decrease in shunt resistance is speculated to result from gold diffusion from the rear contacts into the absorber and through to the front interface. This has likely resulted in the formation of a deep trap state within the CdTe and micro shunts formed between the rear and front contact. Further development of this technology should therefore utilise more stable back contacting methodologies more commonly employed for terrestrial CdTe modules.
published_date 2021-09-01T04:12:40Z
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