A new cluster tool for EMIL

A cluster tool for the research on new classes of materials and device structures for photovoltaic and photocatalysis applications. (Source: Altatech)

A cluster tool for the research on new classes of materials and device structures for photovoltaic and photocatalysis applications. (Source: Altatech)

The Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB) and Altatech, a subsidiary of Soitec, have launched a collaborative partnership to research and develop materials for the next generation of high-efficiency solar cells, including new classes of materials and innovative device structures for photovoltaic and photocatalysis applications.

As part of the organizations’ joint effort, Altatech will install a new single-substrate multi-chamber solution, an AltaCVD system, at HZB’s newly constructed Energy Materials Insitu Laboratory (EMIL) at the synchrotron light source BESSY II facility in Berlin. Together, HZB and Altatech will investigate new materials-deposition processes, functional interfaces and device structures for solar energy conversion and storage.

Altatech’s new AltaCVD system will be used in HZB’s EMIL lab to deposit amorphous silicon (alloys), transparent conductive oxides and ultra-thin dielectrics used in fabricating next generation solar energy devices. The CVD system will be hosted by the new EMIL building, adjacent to HZB´s third-generation storage ring BESSY II. The cluster tool will be directly connected to a state-of-the-art X-ray analytical end-station, which accesses a dedicated beam line from BESSY II. The partner organizations will conduct atomic-layer deposition, plasmaenhanced chemical vapor deposition and physical vapor deposition on substrates ranging from small research samples up to fully industry-compatible six-inch wafers and use EMIL’s outstanding analytical capabilities to analyze material and interface properties in between successive processing steps.

“EMIL aims at exploring materials for high-efficiency photovoltaic cells and new catalytic processes for future solar energy generation and storage concepts. We will develop and characterize these materials with basic energy research methods, but prepare them with industrially related methods to ensure rapid industrial implementation,” says Prof. Klaus Lips, head of the EMIL project and HZB’s Advanced Analytics Group. “The AltaCVD system provides us with a unique combination of a highly flexible design in terms of temperatures, precursors, plasma cleaning, etc. with a fully industrial-compatible deposition technology.”

“This order reinforces the AltaCVD system’s leadership position in advanced materialdeposition applications,” says Jean-Luc Delcarri, general manager of Soitec’s Altatech subsidiary. “Our collaboration with the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin allows us to apply our advanced material-deposition technology at a state-of-the-art synchrotron radiation facility. Together, we are opening the door to a new era in advanced renewable-energy development that will help researchers to tackle the challenges of future world energy needs.”

You might also be interested in

  • Podcast | Der Klimawandel und die Stadt: Mehr Grün oder mehr Photovoltaik?
    Nachricht
    12.08.2022
    Podcast | Der Klimawandel und die Stadt: Mehr Grün oder mehr Photovoltaik?
    Wie umgehen mit begrenztem Platz? Städte und Kommunen müssen sich jetzt auf die Folgen des Klimawandels vorbereiten. Gründächer, begrünte Fassaden und großflächige Entsiegelungen könnten zu einem besseren Mikroklima beitragen. Aber wird der Platz nicht auch für Photovoltaik benötigt?

    In einem kontroversen Gespräch loten die Experten Björn Rau (HZB, BAIP) und Jens Hasse (Deutsches Institut für Urbanistik) die Optionen aus und finden neue Lösungen.

  • Humboldt Fellow Alexander Gray comes to HZB
    News
    12.08.2022
    Humboldt Fellow Alexander Gray comes to HZB
    Alexander Gray from Temple University in Philadelphia, USA, is working with HZB physicist Florian Kronast to investigate novel 2D quantum materials at BESSY II. With the fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, he can now deepen this cooperation. At BESSY II, he wants to further develop depth-resolved X-ray microscopic and spectroscopic methods in order to investigate 2D quantum materials and devices for new information technologies even more thoroughly.
  • Green hydrogen: Nanostructured nickel silicide shines as a catalyst
    Science Highlight
    11.08.2022
    Green hydrogen: Nanostructured nickel silicide shines as a catalyst
    Electrical energy from wind or sun can be stored as chemical energy in hydrogen, an excellent fuel and energy carrier. The prerequisite for this, however, is efficient electrolysis of water with inexpensive catalysts. For the oxygen evolution reaction at the anode, nanostructured nickel silicide now promises a significant increase in efficiency. This was demonstrated by a group from the HZB, Technical University of Berlin and the Freie Universität Berlin as part of the CatLab research platform with measurements among others at BESSY II.