Matching Items (69)

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High Quality Transparent TiO2/Ag/TiO2 Composite Electrode Films Deposited on Flexible Substrate at Room Temperature by Sputtering

Description

Multilayer structures of TiO2/Ag/TiO2 have been deposited onto flexible substrates by room temperature sputtering to develop indium-free transparent composite electrodes. The effect of Ag thicknesses on optical and electrical properties and the mechanism of conduction have been discussed. The critical

Multilayer structures of TiO2/Ag/TiO2 have been deposited onto flexible substrates by room temperature sputtering to develop indium-free transparent composite electrodes. The effect of Ag thicknesses on optical and electrical properties and the mechanism of conduction have been discussed. The critical thickness (tc) of Ag mid-layer to form a continuous conducting layer is 9.5 nm and the multilayer has been optimized to obtain a sheet resistance of 5.7 Ω/sq and an average optical transmittance of 90% at 590 nm. The Haacke figure of merit (FOM) for tc has one of the highest FOMs with 61.4 × 10-3 Ω-1/sq.

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Date Created
2013-06-07

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Improved Efficiency of P3HT: PCBM Solar Cells by Incorporation of Silver Oxide Interfacial Layer

Description

In recent years, a substantial amount of research has been focused on identifying suitable interfacial layers in organic light-emitting diodes and organic solar cells which has efficient charge transport properties. In this work, a very thin layer of AgOx is

In recent years, a substantial amount of research has been focused on identifying suitable interfacial layers in organic light-emitting diodes and organic solar cells which has efficient charge transport properties. In this work, a very thin layer of AgOx is deposited on top of the ITO layer along with PEDOT:PSS and is observed that the solar cells having the AgOx interfacial layer showed a 28% increase in power conversion efficiency in comparison to that of the control cell. The enhancement in efficiency has been ascribed to improvements in fill factor as well as the increase in shunt resistance and decrease in the series resistance of the solar cells. An equivalent circuit model is also provided to understand the changes in the series and shunt resistances in the AgOx modified devices.

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Created

Date Created
2014-07-28

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Photocurrent Enhancements of Organic Solar Cells by Altering Dewetting of Plasmonic Ag Nanoparticles

Description

Incorporation of metal nanoparticles into active layers of organic solar cells is one of the promising light trapping approaches. The size of metal nanoparticles is one of key factors to strong light trapping, and the size of thermally evaporated metal

Incorporation of metal nanoparticles into active layers of organic solar cells is one of the promising light trapping approaches. The size of metal nanoparticles is one of key factors to strong light trapping, and the size of thermally evaporated metal nanoparticles can be tuned by either post heat treatment or surface modification of substrates. We deposited Ag nanoparticles on ITO by varying nominal thicknesses, and post annealing was carried out to increase their size in radius. PEDOT:PSS was employed onto the ITO substrates as a buffer layer to alter the dewetting behavior of Ag nanoparticles. The size of Ag nanoparticles on PEDOT:PSS were dramatically increased by more than three times compared to those on the ITO substrates. Organic solar cells were fabricated on the ITO and PEDOT:PSS coated ITO substrates with incorporation of those Ag nanoparticles, and their performances were compared. The photocurrents of the cells with the active layers on PEDOT:PSS with an optimal choice of the Ag nanoparticles were greatly enhanced whereas the Ag nanoparticles on the ITO substrates did not lead to the photocurrent enhancements. The origin of the photocurrent enhancements with introducing the Ag nanoparticles on PEDOT:PSS are discussed.

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Created

Date Created
2015-09-21

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Novel Applications to Si Heterojunction Solar Cells

Description

Proposed and tested were three different methods to deposit important layers of Silicon heterojunction solar cells (SHJs). If there were a shortage of Silver, Aluminum could be substituted for the contacts. If there were a shortage of Indium, Yttrium Zinc

Proposed and tested were three different methods to deposit important layers of Silicon heterojunction solar cells (SHJs). If there were a shortage of Silver, Aluminum could be substituted for the contacts. If there were a shortage of Indium, Yttrium Zinc Oxide could be substituted. To improve the solar cell, the p and n type layers can be grown with hydrogenated nanocrystallline Silicon (nc-Si:H). 40% and 50% nc-Si:H has shown a maximum absorbance reduction of 5 times compared to hydrogenated amorphous Silicon (a-Si). The substitutions offer alternatives which increase the total possible amount of solar cell production, advancing toward completion of the Terrawatt challenge.

