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ELECTRO-CONDUCTIVE PASTE COMPRISING SILVER POWDER WITH D50 IN A SPECIFIC RANGE AND FAST COOLING IN N-TYPE SOLAR CELL PRODUCTION

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000235451D
Publication Date: 2014-Feb-28

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

The invention relates to an electro-conductive paste comprising silver powder with d50 in a specific range and fast cooling in solar cell preparation, preferably n-type solar cell prepara-tion. In particular, the invention relates to a process for preparing a solar cell, a solar cell obtainable from such a process and solar modules comprising at least one such solar cell. The invention relates to a process for the preparation of a solar cell at least comprising the preparation steps: i) provision of a wafer (101); ii) application of an electro-conductive paste onto the wafer (101), wherein the electro-conductive paste comprises as paste constituents: a) Ag particles with d50 in a range from about 2 to about 4 µm; b) an inorganic reaction system; c) an organic vehicle; and d) an additive; to obtain a solar cell precursor; iii) firing of the solar cell precursor to give a solar cell; iv) rapid cooling of the solar cell, wherein a maximum cooling rate of at least about 50 Ks-1 is reached.

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Electro-conductive Paste comprising Silver Powder with d50 in a Specific Range and Fast Cooling in n-Type Solar Cell Production

Field of the Invention

The invention relates to an electro-conductive paste comprising silver powder with d50 in a specific range and fast cooling in solar cell preparation, preferably n-type solar cell preparation. In particular, the invention relates to a process for preparing a solar cell, a solar cell obtainable from such a process and solar modules comprising at least one such solar cell.

Background of the Invention

Solar cells are devices that convert the energy of light into electricity using the photovoltaic effect. Solar power is an attractive green energy source because it is sustainable and produces only non-polluting by-products. Accordingly, a great deal of research is currently being devoted to developing solar cells with enhanced efficiency while continuously lowering material and manufacturing costs. When light hits a solar cell, a fraction of the incident light is reflected by the surface and the remainder transmitted into the solar cell. The transmitted photons are absorbed by the solar cell, which is usually made of a semiconducting material, such as silicon which is often doped appropriately. The absorbed photon energy excites electrons of the semiconducting material, generating electron-hole pairs. These electron-hole pairs are then separated by p-n junctions and collected by conductive electrodes on the solar cell surfaces. Figure 1 shows a minimal construction for a simple solar cell.

Solar cells are very commonly based on silicon, often in the form of a Si wafer. Here, a p-n junction is commonly prepared either by providing an n-type doped Si substrate and applying a p-type doped layer to one face or by providing a p-type doped Si substrate and applying an n-type doped layer to one face to give in both cases a so called p-n junction. The face with the applied layer of dopant generally acts as the front face of the cell, the opposite side of the Si with the original dopant acting as the back face. Both n-type and p-type solar cells are possible and have been exploited industrially. Cells designed to harness light incident on both faces are also possible, but their use has been less extensively harnessed.

In order to allow incident light on the front face of the solar cell to enter and be absorbed, the front electrode is commonly arranged in two sets of perpendicular lines known as “fingers” and “bus bars” respectively. The fingers form an electrical contact with the front face and bus bars link these fingers to allow charge to be drawn off effectively to the external circuit. It is common for this arrangement of fingers and bus bars to be applied in the form of an electro-conductive paste which is fired to give solid electrode bodies. A back electrode is also often applied in the form of an electro-conductive paste which is then fired to give a solid electrode body.

A typical electro-co...