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The influence of the transparent conducting oxide (TCO) topography was studied on the performance of a silicon oxide intermediate reflector layer (IRL) in a-Si/μc-Si tandem cells, both experimentally and by 3-D optical simulations. Therefore, cells with varying IRL thickness were deposited on three different types of TCOs. Clear differences were observed regarding the performance of the IRL as well as its ideal thickness, both experimentally and in the simulations. Optical modeling suggests that a small autocorrelation length is essential for a good performance. Design rules for both the TCO topography and the IRL thickness can be derived from this interplay.