Monday, March 21, 2011

Phosphorus Diffusion

There are two main layers that are essential to the solar cell’s function. One is a p-type layer, which means that the wafers are boron doped, and an n-type layer created by introducing phosphorus. The silicon wafer usually already starts off by already being doped with boron. in order to form the n-type layer, phosphorus has to be introduced to the wafer at high temperatures of around 870°C for 15-30 minutes in order for it to penetrate into the wafer. The excess n-type material is then chemically removed. These diffusion processes are usually performed through the use of a batch tube furnace or an in-line continuous furnace. According to BTU, detailed cost of ownership models have shown that in-line diffusion can deliver per wafer costs of as low as one third the cost of a batch diffusion furnace. The basic furnace construction and process are very similar to the process steps used by packaging engineers. 

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