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Created

Date Created
2014-05

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Structural and Optical Properties of Ag-Doped Copper Oxide Thin Films on Polyethylene Napthalate Substrate Prepared by Low Temperature Microwave Annealing

Description

Silver doped cupric oxide thin films are prepared on polyethylene naphthalate (flexible polymer) substrates. Thin films Ag-doped CuO are deposited on the substrate by co-sputtering followed by microwave assisted oxidation of the metal films. The low temperature tolerance of the

Silver doped cupric oxide thin films are prepared on polyethylene naphthalate (flexible polymer) substrates. Thin films Ag-doped CuO are deposited on the substrate by co-sputtering followed by microwave assisted oxidation of the metal films. The low temperature tolerance of the polymer substrates led to the search for innovative low temperature processing techniques. Cupric oxide is a p-type semiconductor with an indirect band gap and is used as selective absorption layer solar cells. X-ray diffraction identifies the CuO phases. Rutherford backscattering spectrometry measurements confirm the stoichiometry of each copper oxide formed. The surface morphology is determined by atomic force microscopy. The microstructural properties such as crystallite size and the microstrain for (−111) and (111) planes are calculated and discussed. Incorporation of Ag led to the lowering of band gap in CuO. Consequently, it is determined that Ag addition has a strong effect on the structural, morphological, surface, and optical properties of CuO grown on flexible substrates by microwave annealing. Tauc's plot is used to determine the optical band gap of CuO and Ag doped CuO films. The values of the indirect and direct band gap for CuO are found to be 2.02 eV and 3.19 eV, respectively.

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Created

Date Created
2013

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Carbonate-ceramic dual-phase membranes for high temperature carbon dioxide separation

Description

Emission of CO2 into the atmosphere has become an increasingly concerning issue as we progress into the 21st century Flue gas from coal-burning power plants accounts for 40% of all carbon dioxide emissions. The key to successful separation

Emission of CO2 into the atmosphere has become an increasingly concerning issue as we progress into the 21st century Flue gas from coal-burning power plants accounts for 40% of all carbon dioxide emissions. The key to successful separation and sequestration is to separate CO2 directly from flue gas (10-15% CO2, 70% N2), which can range from a few hundred to as high as 1000°C. Conventional microporous membranes (carbons/silicas/zeolites) are capable of separating CO2 from N2 at low temperatures, but cannot achieve separation above 200°C. To overcome the limitations of microporous membranes, a novel ceramic-carbonate dual-phase membrane for high temperature CO2 separation was proposed. The membrane was synthesized from porous La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O3-d (LSCF) supports and infiltrated with molten carbonate (Li2CO3/Na2CO3/K2CO3). The CO2 permeation mechanism involves a reaction between CO2 (gas phase) and O= (solid phase) to form CO3=, which is then transported through the molten carbonate (liquid phase) to achieve separation. The effects of membrane thickness, temperature and CO2 partial pressure were studied. Decreasing thickness from 3.0 to 0.375 mm led to higher fluxes at 900°C, ranging from 0.186 to 0.322 mL.min-1.cm-2 respectively. CO2 flux increased with temperature from 700 to 900°C. Activation energy for permeation was similar to that for oxygen ion conduction in LSCF. For partial pressures above 0.05 atm, the membrane exhibited a nearly constant flux. From these observations, it was determined that oxygen ion conductivity limits CO2 permeation and that the equilibrium oxygen vacancy concentration in LSCF is dependent on the partial pressure of CO2 in the gas phase. Finally, the dual-phase membrane was used as a membrane reactor. Separation at high temperatures can produce warm, highly concentrated streams of CO2 that could be used as a chemical feedstock for the synthesis of syngas (H2 + CO). Towards this, three different membrane reactor configurations were examined: 1) blank system, 2) LSCF catalyst and 3) 10% Ni/y-alumina catalyst. Performance increased in the order of blank system < LSCF catalyst < Ni/y-alumina catalyst. Favorable conditions for syngas production were high temperature (850°C), low sweep gas flow rate (10 mL.min-1) and high methane concentration (50%) using the Ni/y-alumina catalyst.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2011

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Synthesis and stability of ceramic-carbonate dual-phase membrane for carbon dioxide separation

