Inorganic photo-sensitized transparent conductive oxide (TCO) nanocomposite thin films for photovoltaic (PV) energy conversion

C. G. Allen, G. H. Shih, B. G. Potter

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Nanophase semiconductor composites are widely researched for the development of third-generation photovoltaic (PV) devices. Through quantum-size effects and phase assembly manipulation the optical absorption and carrier transport properties of nanocomposite films can be influenced. We investigate the potential for improved PV-relevant material performance by examining the photo-sensitization of indium-tin-oxide (ITO) with nanophase germanium (Ge). Nanocomposite films are produced by a sequential, RF-magnetron sputter deposition technique. Deposition control and post-deposition annealing are used to demonstrate the manipulation of the extended-assembly of the nanocrystalline Ge phase. Optical absorption characteristics were correlated to variations in the composite film structure as confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. In addition to structure-dependent variation in spectral absorption, spectrally resolved photoconductivity measurements demonstrate enhanced photoconductivity of composite films associated with the incorporation of the Ge phase into the ITO host. These results support the further evaluation of such nanocomposite TCO materials in optoelectronic devices, including PV systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvanced Nanostructured Solar Cells
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 2010
Event2009 MRS Fall Meeting - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: Nov 30 2009Dec 4 2009

Publication series

NameMaterials Research Society Symposium Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0272-9172


Other2009 MRS Fall Meeting
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBoston, MA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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