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Photovoltaic healing of non-uniformities in semiconductor devices

United States Patent

7,098,058
August 29, 2006
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
A method of making a photovoltaic device using light energy and a solution to normalize electric potential variations in the device. A semiconductor layer having nonuniformities comprising areas of aberrant electric potential deviating from the electric potential of the top surface of the semiconductor is deposited onto a substrate layer. A solution containing an electrolyte, at least one bonding material, and positive and negative ions is applied over the top surface of the semiconductor. Light energy is applied to generate photovoltage in the semiconductor, causing a redistribution of the ions and the bonding material to the areas of aberrant electric potential. The bonding material selectively bonds to the nonuniformities in a manner such that the electric potential of the nonuniformities is normalized relative to the electric potential of the top surface of the semiconductor layer. A conductive electrode layer is then deposited over the top surface of the semiconductor layer.
Karpov; Victor G. (Toledo, OH), Roussillon; Yann (Mountain View, CA), Shvydka; Diana (Toledo, OH), Compaan; Alvin D. (Holland, OH), Giolando; Dean M. (Toledo, OH)
University of Toledo (Toledo, OH)
11/ 035,170
January 13, 2005
GOVERNMENT INTERESTS The United States Government has certain rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. NERL-NDJ-1-30630-02 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy.