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Home > News > Radiation Hardness Investigation of PECVD Silicon Carbide Layers for PV Applications
Radiation Hardness Investigation of PECVD Silicon Carbide Layers for PV Applications

 Amorphous silicon carbide films were deposited on P-type Si(100) substrates at various deposition conditions by PECVD technology using SiH4, CH4 and H2 gas as precursors. Technological parameters for wafers were: substrate temperature was 300 oC and gas mixture was for wafer SC1 (SiH4-7 ml/min., CH4-40 ml/min., Ar-10 ml/min) and for wafer SC2(SiH4-4 ml/min., CH4-20 ml/min., Ar-10 ml/min., H2-100 ml/min.), respectively. For both wafers were RF power 150 W and pressure 40 Pa. The concentration of elements in films was determined by RBS and ERD analytical method simultaneously. Chemical compositions were analyzed by FT-IR spectroscopy. Raman measurements of SiC films were performed by using a Raman microscope with 532 nm laser. The thickness and refractive index were determined by spectroscopic ellipsometry. Irradiation of samples with neutrons to a total fluencies A(7.9x1014 cm-2), B(5x1015 cm-2) and C(3.4x1016 cm-2) was performed at room temperature in IBR-M2 reactor at JINR Dubna. The films contain silicon, carbon, hydrogen and small amount of oxygen. IR results showed the presence of Si-C, Si-H, C-H and Si-O bonds. FTIR results showed that the neutron fluencies up to 3.4x1016 cm-2 is not enough to change dramatically concentration of IR active bonds which influence shape of measured IR spectra. Raman spectroscopy results of SiC layers showed decreasing of Raman band feature intensity after neutron irradiation and slightly decreased with increased neutron fluencies. The current-voltage (I-V) characteristics of samples before and after neutron irradiation were measured. The measured current of the films increased after irradiation with neutrons and rise up with neutron fluencies. The higher measured current after irradiation might be due to breaking of the most slightly bonded Si-H, C-H and N-H bonds therefore creating more dangling bonds and so increasing number of defect centers in the layers responsible for the higher conductivity. The Raman spectra showed breaking of SiC and CC bonds due to neutron irradiation, results in to create Si and C clusters where all carbon clusters are electrically active.

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