Skip to Main Content
For screen-printed Ag-paste metallization, the growth of Ag crystallites into Si is essential for the current conduction from the Si emitter to the silver finger. There are strong indications that for low contact resistances, some of these Ag crystallites need to be in direct contact with the silver finger without a separating glass layer in between. In this paper, we concentrate on the origin of Ag crystallites grown into Si in direct contact with the silver finger. On textured surfaces, we vary the Si pyramid sizes, round the pyramid tips to varying degrees, and fabricate flat smooth surfaces. We observe that the size of the pyramids does not play an important role in the achievement of low specific contact resistivity unless the pyramid heights become smaller than the thickness of the glass layer, but rounding of the pyramid tips with standard heights increases specific contact resistivity significantly. From our microscopic investigations, we conclude that the largest influence on the topography-dependent contact resistance comes from the glass coverage governing the amount of Ag crystallites directly connected with the silver finger bulk. Furthermore, Ag crystallites in direct contact with the silver finger are also observed on c-Si without n+ emitter doping.
Date of Publication: Jan. 2013