Fabrication and doping of thin crystalline Si films prepared by e-beam evaporation on glass substrate

Sedani, Salar Habibpur
In this thesis study, fabrication and doping of silicon thin films prepared by electron beam evaporation equipped with effusion cells for solar cell applications have been investigated. Thin film amorphous Si (a-Si) layers have been fabricated by the electron beam evaporator and simultaneously doped with boron (B) and phosphorous (P) using effusion cells. Samples were prepared on glass substrates for the future solar cell operations. Following the deposition of a-Si thin film, crystallization of the films has been carried out. Solid Phase Crystallization (SPC) and Metal Induced Crystallization (MIC) have been employed to obtain thin film crystalline Si. Crystallization was performed in a conventional tube furnaces and Rapid Thermal annealing systems (RTA) as a function of process parameters such as annealing temperature and duration. Produced films have been characterized using chemical and structural characterization techniques such as Raman Spectroscopy, X-Ray Diffractometer and Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometer (SIMS). The electrical properties of the films have been studied using Hall Effect and I-V measurements as a function of doping. We have demonstrated successful crystallization of a-Si by SPC at temperatures above 600 °C. The crystallization occurred at lower temperatures in the case of MIC. For doping, P was evaporated from the effusion cell at a temperature between 600 °C and 800 °C. For B, the evaporation temperature was 1700 °C and 1900 °C. The thickness and the band gap of the Si films were determined by ellipsometry method and the results were compared for different evaporation temperatures. The effect of doping was monitored by the I-V and Hall Effect measurements. We have seen that the doping was accomplished in most of the cases. For the samples annealed at relatively high temperatures, the measured doping type was inconsistent with the expected results. This was attributed to the contamination from the glass substrate. To understand the origin of this contamination, we analyzed the chemical structure of the film and glass by X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) and seen that the glass is the main source of contamination. In order to prevent this contamination we have suggested covering the glass substrate with Si3N4 (Silicon Nitride) which act as a good diffusion barrier for impurities.


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Citation Formats
S. H. Sedani, “Fabrication and doping of thin crystalline Si films prepared by e-beam evaporation on glass substrate,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2013.