Description

Of the potential technologies for pre-combustion capture, membranes offer the advantages of being temperature resistant, able to handle large flow rates, and having a relatively small footprint. A significant amount of research has centered on the use of polymeric and

Of the potential technologies for pre-combustion capture, membranes offer the advantages of being temperature resistant, able to handle large flow rates, and having a relatively small footprint. A significant amount of research has centered on the use of polymeric and microporous inorganic membranes to separate CO2. These membranes, however, have limitations at high temperature resulting in poor permeation performance. To address these limitations, the use of a dense dual-phase membrane has been studied. These membranes are composed of conductive solid and conductive liquid phases that have the ability to selectively permeate CO2 by forming carbonate ions that diffuse through the membrane at high temperature. The driving force for transport through the membrane is a CO2 partial pressure gradient. The membrane provides a theoretically infinite selectivity. To address stability of the ceramic-carbonate dual-phase membrane for CO2 capture at high temperature, the ceramic phase of the membrane was studied and replaced with materials previously shown to be stable in harsh conditions. The permeation properties and stability of La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O3-δ (LSCF)-carbonate, La0.85Ce0.1Ga0.3Fe0.65Al0.05O3-δ (LCGFA)-carbonate, and Ce0.8Sm0.2O1.9 (SDC)-carbonate membranes were examined under a wide range of experimental conditions at high temperature. LSCF-carbonate membranes were shown to be unstable without the presence of O2 due to reaction of CO2 with the ceramic phase. In the presence of O2, however, the membranes showed stable permeation behavior for more than one month at 900oC. LCGFA-carbonate membranes showed great chemical and permeation stability in the presence of various conditions including exposure to CH4 and H2, however, the permeation performance was quite low when compared to membranes in the literature. Finally, SDC-carbonate membranes showed great chemical and permeation stability both in a CO2:N2 environment for more than two weeks at 900oC as well as more than one month of exposure to simulated syngas conditions at 700oC. Ceramic phase chemical stability increased in the order of LSCF < LCGFA < SDC while permeation performance increased in the order of LCGFA < LSCF < SDC.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2013

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Study of charges present in silicon nitride thin films and their effect on silicon solar cell efficiencies

Description

As crystalline silicon solar cells continue to get thinner, the recombination of carriers at the surfaces of the cell plays an ever-important role in controlling the cell efficiency. One tool to minimize surface recombination is field effect passivation from the

As crystalline silicon solar cells continue to get thinner, the recombination of carriers at the surfaces of the cell plays an ever-important role in controlling the cell efficiency. One tool to minimize surface recombination is field effect passivation from the charges present in the thin films applied on the cell surfaces. The focus of this work is to understand the properties of charges present in the SiNx films and then to develop a mechanism to manipulate the polarity of charges to either negative or positive based on the end-application. Specific silicon-nitrogen dangling bonds (·Si-N), known as K center defects, are the primary charge trapping defects present in the SiNx films. A custom built corona charging tool was used to externally inject positive or negative charges in the SiNx film. Detailed Capacitance-Voltage (C-V) measurements taken on corona charged SiNx samples confirmed the presence of a net positive or negative charge density, as high as +/- 8 x 1012 cm-2, present in the SiNx film. High-energy (~ 4.9 eV) UV radiation was used to control and neutralize the charges in the SiNx films. Electron-Spin-Resonance (ESR) technique was used to detect and quantify the density of neutral K0 defects that are paramagnetically active. The density of the neutral K0 defects increased after UV treatment and decreased after high temperature annealing and charging treatments. Etch-back C-V measurements on SiNx films showed that the K centers are spread throughout the bulk of the SiNx film and not just near the SiNx-Si interface. It was also shown that the negative injected charges in the SiNx film were stable and present even after 1 year under indoor room-temperature conditions. Lastly, a stack of SiO2/SiNx dielectric layers applicable to standard commercial solar cells was developed using a low temperature (< 400 °C) PECVD process. Excellent surface passivation on FZ and CZ Si substrates for both n- and p-type samples was achieved by manipulating and controlling the charge in SiNx films.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2013

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Growth and characterization of novel thin films for microelectronic applications

Description

I studied the properties of novel Co2FeAl0.5Si0.5 (CFAS), ZnGeAs2, and FeS2 (pyrite) thin films for microelectronic applications ranging from spintronic to photovoltaic. CFAS is a half metal with theoretical spin polarization of 100%. I investigated its potential as a spin

