Growth optimization and characterization of regular arrays of GaAs/AlGaAs core/shell nanowires for tandem solar cells on silicon.

Author(s) Vettori, M.; Piazza, V.; Cattoni, A.; Scaccabarozzi, A.; Patriarche, G.; Regreny, P.; Chauvin, N.; Botella, C.; Grenet, G.; Penuelas, J.; Fave, A.; Tchernycheva, M.; Gendry, M.
Journal Nanotechnology
Date Published 2019 Feb 22

With a band gap value of 1.7 eV, AlGaAs is one of the ideal III-V alloys for the development of nanowire-based Tandem Solar Cells on silicon. Nevertheless, growing self-catalysed AlGaAs nanowires on silicon by solid-source molecular beam epitaxy is a very difficult task due to the oxidation of Al adatoms by the SiO layer present on the surface. Here we propose a nanowire structure including a p.i.n radial junction inside an AlGaAs shell grown on a p-GaAs core. The crystalline structure of such self-catalysed nanowires grown on an epi-ready Si(111) substrate (with a thin native SiO layer) was investigated by transmission electronic microscopy and photoluminescence. I(V) measurements performed on single nanowires have shown a diode-like behaviour corresponding to the radial p.i.n junction inside the AlGaAs shell. Moreover, a current generation under the electron beam was evidenced over the entire radial junction along the nanowires by means of electron beam induced current (EBIC) microscopy. The same structure was reproduced on patterned substrates with a SiO mask, producing an ordered hexagonal array. High and uniform yields from 83% to 87% of vertical nanowires were obtained on 0.9 × 0.9 cm patterned areas. EBIC mapping performed on these nanowires confirmed the good electrical properties of the radial junction within the nanowires.

DOI 10.1088/1361-6528/aaf3fe
ISSN 1361-6528
Citation Nanotechnology. 2019;30(8):084005.

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