Course Syllabus: Solar Cell Materials and Devices - MSE 320

Course Information

Comprehensive Course Description

320 Solar Cell Materials and Devices course is an elective course for MSc./PhD. students offered from Material Science and Engineering Department. The students interested in solar cells, solar technology and fundamentals behind solar cells from other departments can take the course by registering to the course.
The objective of this course is to provide an insight into the fundamentals of solar cells and describe the manufacturing processes of different types of photovoltaics (PV). Throughout the course, students will learn physical principles of solar irradiation and solar cell operation. Emerging concepts of polymer, hybrid and quantum-dot-based solar cells will be described including device physics, manufacturing and technological development.

The principles and materials addressed in this lecture will be useful for a wide range of applications such as solar cells, light emitting diodes, thermoelectrics and transistors.

Course Description from Program Guide

This course will provide the students with an up-to-date basic knowledge of the physical and chemical principles of materials used in solar cells of various kinds including but not limited to technologies such as: 1) silicon-based solar cells, 2) CIGS, CIS and other inorganic thin film solar cells, 3) multijunction solar cells, 4) nanoparticles and quantum dots solar cells, 5) organic and hybrid solar cells and 6) thermal and concentrator solar power generation.

Goals and Objectives

The objective of this course is to provide an insight into the fundamentals of solar cells and describe the manufacturing processes of different types of photovoltaics (PV). Throughout the course, students will learn physical principles of solar irradiation and solar cell operation. Emerging concepts of polymer, hybrid and quantum-dot-based solar cells will be described including device physics, manufacturing and technological development.

Required Knowledge

This course is elective and no prerequisite course. However, knowledge on physical chemistry, semiconductor physics and thermodynamics is beneficial to understand the concepts that will be addressed during the semester.

Reference Texts

There will be no single textbook following the content of the course. However, there are several books and scientific papers about solar cells can be useful to follow the course content. Some of them are as below: Physics of semiconductor devices- S. M. Sze, Wiley-VCH
Physics of solar cells, from principles to new concepts- Peter Wurfel, Wiley-VCH

The physics of solar cells- Jenny Nelson, Imperial College Press
The photophysics behind photovoltaics and photonics- Guglielmo Lanzani, Wiley-VCH
Solar energy: The physics and engineering of photovoltaic conversion technologies and systems, Organic light emitting devices- Edited by Klaus Muleen and Ullrichj Scherf, Weiley-VCH ( chapters 2,3,6) Generalized detailed balance theory of solar cells- Thomas Kirchartz, Forschungszentrum Julich GmbH

Method of evaluation

10.00% - Presentation 20.00% - Quiz(zes) 30.00% - Midterm exam 40.00% - Final exam

Nature of the assignments

During the semester there will be quizes before lectures about previous and current lecture for the corresponding week. These will include multiple choice or open questions to cover the previous lecture and prepare the student for the current lecture.
There will be a 10 minute presentation for each student during the semester. The details and concept will be discussed in the first week or the semester.
The mid-term will be after the fundamental concept chapters. Presentations will follow the mid-term week. Final exam will be focusing on chapters after mid-term; however will cover the whole semester.

Course Policies

It is expected that all students attend to all the lectures. There might be shifts in the time of the lecture hours due to committments. These will be discussed previously in the lectures.

Additional Information

The course will cover the topics:
-Introduction to photovoltaics
-Fundamentals, limits and losses in solar cells - Semiconductors

- Conversion of chemical energy into electrical energy -Types of solar cells
-Processing of solar cells