Light Trapping With Photonic Crystals Biology Essay


Photonic crystals are interesting nano-engineered periodic structures that allow control and manipulation of light at very small scales, in particular at frequencies inside or close to the photonic bandgaps. By engineering the photonic bandgap, different regimes of the photonic crystal can be achieved, enhancing solar collection angles, concentrating light to increase the interaction with photovoltaic material, or serving as spectral filters over a certain bandwidth of the solar spectrum. One of the interesting phenomena is the so-called self-collimation, where light is guided without a physical channel, exclusively due to the peculiar dispersion properties of the photonic crystal structure [3]. PCs are formed by alternating high-to-low refractive index materials. They can be periodic in one, two or three dimensions. This means that their optical properties vary periodically in one, two or three directions. In photonic crystals the scale of the periodicity is of the same order as the wavelength of light. A simple 1D photonic crystal is the multilayer stack (better known as Bragg reflector), where an alternating layers of high and low refractive index materials with thicknesses of quarter of the wavelength is stack together (fig 1a). A good example of 2D periodic structures can be a set of identical parallel cylinders placed in a homogeneous host medium (fig1b). In addition, the spheres in a diamond lattice can be good examples of 3D photonic crystals (fig 1c).

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C:\Users\melheno\Desktop\Master Thesis\fig1a.png C:\Users\melheno\Desktop\Master Thesis\fig1b.png C:\Users\melheno\Desktop\Master Thesis\fig1c.png

Figure1: Illustration of photonic crystals a) 1D photonic crystal b) 2D photonic crystal c) 3D photonic crystal [1]

Photonic crystals have found many applications in filters, waveguides, resonators and many more applications. The last years have seen an increasing interest in using photonic crystals for solar-related applications [4-8], especially in configurations that can increase efficiencies of existing solar photovoltaic cells. 1D PC structure in form of a Distributed Bragg Reflector (DBR) can be used as a back reflector due to its near-ideal reflecting characteristics in specific wavelengths [5], [9-14]. Two-dimensional photonic crystals are promising for integration with different components due to their compatibility with existing mature fabrication techniques [15-17]. Though 3D photonic crystals require complex fabrication techniques for solar applications, interesting work has been done to show the importance of such structures for light trapping in solar cells [18-20].

A significant challenge to the incorporation of photonic crystals in solar cells is fabrication. One way to fabricate such structures is using Electron Beam Lithography technique [21], [22] another method is nanoimprint lithography [23], [24], as well as interference lithography [25-27] and , of course, photolithography [28], [29] . However, the last option better applies to semiconductor industry rather than for solar application considering the cost related to fabrication. The fabrication method which is to be applied for solar applications need to have high throughput, large scale manufacturing and of course, they need to be affordable. These structures need to provide such gain to efficiency so that they not only can cover for the manufacturing cost but also provide something more to it, otherwise, simply, industry will not be interested in such structures.

[1] J. D. Joannopoulos, S. G. Johnson, J. N. Winn, and R. D. Meade, Photonic Crystals: Molding the Flow of Light (Second Edition). Princeton University Press, 2008, p. 304.

[2] J. D. Joannopoulos, P. R. Villeneuve, and S. Fan, "Photonic crystals," Solid State Communications, vol. 102, no. 2-3, pp. 165-173, Apr. 1997.

[3] P. T. Rakich, M. S. Dahlem, S. Tandon, M. Ibanescu, M. Soljacić, G. S. Petrich, J. D. Joannopoulos, L. a Kolodziejski, and E. P. Ippen, "Achieving centimetre-scale supercollimation in a large-area two-dimensional photonic crystal.," Nature materials, vol. 5, no. 2, pp. 93-6, Mar. 2006.

[4] J. G. Mutitu, S. Shi, C. Chen, T. Creazzo, A. Barnett, C. Honsberg, and D. W. Prather, "Thin film silicon solar cell design based on photonic crystal and diffractive grating structures," vol. 16, no. 19, pp. 15238-15248, 2008.

[5] J. M. Gee, "Optically enhanced absorption in thin silicon layers using photonic crystals," Conference Record of the Twenty-Ninth IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, 2002., no. May, pp. 150-153, 2002.

[6] N. Feng, J. Michel, L. Zeng, J. Liu, C. Hong, L. C. Kimerling, and X. Duan, "Design of Highly Efficient Light-Trapping Structures for Thin-Film Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells," vol. 54, no. 8, pp. 1926-1933, 2007.

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[7] K. X. Wang, Z. Yu, V. Liu, Y. Cui, and S. Fan, "Absorption Enhancement in Ultrathin Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells with Antireflection and Light-Trapping Nanocone Gratings," Nano Letters, vol. 12, no. 3, pp. 1616-1619, Mar. 2012.

[8] J. Bhattacharya, N. Chakravarty, S. Pattnaik, W. D. Slafer, and R. Biswas, "A photonic-plasmonic structure for enhancing light absorption in thin film solar cells A photonic-plasmonic structure for enhancing light absorption in thin film solar cells," vol. 131114, 2011.

[9] X. Sheng, J. Liu, I. Kozinsky, A. M. Agarwal, J. Michel, and L. C. Kimerling, "Efficient light trapping structure in thin film silicon solar cells," 2010 35th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, pp. 001575-001576, Jun. 2010.