I studied the properties of novel Co2FeAl0.5Si0.5 (CFAS), ZnGeAs2, and FeS2 (pyrite) thin films for microelectronic applications ranging from spintronic to photovoltaic. CFAS is a half metal with theoretical spin polarization of 100%. I investigated its potential as a spin injector, for spintronic applications, by studying the critical steps involved in the injection of spin polarized electron populations from tunnel junctions containing CFAS electrodes. Epitaxial CFAS thin films with L21 structure and saturation magnetizations of over 1200 emu/cm3 were produced by optimization of the sputtering growth conditions. Point contact Andreev reflection measurements show that the spin polarization at the CFAS electrode surface exceeds 70%. Analyses of the electrical properties of tunnel junctions with a superconducting Pb counter-electrode indicate that transport through native Al oxide barriers is mostly from direct tunneling, while that through the native CFAS oxide barriers is not. ZnGeAs2 is a semiconductor comprised of only inexpensive and earth-abundant elements. The electronic structure and defect properties are similar in many ways to GaAs. Thus, in theory, efficient solar cells could be made with ZnGeAs2 if similar quality material to that of GaAs could be produced. To understand the thermochemistry and determine the rate limiting steps of ZnGeAs2 thin-film synthesis, the (a) thermal decomposition rate and (b) elemental composition and deposition rate of films were measured. It is concluded that the ZnGeAs2 thin film synthesis is a metastable process with an activation energy of 1.08±0.05 eV for the kinetically-limited decomposition rate and an evaporation coefficient of ~10-3. The thermochemical analysis presented here can be used to predict optimal conditions of ZnGeAs2 physical vapor deposition and thermal processing. Pyrite (FeS2) is another semiconductor that has tremendous potential for use in photovoltaic applications if high quality materials could be made. Here, I present the layer-by-layer growth of single-phase pyrite thin-films on heated substrates using sequential evaporation of Fe under high-vacuum followed by sulfidation at S pressures between 1 mTorr and 1 Torr. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy reveals high-quality, defect-free pyrite grains were produces by this method. It is demonstrated that epitaxial pyrite layer was produced on natural pyrite substrates with this method.

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Created

Date Created
2013

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Protein Crystallization in Unit Gravity and Microgravity Environments: Challenges and Opportunities

Description

Protein crystallization is a technique for the formation of three-dimensional protein crystals, which is widely utilized by scientists, engineers, and researchers. Protein crystallography allows for protein structures and functions to be studied. As proteins play a central role in biological

Protein crystallization is a technique for the formation of three-dimensional protein crystals, which is widely utilized by scientists, engineers, and researchers. Protein crystallography allows for protein structures and functions to be studied. As proteins play a central role in biological systems and life itself, a deeper understanding of their structure-function properties is crucial to elucidating fundamental behaviors, such as protein folding in addition to the role that they play in emerging fields, such as, tissue engineering with application to the emerging field of regenerative medicine. However, a significant limitation toward achieving further advancements in this field is that in order to determine detailed structure of proteins from protein crystals, high-quality and larger size protein crystals are needed. Because it is difficult to produce adequate size, high-quality crystals, it remains difficult to determine the structure of many proteins. However, a new method using a microgravity environment to crystallize proteins has proven effective through various studies conducted on the International Space Station (ISS). In the presence of microgravity, free convection is essentially absent in the bulk solution where crystallization occurs, thus allowing for purely random Brownian motion to exist which favors the nucleation and growth of high-quality protein crystals. Many studies from the ISS to date have demonstrated that growing protein crystals in a microgravity environment produces larger and higher-quality crystals. This method provides new opportunities for better structure identification and analysis of proteins. Although there remains many more limitations and challenges in the field, microgravity protein crystallization holds many opportunities for the future of biotechnology and scientific development. The objective of this thesis was to study the crystallization of hen egg white lysozyme (HEWL) and determine the effects of both unit and microgravity on growth/size and quality of HEWL. Through preliminary trials using a universal ground-based reduced-gravity system, the crystallization of HEWL in a simulated microgravity environment was successfully conducted and the results reported are promising. The utility of continuous, scalable ground-based, microgravity platforms for studies on a wide range of material systems and behavior, such as, protein crystallization, has significant implications regarding its impact on many industries, including drug development as well as regenerative medicine.

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Date Created
2020-12