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  • Endogeneous and exogeneous hydrogen influence on amorphous silicon thin films analysis by pulsed radiofrequency glow discharge optical emission spectrometry.P. Sánchez, D. Alberts, B. Fernández, A. Menéndez, R. Pereiro and A. Sanz-Medel. (2012)

Endogeneous and exogeneous hydrogen influence on amorphous silicon thin films analysis by pulsed radiofrequency glow discharge optical emission spectrometry.P. Sánchez, D. Alberts, B. Fernández, A. Menéndez, R. Pereiro and A. Sanz-Medel. (2012)

Analytica Chimica Acta, 714, 1-7 (2012) (IF=4.55)

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Abstract

During the last decade the photovoltaic industry has been growing rapidly. One major strategy to reduce the production costs is the use of thin film solar cells based on hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H). The potential of pulsed radiofrequency glow discharge coupled to optical emission spectrometry (rf-PGD-OES) for the analysis of such type of materials has been investigated in this work. It is known that when hydrogen is present in the argon discharge, even in small quantities, significant changes can occur in the emission intensities and sputtering rates measured. Therefore, a critical comparison has been carried out by rf-PGD-OES, in terms of emission intensities, penetration rates and depth resolution for two modes of hydrogen introduction in the discharge, manually external hydrogen in gaseous form (0.2% H(2)-Ar) or internal hydrogen, sputtered as a sample constituent. First, a comparative optimisation study (at 600 Pa and 50 W) was performed on conducting materials and on a silicon wafer varying the pulse parameters: pulse frequency (500 Hz-20 kHz) and duty cycle (12.5-50%). Finally, 600 Pa, 50 W, 10 kHz and 25% duty cycle were selected as the optimum conditions to analyse three types of hydrogenated samples: an intrinsic, a B-doped and a P-doped layer based on a-Si:H. Enhanced emission intensities have been measured for most elements in the presence of hydrogen (especially for silicon) despite the observed reduced sputtering rate. The influence of externally added hydrogen and that of hydrogen sputtered as sample constituent from the analysed samples has been evaluated

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