2D photonic crystals to enhance up-conversion emission for silicon photovoltaics
Morton, Jonathan Andrew Scott
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This thesis investigates the application of 2D photonic crystals to enhance the emission of up-conversion layers to improve the efficiency of silicon photovoltaics. Two up-conversion material compositions are of particular interest in this work: erbium doped titanium dioxide (TiO2:Er) and erbium doped yttrium fluoride (YF3:Er). The 2D photonic crystals under investigation are composed of TiO2:Er and air; and YF3:Er and silicon. These nano-structures are investigated using both simulation and experimental methods. Further work in this thesis analyses the properties of the highly conductive polymer poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) for use as a transparent electrode and thin film electrically conductive adhesive for the application of silicon photovoltaics. The design and geometrical parameters for the 2D photonic crystals were optimised through simulations (plane wave expansion and finite-difference time-domain), before the structures were experimentally fabricated and optically characterised. The novel analysis of the refractive index of the prepared up-conversion materials using ellipsometry was a key step in the design of the photonic crystal structures. A maximum photoluminescence enhancement of 3.79 times was observed for the 980 nm emission profile, however this could not be successfully attributed to a photonic crystal effect. The optical, mechanical and electronic properties of PEDOT:PSS were characterised for thin film samples, using novel ellipsometry analysis.