Properties of interfaces in amorphous/crystalline silicon heterojunctions

Sara Olibet*, Evelyne Vallat-Sauvain, Luc Fesquet, Christian Monachon, Aïcha Hessler-Wyser, Jérôme Damon-Lacoste, Stefaan De Wolf, Christophe Ballif

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


To study recombination at the amorphous/crystalline Si (a-Si:H/c-Si) heterointerface, the amphoteric nature of silicon (Si) dangling bonds is taken into account. Modeling interface recombination measured on various test structures provides insight into the microscopic passivation mechanisms, yielding an excellent interface defect density reduction by intrinsic a-Si:H and tunable field-effect passivation by doped layers. The potential of this model's applicability to recombination at other Si heterointerfaces is demonstrated. Solar cell properties of a-Si:H/c-Si heterojunctions are in good accordance with the microscopic interface properties revealed by modeling, that are, e.g., slight asymmetries in the neutral capture cross-sections and band offsets. The importance of atomically abrupt interfaces and the difficulties to obtain them on pyramidally textured c-Si is studied in combination with transmission electron microscopy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)651-656
Number of pages6
JournalPhysica Status Solidi (A) Applications and Materials Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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