[10] X. Sheng, S. G. Johnson, L. Z. Broderick, J. Michel, and L. C. Kimerling, "Integrated photonic structures for light trapping in thin-film Si solar cells," Applied Physics Letters, vol. 100, no. 11, p. 111110, 2012.

[11] L. Zhao, Y. H. Zuo, C. L. Zhou, H. L. Li, H. W. Diao, and W. J. Wang, "A highly efficient light-trapping structure for thin-film silicon solar cells," Solar Energy, vol. 84, no. 1, pp. 110-115, Jan. 2010.

[12] L. Zeng, Y. Yi, C. Hong, J. Liu, N. Feng, X. Duan, L. C. Kimerling, and B. a. Alamariu, "Efficiency enhancement in Si solar cells by textured photonic crystal back reflector," Applied Physics Letters, vol. 89, no. 11, p. 111111, 2006.

[13] K.-H. Yang and J.-Y. Yang, "The analysis of light trapping and internal quantum efficiency of a solar cell with DBR back reflector," Solar Energy, vol. 83, no. 11, pp. 2050-2058, Nov. 2009.

[14] D. Zhou and R. Biswas, "Photonic crystal enhanced light-trapping in thin film solar cells," Journal of Applied Physics, vol. 103, no. 9, p. 093102, 2008.

[15] A. Bozzola, "Light trapping in thin film silicon solar cells with mono and bidimensional photonic patterns," Optical Nanostructures and …, pp. 44-46, 2011.

[16] S. Mallick, M. Agrawal, and P. Peumans, "Optimal light trapping in ultra-thin photonic crystal crystalline silicon solar cells," Optics Express, vol. 18, no. 6, pp. 300-305, 2010.

[17] A. Chutinan and S. John, "Light trapping and absorption optimization in certain thin-film photonic crystal architectures," Physical Review A, vol. 78, no. 2, pp. 1-15, Aug. 2008.

[18] J. Upping, a. Bielawny, C. Ulbrich, M. Peters, J. C. Goldschmidt, L. Steidl, R. Zentel, T. Beckers, a. Lambertz, R. Carius, U. Rau, and R. B. Wehrspohn, "3D photonic crystals for photon management in solar cells," p. 77560A-77560A-13, 2010.

[19] J.-Y. Chen, "Improvement of photovoltaic efficiency using 3D photonic-crystal enhanced light trapping and absorption," Physica E: Low-dimensional Systems and Nanostructures, vol. 44, no. 1, pp. 43-48, Oct. 2011.

[20] J. Upping, a. Bielawny, P. T. Miclea, and R. B. Wehrspohn, "3D photonic crystals for ultra-light trapping in solar cells," Proceedings of SPIE, vol. 7002, p. 70020W-70020W-9, 2008.

[21] Y. Xia, D. Campbell, and K. Korte, "Fabrication and Analysis of Photonic Crystals," Journal of Chemical Education, vol. 18, no. 10, pp. 1402-1411, 2007.

[22] L. O'Faolain, M. V. Kotlyar, N. Tripathi, R. Wilson, and T. F. Krauss, "Fabrication of photonic crystals using a spin-coated hydrogen silsesquioxane hard mask," Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B: Microelectronics and Nanometer Structures, vol. 24, no. 1, p. 336, 2006.

[23] A. Chen, S. Chua, C. F. Jr, B. Wang, and O. Wilhelmi, "Two-dimensional Photonic Crystals Fabricated by Nanoimprint Lithography," Singapore-MIT Alliance (SMA), pp. 1-5, 2005.

[24] K. Ishihara, M. Fujita, and I. Matsubara, "Direct Fabrication of 2D Glass Photonic Crystals by Nanoimprint Lithography," Lasers and Electro- …, vol. CLEO/Pacif, pp. 239-240, 2005.

[25] B. Saekow, S. Rahong, A. Pankiew, R. Sanboontan, W. Bunjongpru, G. Tumcharern, and C. Hruanan, "Laser Interference Lithography for Photonic Crystals Template," Journal of the Microscopy Society of Thailand 24 (2), 108-111, vol. 24, no. 2, pp. 108-111, 2010.

[26] A. Chincholi and S. Banerjee, "Parallel fabrication of photonic crystals (PC) using interference lithography for integrated waveguide-PC devices," Optical Society of America, no. 1, pp. 2-4, 2005.

[27] M. Miyake, Y.-C. Chen, P. V. Braun, and P. Wiltzius, "Fabrication of Three-Dimensional Photonic Crystals Using Multibeam Interference Lithography and Electrodeposition," Advanced Materials, vol. 21, no. 29, pp. 3012-3015, Aug. 2009.

[28] P. Yao, G. J. Schneider, D. W. Prather, E. D. Wetzel, and D. J. O'Brien, "Fabrication of three-dimensional photonic crystals with multilayer photolithography," Optics Express, vol. 13, no. 7, p. 2370, Apr. 2005.

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[29] K. Choi, J. Huh, Y. Cui, and B. Ju, "2D photonic crystal TM polarizer fabricated by one-step combined nanoimprint and photolithography," Solid-State Sensors, pp. 1638-1641, 2011.