Effect of low-temperature annealing on defect causing copper-related light-induced degradation in p-type silicon

Henri Vahlman*, Antti Haarahiltunen, Wolfram Kwapil, Jonas Schön, Marko Yli-Koski, Alessandro Inglese, Chiara Modanese, Hele Savin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
227 Downloads (Pure)


Copper is a common impurity in photovoltaic silicon. While reported to precipitate instantly in n-type Si, copper causes light-induced degradation (Cu-LID) in p-type Si. Recently, partial recovery of Cu-LID was observed after only few minutes of dark annealing at 200°C. In this contribution, we investigate the effects of the dark anneal on Cu-LID-limited minority carrier lifetime both experimentally and by simulations. Surprisingly, after initial recovery, the dark anneal results in further degradation corresponding to a many-fold increase in recombination activity compared to the degraded state after illumination. This anneal-induced degradation can potentially cause additional losses in accidentally Cu-contaminated devices when exposed to elevated temperatures, for example during recovery and regeneration treatments of solar cells. Transient ion drift measurements confirmed that the anneal-induced degradation cannot be attributed to residual interstitial Cu after illumination. After hundreds of hours of annealing, the samples showed another recovery. To analyze these experimental results, a comparison to simulations is performed at the end of the paper.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication7th International Conference on Silicon Photovoltaics, SiliconPV 2017
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2017
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics - Freiburg, Germany, Freiburg, Germany
Duration: 3 Apr 20175 Apr 2017
Conference number: 7

Publication series

NameEnergy Procedia
ISSN (Electronic)1876-6102


ConferenceInternational Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics
Abbreviated titleSiliconPV 2017
Internet address


  • Cu
  • LID
  • precipitate
  • recovery
  • silicon

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